RE: Practical XSL

Subject: RE: Practical XSL
From: Mark Birbeck <Mark.Birbeck@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 18 Feb 1999 18:05:51 -0000
Paul Prescod wrote:
> "Livingstone, Stephen" wrote:
> > Is anyone doing anything serious with XSL yet? If not (for those who
> > decide these things) when is it likely that we shall be 
> able to reliably
> > use XSL?
> It will be safest to use XSL seriously when it becomes a W3C
> recommendation.

Don't agree!

I replied privately to Stephen with mention of a site that we are about
to launch which is an online magazine. Within it there are hundreds of
articles and a database full of information on companies, countries,
people, events and so on. All are cross-referenced with XLink-type
relationships, and then XSL is used to produce HTML for the layout and
in particular the 'real' links needed. 

Now, if XSL changes next week, we have about eight (that's eight)
stylesheets to change. Might take a few hours, and then it's off down to
the pub. Even if certain concepts change I can't see us being
inconvenienced more than a few days. When the IE4 to IE5 changes
happened it took us an afternoon.

And if you have a hundred stylesheets - and I would be surprised if
anyone has yet, given the early stages we are at - then you can devise a
stylesheet to transform them anyway.

BUT ...

Imagine NOT using XSL. We would have implemented a boring old,
traditional solution to the web site. We would not have been able to
deliver the richness of cross-referencing that we have, and if we did it
would be pretty much impossible to maintain. And THEN when XSL had
settled we'd have to start the conversion process, and therefore be a
generation of technology behind.

I say give it a go! You have nothing to lose, and I can assure you that
most problems to do with performance can be 'worked round' for now,
until the next generation comes along. It's really not as difficult as
people are making out.



Mark Birbeck
Managing Director
Intra Extra Digital Ltd.
39 Whitfield Street
t: 0171 681 4135
e: Mark.Birbeck@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

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