Word Count FunctionCount the number of words in the string by looping over and testing each individual character.
This page was last reviewed on Sep 2, 2023.
Word count. Sometimes a document may have a certain file size, but the word count is clearer for estimating its length. A function that counts words in Swift can be developed.
With a for-loop over the characters, we can test each character with Character type properties. Some logic is required to test for whitespace.
Example. We introduce the countWords function. This function receives a String and returns an Int—the count of words in the string.
Step 1 We loop over the characters in the string. The for-loop returns each value as a Character type.
Step 2 We test the previous character to see if it is whitespace that could start a word. We also test the current character for a letter.
Step 3 Because we have to test two characters at once on each iteration, we need to set the previous character here.
Step 4 We return the total number of words in the string, based on the result of the iterative function.
func countWords(source: String) -> Int { var count = 0 var previous: Character = " " // Step 1: loop over string characters. for c in source { // Step 2: test previous character for whitespace, and current for letter, number or punctuation. if previous.isWhitespace { if c.isLetter || c.isNumber || c.isPunctuation { count += 1 } } // Step 3: set previous. previous = c } // Step 4: return count of words. return count } // Use word counting function. let input = "Cat, bird and dog." let result = countWords(source: input) print(result)
Summary. It is possible to develop an iterative word count algorithm in Swift, and this gives accurate results for English. It is also fast, as no regular expressions are used.
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Sam Allen is passionate about computer languages. In the past, his work has been recommended by Apple and Microsoft and he has studied computers at a selective university in the United States.
This page was last updated on Sep 2, 2023 (new).
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