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Re: [xml-dev] Jackson Structured Programming ... doing it with XSLT

I think JSP is highly relevant to the design of XML transformations, but I'm not sure your note really captures why. There's a lot of stuff in JSP (or is it JSD? - I forget) about analysing the structural relationship of input trees to output trees and about making the structure of the code match the input and output structures, and about what to do when they don't match - the classic being to resolve structure clashes by introducing an intermediate tree and then splitting the logic into a pipeline of simpler transformations. All of that translates directly into XSLT stylesheet design. 

In this exercise with multiplication tables, Jackson seems to be focusing on trying to separate the computation of the multiplication table from its presentation. He seems to be arguing that the things that are most likely to change are all about presentation. Again that reflects what we do in the XML world, and to me it strongly suggests structuring the code as a pipeline in which the first phase computes the multiplication table, and the second phase renders it as HTML. That doesn't seem to be what you have actually done; or at any rate, it's not how you describe what you have done.

Sadly I've got a lot of good old books in my bookshelf, but Jackson isn't among them. Nevertheless, I learnt a lot from reading JSP. In ICL in the 1980s we had a 4GL language that was very strongly based on JSP, and there are many analogies with XSLT.

Michael Kay

On 29 Sep 2013, at 20:24, Costello, Roger L. wrote:

> Hi Folks,
> After Sean McGrath's high praise [1] for Jackson Structured Programming I purchased M.A. Jackson's book and have been reading it. 
> It is great.
> The downside of the book, however, is that the programming examples use an archaic notation. So I converted the first couple examples to XSLT.
> Here is a short document that I wrote which introduces Jackson Structured Programming, using XSLT for the programming examples:
> http://xfront.com/Jackson-Structured-Programming/Multiplication-Problem.pdf
> /Roger
> [1] http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/201304/msg00234.html
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