Decimal separator

Johnny Rosenberg gurus.knugum at
Tue Dec 24 09:20:15 UTC 2013

2013/12/24 Colin Watson <cjwatson at>

> On Mon, Dec 23, 2013 at 07:44:24PM +0100, Johnny Rosenberg wrote:
> > In a terminal (bash), is there something that I can type that gives me
> the
> > current decimal separator?
> >
> > For instance, if Swedish locale:
> >
> > $ echo "Current decimal separator: ${SomeVariable}"
> > Current decimal separator: ,
> > $
>   locale -k LC_NUMERIC
> (pipe through the obvious things if you want to use this in a script
> rather than just look at it)

Thanks. I tried:
$ locale -k LC_NUMERIC | grep decimal_point | sed 's/[^\.,]//g'

Works fine.

I don't need the thousands separator in this case, since I was only going
to use it for bc, which doesn't seem to use them.
I just want to use the decimal character on my numerical keypad when typing
the numbers to my script, and I just thought that it would be nice if the
simple script also works on a different setup.

So now I just let the user (me) type in the systems decimal separator, and
the script replace it with a decimal point, There some calculation, and the
answer has i decimal point that needs to be converted to the system's
decimal separator for output.

Thanks! Now I'm just going to make the script work as well…

Johnny Rosenberg

> On the other hand, if what you're really trying to do is to format a
> number with thousands separators, then you want some variant of:
>   env printf "%'d\\n" 1000
> (use a different conversion specifier such as 'g' rather than 'd' if you
> need a fractional part as well; the "env" forces the use of the printf
> binary from coreutils rather than any shell builtin, and in particular
> dash's builtin printf is inadequate for this, although bash's builtin
> printf is fine)
> --
> Colin Watson                                       [cjwatson at]
> --
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