Posting time bug fix proposal (simplified)

Stuart D. Gathman stuart at
Sat Aug 16 21:39:38 EDT 2008

On Sat, 16 Aug 2008, Charles Day wrote:

>> If you want to keep the existing file format unchanged, keep it
>> unchanged.  New programs are free to use the included timezone to
>> extract the original date - or equivalently, ignore everything except
>> the date.  When the timestamps are loaded into a struct tm or equivalent
>> - lo and behold, the month,day,year fields have the correct date.
> Using the date and dropping the time and time zone only works reliably for
> transactions that are not already bug-affected. And this is what the patch
> does. But the rest of the challenge is to detect transactions that have
> already been thrown off by the bug, then derive the original date entered.
> The patch is designed to do that too.

As long as the same time zone is always used, existing transactions and
code are fine.   If some transactions are entered in a different time zone,
then the new program can easily convert them to a new time zone: just load
the date, and set the timezone.  Guaranteed to keep the date the same (it
loses the actual time of the transaction, but that is not shown currently
anyway).  The only difficulty is that the new program doesn't know which time
zone is the desired one.  *That* could be a config option.  Or a utility
could count which timezone is most popular among the transactions and use 
that (minimizes changes to the file).  In fact, the whole "change the 
timezone to make the date consistent" thing might be better done as a 
utility - although explaining to an end user what is about to happen
might be tricky.

>> Instead of doing the mktime() thing and dividing by seconds per day
> I'm not following... I don't think I used any division in the patch. Which
> part of the code are you referring to?

Your patch doesn't, but when calculating days between dates (scheduled
payments, etc), that is what happens unless you convert to a dayno first.
An offtopic plug for real dates.

 	      Stuart D. Gathman <stuart at>
Business Management Systems Inc.  Phone: 703 591-0911 Fax: 703 591-6154
"Confutatis maledictis, flamis acribus addictis" - background song for
a Microsoft sponsored "Where do you want to go from here?" commercial.

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