format date and includeSeconds

Thiago Macieira thiago at
Mon Jul 28 16:41:13 BST 2008

On Monday 28 July 2008 15:58:54 Carles Pina i Estany wrote:
> > That is an incorrect way of handling time.  It is in the 54th minute,
> > not 55th minute.  :55 implies time of :55.0 to :55.59, nothing more
> > and nothing less.  It is exact and should not get rounded, regardless
> > if a second is displayed.  So I would say Kmail is doing it right.
> That was not what I was expecting as a user. So:
> a) or I have a very rare ideas, as user or

I'll be rather blunt: you have very rare ideas. No offense meant, though.

Everything else uses time truncation, not rounding. The only rounding that 
happens is in human speech and at a level higher than minutes. (14:12 becomes 
"quarter past 2" or something similar)

Just think of a watch, such as those on VCRs, DVDs, TVs, you name it: if it 
doesn't let you set the seconds, it'll set them to 0 when you set the time. 
How long will it take for the displayed "HH:MM" to advance one minute? 30 
seconds or 60 seconds?

Also, please note that making this change has a huge cost for a very small 
benefit. In order to add even a second (which you need in order to add the 
minutes) and then show the local time, there are several mathematical 
operations. As you said yourself, it could end up in a one hour jump -- 
forwards or backwards.

Also for the principle of least astonishment: imagine the panel's clock (which 
also doesn't show seconds, so it would be affected by this change) did round. 
And you're looking at it, waiting for a scheduled operation to start on your 
computer. The clock changes, but nothing happens. 30 seconds is plenty of time 
to start wondering if you did anything wrong.

  Thiago Macieira  -  thiago (AT) - thiago (AT)
    PGP/GPG: 0x6EF45358; fingerprint:
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