V13
English  Greek 

HTTP Timezone

While developing web applications, I always had the need to know how to properly display the date/time to a visitor. Writing "1/1/01 10:20:30" isn't just enough. Except from the specific locale formating of date/time strings, there is another problem too. For example, consider the following graph:

Traffic graph

It isn't correct to just say that the time is 12:00. You also need to specify at what place in the world you're refering to. But still, this is old web. Currently all web user interfaces need to be user friendly and do whatever can be done. It would be nice to display the time in the client's local time, instead of showing "12:00 UTC" and expecting the user to do mind calculations for her timezone.

The first proposal of timezone information for web browsers can be found by searching Google for "http timezone". This message summarizes almost everything.

Time has changed since then and from my point of view we need something like that more than ever. So I contacted the (then formed) IETF HTTP Working Group for further instruction. With some guidance from Julian Reschke and others I wrote an Internet Draft. Feel free to read this and send feedback.