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Re: Date processing should be more flexible

From: Christopher Ness <chris_at_nesser.org>
Date: 2005-07-23 03:08:15 CEST

On Sat, 2005-07-23 at 01:32 +0100, Julian Foad wrote:
> [...]
> > Having the hours, months and days without leading zeros is a valid input
> > IMHO.
>
> Yup, valid. That doesn't convince me that omitting the zero from the hours
> gives a significant extra usability benefit in practice, but this is rather a
> lot of discussion for a rather small issue: it's become a bikeshed-painting
> exercise. I'll accept your intuition and preference.
> >
> >>I'm in two minds about whether this change is a good idea in the long term.
> >>Every bit of flexibility has an unquantifiable cost, and though the cost seems
> >>pretty low I'm not completely convinced that the amount of added convenience is
> >>worth it (it seems like a very tiny benefit to me). On the other hand I don't
> >>think it's a big issue either way, so if it makes several people happy then,
> >>OK, let's have it.
> >
> > For those that do not have experience with the ISO 8601 standard it is
> > quite hard -- even after smashing your head off the cubical walls a few
> > times -- to convince oneself that:
> >
> > -r{2005-7-22} != -r{2005-07-22}
>
> What are you saying? Surely your patch will cause Subversion to treat those
> two specifications as equal.

People _with out_ exposure to the standard see these as equivalent (they
do not understand the sorting issues described below - nor IMHO should
they as users).
The current state of the system does not see these as equivalent since
the LHS errors out.

> Yet you are implying that, with experience of the
> standard and some hard thought, one can understand that those specifications
> are in some way unequal. In what way? If so, isn't your patch bad?

The deep details are that once the strings are parsed (char by char)
they are equivalent iff the LHS is accepted though the templates. It
currently is not.

The true nature of the standard appears to forbid omitting leading zeros
in the string because of this sorting case.

[nesscg@heidrun subversion]$ printf 2005-7-22\\n2005-07-22\\n2005-07-23\
\n | sort
2005-07-22
2005-07-23
2005-7-22

Obviously line 3 is out of place. But svn doesn't sort user input and I
cannot imagine why it should.

I like my bikeshed a nice ale colour.
Going to paint it at the /dev/local/pub

Cheers,
Chris

-- 
PGP Public Key: http://www.nesser.org/pgp-key/
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Received on Sat Jul 23 03:08:04 2005

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