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Re: CVS update: ADDED: subversion/libsvn_subr getdate.y

From: Karl Fogel <kfogel_at_collab.net>
Date: 2001-07-04 20:47:39 CEST

Branko Čibej <brane@xbc.nu> writes:
> I think you may be taking the "supports all CVS features" promise a
> bit too far here. By all means, let's support the features, but not
> the misfeatures, please. When was the last time you told CVS to up -r
> 'last friday'?

-1. I don't think Ben has taken CVS compatibility too far at all --
this is the sort of CVS feature we should continue to support.

I have done "last friday" type queries more than once before. I know
that Brian Fitzpatrick also has, suspect others have also enjoyed the
convenience.

> I don't think we should support any notation that's ambiguous. I'd
> even say it's enough to support ISO 8601
> (http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~mgk25/iso-time.html,
> http://ano2000.kpnqwest.pt/gen_8601.htm), including interval
> notation. Things like "today" and "yesterday" are nice, but if we
> support "last friday," we might as well know when "granny's birthday"
> is.

+1 on the general principle you propose, we simply aren't reaching it
in one step.

Ideally, we would support nothing ambiguous. However, "last friday"
is not ambiguous, whereas "xx/xx/xx" is. Now come on, "Granny's
birthday" is not a fair example -- how is Subversion supposed to know
who Granny is? :-)

As far as attaining the ideal goes, here is our situation right now:

  1. Before Ben's change, we didn't have any date parsing at all.

  2. After Ben's change, we have the date-parsing functionality that
     CVS has, which, though it certainly has its warts, is familiar
     to many people and does the right thing most of the time.

  3. We do not currently have any code that satisfies the principle of
     supporting various unambiguous date formats, localizably.

Granted that (3) is the ideal, I don't see why we should drop back to
(1) just because (2) isn't absolute perfection. Let's support what we
can right away, and feel free to improve it when we are able. If
anyone knows of a good, localizable datestring-parsing library that we
can incorporate right now (preferably one not involving a grammar
parser!), please post.

-Karl

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Received on Sat Oct 21 14:36:33 2006

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