JavaScript match against array

I would like to know how to match a string against an array of regular expressions.
I know how to do this looping through the array.
I also know how to do this by making a long regular expression separated by |
I was hoping for a more efficient way like

if (string contains one of the values in array) {

For example:

string = "the word tree is in this sentence";  
array[0] = "dog";  
array[1] = "cat";  
array[2] = "bird";  
array[3] = "birds can fly";  

In the above example, the condition would be false.
However, string = "She told me birds can fly and I agreed" would return true.

Answers:

Answer

How about creating a regular expression on the fly when you need it (assuming the array changes over time)

if( (new RegExp( '\\b' + array.join('\\b|\\b') + '\\b') ).test(string) ) {
  alert('match');
}

demo http://jsfiddle.net/gaby/eM6jU/


For browsers that support javascript version 1.6 you can use the some() method

if ( array.some(function(item){return (new RegExp('\\b'+item+'\\b')).test(string);}) ) {
 alert('match');
}

http://jsfiddle.net/gaby/eM6jU/1/

Answer

(Many years later)

My version of @Gaby's answer, as I needed a way to check CORS origin against regular expressions in an array:

var corsWhitelist = [/^(?:.+\.)?domain\.com/, /^(?:.+\.)?otherdomain\.com/];

var corsCheck = function(origin, callback) {
  if (corsWhitelist.some(function(item) {
    return (new RegExp(item).test(origin));
  })) {
    callback(null, true);
  } 
  else {
    callback(null, false);
  }
}

corsCheck('otherdomain.com', function(err, result) {
  console.log('CORS match for otherdomain.com: ' + result);  
});

corsCheck('forbiddendomain.com', function(err, result) {
  console.log('CORS match for forbiddendomain.com: ' + result);  
});
Answer

If you have the literal strings in an array called strings you want to match, you can combine them into an alternation by doing

new RegExp(strings.map(
    function (x) {  // Escape special characters like '|' and '$'.
      return x.replace(/[^a-zA-Z]/g, "\\$&");
    }).join("|"))

If you don't have only literal strings, you want to combine regular expressions, then you use http://code.google.com/p/google-code-prettify/source/browse/trunk/js-modules/combinePrefixPatterns.js

/**
 * Given a group of {@link RegExp}s, returns a {@code RegExp} that globally
 * matches the union of the sets of strings matched by the input RegExp.
 * Since it matches globally, if the input strings have a start-of-input
 * anchor (/^.../), it is ignored for the purposes of unioning.
 * @param {Array.<RegExp>} regexs non multiline, non-global regexs.
 * @return {RegExp} a global regex.
 */
Answer

Is that ok ?

function checkForMatch(string,array){
    var arrKeys = array.length;
    var match = false;
    var patt;
    for(i=0; i < arrKeys; i++ ){
        patt=new RegExp(" "+array[i]+" ");
        if(patt.test(string))
           match = true;
    }
    return match;
}

string = "She told me birds can fly and I agreed"; 

var array = new Array();
array[0] = "dog";  
array[1] = "cat";  
array[2] = "bird";  
array[3] = "birds can fly";


alert(checkForMatch(string, array));

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