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Re: [O] [PATCH] Separate clocksum format for durations >= 1 day

From: Toby Cubitt
Subject: Re: [O] [PATCH] Separate clocksum format for durations >= 1 day
Date: Tue, 6 Nov 2012 11:35:46 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)

On Mon, Nov 05, 2012 at 11:45:24PM +0100, Nicolas Goaziou wrote:
> Toby Cubitt <address@hidden> writes:
> >> This is not far from your own suggestion to provide different functions
> >> depending on which output is desired, I just happen to think that these
> >> functions would all be so similar that they should be rolled into a
> >> single function that can produce different outputs.  I think there'd
> >> only be a handful of possible values for fmt based on the current usage
> >> and that suggests just another cond form would be needed in
> >> implementing this function rather than a full-blown format string
> >> interpreter.
> >
> > It seems to me your `org--format-time' function would end up looking very
> > like what I sketched. A cond to switch between "hh:mm", "hh.mm",
> > "dd hh:mm" or "dd hh.mm" based only on the contents of the fmt argument
> > would have to check whether fmt contains 2 or 3 %-sequences, then check
> > if it contains "." or ":"
> Again, these are strange and very limiting rules. What if I want to
> have "5 h 32 min"? And "5,3 days"?

Good point.

> Achim didn't specify how he conceives the FMT argument. One possibility
> would be to have a placeholder-based template with, i.e. %d, %h, %m, %w
> for respectively number of days, hours, minutes and weeks. But it's
> still less flexible than functions because you need to have a fixed
> number of placeholders in every template.

Indeed. None of the format-only proposals would let me reproduce the
setup I have currently (with my earlier patch): "5d 3h" for durations
longer than a day, "3:15" for durations shorter than a day.

> I still think functions are the way to go. Three options in the
> defcustom:
>   - One to provide regular time (i.e 14:40 or 3d 18:32)
>   - One to provide decimal time with the highest unit available (i.e.
>     18,75 h or 2,5 d).
>   - One free slot for an user-defined function.

I like the flexibility of functions. But one drawback of this is that you
can't produce your "5 h 32 min" or "5,3 days" examples without defining a
new function. It would be nice if tweaking just the format (without
changing the numbers themselves) could be done by changing a simple
format string.

Because the number of placeholders in a format string is fixed, I don't
see how to avoid the need for multiple format strings. Perhaps we need a
second defcustom that holds a list of format strings, to be used by the
functions in your first two choices.

The first format string for durations < 1 day (or for all durations if
this is the only string in the list), the second for durations >= 1 day.
One nice thing is that this could easily be extended in the obvious way
if one wanted to allow different formats for durations >= 1 month or
>= 1 year.

It's slightly ugly that the defaults for the format-string defcustom
would have to change depending on the value of the function defcustom. I
guess one could either have the format-string defcustom default to nil,
and use hard-coded defaults in the functions (which are overridden by a
non-nil format string value). Or put both functions and format strings
into a single defcustom, e.g. as a list with the function in the first

Dr T. S. Cubitt
Mathematics and Quantum Information group
Department of Mathematics
Complutense University
Madrid, Spain

email: address@hidden
web:   www.dr-qubit.org

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