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29.11 Authors of parse_datetime

parse_datetime started life as getdate, as originally implemented by Steven M. Bellovin ( while at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The code was later tweaked by a couple of people on Usenet, then completely overhauled by Rich $alz ( and Jim Berets ( in August, 1990. Various revisions for the GNU system were made by David MacKenzie, Jim Meyering, Paul Eggert and others, including renaming it to get_date to avoid a conflict with the alternative Posix function getdate, and a later rename to parse_datetime. The Posix function getdate can parse more locale-specific dates using strptime, but relies on an environment variable and external file, and lacks the thread-safety of parse_datetime.

This chapter was originally produced by François Pinard ( from the parse_datetime.y source code, and then edited by K. Berry (