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Convert .txt to .csv with prespecified format

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I have a seismic catalog (.txt) with this format
DATE TIME LAT. LONG. DEPTH MAGNITUDE
(GMT) (N) (E) (km) (Local)
2023 JAN 1 00 31 34.1 38.5625 23.6833 14 2.0
2023 JAN 1 00 38 24.7 38.3304 20.4172 19 1.0
2023 JAN 1 00 47 15.0 38.3940 21.9118 7 0.9
and i want to make a .csv file with the following format:
DATETIME;LAT;LONG;DEPTH;MAG
01-01-2023T00:31:34.1;38.5625;23.6833;14;2.0
01-01-2023T00:38:24.7;38.3304;20.4172;19;1.0
01-01-2023T00:47:15.0;38.3940;21.9118;7;0.9
Any help?
  2 Comments
Cris LaPierre
Cris LaPierre on 17 Apr 2024
Please attach an example of the original file to your post using the paperclip icon.

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Accepted Answer

Cris LaPierre
Cris LaPierre on 17 Apr 2024
Edited: Cris LaPierre on 17 Apr 2024
Assuming your input file can be duplicated by copying and pasting the text above into a text file, here is how I would do it.
  • Treat the file as a fixed-width file
  • Import the date and time as a single variable of type datetime
  • Set the display format of the datetime variable to be your desired output format
  • Set the variable names to be your desired output names
With the table formatted the way you want, use writetable to create your output file, specifying the desired delimirter.
% set up import options
opts = fixedWidthImportOptions("VariableWidths",[25,8,8,5,12],"NumVariables",5,'DataLines',3);
opts = setvartype(opts,'Var1','datetime');
opts = setvaropts(opts,"Var1",'InputFormat','yyyy MMM d HH mm ss.S','DatetimeFormat','MM-dd-yyyy''T''HH:mm:ss.S');
opts.VariableNames = ["DATETIME" "LAT" "LONG" "DEPTH" "MAG"];
% import original file
data = readtable("originalFile.txt",opts)
data = 3x5 table
DATETIME LAT LONG DEPTH MAG _____________________ ___________ ___________ ______ _______ 01-01-2023T00:31:34.1 {'38.5625'} {'23.6833'} {'14'} {'2.0'} 01-01-2023T00:38:24.7 {'38.3304'} {'20.4172'} {'19'} {'1.0'} 01-01-2023T00:47:15.0 {'38.3940'} {'21.9118'} {'7' } {'0.9'}
% create output file
writetable(data,'outputFile.txt','Delimiter',';')
Now preview the output file
type('outputFile.txt')
DATETIME;LAT;LONG;DEPTH;MAG 01-01-2023T00:31:34.1;38.5625;23.6833;14;2.0 01-01-2023T00:38:24.7;38.3304;20.4172;19;1.0 01-01-2023T00:47:15.0;38.3940;21.9118;7;0.9
  10 Comments
Cris LaPierre
Cris LaPierre on 18 Apr 2024
Edited: Cris LaPierre on 18 Apr 2024
The bottom of the fixedWidthImportOptions page indicates it was added in R2017a, but I can reporduce the error in R2018a, so I did some digging. It is indeed available in R2017a, but the calling syntax is different. From the R2018a doc:
Alternatively, for a messy fixed-width text file that is not automatically detected by the detectImportOptions function, create a custom FixedWidthImportOptions object:
opts = matlab.io.text.FixedWidthImportOptions
% set up import options
opts = matlab.io.text.FixedWidthImportOptions;
opts.VariableNames = {'DATETIME' 'LAT' 'LONG' 'DEPTH' 'MAG'};
opts.VariableWidths = [25,8,8,5,12];
opts.DataLines = 3;
opts = setvartype(opts,'DATETIME','datetime');
opts = setvaropts(opts,'DATETIME','InputFormat','yyyy MMM d HH mm ss.S','DatetimeFormat','MM-dd-yyyy''T''HH:mm:ss.S');
% import original file
data = readtable('data.txt',opts)
data = 3x5 table
DATETIME LAT LONG DEPTH MAG _____________________ ___________ ___________ ______ _______ 01-01-2023T00:31:34.1 {'38.5625'} {'23.6833'} {'14'} {'2.0'} 01-01-2023T00:38:24.7 {'38.3304'} {'20.4172'} {'19'} {'1.0'} 01-01-2023T00:47:15.0 {'38.3940'} {'21.9118'} {'7' } {'0.9'}
% create output file
writetable(data,'outputFile.txt','Delimiter',';')
Now preview the output file
type('outputFile.txt')
DATETIME;LAT;LONG;DEPTH;MAG 01-01-2023T00:31:34.1;38.5625;23.6833;14;2.0 01-01-2023T00:38:24.7;38.3304;20.4172;19;1.0 01-01-2023T00:47:15.0;38.3940;21.9118;7;0.9

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