-00:00 on draft-newman-datetime-00.txt

Chris Newman Chris.Newman at innosoft.com
Thu Jan 9 22:01:35 UTC 1997

On Fri, 3 Jan 1997, Robert Elz wrote:
> And while I'm here, it is all very nice to follow 8061 and all
> that, but if the aim of this draft is really to make a spec for
> reporting times that can be used on the internet, it is probably
> more important that the current internet time specs be examined,
> and needless differences be avoided.   Eg: The rfc822 (e-mail) way
> to report a numeric time zone is +nnnn (or -nnnn) - no colons.
> There's about as much hope of that ever changing as there is of
> redefining time to use a much more rational 100 seconds in a minute,
> etc.   Writing a spec that won't be used isn't very productive.

rfc 822 format, as amended by rfc 1123 is in wide use for email, and no
one is suggesting changing that format (although DRUMs is working on
making it more precise). My draft is more concerned with a format for new
protocols, such as the vCard, vCalendar, WWW PICs and other proposals.
Those are all bindly referencing 8601 and all it's ambiguity and

822+1123 is an old format with a number of compatibility problems due to
the historical use of 2 digit years and non-numeric timezones. It's also
extremely English-centric.  In addition, there's the issue of free 
insertion of comments (which is clearly allowed, but probably doesn't
work in some cases).  There does seem to be a demand for a simpler, more
international format for use in new protocols.

My goal was to make a simple, precise and freely available Internet
profile of 8601 and recommend it's use for new protocols.  I am very
strongly opposed to creating yet-another-format as there are already too

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