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Another idea: The regex engine has a heavy optimization for looking for literal substrings, using the same algorithm that index uses.

In the case of one literal that can be used, but I don't think it's used in alternations.

You can test this hypothesis by comparing regexes of two and three alternatives - if I'm right, then both should be roughly equal in speed, and much slower than a single, literal string.


In reply to Re^3: Unefficient Regexp 'Matching this or that' by moritz
in thread Unefficient Regexp 'Matching this or that' by pelagic

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