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Reading tab-delimited ASCII files

From: Matthias Brennwald
Subject: Reading tab-delimited ASCII files
Date: Tue, 07 Aug 2007 21:36:07 +0200
User-agent: Icedove (X11/20070607)

Dear all

I've got some ASCII file containing data which I'd like to read into Octave. The ASCII files contain several lines and columns. The columns are separated by tabs. The first column contains strings or variable width (parameter names), the remaining columns contain mostly numbers and some NaN values (e.g. 'N/A'). As an example, a file might look like this:

K_G     1E-2    N/A     0.1
KD_FIN  2       1.9     1.8
KD_COA  0.2     0.02    1.2E-2
T_LI    9.3244  8.233   N/A

I tried using fscanf to read the data from the files, but I don't understand how to use the template parameter to specify the data format. I ended up reading line by line with fgetl and then analyzing each line seperately. This works, but it's slow. I believe that the fscanf function would be much faster. Can anyone give me an example of how to efficiently read ASCII files, e.g. the one above?


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