[MEI-L] Time representation in MEI and EDTF

Byrd, Donald A. donbyrd at indiana.edu
Tue Feb 26 04:22:10 CET 2013


I've been thinking a lot recently about representing time in extremely 
general ways, and I've gotten involved in discussion of EDTF, an 
"Extended Data Time Format" under development by the bibliographic 
community (http://www.loc.gov/standards/datetime/). In many ways, EDTF 
is "extended" compared to, say, ISO 8601, but the current draft is 
actually more limited in at least one important way: its maximum 
precision is a second, while both 8601 and XSD allow seconds with 
several -- quite possibly an unlimited number of -- decimal places.

I'm telling you this because I'd like to see a musicologist or two 
involved in the EDTF discussion. Furthermore, I'd like to see support 
for seconds with multiple decimal places added to EDTF, and the EDTF 
coordinator at the Library of Congress seems willing to add it _if_ 
someone gives him a realistic use case. I'm not sure I have a realistic 
bibliographic use case, but I'll bet some of you do!

Also, a side question. The MEI docs keep referring to "standard ISO 
form" for dates and times. What is "standard ISO form"? I can't find an 
explanation. Does that mean ISO 8601?


Donald Byrd
Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellow
Adjunct Associate Professor of Informatics
Visiting Scientist, Research Technologies
Indiana University Bloomington

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