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   RE: Simplicity of XPath

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  • From: "Pollington, Lee (ELSLON)" <lee.pollington@biomednet.com>
  • To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
  • Date: Fri, 10 Nov 2000 15:34:09 +0000

I think XPath can be hard to start with, especially things like axis
specifiers which work on the whole document and how the context works in
complicated expressions like the need for self in:
para[preceding-sibling::*[1][self::title]]. Furthermore, there can be
multiple ways of performing the same operation, which can be confusing.

However once it clicks, it's great: both flexible and powerful.

I actually prefer non-abbreviated syntax, I think it's easier to read, you
only have to translate it in your head otherwise.

I think there is a lack of performance and good style guides, however I
realise this is to a large extent implementation specific.


ps. There is a little VB XPath tester (on the net somewhere! I can send the
source code if required), that really helped me out to start and is still a
useful utility.

 -----Original Message-----
 From: Matt Sergeant [mailto:matt@sergeant.org]
 Sent: 10 November 2000 15:20
 To: Bullard, Claude L (Len); xml-dev@lists.xml.org
 Subject: Simplicity of XPath
 "Bullard, Claude L (Len)" wrote:
 > Being able to reapply XPath has advantages
 > on the learning curve although the syntax of XPath isn't
 > all that easy to learn.
 I always thought it was one of the easier aspects to pick up. 
 Is there a
 general consensus on this matter?
 Or is it that the simple (abbreviated) parts of XPath are easy, but the
 non-abbreviated parts are hard?
     /||    ** Director and CTO **
    //||    **  AxKit.com Ltd   **  ** XML Application Serving **
   // ||    ** http://axkit.org **  ** XSLT, XPathScript, XSP  **
  // \\| // **     Personal Web Site: http://sergeant.org/     **
     //  \\


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