Creating JSON from XML using XSLT 1.0 + EXSLT

The article “Generate JSON from XML to use with Ajax”, by Jack D Herrington, is a useful guide to managing data in XML on the server side, and yet using JSON for AJAX transport for better performance, and other reasons. The main problem with the article is that it uses XSLT 2.0. Like most cases I've seen where people are using XSLT 2.0, there is no reason why XSLT 1.0 plus EXSLT doesn't do the trick just fine. One practical reason to prefer the EXSLT approach is that you get the support of many more XSLT processors than Saxon.

Anyway, it took me all of 10 minutes to cook up an EXSLT version of the code in the article. The following is listing 3, but the same technique works for all the XSLT examples.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<xsl:transform xmlns:xsl="" version="1.0"

  <xsl:output method="text" />

  <func:function name="js:escape">
    <xsl:param name="text"/>
    <func:result select='str:replace($text, "&apos;", "\&apos;")'/>

  <xsl:template match="/">
var g_books = [

  <xsl:template match="book">
<xsl:if test="position() > 1">,</xsl:if> {
id: <xsl:value-of select="@id" />,
name: '<xsl:value-of select="js:escape(title)"/>',
first: '<xsl:value-of select="js:escape(author/first)"/>',
last: '<xsl:value-of select="js:escape(author/last)"/>',
publisher: '<xsl:value-of select="js:escape(publisher)"/>'


I also converted the code to a cleaner, push style from what's in the article.

[Uche Ogbuji]

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