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XSLT Programmer's Reference 2nd Edition [Paperback]

Michael Kay
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 April 2001 1861005067 978-1861005069 2nd Revised edition
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.

Product details

  • Paperback: 800 pages
  • Publisher: WROX Press Ltd; 2nd Revised edition edition (1 April 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1861005067
  • ISBN-13: 978-1861005069
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 15.2 x 4.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 913,825 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Amazon Review

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

From the Publisher

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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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
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Despite our slightly over-critical friend's view of it being far too early to write a book on the subject (which beggars the question of when is it the right time?), XSLT Programmer's Reference is still the most comprehensive reference on the latest recommendation from W3C.
The book is clear and concise, though presented in such a manner as to welcome the novice into the 'dark, mysterious world' that is XSLT.
Read this book and learn how to write the correct XSLT file for your application... the book covers simple stylesheets, navigational stylesheets, rule-based stylesheets, and computational stylesheets. It introduces the notion of Functional Programming, discusses the XSLT processing model, and has whole chapters dedicated to core xsl:elements and xslFunctions().
Included in the appendices is a chapter discussing the various XSL/XML parsers currently available (and yes, EVEN AFTER A YEAR the book is still UP TO DATE!)
Having read the book cover to cover I am far more confident in my XSL programming than I ever was before.
If you need to learn XSLT or even if you know it and you need a great, handy reference book for your shelf, don't be a fool BUY THIS NOW.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exactly the book I was looking for 30 Aug 2000
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am involved in a project that needs some fairly deep XSLT, and whilst things were going OK, I felt sure that the knowledge I had gained from the web and a couple of XML books was not complete. You know, when you get something to work, but you are not quite sure how that one little bit actually does the right thing...?
Michael Kay really presents everything in such a complete way that those subtly incorrect mental models that one might be using are corrected. The result is a clear vision of what's happening in ALL your XSLT. He also knows how programmers' minds work and he points out all the potential pitfalls and also the common mistakes we are all likely to make.
I cannot believe you would need another book on the subject. It's even pleasantly readable...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ignore the reviews of the 1st edition book! 22 Jun 2001
By A. Reid
Ignore the reviews of the 1st edition of this book (2000). Now in 2001, The XSLT 1.0 standard has effectively been ratified and is now stable; 1.1 is in the works and the XSLT processors all achieve good levels of compliance. This is currently the most up to date and comprehensive book on XSLT. Not only covers XSLT in depth but also has chapters on the main XSL processors. Excellent examples throughout and a nice, readable style of writing.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the weight. 4 Sep 2000
By A Customer
It may be big but it is clever. This is probably the only uptodate guide to XSLT available. Don't be put off by the word 'Reference' in the title. This book isn't simply a rehash of information you could get off the Net or in your XSLT Processors documentation. As well as essential reference sections (with copious examples of usage) this book provides a thorough and readable grounding in the principles behind and usage of XSLT. XSLT requires something of a mindset change for prodedural programmers and this book helps enormously. Congratulations to Michael Kay.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it now. 7 May 2002
By A Customer
This is the only book to have on the subject of XSLT. I have the first edition -- the second edition also covers the 1.1 specification, introduces some new techniques (e.g. the Muenchian Method), and extends its coverage of the available XSLT engines out there.
His writing style is completely lucid and readable, and he covers the topic thoroughly. Plus if you're really stuck you can join the mailing list (as advertised in the book) and providing you've asked a sensible question, you're likely to get a response from Mr. Kay himself.
Do yourself a favor and buy this book today.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book on XSLT 26 April 2002
This book is the best book I've read on XML and on XSLT in particular. It's the best of the breed, it *teaches* you to think in XSLT, and it's simply SUPERB !
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book on XSLT out there 29 Jun 2001
When I first bought this book, in its first edition, I was just learning XML and XSL. I personally found the book very easy to use, and thanks to the superb job that Michael has done I quickly learned how to use XSLT. Some more examples in the book might have been nice, but those present are very useful, and illustrated some of the concepts very well. XSLT, beyond the very basics, can be quite complex, but a book such as this one that fully explains all of the languages elements and how they all fit together is invaluable. The new second edition is also a good introduction to the new XSLT 1.1 specification, still in working draft, for those (like me) who find the W3C documents rather daunting without some initial exposure to the concepts. All in all, highly recommended.
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A well written guide on how to develop with XSLT 1. The book is more reference than tutorial (as stated on the cover). The only thing I could fault it on would be some of it's examples, which can leave you needing a little bit more to complete your understanding.
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