FW: Australian time zone names

Greg Black gjb at gbch.net
Fri Nov 2 23:49:05 UTC 2007

On 2007-11-02, Stuart Bishop wrote:
> Paul Eggert wrote:
>> Mark Jerkovic [mailto:mjerkovic at aconex.com] writes:
>>> The Australian Government defines time zone names as follows:
>> I'm afraid the situation is a bit more complicated than that.  Have
>> you read the comments in the time zone data source files about this
>> controversial issue?  See the file "australasia" in the archive
>> <ftp://elsie.nci.nih.gov/pub/tzdata2007i.tar.gz> and look for "AEST".
> According to that source, the discussions occurred over 6 years ago before
> there was any sort of governmental statement. Now we have a document on the
> Australian Government's website clearly stating the abbreviations. Surely
> this source outweighs these antique discussion and arguments?

One reason for determining that anything on that website is of no
significance is the simple fact that nobody in Australia has a clue
about what (if anything) is the meaning of AEST -- those of us who can
think will believe the 'S' stands for "Standard" time; but, in summer,
lots of people think it stands for "Summer" time.

I looked at some Melbourne websites yesterday to find out the time of
the Melbourne Cup and was amused to see that it is generally listed as
3:00 pm AEST, despite the fact that it should be AEDT if we take these
abbreviations as meaningful.

The real truth is that it's numeric data that tells us the useful
information and the names are really pointless, especially for us who
live in Australia.  There is no point at all in trying to beat this
particular horse any more.

Cheers, Greg

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