Re: xslt core and intuition was RE: [xsl] Reference to variable cannot be resolved.
Subject: Re: xslt core and intuition was RE: [xsl] Reference to variable cannot be resolved.|
From: Wendell Piez <wapiez@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 14 Feb 2003 13:46:11 -0500
At 06:37 AM 2/14/2003, bryan wrote:
Here is something I wonder about as I don't know that my own experience
is something to go by:
What do people think is a required level of understanding (the core) of
xslt beyond which one can intuit the rest.
The data model and XPath. The processing model, templates, and
"document-driven" ("push") processing: how it works, why it's good, and
when it doesn't help and you have to try something else.
If you get these, the rest can follow. If you try to fake it and write XSLT
without understanding these, you'll get into trouble, probably sooner
rather than later.
And how much of xslt do people think can be intuited.
In my experience (learning and teaching) what makes XSLT hard is not XSLT
so much as it's the interference of preconceptions about the way
"computers" or "computer languages" work or "should" work. Comparatively
unburdened by years of experience writing procedural code, I've never found
XSLT particularly difficult, apart from a short list of "gotchas". (Well
okay, I've written code before, I'm not an absolute tyro; but still, the
only people who'd consider me a "computer programmer" are not themselves
programmers. What this essentially boils down to is that I'm untroubled
when someone like David says "hey, it's not like what BASIC, Fortran or
whatever reason, others seem to resist this.)
Likewise, I have taught hands-on classes in which the neophytes who'd never
done anything beyond HTML have done great, while the code jockeys sitting
next to them have been pulling out their hair.
Particular problems in XSLT have been difficult; but this has had more to
do with the problems, and sometimes the poor fit between the problem and
what XSLT does well, not with XSLT as such.
One reason XSLT seems especially mysterious, I think, is because people
think of a stylesheet as a "program" that gets "executed". It's not: it's
just a *specification* for a transformation, and rightly should contain the
minimum possible programming logic. Mike Kay (or the guys at IBM, or MS, or
your other friendly XSLT engine developer) wrote the program; I'm just
running their code with my inputs. (And yes, I know this is not an absolute
Wendell Piez mailto:wapiez@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Mulberry Technologies, Inc. http://www.mulberrytech.com
17 West Jefferson Street Direct Phone: 301/315-9635
Suite 207 Phone: 301/315-9631
Rockville, MD 20850 Fax: 301/315-8285
Mulberry Technologies: A Consultancy Specializing in SGML and XML
XSL-List info and archive: http://www.mulberrytech.com/xsl/xsl-list
- Re: [xsl] Reference to variable cannot be resolved., (continued)
- Mike Brown - Fri, 14 Feb 2003 04:11:58 -0700 (MST)
- bryan - Fri, 14 Feb 2003 12:37:15 +0100
- David Carlisle - Fri, 14 Feb 2003 12:13:32 GMT
- S Woodside - Fri, 14 Feb 2003 13:08:07 -0500
- Wendell Piez - Fri, 14 Feb 2003 13:46:11 -0500 <=
- bryan - Mon, 17 Feb 2003 10:24:49 +0100
- Wendell Piez - Mon, 17 Feb 2003 18:07:13 -0500
- David Carlisle - Fri, 14 Feb 2003 12:12:34 GMT
- Jeni Tennison - Fri, 14 Feb 2003 12:27:52 +0000