Using JIRA XML, how easy is it to write your own JIRA Issues macro in Confluence?

I know a fair bit about coding in HTML and Velocity but I know nothing about XML. Personally, I think that the jiraissues macro could do with a facelift, and rather than waiting for Atlassian to do it, I was wondering how easy it would be to do it myself. The problem is that I know nothing about XML.

I've had a look at a couple of XML "how-tos" but I've not found them particularly helpful. Given the structured nature of XML, how easy is it to write and apply an XML stylesheet so that my own jiraissues macro in Confluence?

For example, one basic design I'd like to see is to have each item <title> translate to a <h2>, followed by the <description>.

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Penny Wyatt Atlassian Team Apr 21, 2013

I don't know how deep down the rabbit hole you're willing to go, but if XML is the area of uncertainty, how about avoiding XML entirely and using JSON instead, via REST? JSON is a lot easier to parse and can be natively parsed from JavaScript if you want to do things client-side, too.

https://developer.atlassian.com/display/JIRADEV/JIRA+REST+API+Example+-+Query+issues

Thanks for your suggestion, Penny, but I know less about REST than I do about XML. I figured, if the structured XML is readily available whenever I do a query in JIRA using the UI, then implementing some sort of stylesheet to manipulate the appearance of the results is a lot simpler.

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