W3C: 9 XQuery/XPath/XSLT WDs + XQuery Update Reqs

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W3C has updated 9 XQuery, XPath and XSLT Working Drafts and introduced a brand new, sort of milestone one - "XQuery Update Facility Requirements":

This document describes the requirements for the XQuery Update Facility. [XQuery 1.0] provides queries, but has no support for adding new values or changing existing values. The XML Query Working Group intends to add support for updates in a future version of XQuery.
So instead of polishing existing XQuery/XPath2/XSLT2 drafts to deliver finally something stable, they have started thinking about XQuery Update. Great. Now chances are 2006 as XQuery Recommendation publishing year is a way too optimistic.

As a matter of interest here are how XQuery and XSLT2 are positioned now:

XML Query is an XML-aware programming language that can be optimized to run database-style searches, queries and joins over collections of documents, databases and XML or object repositories.
XSLT 2 allows transformation of XML documents and non-XML data into other documents.
(Emphasized by me).

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> and seeing if various implementations interoperate. (No feature can go in the Recommendation without two interoperable implementations).

Do two processors coming from the same source foundation (minor changes to allow for file handling and platform architectural differences) but compiled to the seperate platforms count as one processor or two? You can obviously see where I am going with this :)

Cheers :)


It seems to me that the XQuery Update facility will be a separate specification.

This means that the current XQuery specification can proceed to the status of candidate recommendation in time.

Thanks for noticing the evolution of XQuery from a "query language" to a "programming language" in the W3C webpage. I'll look into that to see if it is a consensus position, or maybe just a mistake.

I don't share your concern that the Update stuff threatens the publication schedule for 1.0 There is some overlap in the people/resources needed for the two, but they are largely being done in parallel. I have faith that the WG chairs will prioritize the work appropriately if there is a resource conflict between 1.0 and 1.1 work.

At this point, the real work to get XQuery (and XSLT 2) out the door is in the hands of the editors, and will soon be in the hands of the people out there checking the relatively final text and seeing if various implementations interoperate. (No feature can go in the Recommendation without two interoperable implementations).

Prediction about W3C schedules is a notoriously black art that no one has mastered, but I'm comfortable with the "early 2006" timeframe for a Recommendation. The technical work is on schedule for that date, anyway. IMHO the only thing that I can imagine holding the Recommendation up beyond that timeframe would be a religious war among the W3C cognoscenti about how XQuery/XPath fits in with the greater goals of the W3C and some conceptions of the architecture of the Web, Semantic Web, etc. Ultimately that stuff is for the Director to sort out, and we will just have to see what happens.

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