Function Transform() Foundation
Transforms a value to a formatted character string.
Transform( <Expression>, <cSayPicture> ) --> cFormattedString
The return value of Transform() is a character string containing the value <Expression> formatted according to the specification given in <cPicture>.
The conversion function Transform() accepts a value, transforms it to a character string, formats this character string according to the specification in <Picture>, and returns the formatted character string. Transform() processes values of data type "character", "numeric", "logical" and "date". It is a versatile function which is often used in formatting data for output on the screen or to the printer.
The characters for a PICTURE function must appear at the start of the character string <cPicture> and must be prefaced with the character @ (Chr(64)). After the character @, one or more of the characters which define specific formatting rules can be included. The valid characters are listed in the following table. Each stands for a specific formatting rule:
|B||N||Displays number left justified|
|C||N||Displays CR (Credit) behind positive numbers|
|D||C||Displays character strings in the SET DATE format|
|L<c>||N||Fills numeric values from the left with the character <c>|
|R||C||Includes unknown formatting characters in the display|
|X||N||Displays DB (Debit) behind negative numbers|
|Z||N||When the value is zero, only blank places are displayed|
|(||N||Displays negative numbers in parentheses with leading blank places|
|)||N||Displays negative numbers in parentheses without leading blank places|
|$||N||Places country-specific currency characters in front of a number|
|!||C||Transforms alphabetical characters to upper case|
Characters for a PICTURE mask can follow the characters for the PICTURE function. When a mask is also specified, the PICTURE function and mask must be separated from one another by a single blank space.
A PICTURE mask contains formatting rules for each individual character of the transformed value. As with the PICTURE function, formatting characters are specified which define a specific formatting rule. Each character in the PICTURE mask corresponds to a character in the return character string. The possible formatting characters for a PICTURE mask are listed in the following table:
|A,N,X,9,#||Displays characters for each data type|
|L||Displays logical values as "T" or "F"|
|Y *)||Displays logical values as "Y", "J" or "N"|
|!||Transforms alphabetical characters to upper case|
|$||Replaces leading blank spaces in numbers with a dollar sign ($)|
|*||Replaces leading blank spaces in numbers with a star (*)|
|.||Marks position for a decimal point|
|,||Marks position for a comma|
Any characters in the PICTURE mask which are not listed in this table are copied into the return character string. When the PICTURE function @R is used, these characters are inserted into the return character string, otherwise they replace characters in the return character string.
Country-specific formatting of numbers
When transforming numbers to character strings, Transform() uses the number format set by the system configuration which results in a decimal point or comma after each setting. When converting a numeric to a string and a decimal point is desired instead of a decimal comma regardless of the system configuration, the numeric value should be transformed by the function Str() instead of Transform(). Example:
When using Transform() to perform conversions and the comma is defined as the delimiter for decimal places in the system settings, a comma is inserted into the formatted result string. Changing the character string back to a numeric value using the function Val() may then lead to erroneous results since Val() only works with a decimal point and not with a decimal comma.
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