RE: [xsl] Need: XSL FO Schema/ .XSD/ Validator? "defined" or "variable" based on the FO Processor used.

Subject: RE: [xsl] Need: XSL FO Schema/ .XSD/ Validator? "defined" or "variable" based on the FO Processor used.
From: "G. Ken Holman" <gkholman@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 20 Jul 2004 07:19:29 -0400
At 2004-07-20 10:26 +0100, Michael Kay wrote:
> >Ideas on how you have used existing XSL-FO validation schemas to trap
> >and handle errors or anything of that type.
> Why?  In my opinion, this is wasted time.

I hope to prove you wrong, Ken. I've now developed a couple of "real"
stylesheets using the schema-aware version of Saxon - not an XSL-FO
stylesheet, admittedly - and I've been very pleasantly surprised by how much
more quickly you find your XSLT coding errors when the schema validation of
the result document is built in to the XSLT processing.

In this, Michael, I would be pleased to be proved wrong!

That's even with
Saxon 8.0 which so far only does run-time validation against the schema, it
doesn't yet do any compile-time checking (that's next on my list).


difference basically is that instead of producing incorrect output, which
then fails validation at the next stage in the pipeline (the FO processor in
this case), you get an error message pointing to the XSLT instruction that
produces the invalid output, which gives you a much faster cycle to correct
the error.

Yes ... may I suggest (and you've probably thought of this) to make it fully switchable? That way during development I incur the processing time to make sure everything works as I'm writing my stylesheet, but then when I'm confident that my stylesheet is working turn it off ... when something is (thought to be) working, I'd like to just use the XSL-FO processor as a safety net and pass through my transformation quickly without schema validation to get results quickly with the (hopefully warranted) confidence there isn't a problem lurking in my stylesheet that was not caught during testing.

A shameless plug for my product, I know, but I really have found that it
makes a difference.

Not at all, Michael .. worthy of discussion ... I'm looking forward to seeing how new tools change my day-to-day XSL-FO development for my customers.

Following this enquiry, I will now be looking out for an
opportunity to try it out on a stylesheet that produces XSL-FO output.

But won't you need an XSL-FO schema, then? I'm not sure one exists ... unless, perhaps, one took the RenderX DTD to Trang and then tweaked the result..

Thanks for bringing this up, Michael.

.................... Ken

Public training 3 days XSLT & 2 days XSL-FO: Phoenix,AZ 2004-08-23
World-wide on-site corporate, govt. & user group XML/XSL training.
G. Ken Holman                 mailto:gkholman@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Crane Softwrights Ltd.
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