Re: [xsl] XSLT 1.1 comments (in defence of xsl:script)

Subject: Re: [xsl] XSLT 1.1 comments (in defence of xsl:script)
From: Francis Norton <francis@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 14 Feb 2001 15:27:12 +0000

David Carlisle wrote:
> I have no particular desire to fill my stylesheets with a scripting
> language (although perhaps emacs lisp might make a nice extension
> language, or TeX, ....) However I think I disagree completely with the
> above.
I'd quite like to fill my stylesheets with XSLT ... thus my current
campaign to get XSLT included as an xsl:script source language, or to
add the equivalent of Mike Kay's saxon:function.  

> If you just use xsl:script then the situation is exactly the same as
> in XSL 1.0. Your stylesheet will be portable.
Between eg Saxon and MSXML3? Not unless you code, test, document and
optimise your extensions in both java and Jscript, surely?

> If, in XSLT 1.0 or 1.1 you use an extension function from a non XSL
> namespace then your stylesheet will not be portable.
> The only difference is that in XSLT 1.0 you won't in general have any
> idea what the extension function is supposed to do (if it isn't "your"
> namespace") but in XSLT 1.1 you may be able to look at an xsl:script
> element which will specify (in a portable way) the binding of that
> extension function to  some external code library or some inlined script.
> But note it is the use of an extension function that makes the document
> non portable. xsl:script does not _do_ anything. it just specifies the
> binding of extension functions to code, so helps specify what it is
> extension functions are doing. extension functions are the enemy of
> portability, not xsl:script. And they are already in XSLT 1.0.
Surely the point is that xsl:script will encourage the development of a
fragemented codebase that uses language-specific extensions. And
inter-platform portability will suffer as a result. As long as there is
no option to code extension functions in platform-portable XSLT, that
goal will move further out of reach.

Am I wrong, David? If anyone can offer surprise me with a good case for
not implementing XSLT extension functions alongside external ones, I'm
sure you can!


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