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Short for Extensible Style Language, a specification for separating style from content when creating HTML or XML pages. The specifications work much like templates, allowing designers to apply single style documents to multiple pages. XSL is the second style specification to be offered by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). The first, called Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), is similar to XSL but does not include two major XSL's innovations -- allowing developers to dictate the way Web pages are printed, and specifications allowing one to transfer XML documents across different applications. W3C released the first draft of XSL in August 1998, and promotes the specifications as helpful to the Web's speed, accessibility, and maintenance.

XSL consists of three parts:
  • XSLT (a language for transforming XML documents)
  • XPath (a language for defining parts of an XML document)
  • XSL Formatting Objects (a vocabulary for formatting XML documents)
XSLT is the most important part of the XSL Standard. It is the part of XSL that is used to transform an XML document into another XML document, or another type of document that is recognized by a browser. One such format is XHTML.

On this website the details of a recipe in the recipes section can also be shown as a XML document. An XSLT file is used to transform the XML document.

Click here to see the XSLT file.