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From Andrew Cave <>
Subject Missing feature in XIncludeTransformer
Date Fri, 20 Jul 2007 18:17:31 GMT

I noticed that Cocoon's XIncludeTransformer seems to be missing the base 
URI fixup support specified in the W3C's XInclude spec [1] (Careful, 
this is distinct from supporting xml:base to resolve relative xi:include 
hrefs against).

In short, it says that the base URIs of documents do not change when 
passed through an XInclude parser. This means that xml:base attributes 
with the value of the current base URI should be added to the top level 
included elements. To see an example, the xmllint parser (part of 
libxml2) will perform this attribute insertion when you enable XInclude 

I think this feature is important because otherwise, relative URIs (i.e. 
links) in an included document will break if the included document is 
not located in the same directory. Adding the xml:base attribute to the 
result gives later content handlers the ability to resolve relative URIs 
against the base. (In particular, I'm thinking of using XPath 2.0's 
resolve-uri function).

Any thoughts? Is this a feature we need to see?

I think this is the cleanest and most general solution for resolving 
relative URIs in included documents -- not to mention it's required by 
the XInclude spec. Pending discussion here, I've created a patch that 
adds this support that I can submit to JIRA.

Andrew Cave

[1] - The Base URI Fixup section of 
the W3C's XInclude specification

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