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[xsl] Do you use Knuth's algorithms book to solve XML processing problems via XSLT?

2021-07-09 10:08:59
Hi Folks,

As you know, Donald Knuth has written a bunch of books that describe algorithms 
for solving just about every conceivable problem.

I've always dreamed of, one day, getting a problem to solve, looking up the 
appropriate algorithm in one of Knuth's books, and then expressing the 
algorithm in XSLT.

That day has yet to come.

It seems like the problems involved in processing XML documents using XSLT is 
somehow different than "ordinary" problems, which makes Knuth's books not 

For example, recently I wrote an XSLT program to output information about each 
element (name, type, minOccurs, maxOccurs, facets) in all the files of an XML 
Schema. My program had to take into consideration complexTypes with 
complexContent, complexTypes with simpleContent, complexTypes with sequence, 
complexTypes with choice, complexTypes with sequence containing xs:any, etc. I 
looked at my finished program and thought, "What is the underlying algorithm? 
Is there something that I could have used from Knuth's books?" Well, the 
underlying algorithm is simply to consider all the ways that things can be 
expressed in XML Schema. I don't think there is anything in Knuth's books that 
would have helped.

Question: Have you ever experienced this: You are given a problem to solve that 
involves processing XML. You find an appropriate algorithm in one of Knuth's 
books. You implement the algorithm in XSLT. TaDa! Finished. Problem solved. Has 
that ever happened to you?

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