XQuery Working Group

Learn XQuery in the Company of Digital Humanists and Digital Scientists

We meet from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. on most Fridays in 800FA of the Central Library. Newcomers are always welcome! Check the schedule below for details about topics. Also see our Github repository for code samples. Contact Cliff Anderson with any questions or see the FAQs below.

Three Easy Pieces on XQuery

Session One

Learn the basics of XQuery.

Session Three

Mashups and XML Databases.


Frequently Asked Questions

Why learn XQuery?
XQuery is a general purpose programming language that excels at working with structured and semi-structured data in formats like JSON and XML. Learning XQuery can make you much more efficient at exploring, analyzing, and transforming your data.

Why XQuery for Digital Humanities?
If you're working with any kind of structured data—like, for instance, the Text Encoding Intiative (or TEI)—you will benefit from learning XQuery. Just check out the multiple grant-funded XQuery projects in the Digital Humanities at Vanderbilt.

Why XQuery for Digital Science?
XQuery is a world-class language for data-munging. If you have lots of data in different formats, like CSV, JSON, XML, or relational databases, XQuery is perfect data integration and analysis tool. Plus it's easy to store your data in XML-native databases like BaseX.

What if I'm new to programming?
We strive to make our sessions accessible to non-programmers, including complete beginners. We always start each meeting with review of a basic topic and encourage newcomers to pair with more experienced participants.

What should I bring?
If you can, please bring a laptop with you to the sessions. If you don't have a laptop, you can always check one out from the library. We're agnostic about operating systems—Linux, OSX or Windows are all fine.

Can I join anytime?
Yes! We try to keep our sessions as modular as possible. If you need help with anything we've covered in a previous session, we'd be glad to bring you up to speed. We strive to be a friendly and welcoming group at all times.



Date Location Topic Session Notes
9/9/2016 800FA, Central Library Exploring BaseX
9/16/2016 800FA, Central Library Introducing FLWOR Expressions
9/23/2016 800FA, Central Library XQuery String Functions Notes
9/30/2016 800FA, Central Library Writing Your Own Functions
10/7/2016 800FA, Central Library Exploring JSON APIs Notes
10/14/2016 Fall Break No Session
10/21/2016 800FA, Central Library Persisting Data to BaseX Notes
10/28/2016 800FA, Central Library From Metadata to Full Text
10/28/2016 800FA, Central Library Connecting with APIs notes
11/04/2016 800FA, Central Library XQuery Full Text (I)
11/11/2016 800FA, Central Library XQuery Full Text (II) notes
11/18/2016 800FA, Central Library XQuery Full Text (III) notes
11/25/2016 Thanksgiving Break No Session
12/2/2016 800FA, Central Library XQuery Full Text (IV) notes
1/13/2017 800BB, Central Library OED Dictionary API notes
1/20/2017 800FA, Central Library OED Dictionary API, Part II
1/27/2017 800FA, Central Library No Session
2/3/2017 800FA, Central Library OED Dictionary API, Part III