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[ga] International Dates

Hi Roberto

> When you say "6/4/01" in the subject line, you really mean "2001-06-04"

In England and Australia the date is written dd-mm-yy as in 25/05/99.  I
still find it very hard to decipher a date with low numbers like 6/4/01.  I
think it is the 6th April rather than 4th June.  Whenever I see such a date,
I need to check other dates in the set -- if there are any -- to work out
which format is being used.

Some years ago I heard that there was an International Standard that did not
use numbers at all.  The format used was that found on most date stamps
(over here at least).  That uses three letter months such as JAN, MAR and

So you would have a date like 25 MAY 99.  It was considered very good
because you did not need a hyphen as a separator - the numbers were either
side of a word.  It was even possible to squash them together (without
spaces) as 25MAY99.

I am not altogether sure how "international" this standard can be when the
names of the months are clearly in English.  In French I suppose you would
need MAI instead of MAY, for example.  With hyphens, it's the date format I
prefer when working with Microsoft Excel spreadsheet eg 25-May-99 now

Of course the numeric reverse date format 2001-05-25 is the best naming
system to use should you wish to list items in date order.  I often use that
characteristic with file naming and find it most convenient.  Either that or
forwards (as in the 25-05-2001) is more logical because the date is
ascending or descending laterally.

But you are assuming Roman notation for numerals.  You are, no doubt, aware
that many languages such as Arabic have a different script for numerals.
Which is perhaps anomalous since I understand ours is considered Arabic
notation ;-)

But I certainly thank Ben and the Berkman Centre for their help with working
out the time in Stockholm.  That's a particular difficulty as was noted in

Best regards
Patrick Corliss

----- Original Message -----
From: Roberto Gaetano <ga_list@hotmail.com>
To: <edelman@law.harvard.edu>
Cc: <ga@dnso.org>
Sent: Monday, June 04, 2001 8:24 AM
Subject: [ga] Re: UPDATE: Open Mic Period Rescheduled to 6/4/01 9AM

> News from Ben, that there will be a chance to submit comments tomorrow
> below).
> My only comment, besides the compliments to Ben + the Berkman Center for a
> job well done once again (that I have seen this time from the other side
> the Web camera), is that when addressing an international audience the US
> format for dates should be avoided.
> When you say "6/4/01" in the subject line, you really mean "2001-06-04", I
> believe ;>)
> Regards
> Roberto

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