· neo4j

Neo4j: apoc.date.parse - java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: Illegal pattern character 'T' / java.text.ParseException: Unparseable date: "2012-11-12T08:46:15Z"

I often find myself wanting to convert date strings into Unix timestamps using Neo4j's APOC library and unfortunately some sources don't use the format that apoc.date.parse expects.

e.g.


return apoc.date.parse("2012-11-12T08:46:15Z",'s') 
AS ts

Failed to invoke function `apoc.date.parse`: 
Caused by: java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: java.text.ParseException: Unparseable date: "2012-11-12T08:46:15Z"

We need to define the format explicitly so the SimpleDataFormat documentation comes in handy. I tried the following:


return apoc.date.parse("2012-11-12T08:46:15Z",'s',"yyyy-MM-ddTHH:mm:ssZ") 
AS ts

Failed to invoke function `apoc.date.parse`: 
Caused by: java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: Illegal pattern character 'T'

Hmmm, we need to quote the 'T' character - we can't just include it in the pattern. Let's try again:


return  apoc.date.parse("2012-11-12T08:46:15Z",'s',"yyyy-MM-dd'T'HH:mm:ssZ") 
AS ts

Failed to invoke function `apoc.date.parse`: 
Caused by: java.lang.IllegalArgumentException: java.text.ParseException: Unparseable date: "2012-11-12T08:46:15Z"

The problem now is that we haven't quoted the 'Z' but the error doesn't indicate that - not sure why!

We can either quote the 'Z':


return  apoc.date.parse("2012-11-12T08:46:15Z",'s',"yyyy-MM-dd'T'HH:mm:ss'Z'") 
AS ts

╒══════════╕
│"ts"      │
╞══════════╡
│1352709975│
└──────────┘

Or we can match the timezone using 'XXX':


return  apoc.date.parse("2012-11-12T08:46:15Z",'s',"yyyy-MM-dd'T'HH:mm:ssXXX") 
AS ts

╒══════════╕
│"ts"      │
╞══════════╡
│1352709975│
└──────────┘
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