The file adapter is able to read files in a variety of formats, and can also read files over various protocols, such as HTTP.
For example if you define:
- States - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_states_and_territories_of_the_United_States
- Cities - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_cities_by_population
You can then write a query like:
And learn that California has 69 cities of 100k or more comprising almost 1/2 of the state’s population:
| City Count | Pct State Population |
| 69 | 48.574217177106576 |
For simple file formats such as CSV, the file is self-describing and you don’t even need a model. See CSV files and model-free browsing.
A simple example
Let’s start with a simple example. First, we need a model definition, as follows.
Schemas are defined as a list of tables, each containing minimally a
table name and a url. If a page has more than one table, you can
include in a table definition
index fields to specify the
desired table. If there is no table specification, the file adapter
chooses the largest table on the page.
EMPS.html contains a single HTML table:
The model file is stored as
so you can connect via
Now for a more complex example. This time we connect to Wikipedia via HTTP, read pages for US states and cities, and extract data from HTML tables on those pages. The tables have more complex formats, and the file adapter helps us locate and parse data in those tables.
Tables can be simply defined for immediate gratification:
And subsequently refined for better usability / querying:
Connect and execute queries, as follows.
Cities is easier to consume than
because its table definition has a field list.
Field definitions may be used to rename or skip source fields, to select and condition the cell contents and to set a data type.
Parsing cell contents
The file adapter can select DOM nodes within a cell, replace text within the selected element, match within the selected text, and choose a data type for the resulting database column. Processing steps are applied in the order described and replace and match patterns are based on Java regular expressions.
There are more examples in the form of a script:
webjoin.sql you will see a number of warning messages for
each query containing a join. These are expected and do not affect
query results. These messages will be suppressed in the next release.)
CSV files and model-free browsing
Some files are describe their own schema, and for these files, we do not need a model. For example,
DEPTS.csv has an
DEPTNO column and a string
You can launch
sqlline, and pointing the file adapter that directory,
and every CSV file becomes a table:
We are continuing to enhance the adapter, and would welcome contributions of new parsing capabilities (for example parsing JSON files) and being able to form URLs dynamically to push down filters.