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I've been playing around with rx lately, and I just noticed there are (at least) 3 different ways of indicating whitespaces in regular expressions.

  1. [:blank:]
  2. [:space:]
  3. \s-

What are the differences between each of them? Does it depend on the major-mode?

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7

The [:blank:] character class matches only the SPC and TAB characters. The other two match whitespace based on the active syntax table.

There does not seem to be a difference between [:space:] and \s-. The latter is an instance of the general \scode pattern for matching based on a syntax class.

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  • 1
    Just did a quick test modifying the syntax table in a buffer to make additional characters whitespace. Testing with regexp-builder I can confirm that both [:space:] and \s- match the additional characters as spaces. – glucas Nov 15 '14 at 14:48

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