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I often use python scripts to parse information stored in many of my org tables. To get python to read these tables I have a script that exports specific tables from a specified org document to csv. I then use

csv.DictReader(open('/path/to/csv/table.csv'))

to parse the information with python.

It recently dawned on me that python could (more or less) read the org tables themselves with something like

csv.DictReader(open('/path/to/org/doc.org'), delimiter='|')

but this would require doc.org to consist solely of an org table. I'm curious if anyone has come across a tool for python that can search an org document for a specified table and parse the table as if it were a csv file. Does such a tool exist?

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One solution is to have a Python Babel block in the Org document that parses the table and writes a CSV. You can then call that Babel block from outside Org (using emacsclient?) to produce the CSV.

Or, not surprisingly, John Kitchen has solved this closer to the way you want: http://kitchingroup.cheme.cmu.edu/blog/2014/08/11/Using-org-mode-outside-of-Emacs-sort-of/

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