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DATETIME  May 2011

DATETIME May 2011

Subject:

Re: Question marks

From:

Saašha Metsärantala <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Discussion of the Developing Date/Time Standards <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 9 May 2011 21:25:54 +0200

Content-Type:

TEXT/PLAIN

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

TEXT/PLAIN (66 lines)

Hello!

In this email, I write a few clarifications and suggestions. I await a
couple of days before I reread the whole BNF because the content of this
and the following e-mail may lead to reformulations in the BNF.

> > If a question mark comes directly after a year, it is
> > quite obvious that the question mark refers to the year
> What if it comes directly after a month
If it comes after a month, of course we need parentheses if we want to
refer to the month! Without parentheses, the question mark would refer to
the whole (part of the) date preceding it.

Of course, we could change those conventions totally and declare that
parentheses around the whole date are compulsory to refer to the whole
date, whereas only the number before the question mark would be
"questioned" if no parenthesis occur.

In the following discussion, I assume that we try to stick to the
philosophy of previous versions of the EDTF drafts, just trying to make it
more consistent.

> (1) 2011-04?

> For (1) Would you say:

> (a) it applies to the year-month combination, because the rule is that if it is at the end of the string it applies to the whole string;
I would answer (a) but for an other reason, namely that a question mark
not preceded by a right parenthesis applies to everything on the left of
the question mark. AFAIR, it was so we designed EDTF. Let's take another
example:

2011-(04)?

Here, the question mark is at the end of the string, but the parentheses
make that the question mark only applies to the month. In other words, I
question the following rule

> the rule is that if it is at the end of the string it applies to the whole string;

An other question, now:

> (2) 2011-04?-01

> (a) it applies to the year-month combination, because it should apply to the portion of the string preceding it;
I would answer (a).

> And what about 2011-04-01?
I considered that the question mark would apply to the whole date.

> - if it is at the end and there are no parenthesis, it applies to the whole string.
OK

> - if it applies to only part of the string, that part is enclosed in parenthesis.
If this part is not the year (or the year-month), otherwise, we do not
need parentheses. I consider it is obvious that the question mark in

2011?-05-09

refers to nothing else than the year. This would also be easy to write in
the BNF.

Regards!

SaaĊĦha,

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