[tz] Dropping iso3166.tab

Christos Zoulas christos at zoulas.com
Wed May 22 15:10:49 UTC 2013

On May 22,  9:14pm, kre at munnari.OZ.AU (Robert Elz) wrote:
-- Subject: Re: [tz] Dropping iso3166.tab

| So, I have a counter proposal to that made by Paul Eggert - with similar
| objectives, just achieved in a slightly different way.
| Paul suggested 3 operations.   The first, removing iso3166.tab is a no-brainer
| we can easily do that - anyone who wants a copy can get it from other sources.
| For zone.tab (assuming that the other solution, of simply moving it, and
| tzselect, to some other project isn't adopted) rather than making column 1
| be a comment, define it to be a region, expressly not a country, and explicitly
| not using (however similar they may seem) ISO3166 2 letter identifiers.
| Instead define it as simply being a tz project specific identifier used to
| group related zones that apply within some tzdata defined region together.
| Of course, in practice, most of the time we'll keep using identifiers, that,
| by pure accident of course, happen to be the same as the 3166 2 letter 
| identifier for the country that has rather similar boundaries to our
| region, without ever, of course, implying they are the same, and without
| ever claimimng that some city belongs to a particular country - that is none
| of our business, nor do we care one way or the other.
| Step 3 of Paul's plan I'd avoid for now - that is, merging zones that could
| be merged.   Not because it is the wrong thing to do, but because it is a
| whole bunch of work for no immediate gain.  All the old zones would still
| exist (or seem to exist) in the output from zic (the stuff that people
| actually see) because of the "backward" entries we would need to create.
| Instead, I'd simply allow zones to be merged if at some future time doing
| so will make life easier - so if in the future, something changes that would
| need updates to a whole bunch of identical zones, it might at that time be
| easier to merge them into one (and add backward links) simply because that's
| easier to do than the same edit several times.

FWIW, I am perfectly happy with this plan.


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