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Re: date formats

On Thu, Dec 14, 2000 at 07:20:25PM +0000, Andrew M.A. Cater wrote:
> On Thu, Dec 14, 2000 at 12:25:53AM -0800, David Lawyer wrote:
> > > > > > The international standard date notation is
> > > > > >
> > > > > >    YYYY-MM-DD
> > 
> > > David Lawyer wrote:
> > > > But a lot of people will be confused by this.  If the doc is is
> > > > English, why not use the existing date format?
> > 
> > On Tue, Dec 12, 2000 at 09:10:22AM -0500, Sandy Harris wrote:
> > > Because anything but that standard creates confusion.
> > :
> > How can "4 February 1995" (LDP's present "standard") create confusion?
> > The doc is in English and as it was pointed out, anyone able to read
> > the doc should be able to also read the date.  And anyone able to
> > translate the doc should also be able to easily translate the date.

> This is desperately Anglo-centric.  

Why?  Wouldn't a doc in language X also have its date in language X?
Why is this Anglo-centric?  Actually, the world is pretty much (for
better or worse) Anglo-centric when it comes to international

> The ISO date is a good numeric sort.  

True, but how important are numeric sorts of docs in various
languages?  Such a sort would need to exclude the duplicates due to
the many translated HOWTOs.  You would probably need to do this in
Unicode.  Would anyone be able to read all those languages?  Wouldn't
you need to translate the titles, etc. to one language?  But one
really needs an evaluation of the doc to see if it's worthy of being
translated.  The extra work involved of translating the date manually
is pretty insignificant.

So if the LDP were just being organized and needed to select a date
format, it wouldn't be a bad idea to pick the international standard
proposed as it about as good as the existing one.  But changing
LDP format comes at a cost and I can't see any compelling reason to
change it.

> If I see a HOWTO that is, say, in Russian / Croatian / Romanian that
> says Foo-HOWTO 2000-04-02 and I know that the English Foo-HOWTO is
> 02/04/2000 - do I translate the English one into Russian ?  Does it
> matter if the writer of the English howto is English or American ??

If you're an English-Russian translator, then you will know how to
read the date in both languages, especially if the date has the month
spelled out.

> I may not be sure of the dates in Catalan / transliterated Cantonese - but
> I can do a numeric sort.

			David Lawyer

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