[tz] On merging timezones - a radical proposal.

random832 at fastmail.us random832 at fastmail.us
Wed May 22 20:14:40 UTC 2013

On Wed, May 22, 2013, at 15:24, Guy Harris wrote:
> Define "users".  Do you mean "administrators" for big machines and "end
> users" for personal machines?

Whoever picks time zones, including end users on big machines that allow
end users to configure how times are displayed to them (speaking of all
UN*X systems...)

> Presumably if users can "pick advanced", the *system vendors* have to
> ship the full set of time zone files (otherwise, "advanced" isn't
> available).

I am not proposing reducing the timezone files that are shipped, merely
adding a way to have fewer timezones to choose from in the UI.

No-one _now_, to my knowledge, doesn't ship the backwards-compatibility
links, and they're even less useful than the ones I'm proposing

> We don't handle that because UN*X APIs don't offer a mechanism for saying
> "please use the time zone I was in at a given time to convert that time";
> if they did, they could use our database for that.

Why is that not what localtime() means? And if it _doesn't_ mean that,
why doesn't localtime simply _always_ use Eastern for people in
Vincennes, despite the fact that "the time zone they were in at a given
time" was Central for part of 2006-2007?

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