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XSLT: Programmer's Reference [Paperback]

Michael Kay
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

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Book Description

April 1 2001 0764543814 978-0764543814 2
What is this book about?

This compact, relevant, updated version reflects recent changes in the XSLT specification and developments in XSLT parsers. The material on tools and implementations has been revised; so too have all the examples. It also includes a new chapter on writing extension functions.

XML has firmly established itself as the universal standard for managing data for the web and is now being implemented on a wide scale.

XSL (eXtensible Stylesheet Language), a vital companion to XML, is used for two main purposes: to format or style XML data so that it can be displayed in a browser and to transform XML data (XSLT). When you transform an XML document, you manipulate the data into a new structure, for example, re-ordering the data. This enables the same data store to be used in an unlimited number of ways. XSLT is a flexible, customizable, and cross-platform language.

XSLT is a notoriously difficult language to understand, but this book, while being a complete reference to the recommendation, will also give code examples showing how it all ties together and can be effectively employed in a real-world development scenario.

What does this book cover?

In this book, you'll find the following topics covered:

  • The rationale behind XSLT: What is it for?
  • The XSLT processing model
  • Design patterns and stylesheet structure
  • A full reference to the XPath and XSLT languages
  • The use of XSLT with worked examplesCurrently available XSLT processors - updated to reflect recent advances in XSLT parser technology
  • Coverage of proposed specification enhancements

Who is this book for?

This book is for programmers already using XML to organize their data in applications and for those who want to use the power and compatibility of XSLT to improve the display of their data. The book is in three parts: a detailed introduction to the concepts of the language, a reference section giving comprehensive specifications and working examples of every feature, and an exploitation guide giving advice and case studies for the advanced user.


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From Amazon

Author Michael Kay exudes enthusiasm in this guide, XSLT Programmer's Reference, by taking every opportunity to illustrate the power and flexibility of XSLT. As XML begins to take hold, the eXtensible Stylesheet Language: Transformation (XSLT) standard will be playing a major role in making all those XML predictions a reality.

Kay calls XSLT the "SQL of the Web"--a phrase that is sure to perk up the ears of many readers expecting a simple documentation of just another Web-language standard. Like other Wrox Programmer's Reference series titles, this book starts off with chapters that rapidly introduce the concepts and set the context for the core of the book, which is a complete documentation of the XSLT standard. The book uses this space well to explore the transformation process and the tree structure that is used for both input and output of style sheet documents. By the time the reader gets to the reference section of the book, he or she will be convinced of the power of XSLT.

Each element of XSLT is covered with concise examples that include both the source XML code and style sheet code. XSLT style sheets can be used in a variety of ways and across a wide spectrum of complexity. The book helps the reader grasp this concept by presenting four style sheet design patterns that comprise the vast majority of implementations. The text looks at each, demonstrating how to identify the design pattern by its content and apply it to appropriate circumstances.

XSLT is the true muscle behind XML and is integral to putting XML to work in the real world. This title is simply a must-have for any developer utilising XML. --Stephen W Plain --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

XSLT Programmer's Reference is a compact, up to date and relevant explanation of the W3C's XSLT and XPath recommendations, including any material that they rely on from referenced specifications such as XML, XML Namespaces, IEEE and Java. XSLT is a notoriously difficult language to understand, but this book, while being a complete reference to the recommendation, will also give code examples showing how it all ties together and can be effectively employed in a real world development scenario. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
It wouldn't be too extravagant to claim that XML is the biggest thing to hit the web since the whole thing started less than ten years ago. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat useful for day to day usage Dec 17 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is not intended to be used has a cookbook, this is a reference and you should buy it only if you want to understand the intricacies of the language.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A good intro to a tough topic May 26 2004
Format:Paperback
XSLT is almost the official programming language of XML - in fact, it uses XML as its representation. Given the importance of XML, XSLT is going to be a critical tool at anyone's workbench sooner or later.
XSLT is also a hard language to work with. That's where this book comes in. When I needed to write an XML-based application of my own - one involving DocBook, HTML, and XSLT itself - XSLT was the natural choice, though a daunting one. Using only this book, I managed to pick up the XSLT programming model (hint: there is almost no such thing as flow of control) and get the job done. Kay's discussions of XML name spaces and other basics were part of what got the job done right.
This book should be on the shelf of every serious XML programmer. I don't know whether a programming beginner would get the full value from it, but experienced readers will find it dense, well-organized, and above all helpful.
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5.0 out of 5 stars great great book April 29 2004
Format:Paperback
Great book. Can't believe how much work was put into it. Seems to have a usefull, concise example for every problem I've encountered. Useful as a reference as well. I wish more technology books were like this. Book is appropriate for beginners and experts alike!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Challenging but well worth it. April 6 2004
Format:Paperback
This book is a challenge, but once you understand the fundamentals, the beauty of XSLT starts to emerge. All of the recursion, immutable variables, predicates, and patterns start to make sense. After a week with Kay's book, you'll be pretty durn handy with just about any XSLT-related task (except maybe complex grouping... give that two weeks). XSLT is a fascinating language, and for a thorough understanding of it I suggest Kay's book, above all others.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Covers everything you need to know about XSLT Jan. 28 2004
Format:Paperback
I have this book and the XSLT Cookbook. This book covers all technical aspects of XSLT and the XSLT Cookbook gives you solutions to solve common tasks with the use of XSLT. It is all I need to have as a programmer/designer working with XSLT.
I highly recommend this book!
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5.0 out of 5 stars XSLT Indept Dec 23 2003
Format:Paperback
Covers 'every' detail you need to know about XSLT. If you use XSLT fairly often in you work then this has to be within arms-length.
Minor inconvinence is references to XSL 1.1 features (which doesn't exists anymore). I also wonder how big this book would be when XSL 2.0 is supported... wait Wrox (the publisher) is gone... may be this is the last edition.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent XSLT tutorial and reference Dec 13 2003
Format:Paperback
This is a great book on XSLT from the author of the popular Saxon XSLT engine. This was the first book I read on XSLT, it gave me a very thorough understanding of the subject and even though I have bought other books to cover some of the whole (in particular the XSLT cookbook), I keep turning back to this book as a reference. The coverage of XPath, which is critical for writing good XSLT, is concise and excellent.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best XSLT Book Sept. 16 2003
Format:Paperback
I have been developing XSLT for a few years and this is the only book I use. It is the best book on XSLT, by far. However, it is not for beginners. Mr. Kay did a fantastic job!
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