RE: [xsl] Split into numbered files: without side-effect? (XSLT 2)

Subject: RE: [xsl] Split into numbered files: without side-effect? (XSLT 2)
From: "Michael Kay" <mike@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2007 14:24:59 +0100
> > If you've got XPath expressions stored in an XML document, then the 
> > only way to evaluate them with standard XSLT is to generate a 
> > stylesheet and then execute it.
> It is not the only way.
> Someone (like me) may be able to parse  an XPath expression 

Well, yes, I was making the assumption that the user didn't want to write an
XPath processor.

> Certainly, in most cases such "dinamism" is not needed and 
> may be avoided.

Actually, I see a very large number of XML-based applications that make use
in one way or another of dynamic XPath expressions - either expressions that
are constructed programmatically, or expressions that are read from
configuration files of one kind or another. I think it's a very useful
technique and I think it's a great shame that we weren't able to get it into
XSLT 2.0. Not that it's easy to specify - it's quite hard to find good
answers to all the context issues like namespaces, variables, and
user-defined functions.

(Sometimes the technique is also used to emulate higher-order functions,
which is not something I particularly encourage.)

Michael Kay

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