Discussion:
biblatex: possible changes to sortyear
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Moewe
2018-06-11 20:19:16 UTC
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Hi everybody,

recently we uncovered a not insignificant problem with the way Biber
sorts year fields for biblatex. In the investigation of that problem it
turned out that the current implementation of the `sortyear` field is
the cause of this problem. See https://github.com/plk/biber/issues/228

A proper solution to this issue would very likely require changes to the
sortyear field that will not allow common idioms such as '1984-0',
'1984-1', etc. to sort as before.

While the general sentiment is that sortyear is a kind of hack anyway
and should be replaced by a well-designed sorting template/scheme, we do
not want to ignore the possible impact that this change might have on users.

So we would like to find out how badly affected people would be by
changes to sortyear behaviour. Of course suggestions that get us out of
this dilemma as well as general observations and insights on the
prevalence of sortyear are also appreciated.

Feel free to join the discussion at
https://github.com/plk/biber/issues/228 or to answer here.

Best,
Moritz
Donald Arseneau
2018-06-11 23:23:03 UTC
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Post by Moewe
A proper solution to this issue would very likely require changes to the
sortyear field that will not allow common idioms such as '1984-0', '1984-1',
etc. to sort as before.
Is that a common idiom? It looks more like an error to me!
Just don't go breaking the *actual* common idiom of '1984-8', '1984-91'.
--
Donald Arseneau ***@triumf.ca
Moewe
2018-06-12 05:23:27 UTC
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Post by Donald Arseneau
[...] common idioms such as '1984-0', '1984-1', etc. [...]
Is that a common idiom? It looks more like an error to me!
Just don't go breaking the *actual* common idiom of '1984-8', '1984-91'.
Thank you for your comment.

Everything that is not an integer would probably be broken, sorry I
should have been clearer about that.

That means that your example would in all likeliness also not work as
expected, though I am not entirely sure what the expected sorting is. I
only know sortyear from biblatex-examples.bib where it is used to
fine-tune sorting within the same year. In that context '1984-0' and
'1984-1' is as good as anything that starts with '1984' and ends with
something that will be sorted in increasing order. What are '1984-8' and
'1984-91' supposed to do?
Donald Arseneau
2018-11-23 07:18:51 UTC
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Post by Donald Arseneau
[...] common idioms such as '1984-0', '1984-1', etc. [...]
Is that a common idiom? It looks more like an error to me!
Just don't go breaking the *actual* common idiom of '1984-8', '1984-91'.
Everything that is not an integer would probably be broken, sorry I should
have been clearer about that.
That means that your example would in all likeliness also not work as
expected, though I am not entirely sure what the expected sorting is. I only
know sortyear from biblatex-examples.bib where it is used to fine-tune
sorting within the same year. In that context '1984-0' and '1984-1' is as
good as anything that starts with '1984' and ends with something that will be
sorted in increasing order. What are '1984-8' and '1984-91' supposed to do?
As an idiom, the meanings are '1984-8' = '1984 to 1988' and '1984-91' =
'1984 to 1991'. I can't be sure what '1984-0' is supposed to mean, but
it is not the normal way to abbreviate '1984 to 1990'. As to whether
biber can properly imagine the omitted digits... it is not too hard to
do so (only leading digits that don't change can be omitted from the
second year).
--
Donald Arseneau ***@triumf.ca
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