How to read a text file into a char array

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This is probably trivial, but I have not found an easy way to convert a text file of n lines and m columns (sample attached) into a char array of the same shape. The only way that might work for me is an n-long for-loop of "fscanf", but I do not know n beforehand, and I figure there must be a simpler and faster vectorized command, which I ignore (I tried fileread and textread to no avail).

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Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson il 22 Gen 2017
temp = regexp(fileread('sample_input.txt'), '\r?\n', 'split');
output = vertcat(temp{:});
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Walter Roberson
Walter Roberson il 22 Gen 2017
The \r represents carriage return. I did not bother to check whether your file has those or only newlines (and it is really easy end up accidentally having a mix of files) so I made the carriage return optional which is done by adding a ? after it.
An alternative to the \r?\n for your situation would be \W+ which would mean any sequence of consecutive non-"word" characters. That would also cover the case where you had multiple columns separated by blanks that you wanted to treat the same as if each were its own line.
Paolo Binetti
Paolo Binetti il 22 Gen 2017
Thank you, clear and useful.

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