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RE: XQuery & XSLT was RE: Verboseness - XML Syntax for XQuery 1.0(XQueryX)

Note, I am speaking solely for myself below and not the working group.

> There is nothing more confusing than having two similar but 
> subtly different syntaxes to remember. XQuery serves a 
> different purpose to XSLT and needs a different syntax to 
> reflect these differences. However, where the two standards 
> overlap they should be more consistent. In particular, I 
> believe the XSLT template body format should be used for 
> query results.

I don't think that the template body format is appropriate for the user
communities that are most likely to use XQuery.

> From:	Michael Champion [SMTP:mike.champion@softwareag-usa.com]
> Sent:	Sunday, June 17, 2001 10:38 PM
> >Finally, on the question of whether XQuery should be more 
> SQL-like than
> >XSLT-like, I think that question is moot:  XSLT *is* a fairly
> reasonable 
> >query language, and those who are happy with it will probably be able
> to 
> >get along without XQuery. The whole point of XQuery (as I 
> see it) is to
> >provide those who need it with a more SQL-like XML query language.
> My understanding of the point of XQuery was that it provides 
> querying across collections of XML documents, with new 
> features for this task and better scope for optimization than 
> XSLT. Making it more "SQL-like" seems pointless to me, as the 
> language is different anyway, and the model is not 
> relational. It uses different keywords and different syntax.

Note that the "SQL-like" form is not tied to relational models at all.
Michael could also have said Lore-like, OQL-like etc. I.e., a concise,
easy to read and write declarative language.

> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Jonathan Robie [SMTP:Jonathan.Robie@SoftwareAG-USA.com]
> Sent:	Saturday, June 16, 2001 11:23 AM
> >>True, but I think it should be, or that they should have a human 
> >>writeable XML syntax available as well.
> >How important is this, and why is it important? Why would 
> humans prefer
> to 
> >write queries in an XML syntax?
> The users editor can ensure well-formedness.
> The syntax for results is itself XML, making it more 
> intuitive. The syntax for results can be similar to that of 
> XSLT, meaning programmers only have to learn one syntax.

Most of my XQuery constituency is not really interested in learning XSLT
syntax but prefers the XQuery syntax.

> >>However, I'm not saying that they should use XSLT, just 
> that: 1. for 
> >>the results part of the query, they should adopt the XSLT template 
> >>body format or something similar.
> >
> >I think that our element constructors are quite similar to XSLT's
> template 
> >bodies, and more so in the latest Working Draft of XQuery.
> They appear to not be well-formed XML in XQuery. 

Is this really a problem? I find human readability and writeability to
be more important goals. Having XML-based constructor functions for
elements and attributes breaks readability and writeability more than
the current constructors.

> >In this message I argue that ease of use, offering conventional
> database 
> >functionality, optimizability, and strong typing are 
> important reasons
> for 
> >developing XQuery, and these needs are not adequately 
> satisfied by XSLT
> 1.0.
> I am not opposed to XQuery, and I am aware that it provides 
> functionality distinct from that of XSLT. I am not implying 
> you should all use XSLT and forget about XQuery. My point is 
> that there are atleast two areas where they overlap: 1. They 
> select parts of an XML document, specified mostly using 
> XPath. 2. They construct new XML elements by example.
> I believe they should try to be consistent in these areas. In 
> some cases, for (1), this would mean changing XSLT to align 
> with XQuery, as XQuery is better. In other areas XQuery is 
> merely different. For area (2), I believe the XSLT format 
> should be used. It has been stated more than once, that the 
> workings groups are co-ordinating their efforts for 
> consistency, but based on 
> http://xmlportfolio.com/xsltuk/slides/ that > does not appear 
> to be working perfectly.

Back to lurking...