[ragel-users] Newbie question: Scanners?

Adrian Thurston thurs... at cs.queensu.ca
Fri May 11 19:49:45 UTC 2007

Hi Andrew,

Scanners are suitable for processing streams of tokens. Generally this
is any input that can be broken down into a list of items taken from a
pool of possibilities.

You can also use a scanner for its backtracking features. They are
useful in cases where you want to attempt one pattern and should that
fail you would like to match some other pattern against a shorter string.


AndrewO wrote:
> Hi,
> I'm pretty new to FSMs, so this is probably an obvious question: when
> would you use a scanner over a standard machine?  Is it just for being
> able to backtrack if you're going to have ambiguity?  Or is it deeper
> than that?
> Sorry if this has been covered elsewere.
> Thanks,
> Andrew O'Brien
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