The International Standards Organisation's standard, number 8601 is an international standard for date and time representations. It is used for all date-time representations in microformats, as well as a number of other formats (Microformats in HTML5
<time> element &
datetime attribute, XML Schema Datatypes, RDF, Atom).
In addition, ISO 8601 dates in particular are the most globally unambiguously human readable/writeable date format and thus should always be used on the (world wide) web.
The following are good prose overviews of ISO 8601:
microformats in general use a subset of ISO8601 - preferring uses which are more human readable (requiring hyphens in dates, and colons in times).
All date-time properties in microformats use ISO8601 values. E.g.
dt-*properties in microformats2
- all classic microformats's date-time properties, including:
RFC 3339 defines a profile of ISO 8601 for the use in Internet protocols and standards.
- It explicitly excludes durations and dates before the common era.
- The more complex formats like week numbers and ordinal day are not permitted (see RFC 3339, section 5.6).
ISO 8601 implementations in programming libraries
- JodaTime - the Java date-time library - ISO8601 Java calendar system
- Perl: DateTime::Format::ISO8601
- Ruby 1.9 implements an iso8601 method in the Date STDLIB but it does not handle ordinal dates.
- Glenn Jones' microformat-node parser includes isodate.js, a Node.js implementation of (some of) ISO 8601.
document more implementations.
- How should dates before the common era be marked up? Andy Mabbett
- What are the use-cases? Link to *-examples page? - Tantek
- If a web page is created or edited by a non-technical human, it is unfriendly to expect them to work in ISO date format. Charles Belov
- ISO dates are more readable/usable by people globally than any one locale-specific format, thus it is more friendly globally to use and ask humans to edit ISO 8601 dates than asking them to try to read/write all the odd and quirky locale-specific formats. - Tantek
- ISO 8601 on Wikipedia
- ISO 8601:2004(E) from ISO (zip-pdf, 228KB)
- Summary of 8601 by ISO
- Technical Committee ISO/TC 154, Processes, data elements and documents in commerce, industry and administration.
- The Mathematics of the ISO 8601 Calendar
- Current date in week date and ordinal date format
- ISO 8601 at the Open Directory Project
- W3C Specification about UTC Date and Time and IETF Internet standard RFC 3339, based on ISO 8601