Text Helper

The Text Helper file contains functions that assist in working with Text.

Loading this Helper

This helper is loaded using the following code:

helper('text');

Available Functions

The following functions are available:

random_string([$type = 'alnum'[, $len = 8]])
Parameters:
  • $type (string) – Randomization type
  • $len (int) – Output string length
Returns:

A random string

Return type:

string

Generates a random string based on the type and length you specify. Useful for creating passwords or generating random hashes.

The first parameter specifies the type of string, the second parameter specifies the length. The following choices are available:

  • alpha: A string with lower and uppercase letters only.
  • alnum: Alpha-numeric string with lower and uppercase characters.
  • basic: A random number based on mt_rand().
  • numeric: Numeric string.
  • nozero: Numeric string with no zeros.
  • md5: An encrypted random number based on md5() (fixed length of 32).
  • sha1: An encrypted random number based on sha1() (fixed length of 40).
  • crypto: A random string based on random_bytes().

Usage example:

echo random_string('alnum', 16);
increment_string($str[, $separator = '_'[, $first = 1]])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
  • $separator (string) – Separator to append a duplicate number with
  • $first (int) – Starting number
Returns:

An incremented string

Return type:

string

Increments a string by appending a number to it or increasing the number. Useful for creating “copies” or a file or duplicating database content which has unique titles or slugs.

Usage example:

echo increment_string('file', '_'); // "file_1"
echo increment_string('file', '-', 2); // "file-2"
echo increment_string('file_4'); // "file_5"
alternator($args)
Parameters:
  • $args (mixed) – A variable number of arguments
Returns:

Alternated string(s)

Return type:

mixed

Allows two or more items to be alternated between, when cycling through a loop. Example:

for ($i = 0; $i < 10; $i++)
{
        echo alternator('string one', 'string two');
}

You can add as many parameters as you want, and with each iteration of your loop the next item will be returned.

for ($i = 0; $i < 10; $i++)
{
        echo alternator('one', 'two', 'three', 'four', 'five');
}

Note

To use multiple separate calls to this function simply call the function with no arguments to re-initialize.

reduce_double_slashes($str)
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
Returns:

A string with normalized slashes

Return type:

string

Converts double slashes in a string to a single slash, except those found in URL protocol prefixes (e.g. http&#58;//).

Example:

$string = "http://example.com//index.php";
echo reduce_double_slashes($string); // results in "http://example.com/index.php"
strip_slashes($data)
Parameters:
  • $data (mixed) – Input string or an array of strings
Returns:

String(s) with stripped slashes

Return type:

mixed

Removes any slashes from an array of strings.

Example:

$str = array(
        'question' => 'Is your name O\'reilly?',
        'answer'   => 'No, my name is O\'connor.'
);

$str = strip_slashes($str);

The above will return the following array:

array(
        'question' => "Is your name O'reilly?",
        'answer'   => "No, my name is O'connor."
);

Note

For historical reasons, this function will also accept and handle string inputs. This however makes it just an alias for stripslashes().

reduce_multiples($str[, $character = ''[, $trim = FALSE]])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Text to search in
  • $character (string) – Character to reduce
  • $trim (bool) – Whether to also trim the specified character
Returns:

Reduced string

Return type:

string

Reduces multiple instances of a particular character occuring directly after each other. Example:

$string = "Fred, Bill,, Joe, Jimmy";
$string = reduce_multiples($string,","); //results in "Fred, Bill, Joe, Jimmy"

If the third parameter is set to TRUE it will remove occurrences of the character at the beginning and the end of the string. Example:

$string = ",Fred, Bill,, Joe, Jimmy,";
$string = reduce_multiples($string, ", ", TRUE); //results in "Fred, Bill, Joe, Jimmy"
quotes_to_entities($str)
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
Returns:

String with quotes converted to HTML entities

Return type:

string

Converts single and double quotes in a string to the corresponding HTML entities. Example:

$string = "Joe's \"dinner\"";
$string = quotes_to_entities($string); //results in "Joe&#39;s &quot;dinner&quot;"
strip_quotes($str)
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
Returns:

String with quotes stripped

Return type:

string

Removes single and double quotes from a string. Example:

$string = "Joe's \"dinner\"";
$string = strip_quotes($string); //results in "Joes dinner"
word_limiter($str[, $limit = 100[, $end_char = '&#8230;']])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
  • $limit (int) – Limit
  • $end_char (string) – End character (usually an ellipsis)
Returns:

Word-limited string

Return type:

string

Truncates a string to the number of words specified. Example:

$string = "Here is a nice text string consisting of eleven words.";
$string = word_limiter($string, 4);
// Returns:  Here is a nice

The third parameter is an optional suffix added to the string. By default it adds an ellipsis.

character_limiter($str[, $n = 500[, $end_char = '&#8230;']])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
  • $n (int) – Number of characters
  • $end_char (string) – End character (usually an ellipsis)
Returns:

Character-limited string

Return type:

string

Truncates a string to the number of characters specified. It maintains the integrity of words so the character count may be slightly more or less than what you specify.

Example:

$string = "Here is a nice text string consisting of eleven words.";
$string = character_limiter($string, 20);
// Returns:  Here is a nice text string

The third parameter is an optional suffix added to the string, if undeclared this helper uses an ellipsis.

Note

If you need to truncate to an exact number of characters please see the ellipsize() function below.

ascii_to_entities($str)
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
Returns:

A string with ASCII values converted to entities

Return type:

string

Converts ASCII values to character entities, including high ASCII and MS Word characters that can cause problems when used in a web page, so that they can be shown consistently regardless of browser settings or stored reliably in a database. There is some dependence on your server’s supported character sets, so it may not be 100% reliable in all cases, but for the most part it should correctly identify characters outside the normal range (like accented characters).

Example:

$string = ascii_to_entities($string);
convert_accented_characters($str)
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
Returns:

A string with accented characters converted

Return type:

string

Transliterates high ASCII characters to low ASCII equivalents. Useful when non-English characters need to be used where only standard ASCII characters are safely used, for instance, in URLs.

Example:

$string = convert_accented_characters($string);

Note

This function uses a companion config file application/Config/ForeignCharacters.php to define the to and from array for transliteration.

word_censor($str, $censored[, $replacement = ''])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
  • $censored (array) – List of bad words to censor
  • $replacement (string) – What to replace bad words with
Returns:

Censored string

Return type:

string

Enables you to censor words within a text string. The first parameter will contain the original string. The second will contain an array of words which you disallow. The third (optional) parameter can contain a replacement value for the words. If not specified they are replaced with pound signs: ####.

Example:

$disallowed = array('darn', 'shucks', 'golly', 'phooey');
$string     = word_censor($string, $disallowed, 'Beep!');
highlight_code($str)
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
Returns:

String with code highlighted via HTML

Return type:

string

Colorizes a string of code (PHP, HTML, etc.). Example:

$string = highlight_code($string);

The function uses PHP’s highlight_string() function, so the colors used are the ones specified in your php.ini file.

highlight_phrase($str, $phrase[, $tag_open = '<mark>'[, $tag_close = '</mark>']])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
  • $phrase (string) – Phrase to highlight
  • $tag_open (string) – Opening tag used for the highlight
  • $tag_close (string) – Closing tag for the highlight
Returns:

String with a phrase highlighted via HTML

Return type:

string

Will highlight a phrase within a text string. The first parameter will contain the original string, the second will contain the phrase you wish to highlight. The third and fourth parameters will contain the opening/closing HTML tags you would like the phrase wrapped in.

Example:

$string = "Here is a nice text string about nothing in particular.";
echo highlight_phrase($string, "nice text", '<span style="color:#990000;">', '</span>');

The above code prints:

Here is a <span style="color:#990000;">nice text</span> string about nothing in particular.

Note

This function used to use the <strong> tag by default. Older browsers might not support the new HTML5 mark tag, so it is recommended that you insert the following CSS code into your stylesheet if you need to support such browsers:

mark {
        background: #ff0;
        color: #000;
};
word_wrap($str[, $charlim = 76])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
  • $charlim (int) – Character limit
Returns:

Word-wrapped string

Return type:

string

Wraps text at the specified character count while maintaining complete words.

Example:

$string = "Here is a simple string of text that will help us demonstrate this function.";
echo word_wrap($string, 25);

// Would produce:
// Here is a simple string
// of text that will help us
// demonstrate this
// function.
ellipsize($str, $max_length[, $position = 1[, $ellipsis = '&hellip;']])
Parameters:
  • $str (string) – Input string
  • $max_length (int) – String length limit
  • $position (mixed) – Position to split at (int or float)
  • $ellipsis (string) – What to use as the ellipsis character
Returns:

Ellipsized string

Return type:

string

This function will strip tags from a string, split it at a defined maximum length, and insert an ellipsis.

The first parameter is the string to ellipsize, the second is the number of characters in the final string. The third parameter is where in the string the ellipsis should appear from 0 - 1, left to right. For example. a value of 1 will place the ellipsis at the right of the string, .5 in the middle, and 0 at the left.

An optional forth parameter is the kind of ellipsis. By default, &hellip; will be inserted.

Example:

$str = 'this_string_is_entirely_too_long_and_might_break_my_design.jpg';
echo ellipsize($str, 32, .5);

Produces:

this_string_is_e&hellip;ak_my_design.jpg
excerpt($text, $phrase = false, $radius = 100, $ellipsis = '...')
Parameters:
  • $text (string) – Text to extract an excerpt
  • $phrase (string) – Phrase or word to extract the text arround
  • $radius (int) – Number of characters before and after $phrase
  • $ellipsis (string) – What to use as the ellipsis character
Returns:

Excerpt.

Return type:

string

This function will extract $radius number of characters before and after the central $phrase with an elipsis before and after.

The first paramenter is the text to extract an excerpt from, the second is the central word or phrase to count before and after. The third parameter is the number of characters to count before and after the central phrase. If no phrase passed, the excerpt will include the first $radius characters with the elipsis at the end.

Example:

$text = 'Ut vel faucibus odio. Quisque quis congue libero. Etiam gravida
eros lorem, eget porttitor augue dignissim tincidunt. In eget risus eget
mauris faucibus molestie vitae ultricies odio. Vestibulum id ultricies diam.
Curabitur non mauris lectus. Phasellus eu sodales sem. Integer dictum purus
ac enim hendrerit gravida. Donec ac magna vel nunc tincidunt molestie sed
vitae nisl. Cras sed auctor mauris, non dictum tortor. Nulla vel scelerisque
arcu. Cras ac ipsum sit amet augue laoreet laoreet. Aenean a risus lacus.
Sed ut tortor diam.';

echo excerpt($str, 'Donec');

Produces:

... non mauris lectus. Phasellus eu sodales sem. Integer dictum purus ac
enim hendrerit gravida. Donec ac magna vel nunc tincidunt molestie sed
vitae nisl. Cras sed auctor mauris, non dictum ...