1. Abstract

"An Introduction to XSLT and XPath" is a lecture-style tutorial introducing the concepts of the Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations (XSLT) 1.0 http://www.w3.org/TR/xslt, XSLT 2.0 http://www.w3.org/TR/xslt20, the XML Path Language (XPath) 1.0 http://www.w3.org/TR/xpath and XPath 2.0 http://www.w3.org/TR/xpath20 W3C Recommendations, used for transforming structured information (e.g. XML to XML, XML to HTML, XML to WML, XML to text, etc.). The course overviews the processing model and the basic principles behind the languages as described in the W3C Recommendations. Approaches to using XSLT and XPath for each of the display, formatting and arbitrary semantics are reviewed. The relationship of XSLT to XSL is explained, though details of XSL Formatting Object semantics are not included. The objectives of the course are to understand the role and utility of the standard, be introduced to the models upon which the standard is built, and identify available documentation and resources.

2. Length

This presentation runs in either 45 minutes, 90 minutes, a half-day or a full-day format in a lecture style. See the detailed syllabi below.

3. Expected Audience

This course is aimed at people needing to understand both conceptual aspects of the XSLT and XPath languages and their applicability.

4. Prerequisites

Attendees must have an awareness of XML, as this is not covered explicitly in the lecture and knowledge of these concepts is assumed. It is not necessary to know XML syntax.

5. Synopsis

For many people, the uses of Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations (XSLT) and the XML Path Language (XPath) W3C Recommendations are new approaches to working with structured information.

"An Introduction to XSLT and XPath" successfully introduces the application of these Recommendations to information expressed in XML. The longer the lecture, the more detail is covered by the instructor. All material is derived as lecture subsets of the book and hands-on training material "Practical Transformation Using XSLT and XPath".

When designing our XML vocabularies to represent our information, we should not be constraining our structures to the presented form we anticipate. We should be constraining our structures to the inherent relationships of information considering the ways we plan to author and maintain our information for the long haul and for many and varied purposes and presentations. This is the commonly-felt shortfall of capturing our information in HTML or in WML or, if we are printing information, in either a proprietary printing application or a static print appearance.

XPath and XSLT give us the ability to, respectively, address our structured information in XML and express the desired transformation of our information into new and varied arrangements. Perhaps these arrangements are necessary because of different technologies such as web browsers, hand-held devices, and print engines. Perhaps these arrangements are necessary because the target audiences for our information differ and we need to either subset or emphasize or rearrange our information into the target uses that make our information the easiest to consume for each of our many and varied users.

XPath is an expression language based on an abstract node-based representation of our structured XML information. XSLT is a declarative language, yet powerful enough to be Turing-complete, where we represent the result of the transformation of our information in a way that a processor can engage whatever algorithms are required to produce the final desired vocabulary and structure.

Using XSLT and XPath frees us to focus our XML creation processes on the nature of our information, while at the same time frees us to meet existing and future requirements for different uses of our information.

Deliveries that are either a half-day or full-day in length introduce the entire scope of functionality of the Recommendations and include valuable reference material to supplement the use of the W3C Recommendation documents.

6. 45-minute Delivery Syllabus

 00:00   Course Introduction
         Module 1: XSL Transformations and the XML Path Language
 00:45   End of Lecture

7. 90-minute Delivery Syllabus

 00:00   Course Introduction
         Module 1: XSL Transformations and the XML Path Language
         Module 2: Getting Started with XSLT and XPath
 01:30   End of Lecture

8. Half-day Delivery Syllabus

 00:00   Course Introduction
         Instructor/Student Expectations
         Module 1: XSL Transformations and the XML Path Language
         Module 2: Getting Started with XSLT and XPath
 01:30   Break
 00:00   Module 3: XPath Data Model
         Module 4: XSLT Processing Model
         Module 5: The XSLT Transformation Environment
         Module 6: XSLT Stylesheet Management
         Module 7: XSLT Instructions
         Module 8: XPath and XSLT Expressions and Advanced 
                   Techniques
         Module 9: Sorting
         Annex A: XML to HTML Transformation Techniques
         Annex B: XSL Formatting Semantics Introduction
         Annex C: Element, Grammar, Function and Object
                    Quick References
         Annex D: Sample Tool Information
         Question/Answer
 01:30   End of Lecture

9. Full-day Delivery Syllabus

 00:00   Course Introduction
         Instructor/Student Expectations
         Module 1: XSL Transformations and the XML Path Language
         Module 2: Getting Started with XSLT and XPath
 01:30   Break
 00:00   Module 3: XPath Data Model
 01:30   Lunch
 00:00   Module 4: XSLT Processing Model
         Module 5: The XSLT Transformation Environment
 01:30   Break
 00:00   Module 6: XSLT Stylesheet Management
         Module 7: XSLT Instructions
         Module 8: XPath and XSLT Expressions and Advanced 
                   Techniques
         Module 9: Sorting
         Annex A: XML to HTML Transformation Techniques
         Annex B: XSL Formatting Semantics Introduction
         Annex C: Element, Grammar, Function and Object
                    Quick References
         Annex D: Sample Tool Information
         Question/Answer
 01:30   End of Lecture
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