Names, Dates, Etc.

Simon St.Laurent simonstl at
Wed Jan 13 20:49:35 GMT 1999

At 12:34 PM 2/6/99 -0800, David LeBlanc wrote:
>How about a novel idea: use the ISO standards for those things where they
>exist. I'm pretty sure there's an ISO standard for dates for example.

The problem isn't that there are no standards for dates - there certainly
is an ISO date standard (8601) - but that there is no standard for
representing dates in XML.  Where does the date go in an element?  Should
it be a single string in an attribute, in element content, broken into
year/month/day, or something else creative?

Dates are the easiest because they have been thoroughly serialized (by the
ISO and others) and because schemas are likely to reference them.

Names and currency are both more complicated, as are other 'basic' things
like phone numbers and (especially) addresses.  If someone's really
standardized these items, especially if they've done it in XML, I'd love to
know.  X.500's done some on the directory information front, but I haven't
seen much call for using that framework in XML.  Maybe we'll go that way.
Who knows?

Simon St.Laurent
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