Nightfire, I don't know much about XML, but I think I know the difference between XML and XSL and if I tell ya that XSL is itself written by XML then I think you get more confused! I only started learning XML because I was hearing its name a lot and I thought it's better I go and learn it! The first thing I did was searching kazza
for a book and I found XML by Examle
that's free to download as well! So, I grabbed the book and now that I'm around page 150 I really think that I have no problem with XML concept and I can understand its value (before that I always used to hear that XML is good, it's great, it can do lots of things, it let us communicate with other sites and ..), so, I think it's better that you go and get that book too, because most of the times reading articles at the beginning when we know nothing doesn't help that much, it only adds to our confusion!
As for as XSL: Extensible Styling Language, it's a styling language! We have two sort of styles, one that works with the formation of document, like it says the color of document should be red for example or the fonts should be 12px. Yes, it's something like CSS. But the other thing that's prettier and more important is XSLT or XSL Transformation, do you know what it does?! It's exactly like preg_replace
in PHP! We can give it a XML document and this is the XSLT that defines for example tag <para>
should be replaced with tag <p>
. In this way you can write your own document in XML and change it whenever you like to any language (HTML for example) or even plain text! You can use this method to make a newsletter in XML and then make several copies of it in HTML, text, WML or whatever! You can also use RSS: Really Simple Syndication from the other sites to get their contents and show it in any style that you like in your site to any device! This is a whole new world! I LOVE XML!