parseLoose method Null safety

DateTime parseLoose(
  1. String inputString,
  2. [bool utc = false]

Given user input, attempt to parse the inputString 'loosely' into the anticipated format, accepting some variations from the strict format.

If inputString is accepted by parseStrict, just return the result. If not, attempt to parse it, but accepting either upper or lower case, allowing delimiters to be missing and replaced or supplemented with whitespace, and allowing arbitrary amounts of whitespace wherever whitespace is permitted. Note that this does not allow trailing characters, the way parse does. It also does not allow alternative names for months or weekdays other than those the format knows about. The restrictions are quite arbitrary and it's not known how well they'll work for locales that aren't English-like.

If inputString does not parse, this throws a FormatException.

For example, this will accept

  DateFormat.yMMMd('en_US').parseLoose('SEp   3 2014');
  DateFormat.yMd('en_US').parseLoose('09    03/2014');
  DateFormat.yMd('en_US').parseLoose('09 / 03 / 2014');

It will NOT accept

  // 'Sept' is not a valid month name.
  DateFormat.yMMMd('en_US').parseLoose('Sept 3, 2014');


DateTime parseLoose(String inputString, [bool utc = false]) {
  try {
    return _parse(inputString, utc: utc, strict: true);
  } on FormatException {
    return _parseLoose(inputString.toLowerCase(), utc);