[tz] Dropping iso3166.tab

Zefram zefram at fysh.org
Tue May 21 10:37:53 UTC 2013

Paul Eggert wrote:
>I have been thinking of proposing to drop iso3166.tab from the
>tz distribution, and to drop all uses of country codes.
>This would help simplify maintenance, as it would mean
>that the database would be unaffected by political
>issues such as whether Kosovo is a country,

The association of time zones with countries is useful, despite the
somewhat fuzzy and occasionally contentious nature of country boundaries.
It is, of course, entirely proper that the notion of "country" doesn't
influence the zone naming scheme, for many more reasons than any present
controversy about country status.  Segregating the country/zone link data
into a separate file, with its own update mechanism, was a wise choice.

Although affected by politics, the database is substantially *insulated
from* the politics, by virtue of delegating the decision on what is a
country to the ISO 3166 MA.  I don't see it being a significant problem.


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