[whatwg] [wf2] Leap seconds, dates in the past

Henri Sivonen hsivonen at iki.fi
Wed Aug 16 05:14:41 PDT 2006

On Aug 16, 2006, at 13:17, Charles McCathieNevile wrote:
> I disagree. There are a lot of use cases for simple forms dealing  
> with dates before 0001-01-01 even if we just use the proleptic  
> Gregorian calendar.

Could you elaborate on the use cases? Are there a lot of use cases on  
the Web now that force site author to hack awkward JavaScript widgets  
themselves? Can't they continue using those hacks for uses cases that  
are not mainstream like airline reservations?

> The most obvious is a conversion widget between calendars - there  
> is no need for machine-interpretable information to know that one  
> date is julian and one gregorian to find the right dates for  
> tracking key events leading to the October Revolution...

Does an October Revolution visualizer need to use for widgets as  
opposed to e.g. a table of text dates side-by-side? Besides, for  
tracking revolutions around February in 1600, 1700, 1800 or 1900 that  
hack won't work right.

> because there are use cases where that is necessary for things that  
> will happen in the next few months...

What cases are those?

> If the goal of WF2 is to provide something simple for people to  
> use, then it ought to be a preferable option for people like  
> history teachers with basic web skills, or the support guy or smart  
> kid at school who helps them out.

I've seen software professionals struggle with the Gregorian  
calendar. Even if they were able to deal with the Gregorian calendar,  
I very much doubt that history teachers with basic Web skills or  
support guys are up to the task of dealing with computer processable  
dates in any case other than the Gregorian calendar starting with  
1930s or so (without timezones :-).

Henri Sivonen
hsivonen at iki.fi

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