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Re: Measuring the complexity of XSLT stylesheets

Subject: Re: Measuring the complexity of XSLT stylesheets
From: Lars Marius Garshol <larsga@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Sun, 17 Apr 2005 19:39:06 +0200
xslt measure time
* Sebastien Arbogast
| Maybe you could try to bring the problem back to a question of
| algorithm complexity.

Well, algorithm complexity is a measure of how quickly the time
increases with the size of the input. That's not my concern, however.
I'm interested in the complexity of the stylesheet as perceived by a
human being. So a better measure for my purposes would be something
like McCabe cyclomatic complexity, but I'm clueless about how to
compute that for an XSLT stylesheet.

| Because a XSLT stylesheet doesn't have any complexity in itself :
| it's not code in itself because it's not compiled or
| interpreted. 

I'd say an XSLT stylesheet *is* code, because it is an executable
description of a process. It's pretty declarative, but still code,

| The real program, where complexity really is (in terms of code
| performance if that's what you mean), it's the XSLT processor. So
| the first thing you have to do to evaluate complexity is to choose
| one implementation of an XSLT processor (MSXML, Saxon, Xalan,
| etc.).

If my goal was to find out how long it would take to run the
stylesheet this would be of interest, but I'm more concerned with how
difficult the stylesheet is to write and maintain. So I'm looking for
complexity in a different sense.

Lars Marius Garshol, Ontopian         <URL: http://www.ontopia.net >
GSM: +47 98 21 55 50                  <URL: http://www.garshol.priv.no >

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