String find and replace method optimization

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I am trying to find a specific header string from different Maps (LEDES1998Bheaders, LEDES98BIheaders and LEDES98BI_V2headers) in an errorMessage depends on the parcel type and if the errorMessage has the specific header string I need to replace it with the corresponding value.

public class ErrorMessageConverter {

    private static Map<String, String> LEDES1998Bheaders = new HashMap<>();
    private static Map<String, String> LEDES98BIheaders = new HashMap<>();
    private static Map<String, String> LEDES98BI_V2headers = new HashMap<>();

    static {
                LEDES1998Bheaders.put("(\binv_date\b|\bINVOICE DATE\b)", "INVOICE DATE");
    LEDES1998Bheaders.put("\binv_id\b", "INVOICE NUMBER");
    LEDES1998Bheaders.put("\bcl_id\b", "CLIENT ID");
    LEDES1998Bheaders.put("\blf_matter_id\b", "LAW FIRM MATTER ID");
    LEDES1998Bheaders.put("\bUNITS\b", "LINE ITEM NUMBER OF UNITS");
    LEDES1998Bheaders.put("(\bBaseRate\b|\bRate\b|\btk_rate\b)", "LINE ITEM UNIT COST");

    LEDES98BIheaders.put("\blf_address/address_info/address_1\b", "LAW FIRM ADDRESS 1");
    LEDES98BIheaders.put("\blf_address/address_info/city\b", "LAW FIRM CITY");
    LEDES98BIheaders.put("\btax_rate\b", "LINE ITEM TAX RATE");
    LEDES98BIheaders.put("\btax_on_charge\b", "LINE ITEM TAX TOTAL");
    LEDES98BIheaders.put("\btax_type\b", "LINE ITEM TAX TYPE");

    LEDES98BI_V2headers.put("\binv_reported_tax_total\b", "INVOICE REPORTED TAX TOTAL");
    LEDES98BI_V2headers.put("\binv_reported_tax_currency\b", "INVOICE TAX CURRENCY");


    public static String toUserFriendlyErrorMessage(String parcelType, String message) {

        if (parcelType.equals("LEDES1998B")) {
            return updateErrorMessage(message, LEDES1998Bheaders);
       else if (parcelType.equals("LEDES98BI")) {
            message = updateErrorMessage(message, LEDES1998Bheaders);
            return updateErrorMessage(message, LEDES98BIheaders);
       else if (parcelType.equals("LEDES98BI V2")) {
            message = updateErrorMessage(message, LEDES1998Bheaders);
            message = updateErrorMessage(message, LEDES98BIheaders);
            return updateErrorMessage(message, LEDES98BI_V2headers);
        return message;


    private static String updateErrorMessage(String msg, Map<String, String> invHeaders) {
        Pattern pattern;
    for (String key : invHeaders.keySet()) {
        pattern = Pattern.compile(key);
        if (pattern.matcher(msg).find()) {
            msg = msg.replaceAll(key, invHeaders.get(key));
    return msg;

Below are couple of sample error messages:

String errorMesage1 = "Line 3 : Could not parse inv_date value" 
String errorMesage2 = "Line : 1 BaseRate is a required field"

Can this method simplified further in java 8 using filters/lambda expressions?


Your code looks fairly effective, but it could be a bunch more efficient if you rearrange the code a bit, do some pre-processing, and reduce your run-time checks. Let’s go through that in order….

I recommend a ‘set up’ stage to your code. Consider an ideal situation at runtime, the code would look something like:

public static String toUserFriendlyErrorMessage(String parcelType, String message) {

    for (Rule rule : getRules(parcelType)) {
        message = rule.process(message);
    return message;

That would be a neat solution, where you have a bunch of rules that you know apply to the messages of a particular type, and that you can then just apply whichever ones are appropriate. That would be the most efficient at use-time too.

How would you implement that? Using some pre-processing, of course, and a new Rule class.

This preprocessing is key, and the features you should look for here are:

  1. the rules are sorted at pre-process time.
  2. some rules are in multiple sets of operations.
  3. Pattern instances are compiled just once, not at use-time.

Your rules are convenient in the sense that the parcelType values seems to have an ‘extension’ type system:

  • LEDES1998B is rules LEDES1998Bheaders
  • LEDES98BI is the same as LEDES1998B plus the rules in LEDES98BIheaders
  • LEDES98BI V2 is the same as LEDES98BI (and thus LEDES1998B) but also includes LEDES98BI_V2headers

How would I recommend preprocessing things?

private static final class Rule {
    private final Pattern key;
    private final String replacement;

    Rule(String search, String rep) {
        key = Pattern.compile(search);
        replacement = Matcher.quoteReplacement(rep);

    String process(String msg) {
        return key.matcher(msg).replaceAll(replacement);

So, that rule class is simple enough… how to add them together?

private static final Map<String, Rule[]> RULE_MAP = buildMap();

private static final Map<String, Rule[]> buildMap() {
    Map<String, Rule[]> result = new HashMap<>();
    List<Rule> rules = new ArrayList<>();

    addRules(rules, LEDES1998Bheaders);
    result.put("LEDES1998B", rules.toArray(new Rule[rules.size()]));

    addRules(rules, LEDES98BIheaders);
    result.put("LEDES98BI", rules.toArray(new Rule[rules.size()]));

    addRules(rules, LEDES98BI_V2headers);
    result.put("LEDES98BI V2", rules.toArray(new Rule[rules.size()]));

    return result;

private static final void addRules(List<Rule> target, Map<String,String> sources) {
    for (Map.Entry<String,String> me : sources.entrySet()) {
        target.add(new Rule(me.getKey(), me.getValue()));

Now, your last part is the getRules method:

private static final Rule[] getRules(String parcelType) {
    Rule[] rules = RULE_MAP.get(parcelType);
    if (rules == null) {
        throw new IllegalStateException("No rules set for type " + parcelType);
    return rules;

Now your code should go smoothly.

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