1179: "ISO 8601"

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psyclo
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby psyclo » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:37 pm UTC

Quicksilver wrote:Alt Text:"ISO 8601 was published on 06/05/88 and most recently amended on 12/01/04."
12/01/04? is that 2004? or 2012? or 2001? it should just be DD/MM/YYYY. Makes the most sense.


Exactly! Why post this whole thing about how non-ISO dates are discouraged, then put dates in the wrong format in the alt text???
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drachefly
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby drachefly » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:38 pm UTC

Today is clearly 2013-chaos-58.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby CharlieP » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:45 pm UTC

When I bought my first digital camera in 2002, I started naming the files (for example) cp200204151124.jpg. If two photos had the same minute I would just increment the last digit to create uniqueness. When I went to Peru in 2003 and snapped the Colca Canyon condors, this proved to be unworkable, so I went through all my photos and added two more digits to hold the seconds. :? I also realised that if you cross the Peruvian border and take a photo within an hour of the last one you took in Bolivia, your photos can end up out of order, so iteration 3 involved using UTC times for all filenames (this was a much bigger retrospective edit!).

That made me wonder - why are timestamps on (most) computer filenames (that I'm familiar with) worry about local time offsets in the same way that those on emails do? I know the big difference is the amount of travelling the two things generally do, but surely there are times that this could be important?

Later that year I discovered ISO 8601, and have used it ever since in filenames at work. Without prompting, people have slowly started copying me when they discover that files now order themselves neatly instead of going 01-01-2004, 01-01-2005 ... 01-01-2013, 01-02-2004 etc.
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby CharlieP » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:47 pm UTC

Oktalist wrote:
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.

Then you should write the year as 3102 (3rd year of the 1st decade of the 0th century of the 2nd millennium).


I think you mean third year of the second decade[1] of the first century of the third millennium. :)

[1] but fourth year of the decade known as the 2010s.
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby valar84 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:49 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:
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.


I registered just to reply to this.

I think your reasoning has one major flawed assumption: you assume that the event in question which date you ask for is close in time. If that is the case, then yes, the day would be the most important bit of information. If you are the 4th of a given month and ask the date of your dentist appointment, and the reply is the 14th, then you assume it is the same month and year, whereas if one told you the year of the month, that would be redundant (as long as they are what you expect). That's all fine and good...

Except that your assumption is not universal at all. If you have to verify an old report or an old file, then the data with the most important bit of information is the year, not the month nor the date. If you found an old report which only had the day of the month written on it, that information would be completely meaningless. In this case, the ISO standard, by the same reasoning you offer (the most important bit of information should be first), is valid, because you don't know the month nor the year, you are more interested in them than in the day. In fact, the only reason why the day would be the most important bit of information is because you assume that you know both the month and the year. It doesn't mean that their information is less important, it just means that you think you already know the information they carry.

Now ask yourself: in what circumstances are the ISO standards most likely to be used? In bureaucracy and record-keeping. Which are EXACTLY the situations where the ISO standard is appropriate by your very own criterion. Thus, when writing documents that others may have to verify later on, the ISO standard makes all the sense in the world.

Plus, the YYYY-MM-DD system will be much easier to sort than DD-MM-YYYY on computers if you use the precaution of writing the date at the start of every one of your folders (which we do at my workplace). That's my reasoning for supporting that standard.

Of course, if you're talking with someone and not writing a mail, a letter or any sort of document, then your assumption is generally valid. People generally talk about dates that are close, but I don't think ISO cares about how you describe a date when talking to your coworker or your mother, it only cares about how you write it down in official documents.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby cellocgw » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:50 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
Gargravarr wrote:I'd like to propose the following Internet law:
Any sufficiently long forum thread, regardless of original topic, will culminate in a debate about the existence of God.

Or is there already a law like that?


God wins law? :wink:


That wins the Worst Internet Pun of the Week Award.
And I thank you for that.
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby TheButler » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:53 pm UTC

This is the kind of thing that always gets people throwing rocks on the Internet because some of us have principles, and that's why the discussion is so hilariously pointless. :) There's a very specific reason that the USA is forever dragging its heels on improving things, and it's woven into every dollar you have. (We weren't even the first to switch to digital TV, and this is the nation that TV built.)

I work at a certain major volume retailer (you'd guess it in three) as a setup technician for eCommerce. Volume means that instead of charging a fair price and applying talent and skill to attract some customers, we undercut ourselves and try to attract all the customers, and that includes the stupidest person in the room. Everything in the USA does this, and that's how "irregardless" found its way into the dictionary.

The thinking goes that if we tried to use a different date format than what 80% of people are used to (or God forbid the Metric system) , it will make their little heads hurt and they'll wander off to another website that speaks Derpish for them. "Should we call it a non-cheese cheeseburger?" I've actually been in this meeting.

So, until we're officially dethroned as cash-cow to the world, you're just going to have to accept our asinine way of doing things. :) Remember, a Mile is 5280 Feet, a Yard is 3 Feet (a Mile divides evenly into 1760 Yards, but saying it that way is weird and gay), a Foot is 12 Inches, and an Inch is completely meaningless.

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Camahueto
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Camahueto » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:57 pm UTC

atypicaltexan wrote:
turtle42 wrote:We really need to standardise on a consistent timezone


If the "we" here refers to the US, then no--all we need to do is to use something that is understandable internationally, i.e. UTC (or GMT) offsets.

Any time I'm writing a time that will be seen by an international audience in a medium that will be stored indefinitely, I will put it in the form "February 27, 2013 at 6:30 PM CST/UTC-6". This may be horribly nonstandard, but it is (at least as far as I've seen) unambiguous to anyone who may be reading it.

The level of specificity needed, of course, varies on the target audience and the medium of communication. In an e-mail specifying a meeting of immediate importance to a colleague in the same town as me, I could simply say that we need to meet "tonight at 6:30" and my point will be made.


I have tried to set internet meetings with people from different countries at UTC times: I have failed miserably. All of them demands I set the time to their own time zones. For example, I need to propose hours listing the time in every time zone every time.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Gargravarr » Wed Feb 27, 2013 4:58 pm UTC

dp2 wrote:Well, no, there's one higher, and ironically, the ISO format doesn't allow for it: differentiation. Easily telling the difference between any two dates or times. Only "time units since reference date" provides that.

When the alien invasion fleet lands, official documents will be stamped with Planck time units, with the Big Bang as reference date, written in base-64. That will solve a few problems :wink:

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Xeio » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:06 pm UTC

Diadem wrote: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.
I'm not really sure this reasoning holds water if you're in a situation where you need to write the whole date out. Clearly if you are able to write "The 2nd" or "March 2nd" the year is (hopefully) obvious from context. It's not that the year isn't important, but we have context clues and don't need to provide redundant information. I've run into blogs and such that do that though, and I'm left to wonder what year they meant, which is extremely relevant to the internet where everything stays around forever.

Usually online like browsing news or reading a blog entry the Year/Month are much more relevant to me than day unless it's something like a recent event that happened in the last month. It's not a particularly rare occurrence online to see some article posted/shared from a year and a day ago as if it's recent news.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Oktalist » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:09 pm UTC

Gargravarr wrote:When the alien invasion fleet lands, official documents will be stamped with Planck time units, with the Big Bang as reference date, written in base-64. That will solve a few problems :wink:

They will also need a system for encoding inertial reference frames, or else any reference to a standard time would be meaningless.
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Wnderer » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:29 pm UTC

Where I work we use the ISO 8601 for file names 20130227 or 130227. Dating log books, documents, reports etc it is 27 FEB 2013.

Personally I feel proper English usage comes from the definition of the word 'of'.

OF - —used as a function word to indicate the component material, parts, or elements or the contents <throne of gold> <cup of water>

throne of gold or gold throne. 27th of February or February 27th. That's how I think of the date in my head.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby keithl » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:32 pm UTC

Boy, you earthlings will be in big trouble when Y10K hits. At the exponential rate you are stockpiling information, recomputing the rollover from 9999-12-31 to 10000-01-01 will vaporize your planet.

Before it is too late, you should follow the example of Danny Hillis and Stewart Brand, and write the date like so: 02013-02-27 . Then you will be in Really Big Trouble when Y100K hits, but hopefully most of you will be circling other stars by that time, and not all of your planets will vaporize at once.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby silverpie » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:44 pm UTC

drachefly wrote:Today is clearly 2013-chaos-58.


Nice try, but it would be 847-chaos-58.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Gargravarr » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:49 pm UTC

Oktalist wrote:
Gargravarr wrote:When the alien invasion fleet lands, official documents will be stamped with Planck time units, with the Big Bang as reference date, written in base-64. That will solve a few problems :wink:

They will also need a system for encoding inertial reference frames, or else any reference to a standard time would be meaningless.

Well, I didn't say it would solve all problems

Edit: Bleh, that was a really weak comeback :oops:
Last edited by Gargravarr on Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:11 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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mikrit
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby mikrit » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:59 pm UTC

Jean2 wrote:But our Gregorian calendar system is based on a fixed date that starts on Year one when was believed a certain person was born. This system was good because at least there was a consistent date system, that didn't reset to year one every time a new king was crowned (like before), so Napoleon couldn't just declare it to be Year One again.

Not Napoleon, but before him there was the http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Republican_Calendar, a wonderfully nerdy design, which restarted from year I (roman numeral), with ten days in a week (sorry: decade) and ten hours per day.

In fact, I think it was Napoleon who officially got rid of it.
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Don Calvus
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Don Calvus » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:15 pm UTC

Gargravarr wrote: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.


You must be a nice flatmate!

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Don Calvus
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Re: "ISO 8601"

Postby Don Calvus » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:17 pm UTC

piton wrote: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.


I can derive another bottom line from this syllogism.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby MadLogician » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:22 pm UTC

[quote="Brian-M]
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.)
[/quote]

Citations, please. Wikipedia says that Julian Period and Julian Day are not the same thing. I find no reference on the International Astronomical Union site http://www.iau.org/ to the Julian day system having been abandoned, although there have been some detailed tweaks as to how it is used.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Confusion » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:27 pm UTC

silverpie wrote:
drachefly wrote:Today is clearly 2013-chaos-58.


Nice try, but it would be 847-chaos-58.


You are both wrong.
Today is Pungenday, the 58th day of Chaos in the YOLD 3179 according to the Discordian calendar, which I would assume would be written 3179-1-58 if you would follow the guidelines in ISO 8601.
Unfortunately (or not, as that would mess things up) I do not think ISO 8601 covers other calendars than Discordian calendar but a standard covering other calendars also would most likely require some kind of marker to not confuse them, just like ISO 8601 have for week dates (today is 2013-W9-27 in that format).

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Nem » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:34 pm UTC

Look, store it however you like - just pick a standard and tell us what you're using and stick to it. I can parse it out into whatever format I want.

Let's just pick a standard and use it and stick to it behind the scenes, and let everyone interface with it however they want - as long as they keep to the damned contract of using what they've said they're going to use, there's no problem.

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Wnderer
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Wnderer » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:34 pm UTC

MadLogician wrote:[quote="Brian-M]
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.)
[/quote]

Citations, please. Wikipedia says that Julian Period and Julian Day are not the same thing. I find no reference on the International Astronomical Union site http://www.iau.org/ to the Julian day system having been abandoned, although there have been some detailed tweaks as to how it is used.[/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote]



Which wikipedia are you looking in?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_day

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"Julian date" and "JDN" redirect here. For dates in the Julian calendar, see Julian calendar. For the military IT system, see Joint Data Network. For day of year, see Ordinal date. For the comic book character Julian Gregory Day, see Calendar Man. Not to be confused with Julian year (disambiguation).

Julian day refers to a continuous count of days since the beginning of the Julian Period used primarily by astronomers.

The Julian Day Number (JDN) is the integer assigned to a whole solar day in the Julian day count starting from noon Greenwich Mean Time, with Julian day number 0 assigned to the day starting at noon on January 1, 4713 BC proleptic Julian calendar. (November 24, 4714 BC in the proleptic Gregorian calendar.) The Julian day number for today, 25 February 2013, is 2456348.

The Julian Date (JD) of any instant is the Julian day number for the preceding noon plus the fraction of the day since that instant. Julian Dates are expressed as a Julian day number with a decimal fraction added.[1] The current Julian Date is 2456348.5450463.

The term "Julian date" may also refer, outside of astronomy, to the day-of-year number (more properly, the ordinal date) in the Gregorian calendar, especially in computer programming, the military and the food industry,[2]— or it may refer to dates in the Julian calendar. For example, if a given "Julian date" is "12 May 1629", this means that date in the Julian calendar (which is 22 May 1629 in Gregorian calendar— the date of the Treaty of Lübeck). Outside of an astronomical or historical context, if a given "Julian date" is "40", this most likely means the fortieth day of a given Gregorian year, namely February 9. But the potential for mistaking a "Julian date" of "40" to mean an astronomical Julian Day Number (or even to mean the year 40 ad in the Julian calendar, or even to mean a duration of 40 astronomical Julian years) is justification for preferring the terms "ordinal date" or "day-of-year" instead. In contexts where a "Julian date" means simply an ordinal date, calendars of a Gregorian year with formatting for ordinal dates are often called "Julian calendars",[2] in spite of the potential for misinterpreting this as meaning that the calendars are of years in the Julian calendar system.

The Julian Period is a chronological interval of 7980 years beginning 4713 BC. It has been used by historians since its introduction in 1583 to convert between different calendars. 2013 is year 6726 of the current Julian Period. The next Julian Period begins in the year 3268 AD.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_calendar

EDIT: Nevermind. I see you are objecting to it being abandoned not that it existed.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Gargravarr » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:37 pm UTC

Don Calvus wrote:
Gargravarr wrote: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.

You must be a nice flatmate!

Haven't been a flatmate since college, but no, I was actually kind of annoying.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Spoe » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:39 pm UTC

CharlieP wrote:Later that year I discovered ISO 8601, and have used it ever since in filenames at work. Without prompting, people have slowly started copying me when they discover that files now order themselves neatly instead of going 01-01-2004, 01-01-2005 ... 01-01-2013, 01-02-2004 etc.


Did you also discover you'd already been using ISO 8601 dates? YYYYMMDD is valid ISO 8601. Any you were ALMOST using valid ISO 8601 date times, needing only a 'T' between the date and time, e.g. 20130227T133930.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Spoe » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:42 pm UTC

keithl wrote:Boy, you earthlings will be in big trouble when Y10K hits. At the exponential rate you are stockpiling information, recomputing the rollover from 9999-12-31 to 10000-01-01 will vaporize your planet.

Before it is too late, you should follow the example of Danny Hillis and Stewart Brand, and write the date like so: 02013-02-27 . Then you will be in Really Big Trouble when Y100K hits, but hopefully most of you will be circling other stars by that time, and not all of your planets will vaporize at once.


Not so much. ISO defines 4 digit years as a minimum length. It allows for longer years.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Diadem » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:49 pm UTC

Camahueto wrote:I have tried to set internet meetings with people from different countries at UTC times: I have failed miserably. All of them demands I set the time to their own time zones. For example, I need to propose hours listing the time in every time zone every time.

May I take this time to complain about people using UTC instead of GMT?

Everyone knows what GMT means, almost no one knows what UTC is, yet some people insist on using UTC, despite those two terms meaning the same thing (not quite, but the difference is never more than a second).
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Don Calvus
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Don Calvus » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:49 pm UTC

TheButler wrote:Everything in the USA does this, and that's how "irregardless" found its way into the dictionary.


Oh my. I'm an English-to-French translator, and I can't even imagine the reason behind this. And... what is this supposed to mean? What "regardless" already meant, but some people didn't compute the "less" part and needed redundant information, thus making a logical mistake? Or the contrary of "regardless", which would be... "taking into account"? :?

After all, you already have the "could care less" case, which is puzzling.

The thinking goes that if we tried to use a different date format than what 80% of people are used to (or God forbid the Metric system) , it will make their little heads hurt and they'll wander off to another website that speaks Derpish for them. "Should we call it a non-cheese cheeseburger?" I've actually been in this meeting.


Haha, I'm always thinking to myself "God, they make me actually say this!" when I'm ordering a "cheeseburger sans fromage" (ie "a cheeseburger without cheese") since the French (or Belgian, for that matter) fast-food chain "Quick" decided they did not want to sell a regular hamburger anymore. Yes, that's right: they are plain stupid, and although I am French, I hate cheese.

I can certainly imagine this meeting...
Last edited by Don Calvus on Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:54 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby MadLogician » Wed Feb 27, 2013 6:53 pm 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?



Which shows why you should be very careful about relying on the results of Google translate.

The Romans had an odd dating system, and that translates as '5 days before the Calends of March in year 2761 from the building of the city'.

That date is wrong - we're less than 5 days before March 1st and the current year is 2766 AUC. It's also applying the Gregorian calendar rather than the Julian (named after Julius Caesar, no relation to either Julian Period or Julian Day).

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby C'tol » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:28 pm UTC

Confusion wrote:
silverpie wrote:
drachefly wrote:Today is clearly 2013-chaos-58.


Nice try, but it would be 847-chaos-58.


You are both wrong.
Today is Pungenday, the 58th day of Chaos in the YOLD 3179 according to the Discordian calendar, which I would assume would be written 3179-1-58 if you would follow the guidelines in ISO 8601.
Unfortunately (or not, as that would mess things up) I do not think ISO 8601 covers other calendars than Discordian calendar but a standard covering other calendars also would most likely require some kind of marker to not confuse them, just like ISO 8601 have for week dates (today is 2013-W9-27 in that format).
C'tol wrote:What about 58/01/3179? Or is it 3179/01/58?

... I think 01/58/3179 is much better...


Yep, my `ddate` reported the same...

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Pingouin7 » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:52 pm UTC

I prefer MM/DD/YYYY because 27th Feb. 2013 sounds odd.
Last edited by Pingouin7 on Wed Mar 06, 2013 2:08 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Jamaican Castle » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:55 pm UTC

Clearly the only solution is to build a complex programming module that holds all of your time information and can output it in whatever manner you want. For maximum annoyance, it should be programmed in something exceptionally dense that isn't widely taught any longer (or Basic).

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby AUS » Wed Feb 27, 2013 7:57 pm UTC

Probably already stated, but I'm a lazy asshole so here we go:

MM/DD/YY, because smallest to largest. 01-12, 01-31, 00-99.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby commodorejohn » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:00 pm UTC

I say we start dating by Roman emperors again.
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby sztupy » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:23 pm UTC

In Hungary, the correct way to write dates is YYYY.MM.DD. (it's still not correct, but at least the order is correct, I've never understood why DD/MM/YYYY is logical in any way). But starting from this year there is a new EU law, that says all expiration dates must be written in a standard format, which is DD/MM/YYYY. So the EU basically said the ISO standard to * himself. (but yes, this is basic standard++ behaviour)

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Gargravarr » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:34 pm UTC

commodorejohn wrote:I say we start dating by Roman emperors again.

It always amazed me that most of the emperors were incompetent and/or psychotic, but the empire still survived for a millenium or so. Maybe that inspires optimism for our future. Or maybe not.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby bmonk » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:38 pm UTC

dratini wrote:See, Chinese people always write YYYY MM DD, and they do a similar thing for addresses: country (when required), city, suburb, street, and house/flat number. Because we are so sensible and everyone is able to conform to the same standards.

They also write the family name first, then the personal name. General to specific.

Gargravarr wrote:
commodorejohn wrote:I say we start dating by Roman emperors again.

It always amazed me that most of the emperors were incompetent and/or psychotic, but the empire still survived for a millenium or so. Maybe that inspires optimism for our future. Or maybe not.


Even better, we could use the Easter Emperors too--that would give us nearly 1500 years of Empire, plus the several hundred of Republic before that. We'd only have to come up with names and dates for the last 600- years.
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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby jc » Wed Feb 27, 2013 8:59 pm UTC

cwolves wrote:As great as standards are, this is the wrong way to way to write a date.

Why?

because some implementations of common languages (such as JavaScript) won't parse `2013-02-26` whereas _every_ date parser will parse `2013/02/26` to today.

Results are more important than standards.


So which javascript date parser has a problem with an ISO date? It's a bit surprising that such a thing would exist in any computer language so widely used, because it would totally fail for most east-Asian dates. Thus, in China and Japan, today is 2012年2月27日, which is ISO format with the Chinese characters for year, month and date as separators. This is legal ISO format, because ISO basically says that only the digits (and the +- if there's a time zone) are significant, you can use any separators that you like, and those are the date-field separators in several of the world's major languages. If a date-parsing routine in any widely used programming language fails to parse something so simple and widely-used, the question "What were they thinking?" comes to mind. And I'd be surprised if you couldn't find a decent javascript date-time parser if the one you're using fails so spectacularly on the date format used where most of our computers are now manufactured.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby igoradsilva » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:11 pm UTC

Actually, according to ISO 8601, 20130227 is acceptable (check the Wikipedia).

I agree with Randall about standards, but this standard, although very logical, would mess up with most of the population where I live. I'm brazillian and here we use the International System format, which is 27/02/2013. It is used this way because it is the way we speak it: "vinte e sete de fevereiro de dois mil e treze" ("twenty-seven of february of two thousand and thirteen", if I can attempt to explain how we speak). In USA, the format used is MM/DD/YYYY because it is spoken that way in American English: "February twenty-seventh, two thousand and thirteen." In British English, it is spoken like in Brazil: "twenty-seventh of February of two thousand and thirteen."

So, there is no standard because each language speaks in a specific order. And there is a reasonable explanation for speaking the less significative first: context. In the context of a month, we can speak only the day. In the context of a year, we can supress the information of the year, but we don't usually write a date specifying the month and the year and supressing the day.

So, don't expect for the world to adopt a standard representation for dates while we all don't speak the same language.

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby AndrewGPaul » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:23 pm UTC

Since someone else has already brought up stardates, I'll throw in the date system used in the Warhammer 40,000 wargame setting:

Right now (2013-02-27 21:12:38) would be 0156013.M003.

The first digit is an accuracy flag. 0 basically means the event being dated happened on Earth.
The next three are the fraction of the year, from 000 up to 999
The 5th -7th are the year within the millennium, from 000 to 999
After that is the millennium. For a political entity which is over 10,000 years old, and has institutions, bureaucratic processes and even individuals which can span across different millennia, that's necessary to record.

That does mean that the year 2000 is counted as the first year of a new millennium rather than the last year of the previous one.

wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Imperial_Dating_System

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Re: 1179: "ISO 8601"

Postby Klear » Wed Feb 27, 2013 9:30 pm UTC

sztupy wrote:I've never understood why DD/MM/YYYY is logical in any way


Read this thread.


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