I'm trying to pull a list of people based on their last names. The catch is I only want to QUERY people with last names that fit between an alpha range to the 4th character.

Example

I only want names that fall between Mimz and Sand

I have this formula, but it doesn't go to the 4th character and I don't understand how to update.

=QUERY(data!B1:J30000, "Select B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J  where lower(D) matches 
'^(m[k-z]|[n-r]|sa).*' order by D")

I believe the adjustment needs to be made here (m[k-z]|[n-r]|sa) but I don't know the syntax.

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Link to copy of report tab

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1rL0ufamiMfC6qZhalsPw9s0SuKuBdXuNGVx_JtoOSEc/edit#gid=1728510345

Link to copy of data tab (simplified)

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1rL0ufamiMfC6qZhalsPw9s0SuKuBdXuNGVx_JtoOSEc/edit#gid=2033321539

  • 1
    Please provide some sample data to test your formula and those to be proposed. – Rubén Nov 1 '16 at 23:39
  • @Rubén I've added the links to the question. Thanks for looking into this! – Mr. B Nov 2 '16 at 2:14
  • 1
    The spreadsheet looks very complex. Please make a simpler demo spreadsheet. – Rubén Nov 2 '16 at 4:46
  • @Rubén I've updated link to the "data" sheet and simplified it. I've also removed all other tabs that aren't directly related to this question. Thanks again! – Mr. B Nov 2 '16 at 15:13
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Since this is more a regular expression logic update, I can contribute:

Try:

'^(mimz|mi[n-z]|m[j-z]|[n-r]|sa[a-m]|san[a-d]).*'

Just keep in mind that the range above needs to differ by the first character. If not, then pull the common characters out. For mimz-mitz:

'^mi(mz|[n-s]|t[a-z]).*'

Not saying there isn't an easier way -- this just helps you update this particular way in the future.

  • I'm testing this now. Thank you! Is there an easier (more straight forward) way that you recommend? – Mr. B Nov 2 '16 at 16:04
  • 1
    First, I don't know how 'dynamic' it needs to be -- this regex is obviously hardcoded. Second, I don't know excel or its myriad of functions. So even if this works (and it should ;) ), someone else might come up with a better answer. That's all I meant. So short answer -- I don't know ;) – Gerard ONeill Nov 2 '16 at 16:07

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