FW: Localization of timezones from zone.tab

Chuck Soper chucks2 at veladg.com
Tue Jul 10 21:49:10 UTC 2007

Thanks for your response. I now remember meeting 
someone from IBM at an IMUG meeting at Apple; he 
described metazones.

What is the best way for me to stay informed of 
CLDR related to time zones? And is there a way to 
make comments, suggestions or discuss?


At 1:54 PM -0700 7/10/07, Mark Davis wrote:
>We have actually instituted an alternative 
>mechanism called 'metazones', which are somewhat 
>like what you describe. They basically coalesce 
>zones that have the same behavior in modern 
>time. However, they have some further 
>restrictions, and we only put this in recently 
>thus haven't gathered enough data to be useful 
>On 7/10/07, Chuck Soper <<mailto:chucks2 at veladg.com>chucks2 at veladg.com> wrote:
>I've been on the tz list for several years. I 
>have tried to follow the Time Zone Localizations 
>topic for CLDR.
>I do not understand why translations would be 
>supplied for timezone IDs (tzIDs). Many tzIDs 
>refer to the same time zone name. For example, I 
>believe that Argentina has 2 time zone names, 
>yet it has 10 tzIDs to handle DST rules for 
>various states. Does this mean that 20 localized 
>names would be required for Argentina? Does this 
>mean that a new tzID would not be localized?
>Looking at 381 tzIDs of a tzData version (from 
>2006), I multiply it by two (for std and dst 
>names) to obtain 762 time zone names required. 
>By removing names of tzIDs that do not recognize 
>DST and removing tzIDs that refer to the same 
>time name (e.g. many tzIDs refer to Central 
>European Time), I was to reduce total time zone 
>names from 762 to 212.
>Can over 500 names can be removed from the 
>translation list? Multiplying 500 potentially 
>unneeded names by the number of translations 
>would result in a large reduction of translation 
>My approach is dependent on having a stable list 
>of time zone names. As far as I know, such a 
>list does not exist. If such a list existed, I 
>would envision tzIDs being mapped to the 'time 
>zone name' list.
>At 10:44 AM -0700 7/10/07, Mark Davis wrote:
>>The Unicode CLDR project 
>>does supply translations for timezone IDs. 
>>There are a few caveats.
>>1.      The timezone database really has 
>>equivalence classes of IDs. One of these can be 
>>used as a representative for any in the 
>>equivalence class. It is the zone.tab file that 
>>contains such IDs. CLDR started by using that 
>>file, but unfortunately it is not stable 
>>(different equivalent IDs can be substituted at 
>>any time). So what we do is use as the 
>>representative the one that historically the 
>>first one used in any zone.tab file (after CLDR 
>>2.      We allow, but do not encourage, 
>>translation of zones that are the only zone in 
>>a country. For that we use the country name. 
>>This cuts down very substantially on the number 
>>of translations needed. That is, you would see 
>>the equivalent of "Italy", and "United States 
>>(Los Angeles)" -- only in the latter case do we 
>>need translations for the cities.
>>3.      Translators can optionally add other 
>>variations: daylight (summer) time, standard 
>>(winter) time, and generic time, both 
>>abbreviated and long.
>>4.      These choices percolate out to clients 
>>of CLDR: Google, IBM, Apple, Adobe, and many 
>On 7/10/07, Olson, Arthur David (NIH/NCI) [E] 
><<mailto:olsona at dc37a.nci.nih.gov>olsona at dc37a.nci.nih.gov> 
>I'm forwarding this message from Vincent Untz, 
>who is not on the time zone mailing list.
>Those of you who are on the time zone mailing 
>list should direct replies appropriately.
>                                 --ado
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Vincent Untz [mailto:<mailto:vuntz at gnome.org> vuntz at gnome.org]
>Sent: Tuesday, July 10, 2007 1:24 PM
>To: <mailto:tz at lecserver.nci.nih.gov>tz at lecserver.nci.nih.gov
>Subject: Localization of timezones from zone.tab
>[please keep me cc'ed since I'm not subscribed to this list]
>I know that, at least in GNOME, there are now three places where we
>parse zone.tab to get a list of timezones supported by the OS. I suppose
>other projects are also doing this. This list is then presented to the
>user to let him choose the timezone.
>The problem here is that we let the user choose strings which look like
>"Antarctica/South_Pole". This is not really good for
>non-english-speaking people ;-)
>Of course, we can add all the timezones to our list of strings to
>translate, but this means all projects needing to do so will duplicate
>this work and the translations.
>I'd like the tz database to ship translations in po files. This would
>imply the following:
>+ create a small script to generate a POT file from zone.tab (easy)
>+ submit the POT file to the translation project [1] (or any other
>    place that helps with translation)
>+ add the po files for translation to the tz database
>+ choose a gettext domain
>(Of course, I'm quite probably forgetting about a step :-))
>I've seen that this topic has been discussed before [2], but the
>proposition there was really more ambitious, so I'm hoping a simple
>approach would be welcomed.
>What do you think?
>[1] <http://translationproject.org/>http://translationproject.org/
>Les gens heureux ne sont pas pressés.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://mm.icann.org/pipermail/tz/attachments/20070710/a12e1b21/attachment.htm>

More information about the tz mailing list