Welcome to XSLT and XPath, two members of the W3C XML family of standards. This book concentrates on using XSLT and XPath to solve problems that you are likely to encounter every day in writing XSLT stylesheets. I have tried to focus most attention on the features that you will need frequently, while still treating other aspects of the subject in brief. You can find additional detailed information in the Quick Reference appendixes, and in more advanced works such as Michael Kay's XSLT 2.0 and XPath 2.0 Programmers Reference, also in the Wrox list.
I assume that you have a sound knowledge of XML and related web standards, such as XML Schema and XHTML. In an introductory book like this, there isn't enough space to fill in background information on these subjects.
Conversely, I don't assume that you are familiar with a particular programming language, or that you necessarily have a strong programming background. The chapters include a few comparisons with other languages, and as you'll see, XSLT takes a different approach from most of them.
If you are an experienced web author, or a technical writer who works regularly with XML, there is no reason why you can't pick up XSLT, leveraging your existing knowledge and skills. Quite a few practitioners that I know come from this kind of background.
This book aims to give you a good grounding in the basics of XSLT and XPath, concentrating on version 2.0 of both standards. It is definitely not aimed at experienced ...