Re: Fwd: xsl:key() and $variables.
I've never heard of xsl:key but the second illustration here:
Presumably each Employee would have a unique SSN and therefore the key() call will return one Element.
And if the SSN isn't unique -- or maybe your key value is the surname not the SSN -- you could get several Employees back, all with the same SSN, surname or what have you.
Hence the applicability of keys for de-duplicating and accordingly for grouping.
Note there's nothing you can do with a key that you can't do with brute-force XPath. But since the processor has the information up front to build an index, many expensive tree traversals are avoided and the application scaled much better.
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