I am pretty sure that parsing a delimited string is one of the basic string operation that all of us do. Any programmer must have used it at least once in his or her programming career. Based on the programming language he or she uses, there might be different methods or ways to do this.
Let us look a second at TSQL. There are many ways to parse a delimited string. There are many ways widely used and discussed and you can find several articles on Internet which explains those methods. The most common approach that I have seen is using a PATINDEX in a WHILE loop. I have recently written an article at SQLServerCentral which shows yet another way of parsing a delimited string. The approach I presented at SQLServerCentral uses an XML based approach for parsing the string.
You can find the article here.