Re: [xsl] Announcement: Dexter - XSL Transform Generation Tool

Subject: Re: [xsl] Announcement: Dexter - XSL Transform Generation Tool
From: Abel Braaksma <>
Date: Fri, 18 Jan 2008 11:05:41 +0100
Michael Dykman wrote:
Abel: would you mind if I borrowed some of your verbiage for that documentation?

No, not at all, I'd be honored! ;)

Another note, but now about the design of your product. Though it looks
like a well thought-of design, I think you made one major mistake not to
go the W3C XML way to write extensions in their own namespace.

Noted. That is something I am aiming for in version 2. I was anxious to get the
idea out of head and that is one of the decisions I made early on just to get a
working model. The namespace would be a welcome addition.

More than welcome, even (and I sure hope you meant version 0.2, because 2.0 seems to be a bit too far off ;)

One other thought: you mention SVG as an example on your website, but both SVG and XSL-FO, which are superb candidates for use-cases of your tool, cannot be tested anymore once you start creating a design document: an invalid SVG or XSL-FO document (and it is invalid once your attributes are used) will not render. This is different from the XHTML examples, which will still render. Not using a namespace unfortunately renders your tool useless for all but the most trivial examples.... (meaning: your tool will still work, but the strength of it, as you state on your homepage, that you can *design* a document without it being tampered by your extensions, does not hold any longer).

<alessandro.bologna@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
I do have a question, if you don't mind. Why did you choose to
generate the XSLT from the template in Java, instead of XSLT? A

You know, it never occurred to me until I read this. That is an
excellent idea and bears
some thought. I chose Java because I am intimate with it's XML
facilities and there is a
lot of logical transformation going on under the covers which is more readily
accomplished with a general purpose language.

Opinions vary. But yes, sometimes business logic is better written in a GP language. But there's another benefit when doing this solely in XSLT: people do not have to invest in your tools, they can just embed the XSLT in their current systems without much changes to their architecture. And possibly/hopefully, your settings file, which is now embedded in the JAR and is a java .properties file, will then become an XML settings file.

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