Introduction to XPath
XPath can be thought of as a query language such as SQL. However, rather than extracting information from a database, it extracts information from an XML document. XPath is a language for retrieving from a database, it extracts information from an XML document. XPath is a language for retrieving information from a XML document. XPath is used to navigate through elements and attributes in an XML document. Thus, XPath allows identifying parts of an XML document.
XPath provides a common syntax as shown in figure:-
- XSLT: XSLT is a language for transforming XML documents into XML, HTML, or text.
- XQuery: XQuery builds on XPath and is a language for extracting from XML documents.
Benefits of XPath
XPath is desingned for XML documents. It provides a single syntax that you can use for queries, addressing, and patterns. XPath is concise, simple, and powerful.
XPath has many benefits:
- Syntax is simple for the simple and common cases
- Any path that can occur in an XML document and any set of conditions for the nodes in the path can be specified.
- Any node in an XML document can be uniquely identified
XPath is designed to be used in many contexts. It is applicable to providing links to nodes, for searching repositories, and for many other applications.