[tz] Proposal to change Macquarie Island to be Australian territory

Tobias Conradi mail.2012 at tobiasconradi.com
Thu Apr 18 19:43:40 UTC 2013

On Thu, Apr 18, 2013 at 8:11 PM, Guy Harris <guy at alum.mit.edu> wrote:

> Perhaps both databases should be using the same LOCODE-derived identifiers as the "official" identifiers, with all the region/city names used as legacy backwards-compatibility names?  Using those as the "official" identifiers has the advantages that:
>         1) they look like line noise to humans,

UN LOCODEs are structured and not noise to all humans. For US people:
USNYC, USPDX, what may these refer to? Germans: DEBER ...? Italians

> so UIs for setting the zone will perhaps make an effort to do something better than offer you a choice of zone identifiers or zone identifiers with underscores replaced by spaces;

Programmers that feel like doing so can do so already.

>         2) they look like line noise to humans, so perhaps people won't get quite as bent out of shape because The Wrong City was used;

An often mentioned case is Asia/Shanghai where people request
Asia/Beijing - with UN LOCODEs that would be CNSHA vs. CNBJS

>         3) they look like line noise to humans, so perhaps people won't get quite as bent out of shape because The Wrong Region was used;

The first two letters of UN LOCODEs are the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 codes,
likely not noise to all humans.

>         4) advantages 2 and 3 mean they won't have to change over time;
ISO codes can change, the current region names are not affected by
changes in country names and mergers or splits of countries.

But CLDR ads a layer of problems on top if UN LOCODEs

Some feedback regarding CLDR zone identifiers has been provided at:

Variable length and inconsistent country code usage:
USNAVAJO (larger region, not a simple locality)
JERUSALEM (This is not in JE JERSEY!)
GAZA (This is not in GA GABON) - certainly not "line noise"

It would have been easy to have at least fixed length identifiers,
based on the UN LOCODEs:

It is common for identifiers created by ISO to have fixed length, e.g.
language codes.

But maybe CLDR had limited understanding of UN LOCODEs and that is why
they choose to not use five digits for places that they couldn't find
a LOCODE for.

Tobias Conradi
Rheinsberger Str. 18
10115 Berlin


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