Phillip Pearson - web + electronics notes

tech notes and web hackery from a new zealander who was vaguely useful on the web back in 2002 (see: python community server, the blogging ecosystem, the new zealand coffee review, the internet topic exchange).

2003-1-9

RSS timezone issue when importing

I wonder how bzero should import blogs written in different timezones. bzero works like Radio - it stores the date of a post in the URL. However, that date is local time, not GMT or anyone else's time zone.

What that means is that when I make a post at 10am on 1 Jan 2003 local time (2003-01-01 10:00:00), the date part of its URL is /2003/1/1/, while the RSS pubDate is something like 2002-12-31 21:00:00 GMT. It messes up permalinks (and the flow of posts) if you import this somewhere else with a URL containing /2002/12/31/, but that's the best I can do without a hint as to the timezone of the original blogger.

The January backup for Second p0st shows exactly this problem (scroll down to the bottom).

Is there a standard tag (something from Dublin Core?) that I can use in my RSS <channel> section to specify the timezone of the creator? That would let me work out what the original permalinks should have been. Comments?

Notes:

Here is some mailing list discussion on the topic.

The RDF people refer to things specifically with timezone files (here are some more). That seems unnecessarily complex though.
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bzero 0.15 available now

bzero 0.15 is now available.

The main change is that you can now specify post titles, etc, in a new way:

    %title Foobar

rather than:

    #title 'Foobar'

If you use the old way, everything after "#title" is evaluated as a Python expression. This means you can do some cool stuff. However, it makes writing with non-US characters rather hard. If you use the new '%title' syntax, you can put anything in there (anything encoded in UTF-8 or ISO-8859-1 should work).

If you want to add yourself to the GeoURL project, you can now do so by editing a file ~/.bzero/(blogname)/extraheaders.html and putting in the <meta name="ICBM" content="lat, long"> line. The default template now includes the other required meta (DC.title). Details for how to do it.

There have also been a few bug fixes (things now say '2003' instead of '2002', and the BlogGazer code that reads a backed-up Radio or bzero weblog is partly integrated. (Try 'bzero import blogname http://url/to/files.xml' - details in the readme). It has difficulty with non-GMT time zones (it puts some of my Dec 31 posts in January) right now so I don't recommend using it just yet.

Enjoy!
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