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RE: XML query language for selecting and manipulating

From: Michael Kay <mhk@mhk.me.uk>
Date: Mon, 7 Mar 2005 17:47:14 -0000
To: "'Judith Winter'" <judith.winter.mail@web.de>, <www-ql@w3.org>
Message-ID: <E1D8MKk-0005kx-Bk@frink.w3.org>

The two options are XQuery and XSLT.

Neither has in-situ update at present; in both cases the way you modify
documents is to create a modified copy.

The ability to identify a collection of documents as input is more of a
product feature than a language feature. You will probably find that XQuery
products handle this better than XSLT products (though with Saxon, for
example, the way you define an input collection is exactly the same for both
languages). How large is the set of documents, and how large are the

Some queries can be expressed more easily in XQuery than in XSLT, especially
those involving relational-style joins, but there's nothing you can do in
XQuery that can't be done in XSLT. There are some things that XSLT can do
that can't be done in XQuery, but in most cases these are concerned with
output formatting. Copying a document with a few small changes is easier in
XSLT than in XQuery.

XSLT has a standard Java API (JAXP). There's work going on to define a
standard Java API for XQuery but at present each product has its own.

Michael Kay

> -----Original Message-----
> From: www-ql-request@w3.org [mailto:www-ql-request@w3.org] On 
> Behalf Of Judith Winter
> Sent: 07 March 2005 16:35
> To: www-ql@w3.org
> Subject: XML query language for selecting and manipulating
> Hi,
> I am looking for a XML query language and already had a look 
> at languages such as XQuery, XML-GL, XQL, XSLT etc.
> I would be interested in you opinion, which query language 
> would suit my purpose best:
> My application needs to query a set of xml-documents: if they 
> have a certain structure (fixed structure or structure where 
> some elements can be optional or even cases where there are 
> several possibilies for a match such as "any document where 
> the adress consists of street and number or of a GPO box") or 
> if the elements and attributs match certain values ("any 
> document where the street is 'George street' "). The result 
> of the query will be zero, one or several matching xml-documents. 
> Sometimes a query will also have to manipulate documents, 
> such as creating a new document or updating/deleting parts of 
> it (for example adding new elements/attributs, changing values).
> What would you think which query language is the right one to 
> write such queries ?
> (I would prefer to use XSLT, but am not sure if it has all 
> needed functionality, as not the formating of the resulting 
> xml-documents is important, but the ability of the query 
> language to query structure as well as values and also to be 
> able to delete, create and modify documents) ?
> I would also need a Java-API for that query language...
> Thank you very much,
> Judith
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Received on Monday, 7 March 2005 17:47:58 UTC

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