It took me a long time to wrap my head around programming in XSL. In my
opinion, it was very similar to programming in old school lisp. I have used
Knute‘s book for solving problems. I think what you end up having to do is
understand his algorithm and then it Has to be recast in your language
of choice, in this case XSL. A lot of his algorithms, are structured more
around a standard programming language or assembly language. You have to Think
differently in XSL to achieve the best results in my opinion.
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On Friday, July 9, 2021, 10:09 AM, Roger L Costello
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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