W2653 CSV File Processing

From Coder Merlin
Within these castle walls be forged Mavens of Computer Science ...
— Merlin, The Coder




This tutorial will provide an introduction about processing CSV files.



Create a new directory in your ~/projects folder, named project-2651. Then, download this file Example-metars.csv to that directory.

cd ~/projects
mkdir project-2651
cd project-2651
wget https://wiki.codermerlin.com/mediawiki/images/1/15/Example-metars.csv

View the file in emacs:

emacs Example-metars.csv

Carefully observe the file. Remember that the "\" character as the last character in a line in emacs is a line-continuation character. (For reference, you may read Continuation-Lines.) You'll probably find it much easier to read most lines if you maximize the width of your window.


  1. On which line does the actual data begin?
  2. How could you programmatically make this determination?
  3. What is the purpose of the immediately preceding line?
  4. How are records delimited?
  5. How are fields delimited?

Create a new file in the current directory, "main.swift". Perform all exercises in this lab in that file.


  1. Design a class that will contain each field in a metar as a separate property. Pay close attention to the type of each field.
  2. Create an initializer that accepts a series of fields of the expected type
  3. Create a convenience initializer that accepts a series of strings, one for each field
  4. Create a convenience initializer that accepts a single string, in a format identical to that in the sample file
  5. Support the CustomStringConvertible protocol, providing a reasonable description of the data encapsulated in the class.


Key Concepts[edit]