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DATETIME  September 2011

DATETIME September 2011

Subject:

Re: Internal unspecified

From:

"Edward C. Zimmermann" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

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

Date:

Mon, 5 Sep 2011 13:41:58 +0200

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On Tue, 30 Aug 2011 15:13:25 -0400, Ray Denenberg, Library of Congress wrote
> From: [UTF-8?]SaaÅ¡ha Metsärantala
> > The BNF excludes dates such as
> > 
> > 199u-uu
> > 
> > at level one.
> > 
> > At 102, such a date is not present in the "Examples" column, but it is
> > not excluded as of the "Syntax/rules" column. In such a date, no "u" is
> > "internal" and therefore, I consider that such a date is "level one".
> 
> My intent was pretty much as expressed in the BNF, though perhaps not 
sufficiently described in the prose, so that can be improved.  The intent is 
that level 1 unspecified is one of the following:
> 

Since u is a placemarker (to be filled in a some later date).. why restrict 
its use? Recall "1990-uu" says (an event took place in) a month in 1990 that 
will be "filled in later" (e.g. precision of month).. versus "1990" that 
says (an event took place in) 1990 (e.g. precision of year).  

> 1. a year with one or two (rightmost) unspecified digits, e.g. 199u or 
19uu.  Year only.
> 2.  year specified but month unspecified.  e.g. 1990-uu  (And in this 
case, no provision for just one of the month digits unspecified, e.g. 1990-
0u.)

1990-12-0u seems if we are going to have u as a legitimate expression. 
Imagine I want to document a date I know took place at the start of Dec. 
1990 but I'm not sure if it was the 1st, 2nd or 3rd of the month.. and I 
want to check.. The expression "1990-12-0u" seems fine and dandy... later 
when I've checked that it was the 3rd I'd fill it in.. That's why I might 
write "1990-12-0u" and not "1990-12" with the non-expressed (private) intent 
of expanding the date when I have the data (and time to attend to the task).

I would argue that u as blanks to be filled in.. should be allowed wherever 
anyone might see fit to use them. I personally might not ever see the need 
for an expression such as "uuu2-12-22" but who am I to say "no no"..?

The "rightmost" rules were about---- and should be limited to--- precision, 
e.g. "x". xxx2 makes no sense. uuu2 does.
(that said the expression "1990-12-0x" does make sense to be as does all the 
expressions "from right to left")

> 3. Year and month specified, day unspecified (And similarly no provision 
for just one digit of the day unspecified, as in 1990-12-0u.)

Beware the use of the predicate "unspecified". In the date "1990" neither 
the month or day are specified but its something quite different from "1990-
uu-uu". If one can specify the month of a date that is expressed in years 
then the date has at least month precision.. similarly if one specify the 
month and day it has day precision.. "can specify" and "specify" are not, I 
must stress, the same. With "1990-12-uu" I explicitly state that I "can 
specify" the day but has not yet--- I plan on filling in the blanks.. 
With "1990-12" I say that I can't--- obviously with more information....

> 4. Year specified, day and month unspecified.
> 
> If anyone thinks this is not sufficient please provide a use case.   I 
will add the above description to the prose.
> 
> > internalUnspecified = ( year "-uu-" day ) | ( yud "-" ( monthDay |
> > ( month "-uu" ) | ( "uu-" day ) ) )
> 
> I've changed it to:
> 
> internalUnspecified = 
> year "-uu-" day 
> | yearWithOneOrTwoUnspecifedDigits "-" IUMonthDayPart
> 
> IUMonthDayPart = 
> monthDay
> | month "-uu"
> | "uu-" day


--

Edward C. Zimmermann, NONMONOTONIC LAB

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