Mon, 16 Jun 2003 14:57:54 +0100
At 11:37 16/06/03 +0100, Malcolm Wallace wrote:
>Graham Klyne <GK@ninebynine.org> writes:
> > I don't feel especially well-qualified, but if I can contribute in some
> > small ways...
>A small surprise to me was that the editor of RFC 3339 "Date and Time
>on the Internet: Timestamps" is one Graham Klyne, which may not be the
>same person as you, but perhaps you are more qualified for the job of
>proposing a new Time module than you admit... :-)
Maybe I should explain a little.
My editoriship came about because I found myself repeatedly citing a
previous version of this document, for which the "heavy lifting" had
already been done by Chris Newman, the other editor of RFC 3339. I
badgered Chris a few times about moving his document to RFC status so we'd
have a stable, persistent reference. In the spirit of "he who asks, gets
volunteered", Chris suggested that I take it on.
My technical contribution was to be an axe-wielder: the original draft
contained a lot of much-debated materials about time-zones. But the
immediate goal was for a simple profile of ISO 8601 suitable for conveying
protocol timestamps, so I slashed and burned the verbiage surplus for this
You may notice a similar flavour in my suggestions for the Haskell Time
module: when discussing time, it's very easy to get dragged into all kinds
of arcane requirement, when x%, for some x just slightly less than 100, of
applications would be well satisfied by something much simpler.
As for the reference to RFC1129, I tend to agree (though using UTC as a
common reference is important to time synchronization on the Internet, and
RFC3339 reflects this in that times are (usually) expected to be expressed
in a form clearly referenced to UTC).
As for representation, I guess we need to distinguish between
representation for human presentation, and representation for transfers
between programs (I've never been quite clear which purpose is meant to be
served by Haskell Show and Read classes -- I suspect it's a bit of
both). I think an ISO 8601 based format is good for the latter; the
former maybe more usefully localized than standardized.
Finally, I may have gone quiet on this topic, but I haven't abandoned
it. I have some pointers to earlier Haskell mailing list discussions that
I've yet to read through before I come barging back. There should come a
point when aspects of my own work, relating to scheduled network access
controls, will bring me back into this.
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