[tz] timezone Verschlimmbesserung

Paul Eggert eggert at cs.ucla.edu
Wed Sep 29 16:53:54 UTC 2021

On 9/29/21 4:20 AM, Tony Finch via tz wrote:
> The aim of merging timezones was to avoid political issues and to reduce
> the maintenance burden. It seems to me that it has failed to achieve those
> goals.

Thanks for your comments and concerns. Although the recent contretemps 
has been a setback, it's been less of a maintenance burden (to me at 
least) than other things that merging timestamps helped forestall. The 
Kosovo business earlier this year is an example.

Political issues have the real potential to kill the project, and that 
hazard far outweighs all the relatively-minor technical issues involved 
in merging Zones.

Admittedly there has not been unanimous agreement about merging Zones, 
and Stephen has objected since the beginning. And there is inevitably a 
conflict between the exceedingly few users who want lots of reliable 
pre-1970 data and yours truly, a volunteer maintainer who cannot satisfy 
these users' desires and who needs to draw the line somewhere, fairly.

That being said, pre-1970 timestamps are an area where the long-term 
maintenance burden is very real and the overall end-user benefit is 
exceedingly tiny, even negative. So it's been an easy call for me so far.

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