1179: "ISO 8601"

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LFenske
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby LFenske » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:43 am UTC

ISO 8601 is my very favorite ISO!

BTW, IIRC, 20130227 is also valid in ISO 8601.

exoren22
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby exoren22 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:43 am UTC

maxmaxmaxmax wrote:...and how could he not follow his own damn rule in the title text? ...


I... I think you missed the joke.

EDIT: In response to people above, no, DD/MM/YYYY is not correct, as the information is unsortable and ambiguous, and gives you least significant information first. DD <TLA for the month> YYYY is the best for dates read by humans, as it's unambiguous, and YYYY[-|/]MM[-|/]DD (I use without any separators, personally) is the best for sorting purposes (and is also the US military standard for that reason).

[of course with the disclaimer that this is my opinion only]
Last edited by exoren22 on Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:57 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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paulrowe
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby paulrowe » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:43 am UTC

The ones who'd probably have to make the least adjustment would be the Chinese, Japanese, and others like them. They already write the date as 2012年2月27日. The elements are already in the correct order, now it's just a matter of taking out the placeholder characters, right?

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby EvanED » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:46 am UTC

Jorpho wrote:But for the same reason, YYYY-MM-DD doesn't seem right in everyday use either. I mean, if you don't care about the year – and for most everyday applications, why would you?

Um, I do a lot. I'd guess that most of the dates I write are either for things like checks and other "sign and date" forms, or for filenames where I *do* care. (E.g. I just saved several bank statements, and they certainly get named with the year.) In fact, about the only time I write a date without the year is when I'm scribbling something in some notes, where I either won't need to know for very long or can tell from the context.

Edit: I guess that that's a lie. E.g. I've told my friends I'm coming to visit on 3/15 for example.

Snax
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Snax » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:47 am UTC

I was sure that in the alt text that he was using mm/dd/yy for one date and dd/mm/yy for the other, which led me on a search for the "truth". Turns out the original 8601 was published 1988-06-15 --- I was floored! He's so careful with the details normally...maybe this was intentional? Just to engender the confusion?

Chew
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Chew » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:47 am UTC

20130227 is allowed under this standard.

jesselong
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby jesselong » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:48 am UTC

Amen! Printing out and sticking on the wall!

Showsni
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Showsni » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:48 am UTC

Area Man wrote:No! Would you seriously write time as ss:mm:hh? or mm:ss:hh? No. The date is just an extension of that. L-R is big to small (more precision further right, like normal numbers).



If you're just writing time on its own, then yes, you do big to small; but if you're writing/saying time as an extension of a date, then you would do it small to large, right?

"It's the 20th second of the 47th minute of the sixth hour of the 27th day of the second month of the 2013th year since the birth of Christ."

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Mambrino » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:52 am UTC

The local standard is DD.MM.(YY)YY, so I use that.

In international usage, if there's a need to be unambiguous, I prefer to spell out the month in English. Or possibly shorten it (Jan, Feb, etc.). English is the de facto standard language for international communication anyway, so there's no fear that someone will misunderstand "February". Then everyone can translate "February 27th, 2013" of "27 February 2013" to their respective local all-number formats, were it DD/MM or MM-YYYY_DD, if they want to.

ISO 8601 "2013-02-17T11:03:34Z" is fine when programming / doing something with computers in general, but I think it's quite hard to read. (BTW. In addition to '-' and '/', which are also arithmetic symbols, 'T' isn't quite good separator symbol, really. It doesn't stand out. Even 't' would be better: 2013-02-17t11:03:34Z.)
Last edited by Mambrino on Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:55 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

Brian-M
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Brian-M » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:52 am UTC

amulshah7 wrote:There should be one standard date method, but I doubt it will happen.

Adacore wrote:Any format that has years, then months, then days is preferable to any other format

There was a standard used by historians (for converting dates) and astronomers (for recording observations) for over 400 years, but was recently abandoned. It's called the Julian Period, or Julian Day. (Not to be confused with the Julian Calendar which would show today as being the 14th instead of the 27th.)

It didn't bother with years or months, it only counts days elapsed since an arbitrary point in time predating recorded history. It made it easy for historians to convert between different calendars.

Midnight at 2013-02-13 would be recorded as 2456350.5

The .5 at the end is a result of the fact that the Julian Day begins at midday. There weren't clocks capable of marking midnight with any accuracy when it was invented, but if it was a sunny day you could always pinpoint the exact moment of midday with using sextant. (The date is normally rounded off the the nearest whole number unless you want to record time as well.)

This made it convenient for astronomical observations, because all observations during the same night would be recorded on the same date.

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Jorpho
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Jorpho » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:54 am UTC

EvanED wrote:
Jorpho wrote:But for the same reason, YYYY-MM-DD doesn't seem right in everyday use either. I mean, if you don't care about the year – and for most everyday applications, why would you?
Um, I do a lot. I'd guess that most of the dates I write are either for things like checks and other "sign and date" forms, or for filenames where I *do* care. (E.g. I just saved several bank statements, and they certainly get named with the year.) In fact, about the only time I write a date without the year is when I'm scribbling something in some notes, where I either won't need to know for very long or can tell from the context.
See, in my mind the only forms that matter will specifically have named positions for the different digits, or have sufficient space for the month to be written in letters. And most forms don't particularly matter since I'll never see them again. And filenames can be sorted algorithmically.

paddyfool
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby paddyfool » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:56 am UTC

YYYYMMDD certainly makes the most sense for a file name. DD mmm YYYY (e.g. 27 FEB 2013) is a handy format for shorthand dates in shared notes, to avoid confusion if there's a chance those notes might be picked up by either an American or a somebody else. It's also closer to how we talk about dates ("It was the first day in August, 2023..., or "let's meet again on the 7th of March" etc.), which makes it come a lot more naturally.

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ysth
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby ysth » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:58 am UTC

EvanED wrote:In addition to what you said, the ISO 8601 format also sorts correctly.

Checkmate. :-)
Not quite. But in due time, ISO 18601 will no doubt come along and fix things.

xenotrout wrote: GNU date interpreting input date in local and outputting UTC? Anyone else annoyed it doesn't seem to be able to parse ISO-8601?

? both input and output are local, and it parses it just fine (using coreutils 8.13, though I would be shocked if it had changed in a long time).

EvanED wrote:I've told my friends I'm coming to visit on 3/15 for example.

Beware...
Last edited by ysth on Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:09 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Jean2
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Jean2 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:59 am UTC

Showsni wrote:"It's the 20th second of the 47th minute of the sixth hour of the 27th day of the second month of the 2013th year since the birth of Christ."


Actually it's the 2012th year SINCE the (assumed) birth date of the Christ(1-01-01). Since years start on Year 1, it would be 1 year since birth by year 2.

Edit: Well, it's likely 1-12-25(Christmas day), although historians say Christ was born some 30 years before Christ.
Last edited by Jean2 on Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:21 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

sotanaht
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby sotanaht » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:15 am UTC

The justification for Month/Day/Year is that the year is inconsequential. In most day to day use, only the month and day are of any importance, and are thus written big to small, with the year often left off entirely. When the year is added, it's more of an afterthought, think of it more like month/day, year.

That's also the problem with Year/Month/Day and the reason why many would prefer Day/Month/Year. The year shouldn't be first because it is the least important bit of information for day to day use.

nowhereman
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby nowhereman » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:23 am UTC

I must attack this ISO standard. It is obvious why we do not use this format (YYYY-MM-DD). We have ordered the date by quantity of information it imparts. For example, if you ask me the date, and I tell you it is 2013, you would probably be taken aback by my apparent idiocy. Obviously you wanted more information than that. If you needed to know when to plant your crops (assuming you didn't just guess by the weather), being told the year will be of almost no use to you. The day is similarly uninformative. It is nice to know that it is the 26th, but the month is unknown. However it is still better than knowing the year. After all, you can rule some things out automatically. For example, it is unlikely to be December 26th because I did not receive presents yesterday for Christmas. Of course it is possible that I am unpopular, but let us think positive. The month is by far the most informative. I know about when the school year will start by the month (August), when to start planting (March for some plants, as late as May for others), and when I will likely need hospitalization (July for fireworks). Hence the dates are listed MM/DD/YYYY (or MM/DD/YY for short if it is in the same century).

As for those complaining about the necessity of sorting information correctly, programming is about solving problems, and not creating arbitrary guidelines to save you from having to do so. Whenever I hear the argument from laziness, I am reminded of websites that require my password be exactly 10 characters long, and contain only certain valid characters. Sure, I would rather use a 22 character password made up of random letters, numbers, etc... but security is secondary to simplicity. After all, we all know how long it takes to write fifty lines of code to convert a password into a sanitized 128 character array. Actually, I am being unfair to the security community as I am sure someone has already created a library to do this for you. I am sure that the security community at large are smart enough to not repeat redundant code when a call would suffice.

So to you guys, I say suck it up. </rant>

Edit: someone posted this point before me. However, as I felt like ranting, I posted this anyway.
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xenotrout
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby xenotrout » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:27 am UTC

ysth wrote:
xenotrout wrote: GNU date interpreting input date in local and outputting UTC? Anyone else annoyed it doesn't seem to be able to parse ISO-8601?

? both input and output are local, and it parses it just fine (using coreutils 8.13, though I would be shocked if it had changed in a long time).


You are correct and `date -d 2012-02-27UTC +%s' is the command I should have used (but without -d, if an input date is specified, it must be MMDDhhmm[[CC]YY][.ss]). I reread the manpage and noticed %s is always UTC, other formats output would have been local (and matched input timezone).

sotanaht
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby sotanaht » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:29 am UTC

paddyfool wrote:YYYYMMDD certainly makes the most sense for a file name. DD mmm YYYY (e.g. 27 FEB 2013) is a handy format for shorthand dates in shared notes, to avoid confusion if there's a chance those notes might be picked up by either an American or a somebody else. It's also closer to how we talk about dates ("It was the first day in August, 2023..., or "let's meet again on the 7th of March" etc.), which makes it come a lot more naturally.


That last bit is actually another good argument for Month/Day/Year. Essentially laziness. Which is easier to say, March 7th, or the 7th of March? I can't even think of a coherent sentence to use year/month/day in.

Jean2
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Jean2 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:31 am UTC

sotanaht wrote:That's also the problem with Year/Month/Day and the reason why many would prefer Day/Month/Year. The year shouldn't be first because it is the least important bit of information for day to day use.


If you ask someone in the street what the date is. They'll say: the 27th. If you ask then: Of? They'll answer: February! If you really forgot the year and then ask: Of? They'll answer: Are you serious? 2013! Well sometimes people now the date but forget which year it is as years aren't always written in a date.

ijuin
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby ijuin » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:34 am UTC

CardcaptorRLH85 wrote:
JohnTheWysard wrote:Some traditionalists will still insist on V Calends Mars anno conditae urbis MMDCCLXI.


When I run this latin through Google Translate I get '5 years from the founding of the new moon, Mars 2761'. Is that what was meant here?


Roman dating system. "Anno Conditae Urbis" means years since the founding of the City (of Rome). "Mars" in this context means the month of Mars (March to us). "5 Calends" means that it is the 5th day counting from the Calends (i.e. beginning of the month). Thus, the date given is 5 March of the 2761st year since the founding of Rome.

Incidentally, the "Calends" is specified in this date because the Romans only counted from the start of the month during the early part of the month. During the second half of the month, they counted from the Ides of the month (15th of a 31-day month, but 13th of a 30-or-less-day month). We all remember the line in Shakespeare's "Julius Caesar"--"Beware the Ides of March", right?

fifiste
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby fifiste » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:40 am UTC

I don't mind them going from larger to smaller or smaller to larger.
Don't care much about different delimiters either. So both dd/mm/yy and yy-mm-dd are fine by me.
What drives me up the walls is a way that goes like mm/dd/yy wtf? I like them ordered, either 123 or 321 but why why on earth would anyone think 213 or 132 or soemthing like this is a good idea? It seems to be some-kind of default in most spreadsheets etc. I have almost gotten nosebleeds trying to work around this in some applications/systems. It's some-kind of US format - tries me crazy, just like most of their measurement system - Brits ain't better in the latter either.

Wooloomooloo
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Wooloomooloo » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:43 am UTC

There should be an annex to that standard specifying that nothing less than the full year-qualified date is mandatory everywhere on the internet, and non-compliant sites shall be nuked from orbit: one of my "favorites" is landing on a blog/forum/whatever coming from a search query only have it tell me the post in question (generally somewhere between 2 to 7 years old) was made "on June 12". OH YEAH...? Which b'ak'tun, idiots?!?

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Andersmith » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:45 am UTC

sotanaht wrote:That's also the problem with Year/Month/Day and the reason why many would prefer Day/Month/Year. The year shouldn't be first because it is the least important bit of information for day to day use.

Well, actually it's really important. "I last took a shower on 02/27/12" is much more shocking than "I last took a shower on 02/26/13". For the *current* date, it's expected you know it, as it's so important and changes so slowly.

huangho
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby huangho » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:46 am UTC

Xantix wrote:
by sherlip » 02_26_2013 10:55 pm UTC

Am I the only one not getting the

2 3 1 4
0 1 2 3 7
5 67 8

Because it confuses the hell out of me...


The digit 0 occurs in position two and five.
The digit 1 occurs in position three.
The digit 2 occurs in position one, six, and seven.
The digit 3 occurs in position four.
The digit 7 occurs in position eight.

2013-02-27

You, sir, are a gentleman and a scholar (for arbitrary gender of 'gentleman').

Gargravarr
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Gargravarr » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:50 am UTC

Thank you Randall for adressing one of my pet peeves.

When I open the fridge and find a box marked with yy/MM/dd (or dd/MM/yy or yy/dd/MM, who can tell?), I throw it out partly to be safe, but mostly in protest.

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da Doctah
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby da Doctah » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:03 am UTC

sotanaht wrote:The justification for Month/Day/Year is that the year is inconsequential. In most day to day use, only the month and day are of any importance, and are thus written big to small, with the year often left off entirely. When the year is added, it's more of an afterthought, think of it more like month/day, year.

That's also the problem with Year/Month/Day and the reason why many would prefer Day/Month/Year. The year shouldn't be first because it is the least important bit of information for day to day use.

You actually just made an argument for why the year should be first.

Back in the 1960s, when I was just a kid, our phone number was 259-0741. (Don't bother calling it; not only haven't we lived at that number since the Nixon administration, the phone company has gone through some major upheavals in the years in between.) That's what you called from anywhere in Newhall.

If you lived farther away, you told the operator you wanted (805) 259-0741. And they charged you for a long-distance call. It may or may not have been able to dial the whole thing without professional help, but if you did, the area code went on the beginning of the number. The part that was optional and used only by the infrequent faraway caller was more important.

Addresses on snail-mail, back when that was the only kind in existence, had the individual name on the first line, the house number and street on the second, and the city and state on the last line. When I was about six years old, they came up with something called a ZIP code and stuck that on the end of the whole mess (before that, addresses in big cities with lots of post offices specified things like "Los Angeles 4, Calif.") So, unfortunately, we got used to going from the specific to the general in reading an address instead of doing it the most logical way.

Just before the fall of the Soviet Union, I had occasion to send a card to someone in the USSR; they managed to get it right: city and republic up top, street address below that, recipient's name at the bottom.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby millionmice » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:20 am UTC

Glorious. This format reduces errors (you can assume it's not YYYYDDMM as that's rarely used), and does away with year free notation. I have seen computer systems in hospital wards where the same system utilizes 3 different date formats in different locations after ongoing committee driven redesigns. One person will insist ISO 8601 isn't British so only DDMMYYYY is acceptable, another knows better and pushes for ISO 8601, and the initial default is usually MMDDYYYY.

End result is dates that need double checking in every case (perhaps not a bad thing as it forces checks that are normally good practice).

To weigh into the 'important information' debate, you're all nuts. What is and isn't important is contextual, and the statistical weight to assign to each context (each use of date/address) is subjective. So there isn't a "logical" answer, though there may be an ideal for a given process.

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Linux0s
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Linux0s » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:25 am UTC

So ISO 8601 was most recently updated on my birthday and they couldn't even send a card? Screw you ISO 8601!

I will now only write the date in proper stardate form, starting on -309843.4
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thyristor
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby thyristor » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:28 am UTC

This is why I always configure my Linux language settings to en-dk.
This way I can still have my system in English while using ISO 8601.

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Diadem
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Diadem » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:29 am UTC

He convenient that this 'one international standard' just happens to be the American one. If only Americans were so eager to conform to international standards in other areas!

Nah, who am I kidding. This is one of those places where the Americans are just right. The American way of writing dates sorts alphabetically, and that's such a huge bonus it trumps all other considerations.
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Diadem
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Diadem » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:33 am UTC

Area Man wrote:
Quicksilver wrote:it should just be DD/MM/YYYY. Makes the most sense.

No! Would you seriously write time as ss:mm:hh? or mm:ss:hh? No. The date is just an extension of that. L-R is big to small (more precision further right, like normal numbers).

Actually writing dates as DD/MM/YYYY and times as HH/MM/SS makes perfect sense.

It's just starting with the most important bit of information. If you ask for a date, you're generally interested in the day above all. "Do you have time the 26th" is a perfectly normal question, and people will generally know what month you are referring too. Only for dates further out do you need to specify the month, and only for dates even further out do you need to specify the year. So you write day - month - year in order of importance.

For times it's the other way around. You're generally interested in the hour first. Only when you know the hour do you start caring about minutes, and seconds you generally do not care about at all. In fact the seconds (like the years) are often left out entirely.

So this way of writing dates and times actually makes a lot of sense. It just sucks that it doesn't sort well alphabetically.
It's one of those irregular verbs, isn't it? I have an independent mind, you are an eccentric, he is round the twist
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby mousewiz » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:37 am UTC

Area Man wrote:
Quicksilver wrote:it should just be DD/MM/YYYY. Makes the most sense.

No! Would you seriously write time as ss:mm:hh? or mm:ss:hh? No. The date is just an extension of that. L-R is big to small (more precision further right, like normal numbers).

It's unlikely that I would ever want to know seconds, minutes, and hours, while caring most about the number of seconds. The same is true with most numbers; if I care about smaller units, I either care more about the larger units, or I care only about the smaller units. I'm sure there's an exception somewhere, but I'm not thinking of it.

Dates are different. The month or the day is often more relevant than the year, but the year still needs to be noted just to make sure the yogurt really is expired. So no, it's not just an extension of left-right, biggest-smallest.

That said, as a developer, I approve of standards, and sortability is a strong argument.

(looks like I got ninja'd, so you can just read this as a +1 for Diadem)

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Kit. » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:56 am UTC

Jorpho wrote:I mean, if you don't care about the year – and for most everyday applications, why would you?

For archival purposes.
millionmice wrote:(you can assume it's not YYYYDDMM as that's rarely used)

I use it to name directories. It fits into 8 symbols and can be coded in RADIX-50.

(oops, sorry, of course I use YYYYMMDD)
Last edited by Kit. on Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:56 pm UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby yurell » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:00 am UTC

cwolves wrote: whereas _every_ date parser will parse `2013/02/26` to today.


Really? I parse that as 'yesterday' ^_~
cemper93 wrote:Dude, I just presented an elaborate multiple fraction in Comic Sans. Who are you to question me?


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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby afaber12 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:03 am UTC

Linux0s wrote:So ISO 8601 was most recently updated on my birthday and they couldn't even send a card? Screw you ISO 8601!

I will now only write the date in proper stardate form, starting on -309843.4


Hang on, is that using the TOS system, the TNG/DS9/VOY system, or the JJA system?

Excuse me, ISO? We need a new date standard for stardates!

Gargravarr
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Gargravarr » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:04 am UTC

To summarize, ISO 8601 is
- Unambiguous
- Sortable
- Understandable (unlike eg Stardate or "seconds since reference date")
- Language independant
- Context independant
- Scalable (need more precision? Just add a number at the end)

If that's not a check mate, I don't know what would be.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby phlip » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:11 am UTC

Naturally, the ideal arrangement is MM/YY/HH, MM:DY:YD. I'm sure I don't need to go into why.

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enum ಠ_ಠ {°□°╰=1, °Д°╰, ಠ益ಠ╰};
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piton
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 7:03 am UTC

"ISO 8601"

Postby piton » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:12 am UTC

In my country we write dates this way.
Interestingly, because of the EU, on food we have to print expiration dates as DD-MM-YY(YY), because the rest of Europe uses that format and using both leads to confusion.
Bottom line: EU has a bug.

piton
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 7:03 am UTC

Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby piton » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:19 am UTC

This might be in closer relation to spoken languages:
In English you say d-th of m, evening in June, summer of 68.
In Hungarian we say the other way around, so the standard date makes sense.

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phlip
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby phlip » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:26 am UTC

piton wrote:In English you say d-th of m, evening in June, summer of 68.

Well, this also varies... in normal countries, it's typically worded say "27th of February", but in the US they'll typically say it as "February 27", matching their MM/DD layout.

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enum ಠ_ಠ {°□°╰=1, °Д°╰, ಠ益ಠ╰};
void ┻━┻︵​╰(ಠ_ಠ ⚠) {exit((int)⚠);}
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