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

2021-07-09 11:05:26

You can't do engineering without mathematics (in some form) -- but that
doesn't mean they are the same thing.

Cheers, Wendell

On Fri, Jul 9, 2021 at 3:09 PM Roger L Costello costello(_at_)mitre(_dot_)org <
xsl-list-service(_at_)lists(_dot_)mulberrytech(_dot_)com> wrote:

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 applicable.

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?


...Wendell Piez... ...wendell -at- nist -dot- gov...
...wendellpiez.com... ...pellucidliterature.org... ...pausepress.org...
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