Around 2000, some people believed that nearly all programming would be a matter of transporting and transforming XML. XML would be the universal data format, and all software would be a matter of transforming XML. If that were the case, then it would be very handy to use a language designed especially for transforming XML. That language was XSLT.
I’m sure some programmers write XSLT on a daily basis, and there’s probably a large amount of machine-generated XSLT out there. But it’s safe to say XSLT never became extremely popular. Maybe because the syntax is awkward. Not many developers like to write lots of angle brackets. Or maybe the declarative/functional style of the language isn’t as comfortable as a more imperative style of programming for most developers. I don’t really know. I thought XSLT sounded like a good idea, but I never learned it. My experience with XSLT consists of a few dozen lines I wrote six or seven years ago.
Along these lines, I ran across the following picture in a blog post entitled A picture is worth a thousand words: is XML dying? containing the following photo: