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XKCD: It's more than a comic:
literary masochistProbably at least half of date-reading confusion would be cleared up if nobody wrote the year with only two digits. If I had to hazard a guess.
It's fortified with what the world wants.
What the world deserves.
Geronimo!I find it hard to believe that there are still people who use 2-digit years. Voluntarily, as opposed to being constrained by a printed form or data entry scheme.
edited 27th Feb '13 7:21:32 AM by Fighteer
WandererThey're probably the same people who abbreviate June and July as Jun and Jul when not limited to 3 character fields. After all, it's shorter, so it's more efficient...
literary masochistBut Jun and Jul aren't quite as ambiguous as two-digit year notation tends to be.
It's fortified with what the world wants.
What the world deserves.
To avoid confusion, I always write the year with 4 digits, and the month textually. Apr/16/2013, 16/Apr/2013, even Apr/2013/16 are gonna be read right that way. I would use YYYY-MM-DD for filenames if I had any case to. In practice, the only current use I have for name-dated files right now is log rotation, and the logger in question just uses TAI timestamps rather than a human calendar.
edited 27th Feb '13 7:36:00 AM by Tangent128
Conversation is a contact sport.
I'm back, baby.I use two digit dates most of the time because I doubt that the vast majority of things I'm dating are going to be super relevant one hundred years from now and I know they weren't relevant one hundred years ago.
Shadowed PhilosopherYeah, but the issue isn't ambiguity as to whether the year '08' refers to 1908, 2008 or 2108, it's ambiguity as to whether the number '08' represents a month, a day or a year. '2008' is always a year. Granted, that issue became somewhat less pressing two months ago, and will remain so for another ~88 years.
Geronimo!I develop database applications. Believe me, it matters when you're trying to convince a computer to interpret a date value properly. For casual interpersonal use, not so much.
I'm back, baby.And in my experience, my method of writing dates is either forced to comply with a program's preferred formatting or filtered through a human intermediary who I hope translates it so as to prevent misunderstanding. I would probably have a different stance if I was one of those intermediaries, but I'm not so I don't.
edited 27th Feb '13 9:46:47 AM by OhnoaBear
Stand aside!In the US, most people use month-day-year. In most other parts of the world they use day-month-year. This is a huge reason for confusion in itself. At least if a date begins with a 4-digit year, it's pretty clear (I never saw anyone write it year-day-month). But just what 01/02/03 means is just ambiguous.
When I was working in a lab we were told to use the three letter abbreviation for months to prevent confusion. Good idea, but apparently others don't do that. It was a hell of time converting older labels when they used a mix of M/D/Y and D/M/Y depending on the first person to originally label that bag.
3DS Friend Code: 2681-0594-7489
I want Kat's glasses!I mainly use ISO dates, except when I relapse to JJ/MM/AAAA. Now all you have to do is universally adopt 24-hour clocks, rather than associate them with military.
They Called Me Mad!! I decided to show them all; but when I looked on my works, oh mighty, I despaired: for it made me realize they were right.
Indiana SoloI mostly do the standard american MM/DD/YY, but I almost always write out the full year. I like precision.
Just zis guyWhen I was in the Navy, about 2 decades ago, they said the preferred date formatting was DD/MMM/YYYY. With the 3 letter month abbreviation, it's a lot more difficult to misunderstand which part of the date is the month and which is the day. (The year speaks for itself, of course.) On the other hand, although it's not been an issue for me I can see the benefit of YYYYMMDD for computer file names, which sorts a lot better than the alternate arrangements.
War ALWAYS changes. Man does not.In the British military, the correct format is 27 FEB 13. Especially in my former employers, the Royal Corps of Signals.
Speak up!The reservation system I use at work is based on an old IBM AS/400. My department uses MMDDYY. So, if I want to pull up a sailing on April 9, 2013, I type in "040913". Leading zeroes required. I have heard that the Australia desk uses the three-letter abbreviation for the month, e.g., "09APR13". I don't know how the dates are actually stored in the computer, so it may just be the way the dates are entered and displayed. We never have to deal with reservations older than a year or two or more than 3 years in the future, so the four-digit year is not necessary. Long story short: in this case, it is easier to use a less precise system of writing dates.
The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.
Angry MothI'm always really confused about dates because half the people here use DD/MM/YYYY and the other half use MM/DD/YYYY. It also annoys me to no end, since I have a summer job in a bank where I have to verify the content of AT Ms and one of the things I must check is the dates on cheques. I sometimes get some where people use DD/MM/YYYY in the space labelled MM/DD/YYYY...
Who's an angry moth? You are! Yes you are! You're the fuzziest and angriest moth! Original pic.
Conceptually FrameworkedYYYY-MM-DD is a really good format when working with dates. However it's too clunky for writing in general. It's nothing like how you would read it. 2013, the second month, the 27th day? I really dislike the American system though. Not ordering smallest to largest or largest to smallest when dealing with numbers is an irritation to me. And before the American date standard changed DD/MM/YYYY wasn't ambiguous at all. I'd say you're still going to have to be sensitive to context. At the very least ISO is likely to be contradicted by style guides everywhere. Also according to Wikipedia, YYYYMMDD is allowed.
edited 27th Feb '13 8:55:24 PM by UltimatelySubjective
"Nullius addictus iurare in verba magistri, quo me cumque rapit tempestas, deferor hospes."
Shadowed PhilosopherIt's precisely how you'd read a date in Japanese. I ought to start using YYYY/MM/DD more in contexts other than computers. It just makes more sense.
|Y| = |X| Add 5I learned MM/DD/YY in school. Might start trying this YYYY-MM-DD thing though, most of the time I'm writing dates it's either on a paper (in which I have to use the format specified by the writing style, usually "January 1, 1900" or something) or it's a filename, in which case YYYY-MM-DD would sort it.
Geronimo!#1180 That's not perfectly true. The more you know about computers, the more likely you are to correctly predict what is and is not caused by a virus. The diagram should have a small overlap.
Stand aside!If you are computer savvy and know what a virus can do, you don't say "maybe it has a virus". You either say "it probably/definitely has a virus" or "it is definitely caused by something other than a virus". Then, you add "either way, you must reinstall it".
Shadowed PhilosopherIn any system in which the effect of a virus is a reasonable possibility, yes, that's probably the best option.
|Y| = |X| Add 5Yeah, my Network Security teachers have been saying that, because even if you can clean it up, you can't prove that the virus hasn't cleverly hidden something somewhere unless you go over with a finetooth comb. Best to wipe it and restore from the last good back-up (which may take some figuring), takes less time and means the system definitely clean.
edited 1st Mar '13 3:42:29 PM by TheInferno
?I think there should be some overlap, but not much. It does seem like 90% of the stuff that people think is caused by viruses is actually caused by malware.
Just call me Staghorn. It's not like you can pronounce Thnikkafan, anyway.
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