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Perl: the Markov chain saw

Re: Find most frequently used word in text file.

by roboticus (Chancellor)
on Dec 19, 2013 at 19:44 UTC ( #1067874=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Find most frequently used word in text file.


The first half is pretty good. There are a few quibbles, but nothing bad. For the second half, though, you're doing *far* too much work to get the best key/value from the hash. I'dd suggest something more like this:

my ($bestVal, $bestKey) = (-1); foreach my $key (@keys) { if ($hash{$key} > $bestVal) { ($bestVal, $bestKey) = ($hash{$key}, $key); } } print "The most frequent word in $ARGV[0] is $bestKey, which was seen +$bestVal times.\n";

Now on to a few of the quibbles:

  • Your variable names are good except one two: %hash and @arrays.
  • chomp $word; is unnecessary, since you just split the string up at non-word characters. Similarly, the regex substitution to remove whitespace is redundant.
  • If your file is big, you may run out of memory because you're reading the entire file at once. You might try:
    while (my $line = <FILE>) {
    This has the additional advantage of removing the need for the @arrays variable.

I didn't see any real problems, just unnecessary work. Nice work!

Update: Updated first quibble.


When your only tool is a hammer, all problems look like your thumb.


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