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Re: Beginners question: Koala XSL-Engine and <xsl:process se

Subject: Re: Beginners question: Koala XSL-Engine and <xsl:process select>
From: Tyler Baker <tyler@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 23 Oct 1998 15:31:57 -0400
explaining xml
Chris Maden wrote:

> [Tyler Baker]
> > This of course makes sense if XSL is supposed to be able to handle
> > nodes other than just element nodes.  I guess this all boils down to
> > whether XSL should just be something for content transformations or
> > something much more complex which handles comments, PI's, and all of
> > that other stuff that for the most part has nothing to do with
> > presentation.
> I'd like you to come tell my production editors that PIs have nothing
> to do with presentation.  They're exactly where information like
> page-breaks belong.
> The current draft says:
>      Issue (pattern-pi-target): Should it be possible to have a
>      pattern that matches a processing instruction?
> I think that it should, and I think that it'll probably go that way.

This is one way of doing things here.  I am just arguing here to keep XSL
(and XML for that matter) very, very, simple.  If XML and XSL are not very
simple, there is no reason to use it as working with it will be about as
bad as working with native document formats.  I feel sometimes that people
simply want to keep adding things to a language (programming or otherwise)
simply to suit their particular application at the time without ever
considering the possible negatives of doing so.  As you keep adding
complexity you are continually increasing the learning curve for others to
use your creation and in the end it will all fail because the number of
dollars and time it takes to get people up to speed with the language you
are creating will be greater than any dollars you save by using the
technology.  XML got a lot of hype earlier in the year, but now it seems
like it is dying a bit.  Perhaps the complexity of it for newbies scared a
lot of people off.  Really, I don't know but it sure seems that way.  I
myself have spent a lot of time trying to get up to speed over the last
year with XML and its other related technologies and for me that is way
longer than I had hoped it would take.  You should not need a 10 year
record with SGML to have any clue about how to use XML.

The main success of Java I feel is that a C/C++ programmer could read the
Java Language Specification and get up to speed in a matter of weeks.  XML
and XSL, even though they are not programming languages, in a lot of
respects are somewhat more complicated.  I just plead with those
responsible for maintaining XML and XSL, that things do not get any more
complicated than they already are.  If you try explaining XML and XSL to
someone who is of intermediate computer experience and you start sounding
like a geek to them, that is a good sign things are too complicated.


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