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The Extensible Stylesheet Language Family (XSL)

XSL is a family of recommendations for defining XML document transformation and presentation. It consists of three parts:

XSL Transformations (XSLT)
a language for transforming XML
the XML Path Language (XPath)
an expression language used by XSLT to access or refer to parts of an XML document. (XPath is also used by the XML Linking specification)
XSL Formatting Objects (XSL-FO)
an XML vocabulary for specifying formatting semantics

An XSLT stylesheet specifies the presentation of a class of XML documents by describing how an instance of the class is transformed into an XML document that uses a formatting vocabulary, such as (X)HTML or XSL-FO. For a more detailed explanation of how XSL works, see the What Is XSL page.

For background information on style sheets, see the Web style sheets resource page. XSL is developed by the W3C XSL Working Group (members only) whose charter is to develop the next version of XSL. XSL is part of W3C's XML Activity, whose work is described in the XML Activity Statement.

  • XSL-List, main public list for discussion about XSL
  • xsl-editors: comments/discussion on XSLT 1.0
  • www-xsl-fo W3C list about Formatting Objects
  • XSL-FO: a Yahoo Groups list on XSL-FO.
  • If you find an error in a specification, see the Scope section of that document for how to report the error.


2008-09-11: Antenna house 4.3 Released

This is a major release of Antenna House XSL Formatter that adds a 64-bit Windows version of Formatter and two major options, the INX Creator Option and the CGM Option.

2008-04-17: RenderX blogpaper

blogpaper, a Web-based interface for making PDF or PostScript from blogs, wiki pages, Web pages and more, uses RenderX.

2008-03-26: XSL-FO 2.0 Requirements Published

The Extensible Stylesheet Language (XSL) Requirements Version 2.0 have been published, along with a Survey to ask potential implementors and users for feedback on the relative importance of the proposed new features.

2008-01-03: Assentis DocFamily 4.0 Released

Assentis Technologies has released version 4.0 of their DocFamily product suite, which includes an XSL-FO and XFORMS designer, a J2EE based composition server, a repository server and an interactive document editor based on HTML. The 4.0 release provides increased support for high-volume XSL-FO printing. DocFamily 4.0 now supports XHTML, PCL, PDF/A and ZPL as output formats, in addition to AFP, PostScript and PDF. For interactive document editing, DocWrite added XForms support and extended WYSIWYG XSL-FO editing functionality.

2007-10-05: Altsoft Xml2PDF 2007 1.1. released

Altsoft NV has released Xml2PDF 2007 v.1.1. with VML support in Word 2003-2007 Xml source and optional support of PDF/a, PDF/x specifications for PDF output.

2007-08-11: Antenna House XSL Formatter V4.2

Antenna House has released Antenna House XSL Formatter V4.2, with support for Unicode 5.0, PDF Acrobat Forms (AcroForms), PDF Digital Signatures, PDF/A, PostScript Output (as an option) and numerous other enhancements.

2007-08-08: aXSL 0.2 released

aXSL 0.2 was released; it now supports XSL-FO 1.1 constructs, and adds typesafe enumerations for datatypes. There is also support for isolating SVG code inside the Graphics module, and the code has been cleaned up and simplified. See the release notes.

2007-05-12: oXygen 8.2 released

oXygen 8.2 supports editing, running, debugging and profiling for XSLT 1 and 2, and now adds support for included and imported XSLT stylesheet fragments. It also adds new features for working with XML Query.

2007-05-11: xmlroff 0.5.0 released

xmlroff 0.5.0, a C-based open source XSL-FO implementation, was released. The new release is easier to build, having fewer dependencies.

2007-05-08: Altsoft Xml2PDF 2007 released

Altsoft Xml2PDF 2007 (Server .NET API, Workstation and Viewer) is released. Convert XSL-FO (v. 1.1), Word 2003-2007, XHTML and SVG documents to PDF, XPS, PS and TIFF. Free for evaluation purposes and desktop use.

Liam Quin (liam@w3.org), Alternate Team Contact for the XSL Working Group
$Id: Overview.html,v 1.409 2008/11/14 12:59:08 liam Exp $.
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