[tz] tzdb timezone names/identifiers and links

Martin Burnicki martin.burnicki at meinberg.de
Thu Feb 28 10:50:32 UTC 2019

Michael Douglass wrote:
> On 2/26/19 17:17, Steve Allen wrote:
>> On Tue 2019-02-26T20:00:54+0000 Paul.Koning at dell.com hath writ:
>>> Once in a while it is suggested that all tzdb zones should be
>>> identified by random unique integers, or something like that.  I'm
>>> more and more inclined to think that's a good idea, because it would
>>> once and for all shut down this confusion.
>> This seems to be a proposal to
>> 1) Move the arguments to be Somebody Else's Problem, somewhere else.
> Yes - but also to provide a mechanism that makes it less of a problem
>> 2) Break a lot of existing interfaces to achieve that goal.
>> I cannot begin to calculate the cost of 2) but given the number of
>> downstream interfaces which use tzdb it seems likely larger than the
>> cost of tolerating the discussions on this list.
> There's an easy backwards compatibility mode:
> 1. have a uid for every zone
> 2. Create a set of data mapping that uid on to names that look like the
> current names
> 3. Provide a backwards compatability mode to take that file (or another
> named file) and put the names back
> For unchanged downstream software it looks exactly the same. However now
> we have disassociated the zones from the name. Downstream users are free
> to create their own files if they wish and we can also set about finding
> a owner for that name file (cldr perhaps?)

Exactly. In the short term you have compatibility for existing
applications, and in the long term you can reduce the confusion caused
by names that are meant to be just identifiers, but not names to be
displayed, from the names that really are to be displayed.

I know the sentence above is confusing, but that exactly reflects the
underlying problem. ;-)

Martin Burnicki

Senior Software Engineer

MEINBERG Funkuhren GmbH & Co. KG
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