[tz] Ambiguous abbreviations for Australian timezones when daylight savings is in affect

Guy Harris guy at alum.mit.edu
Sun Mar 31 04:44:46 UTC 2013

On Mar 30, 2013, at 8:53 PM, SM <sm at resistor.net> wrote:

> Hi Timothy,
> At 19:33 27-03-2013, Timothy Arceri wrote:
>> It's well past time the Australian abbreviations were updated to reflect the
>> current terms and usage. Stop the confusion and use the abbreviations
>> recommended by the Australian government to try to avoid this mess.
> Here are some links on Australian abbreviations.  It is difficult for tell what is current usage (e.g. see the first two links).  If the Australian government thinks that it is important to stop the confusion it would likely find an effective way to convince the people in Australia about that.  I don't think that it is a good idea for the Olson database to dictate what the people within Australian should do.

A change in the abbreviation would not change whether the database is dictating what Australians should or will do, so that's not a reason not to change.

As a non-Australian, my only interest is in not seeing this debate replayed over and over again.  The UN*X APIs already exist and are expected to return time zone abbreviations (some callers might expect it to return three-letter time zone abbreviations, but that's currently not the case even for the US any more), so we're stuck with supplying time zone abbreviations.

My vote is to pick the one that the fewest Australians who actually bother to voice an opinion on this dislike, and announce that all subsequent complaints will go to /dev/null (or NUL:, if we get a Windows port :-), so that we won't go through this again.

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