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Re: W3C 'endorsement' of ISO 8601

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  • Aron Roberts
    (Resending, with a correct subject line:) Tex Texin wrote, in Re: The EME Web Sites and the ISO 8601 Standard ... Tex is correct. However, date and time
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 23, 2001
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      (Resending, with a correct subject line:)

      Tex Texin wrote, in "Re: The EME Web Sites and the ISO 8601 Standard"

      >re [Ian Galpin's assertion]:
      >>On the Web, the World Wide Web
      >>Consortium (W3C), now recommend (on the
      >><http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-datetime> site)
      >>only the Year-Month-Day date format.
      >To be clear this is just a note with no endorsement of the W3C.
      >The opening statement of the note says exactly that.
      >We shouldn't misconstrue its intent.

      Tex is correct.

      However, date and time representation standards derived from ISO
      8601 are showing up with increasing frequency in the recommendations
      of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) <URL:http://www.w3.org/>.

      Some examples -- which include working drafts and other
      'recommendation-track' documents at various stages -- include:

      - XML Schema Datatypes

      - Resource Description Framework (RDF),
      via the optional incorporation of Dublin Core metadata
      (as per the discussion in section 7.4)

      - XForms

      - Platform for Internet Content Selection (PICS) Labels
      (The PICS format uses an incorrect separator between
      date elements, which is corrected in the later PICSRules
      specification, below.)

      - PICSRules

      - Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language (SMIL) 2.0
      (specified in the "The SMIL 2.0 Timing and Synchronization Module")

      Examples of other, similar standards or specifications for the Web
      which have incorporated ISO 8601 in various forms, although not
      carried out directly under the auspices of the W3C, include:

      - Dublin Core Metadata Initiative
      (specified via the metadata element set)

      - RELAX (an XML schema language)

      - News Industry Text Format
      (specified via the DTD documentation)

      - The Information and Content Exchange Protocol (ICE)

      Like RELAX, TREX is yet another, emerging XML schema language. Its
      author states that it may later "partner" with XML Schema datatypes,
      above, which might potentially include the latter's ISO 8601-derived
      date and time datatypes.


      The inclusion of XML Schema, RELAX, and TREX on this list is of
      considerable significance. These are the three leading,
      next-generation schema languages for describing eXtensible Markup
      Language (XML) document types.

      If present trends hold, a significant portion of the world's
      structured data will at some point in its transmission, use, or
      storage be marked up in XML. By implication, dates and times
      appearing in XML documents or data streams -- and which are
      explicitly defined by one of these schema languages as date- or
      time-related elements or attributes -- would thus need to conform to
      datatypes derived from ISO 8601.

      Of course, it will be a long time before we will know whether this
      will actually transpire! ;-) Still, there is a reasonable
      possibility that XML may prove to be something of a Trojan Horse,
      becoming the primary mechanism -- albeit an indirect one -- through
      which ISO 8601 date and time representations will come to be widely
      used in data processing worldwide.

      Aron Roberts Workstation Software Support Group . 221 Evans Hall
      University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-3808 USA
      aron@... . +1 510-642-5974 . fax 510-643-5385
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