Re: [xsl] XSLT 1.1 comments

Subject: Re: [xsl] XSLT 1.1 comments
From: Uche Ogbuji <uche.ogbuji@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 15 Feb 2001 08:06:37 -0700
> Clark C. Evans wrote:
> > Many people want scripts beacuse the "modulization" abilities
> > of XSLT leave alot to be desired, i.e., making a template and
> > calling a template are just too verbose.
> That's not the primary reason I could imagine wanting user-defined
> functions. I can imagine two situations that this would not help:
> 1. for getting information about the system in ways impossible in
> XSLT, like getting the current date, testing whether a file or
> directory exists, or pulling information out of a database from within
> a stylesheet

This is prime territory for separately standardized extensions, say using 

> 2. for accessing templates within XPath predicates - for example if I
> write a funky regexp match template then I'd like to be able to use it
> to select all nodes whose value matches a particular regexp

Prime territory for improving run-time dynamicism within XSLT itself.  I think 
introspection has proven itself as a powerful means of improving programmer 
expressivity, and better introspective and dynamic programming support in XSLT 
would eliminate, IMO, most of the need for extensions beyond standard 

> There are ways around both these current limitations - you can pass
> the current date and so on in as a parameter, and you can (in XSLT
> 1.1) construct an RTF holding copies of or references to the relevant
> nodes to get the second functionality - but they're very unweildy.

I agree that they are currently unweildy, but I think that this will be 
minimized by standardization layered on top of XSLT 1.0.

Uche Ogbuji                               Principal Consultant
uche.ogbuji@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx               +1 303 583 9900 x 101
Fourthought, Inc.                
4735 East Walnut St, Ste. C, Boulder, CO 80301-2537, USA
Software-engineering, knowledge-management, XML, CORBA, Linux, Python

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