# How to convert string representation of list to a list?

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I was wondering what the simplest way is to convert a string representation of a list like the following to a `list`:

``````x = "[ "A","B","C" , " D"]"
``````

Even in cases where the user puts spaces in between the commas, and spaces inside of the quotes, I need to handle that as well and convert it to:

``````x = ["A", "B", "C", "D"]
``````

I know I can strip spaces with `strip()` and `split()` and check for non-letter characters. But the code was getting very kludgy. Is there a quick function that I"m not aware of?

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## How to convert string representation of list to a list? split: Questions

How do you split a list into evenly sized chunks?

By jespern

I have a list of arbitrary length, and I need to split it up into equal size chunks and operate on it. There are some obvious ways to do this, like keeping a counter and two lists, and when the second list fills up, add it to the first list and empty the second list for the next round of data, but this is potentially extremely expensive.

I was wondering if anyone had a good solution to this for lists of any length, e.g. using generators.

I was looking for something useful in `itertools` but I couldn"t find anything obviously useful. Might"ve missed it, though.

2632

Here"s a generator that yields the chunks you want:

``````def chunks(lst, n):
"""Yield successive n-sized chunks from lst."""
for i in range(0, len(lst), n):
yield lst[i:i + n]
``````

``````import pprint
pprint.pprint(list(chunks(range(10, 75), 10)))
[[10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19],
[20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29],
[30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39],
[40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49],
[50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59],
[60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69],
[70, 71, 72, 73, 74]]
``````

If you"re using Python 2, you should use `xrange()` instead of `range()`:

``````def chunks(lst, n):
"""Yield successive n-sized chunks from lst."""
for i in xrange(0, len(lst), n):
yield lst[i:i + n]
``````

Also you can simply use list comprehension instead of writing a function, though it"s a good idea to encapsulate operations like this in named functions so that your code is easier to understand. Python 3:

``````[lst[i:i + n] for i in range(0, len(lst), n)]
``````

Python 2 version:

``````[lst[i:i + n] for i in xrange(0, len(lst), n)]
``````

2632

If you want something super simple:

``````def chunks(l, n):
n = max(1, n)
return (l[i:i+n] for i in range(0, len(l), n))
``````

Use `xrange()` instead of `range()` in the case of Python 2.x

2632

Directly from the (old) Python documentation (recipes for itertools):

``````from itertools import izip, chain, repeat

"grouper(3, "abcdefg", "x") --> ("a","b","c"), ("d","e","f"), ("g","x","x")"
``````

The current version, as suggested by J.F.Sebastian:

``````#from itertools import izip_longest as zip_longest # for Python 2.x
from itertools import zip_longest # for Python 3.x
#from six.moves import zip_longest # for both (uses the six compat library)

"grouper(3, "abcdefg", "x") --> ("a","b","c"), ("d","e","f"), ("g","x","x")"
``````

I guess Guido"s time machine works‚Äîworked‚Äîwill work‚Äîwill have worked‚Äîwas working again.

These solutions work because `[iter(iterable)]*n` (or the equivalent in the earlier version) creates one iterator, repeated `n` times in the list. `izip_longest` then effectively performs a round-robin of "each" iterator; because this is the same iterator, it is advanced by each such call, resulting in each such zip-roundrobin generating one tuple of `n` items.

We hope this article has helped you to resolve the problem. Apart from How to convert string representation of list to a list?, check other split-related topics.

Want to excel in Python? See our review of the best Python online courses 2022. If you are interested in Data Science, check also how to learn programming in R.

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Xu Williams

Abu Dhabi | 2022-12-02

I was preparing for my coding interview, thanks for clarifying this - How to convert string representation of list to a list? in Python is not the simplest one. Will get back tomorrow with feedback

Marie Innsbruck

Paris | 2022-12-02

Thanks for explaining! I was stuck with How to convert string representation of list to a list? for some hours, finally got it done 🤗. I am just not quite sure it is the best method

Ken Krasiko

San Francisco | 2022-12-02

Maybe there are another answers? What How to convert string representation of list to a list? exactly means?. Will use it in my bachelor thesis

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