Joint Submission request to W3C by W3C Members Microsoft Corp., Inso Corp., and ArborText, Inc.

We, representatives of Inso Corporation (please see corresponding declaration from Microsoft and ArborText) hereby submit to the Consortium the following specification comprising the document(s) linked below:

  1. A Proposal for eXtensible Style Language (XSL)

which is referred to as "the submission". We request the submission be known as the "XSL" submission.


This document provides a proposed specification for an eXtensible Stylesheet Language (XSL) for formatting XML data and documents on the Web. XSL is expressed in the XML syntax and is designed to appeal to a wide user base in the Web community by leveraging the combination of declarative constructs (tags) and scripting (JavaScript) familiar to Web authors.

XSL is based on the DSSSL standard (as defined in the deliverable for Phase III of the XML Activity) and also uses key concepts from CSS. XSL includes the subset of DSSSL flow objects (formatting operations) described in DSSSL-O. It also includes a set of flow objects corresponding to HTML elements with CSS properties to ensure full HTML/CSS compatibility.

XSL provides functionality beyond CSS (e.g. element reordering). We expect that CSS will be used to display simply-structured XML documents and XSL will be used where more powerful formatting capabilities are required or for formatting highly structured information such as XML structured data or XML documents that contain structured data.

Intellectual property Rights

Inso agrees that the submission may be copied, modified, and distributed by W3C staff and W3C members as part of the W3C process. Inso claims no copyright interests in the documents comprising the submission.




The submission may distributed within the membership of the W3C free of any fee.

The submission may be distributed publicly free of any fee.


Inso believes that there may be dependencies on necessary supporting technologies.

Suggested action

We suggest that the Consortium work on the proposal as part of the XML Activity and that it move forward as a candidate for Recommendation.

Further, we request that the proposal be immediately posted on the W3C web site as a public note.


We propose Sharon Adler as chairperson and a part-time engineering resource to provide additional technical assistance.

Change control

Should any changes be required to the document, we would expect future versions to be produced by W3C process.


Inquiries from the public or press about this submission should be directed to:

Sharon Adler, sca@inso.com


this 27th day of August, 1997,

Inso Corp.

(In conjunction with Microsoft and ArborText: please see eparate submission declaration)