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

We, representatives of Microsoft Corporation (please see corresponding declaration from Inso 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

Microsoft agrees that, upon adoption of this contribution as a W3C standard, any W3C member will be able to obtain a license from Microsoft to implement and use the technology described in this contribution for the purposes of supporting the Internet Standard on a royalty-free basis. One condition of this license shall be the party's agreement to not assert patent rights against Microsoft and other companies for their implementation of the Internet Standard. Microsoft expressly reserves all other rights it may have in the material and subject matter of this contribution.

Microsoft expressly disclaims any and all warranties regarding this contribution including any warranty that this contribution does not violate the rights of others or is fit for a particular purpose.




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

The submission may be distributed publicly free of any fee.


The following points should be noted as regards licensable technology involved in any third party implementations of the technology specified in the submission: there are patented and copywritten technologies discussed herein which are not necessarily owned or licensed by Microsoft. Microsoft makes no assertions about the availability of these third-party rights.

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.


To help with this work, we expect to be able to provide reference implementations in a variety of languages as well as one ongoing full-time Microsoft engineer to consult and contribute to the implementation and design of the final specification.

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:

Thomas Reardon, thomasre@microsoft.com


this 27th day of August, 1997,

Microsoft Corp.

(In conjunction with Inso and Arbortext: please see separate submission declaration)