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index function for text strings?

Posts: 21

index function for text strings?

I am trying to create categories from open ended questions.  What is the best way to go about this if I want to use full strings?  Is there a way to do this without identifying position or case e.g (lowercase)?  I have attached code so you guys can get an idea of what I am trying to do, I am sure the index function probably is not the best way to go about this.  I basically want to tell say, " if a response in var contains this word and/or string, then var=1 ..."

SAS base 9.4

Super User
Posts: 5,076

Re: index function for text strings?

Two things to consider ...


You are probably better off using INDEXW rather than INDEX.  If you are searching for "dense" SAS looks for those characters.  If your longer string were to contain "condense" then INDEX will find "dense", but INDEXW will not.


And it's easy to apply UPCASE to both arguments with INDEXW so matches can be found regardless of upper vs. lower case.

Trusted Advisor
Posts: 1,368

Re: index function for text strings?

Assuming you are testing for whole words and there may be more than one wanted, you can try alternative code:

data want;
 set have;
      length word $15; /* addapt to max length word to check */
      i = 1;
      word = lowcase(scan(id01q01txt, i));
      do until (word = ' ');
           if word in ('cost' 'insurance' 'afford'  ...) then reasonmam=1; else
           if word in ('busy' 'availability' 'time' ... ) then reasonmam=2; else
           ... etc. up to ...
           if word in ('age' 'old' 'over' ...) reasonmam=10; 
           word = lowcase(scan(id01q01txt, i));
          OUTPUT;   /* any time a word is fitting */
Posts: 21

Re: index function for text strings?

I will give this a try. Thank You!


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