[microformats-discuss] International date formats

Tantek Ç elik tantek at cs.stanford.edu
Tue Jul 26 01:31:12 PDT 2005

On 7/26/05 12:48 AM, "fantasai" <fantasai.lists at inkedblade.net> wrote:

> Tantek Çelik wrote:
>>> I presume the official designation would be an "ISO_8601" date in the
>>> title, but the 'recommended' practice would be, with a space and
>>> timezone:
>>>> <abbr title="YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM[:SS]+-Z">
>> I would prefer to point to the W3C Note on Date Time for recommended
>> practice for now.
>>  http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-datetime
>> Which does ask for the "T" date time separator to be used.
> That note's targetted at more computer-oriented uses than a specifically
> human-targetted tooltip. The 'T' is helpful in software and data formats
> because it makes the date-time parse as a single token.


> However, a 'title'
> attribute's value ought to be primarily helpful to humans.

Helpful to humans yes.  primarily? i'm not sure. probably.

> I don't consider
> date-times with a T to be human-friendly:

Easy enough to answer with a bit of surveying probably.

> they are harder for people to
> recognize as a date and time rather than an arbitrary numerical string
> because the separation into a date string and a time string (both of which,
> unlike timestamps, are common outside computer formats) is more visually
> distinct. Using a space still conforms to ISO 8601, so it's not reinventing
> anything, just using an option that happens not to be part of the subset
> described in the W3C Note.

Have you considered giving feedback on the W3C Note?

Parsing a "single normal space character ASCII 32" (rather than just "white
space") should be equivalently easy to parsing a "T", and thus since they
are equivalent from a computer point of view, you could make the argument
that the W3C Note should be extended to permit either since the space is
more human friendly.

Then we could simply profile that and recommend that folks SHOULD use a

I'd just like to see this argument pushed up stream, because I think it has
a decent chance, and would benefit many others.



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