For example i have lines:

* test1
** another tests
* some other line

I would like to match t in first line, a in second, s in third.

  • The title and the body of the question are inconsistent. Please edit to make them agree. Do you want the first character which is "not * and not whitespace" or do you want the first character "after certain other character"? Those are completely different requierments.
    – phils
    Mar 18, 2020 at 22:06
  • Sorry. I added an example, to make my question more clear.
    – Sime1
    Mar 19, 2020 at 16:26

2 Answers 2

(re-search-forward "[^*[:space:]]")

Then use match-data or similar functions, if you want the match.

And put that code inside save-excursion if you don't want to end up moving the cursor.

If you want to include newline chars as whitespace chars then use something like

  • 1
    Your code matches all characters in line that are not * or spaces. I just want to match 1 - the first one that is not * or space. btw im using regex for avy command.
    – Sime1
    Mar 18, 2020 at 20:02
  • No, it matches the first such character.
    – Drew
    Mar 18, 2020 at 21:19
  • 1
    @Sime1 If the issue is specific to avy, then please ask a separate new question about avy.
    – phils
    Mar 18, 2020 at 22:04

Emacs regexps don't have arbitrary zero-width look-around assertions, so if you're hoping for a pattern which in its entirety would only ever match those characters (no matter where it started from, or how many times you searched) then you're out of luck. In Emacs such behaviours are achieved using elisp rather than solely with the regexp engine.

You can, of course, search for:

^\*+ \(.\)


"^\\*+ \\(.\\)"

And then you'll have the character you wanted in the matched sub-group.

It all depends on what you're doing, though.

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