International date and time formats in Notes

by Volker Weber

It looks like Manfred has some difficulties with the international date and time formats for madicon RSS Reader. Frankly, I am quite surprised that there is an issue at all, since I always had the impression that Notes handles this automatically.BTW, you may want to check his site since he has another update to version 1.02 with some cosmetic changes to the date/time columns, which now display without a line break.

The German date format would be 13.02.2004 and time would be 13:00. In the US the same date and time would read 02/13/04 1:00 pm. Don't get me started on which I think is better. :-)

So what would be the correct format for you, and does the RSS reader work as expected?

Comments

The code I wrote for my aggregator has had problems with dates, too, but in all cases that I checked into it, it was because the XML data itself was not conforming to any of the various standards for expressing dates in RSS feeds. I blogged about it quite some time ago here http://smokey.rhs.com/web/blog/rhs.nsf/stories/XMLIsNoMagicBullet.

-rich

Richard Schwartz, 2004-02-13

Yup, getting the dates right in a RSS feed is not exactly intuitive.

I found these articles very helpful. The first two articles have links to documents describing how to build the UTC date (RSS 1.0) or RFC822-date (RSS 2.0)

jmichael, 2004-02-13

Shouldn't everything work with the international date format as the W3C recommends?

Armin, 2004-02-13

Let me explain:
I have no problem to extract the date/time information from the xml content.

Check it yourself: copy one News document via the clipboard to you mail file. After doing this, you can look at the properties of the document and verify the content of the field 'ItemPubDate' (within my program, you cannot see the properties because of the hidden design). The content of this field is ok.

There is only the problem of displaying the content of this field in a view column or within a field in a form.

Strange behavior: If I (using the English notes client with German settings) set my German Windows XP to English (US) settings, the date/time is correctly displayed. If Bruce does the same: nope.

There is no hard-coding of a special time-format. I always use the default: "User" - which should mean (imho): Let the Notes Client handle it related to the settings in Notes and/or the os-settings.

Any ideas?

Manfred Dillmann, 2004-02-13

Manfred,

Does the database reside on a sever, or is it local on a workstation?

If my memory is correct, the date format in View columns is controlled by the server's settings regardless of what the client settings are. This kind of makes sense since the server is the thing that builds the view index, not the client workstation.

Ken Porter, 2004-02-13

Ken,

during testing this issue, it makes no difference (stored on a server or local). For me, the displayed format is always correct related to the settings of my os or the Notes settings...

Your thoughts on the index:
It is correct, that the indexer task builds and maintains the database index if the database is stored on a Domino server. The NIF (Notes Index Facility) part of the NSF contains the information to present documents in a view based on the filter, the sorting of columns and last but not least the content of the columns. From my opinion, it makes no sense to include date/time information for a single country within the NIF. I assume, the date/time information is stored in a binary, more compact format. If not, that would not be a good design. ;-)

And one other point: If a company has users from different countries, every one of them has to use the format provided by the server. That could not be true in 2004. You then don't need any settings on date/time within the Notes Client or on the os...

Has anyone of you some *good* connections to a *good* developer at ibm who could provide some deeper information on this topic?

Manfred Dillmann, 2004-02-13

The fellow I'd talk to isn't at IBM any more. He used to be one of their I18N specialists: Ed Batutis. http://www.batutis.com. I downloaded a copy of the program about a week ago, but haven't played with it much. It's so much better than my own bloggregator, but I'm so used my own that I haven't had the heart to switch ;-)

-rich

Richard Schwartz, 2004-02-14

Manfred and I have taken this discussion to email, and I have posted an article about it in my blog, here.

-rich

Richard Schwartz, 2004-02-15

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