[uf-discuss] human readable date parsing

Paul Wilkins paul_wilkins at xtra.co.nz
Wed May 2 14:37:25 PDT 2007

From: "James Craig" <jcraig at apple.com>
To: "Microformats Discuss" <microformats-discuss at microformats.org>
Sent: Thursday, May 03, 2007 8:56 AM
Subject: Re: [uf-discuss] human readable date parsing

> Tim Parkin wrote:
>> With all of the discussion about iso dates being unreadable and  that an
>> iso date isn't necessarily required when someone enters a date (i.e.
>> saying 24th June doesn't translate into a single date, neither does
>> 'thursday'). Shouldn't the focus be on trying to standardise date
>> formats rather than trying to hide the iso date? If we can get a  parser
>> to recognise 'human readable' dates (which *is* possible, if not  totally
>> easy, http://labix.org/python-dateutil for a python version).
> I disagree. If you try to make other, human readable formats into a 
> standard, they will fall short when it comes time to internationaliz (s)e 
> it. If you can come up with a better format readable to all  machine and 
> all humans in all languages, I'll recant.
> I think the ISO 8601 is the best machine data format for the job. I  just 
> don't think it should be in abbr.

So as machine-readable information shouldn't be presented in a 
human-readable manner, that rules out having the information in-the-clear, 
and in title tags.

This leads us to having a hidden class for machine-readable information that 
will be hidden by default and not presented to people.

A class with a suitable name would have to be used, something like the 
existing "value" but modified to infer that it's for the computer only and 
isn't to be read.

What if the value class was to be used with a hidden class. Then they would 
serve their purpose, they wouldn't interfere with existing styles and could 
be interpreted correctly.

.hidden {display: hidden}

Then the human-readable and machine-readable can be mashed together. If the 
screen-reading software honor hidden styles this could be the right path to 

<span class="dtstart">Friday the 13th <span class="hidden 

Paul Wilkins 

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