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xml_text does not trim "&nbsp" #151

rentrop opened this Issue Nov 30, 2016 · 3 comments


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rentrop commented Nov 30, 2016

In my html-code i have &nbsp (i.e. non non-breaking space). If i try to get the the text via xml_text(..., trim=TRUE) it returns the non-breaking space instead of an empty string.
Is this a feature? IMHO the expected behavior would be to return an empty string...


space <- rawToChar(as.raw(c(0xc2, 0xa0)))
doc <- read_xml(paste0('<td style="text-align:left;">', space, '</td>'))
xml_text(doc, trim = TRUE) == "" # FALSE
charToRaw(xml_text(doc, trim = TRUE)) #[1] c2 a0

stringi::stri_trim_both(xml_text(doc, trim = TRUE)) or stringr::str_trim

@rentrop rentrop changed the title from xml_text does not delete &nbsp to xml_text does not trim "&nbsp" Dec 1, 2016

@jimhester jimhester closed this in 13ec091 Dec 6, 2016


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rentrop commented Dec 15, 2016

@jimhester thanks for getting on this so fast. Unfortunately this fix opens another error:

Take this example:

devtools::install_github("hadley/xml2") # Version
doc <- read_html('<td>31.12.2010&nbsp;<br>€
text_nodes <- xml_find_all(doc, ".//text()[normalize-space()]")
xml_text(text_nodes, trim = TRUE) # "31.12.2010" ""

So xml_text now removes the -sign.

The expected result would be:

stringi::stri_trim_both(text_nodes) # "31.12.2010" "€"

@jimhester jimhester reopened this Dec 15, 2016

@jimhester jimhester closed this in 0eaa61c Dec 15, 2016


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jimhester commented Dec 15, 2016

Ok I refactored how this was being done, thanks for the reproducible example.


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rentrop commented Dec 15, 2016

Perfect, thanks

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