[tz] [PATCH 2/3] Replace some zones with links when that doesn't lose non-LMT info.

Stephen Colebourne scolebourne at joda.org
Wed Sep 4 17:09:19 UTC 2013

On 4 September 2013 18:00, Guy Harris <guy at alum.mit.edu> wrote:
> On Sep 4, 2013, at 2:32 AM, Stephen Colebourne <scolebourne at joda.org> wrote:
> Actually, no, I'm not "from an academic background", except to the extent that I have an academic degree; everywhere I've worked since 1979 was a business of some sort, not in academia.  ("alum" is short for "alumni"/"alumnae", if you're guessing from my e-mail address that I work in academia; it's a mail-forwarding service.)
> As for whether I'm a "supporter of Paul's approach", I think that's an overstatement.  I'm somebody who's certainly sympathetic to concerns about having to offer end-users choices between tzids that won't make any real difference to them in practice - i.e., I'm not 100% an *opponent* of Paul's approrach - but I think the *ideal* way to handle that is not to offer end-users choices between tzids, which is why I've cited OS X's "Time Zone" subpane of "Date & Time" in System Preferences as the right way to handle that, rather than the cheesy "I know!  I'll just turn all the underscores in tzids into spaces and make an option menu out of them!" stuff done by some other OSes.  There are now data files freely available that can support that.

Moving on from my dumb academic statement, I agree entirely that a
good user interface should not expose raw or mangled raw zone IDs.
CLDR offers good textual forms for example.

> And I think anybody using the tzdb to handle pre-1970 dates, or claiming that their APIs can be used to handle pre-1970 dates, should either state it as "you can use it, but we make no claim that the results will be correct, so don't rely on it for anything where a difference of an hour or two will actually matter" or should back up their confidence with historical research (and send the results of that research to Paul so the comments can be updated).

I might add something to JSR-310 to that effect.

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