Publishing Books Using XML Technologies
Dr. Herong Yang, Version 4.01

Introduction to XSL Templates?

This section provides some basics about how to define XSL templates to Transform XHTML files.

XSL Template: A unit of XSL statements that defines the replacement content for elements in the XML source files that matches the specified pattern. An XSL template has the following structure:

<xsl:template match="pattern">
 replacement_content
</xsl:template>

where "pattern" is a pattern used to match element names in the source XML file, and "replace_content" is the output to be inserted in the same place where the matching elements are.

If an element in the source XML file is matched, the entire element will be replaced, starting from "<" of the starting tag to ">" of the ending tag. By this definition, the replacement includes the element name, all attributes, text content, and all sub-elements.

For example, if we have the following element in the source XML file:

<p a="v">
 Some text with a <c>child element</c>.
</p>

and the following template in the XSL file:

<xsl:template match="p">
 Replacement text for the element "p" in the source XML file.
</xsl:template>

the output will be:

 Replacement text for the element "p" in the source XML file.

because the tags, attribute, text content, and child element are all replaced by the text specified in the template statement.

For more tutorials on XSL templates, please see my other book: Herong's Tutorial Notes On XML Technologies.

Table of Contents

 About This Book

 Ideas on Publishing Books using XML

 Overview of hyPub - A Simple XML Publishing Tool

 Writing Book Contents in XHTML Source Files

Transforming Book Source Files with XSL Technology

 What Is XSL (eXtensible Style Language)?

Introduction to XSL Templates?

 xalan - XSL Transformation Processing Engine

 How XSL Technology Is Used in hyPub?

 Designing Web Page Layouts with Tables

 Controlling Web Page Appearance with CSS

 Sharing HTML Codes with JavaScript Files

 Generating Web Pages with hyPub

 Formatting Printable Documents with XSL-FO

 Generating PDF Documents with hyPub

 Areas of Future Improvements

 References

 PDF Printing Version

Dr. Herong Yang, updated in 2007
Introduction to XSL Templates?