# String Formatting on Commodore Computers Commodore BASIC has some interesting and simple string functions built in. Two of them are self explanatory: LEFT\$ and RIGHT\$. But the mysterious MID\$ function is a little tricker, and I can never remember how it works.

So here’s a quick recap on how three of these work.

### LEFT\$ (A\$,X)

The LEFT\$ function takes the x left characters from a given string. Here’s an example:

```a\$="one-two-three"

print left\$(a\$,3)
one```

We get “one”, because those are the 3 leftmost characters in our string a\$.

### RIGHT\$ (A\$,X)

Likewise, RIGHT\$ takes the x right characters from any given string:

```a\$="one-two-three"

print right\$(a\$,5)
three```

Here we get “three”, because those are the 5 right characters of a\$.

### MID\$ (A\$,X,Y)

MID\$ is a little more complex. It takes x characters from a given string, starting at position y. Let’s look at our earlier example again:

```a\$="one-two-three"

print mid\$(a\$,5,3)
two```

We get “two”, because those are the 3 characters, starting at position 5. The first position in all these string operations counts as one rather than zero.

But did you know that MID\$ can also be used to assign and replace different characters in a string? Consider this:

```mid\$(a\$,5,3)="ten"

print a\$
one-ten-three```

Now we’ve replaced the 3 characters in our string with another string, starting at position 5.

I had no idea it cold do that! All these string operations work in all variations of the Commodore BASIC, except for the MID\$ assignment which only works on the Plus/4 and the C128.