XML Transformations with CSS and DOM

Saturday September 28th, 2002

Apple Developer Connection has a tutorial describing how to render XML in Mozilla using CSS and DOM. The article starts off by explaining how to style XML using CSS and then uses DOM Level 2 to transform some of the output into XHTML. This is all standards-compliant stuff that should work in any 'next generation' browser but only Mozilla is currently cool enough to support it all. The tutorial is by Scott Andrew LePera, who also wrote ADC's last article about Mozilla.

#9 Re: XSL considered harmful

by masi

Monday September 30th, 2002 12:41 AM

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The article is VERY old. It is (mainly) about XSL, now XSL-FO, and not XLST. As the author self states: "some XSL advocates have begun to call for a clean separation between the proposed transformation language and the formatting language."

Plus, it is a bad article because of it's unnecessary angry tone. While the author is right, you can do transformations with a (procedural) language, it doesn't mean it's the only way to do it. As mentioned in another post, XLST 2.0 will get some 'user functions' to beef up the basic (declarative) transformation language.

What I don't get is the point on being "interactive". I do not remember the hopes about the orginal XLS, but certainly I see nothing about XSL-FO and XSL that's there to support interactivity. Obviously, DOM manipluation + CSS is the way to go.

Anyway, XLST is now mostly a server-side used technology. IE 5.x supports has onyl an implementation of the old working draft (there is a 'plugin' in MS' download area). And IE 6.x finally implements XLST out of the box, but defaults to the working draft. You have to explictely invoke a transformation on a DOM tree using JScript! This breaks all XML code that uses XML prosseing instructions. So XLST will stay serevr side, bu on a very few sites with a closed user base like intranets.