Re: [LEAPSECS] Consensus rather than compromise

From: Poul-Henning Kamp <>
Date: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 19:46:51 +0200

In message <>, Rob Seaman writes:

>Yes, I assert that we already agree on what I'm saying - or trying to
>say here. Let's put aside six years of squabbling about details and
>look at the larger picture.
>John Cowan and others on the "leap seconds suck" side of the
>discussion have often said things that indicate that, whatever the
>tolerance, there is some common sense connection between darkness and
>the concept of midnight:
>>> "as long as the clock doesn't say noon when it's midnight"

But apart from a select little crew of time-nuts and the geographically
gifted, nobody has UTC on their clock: They have local time which
is some number of minutes offset from UTC.

We could replace UTC with TAI, or kill leapseconds in UTC and let
it keep its offset from TAI or do a myriad of other things and still
keep "the clock" as people see it on their wrist [1] in sufficient
sync with the light of day through minor acts of timezone adjustments.

If you want to get me to agree with you on something resembling the
statement you made, then it is this:

        Local Legal/Civilian time will probably always have the sun
        highest in the sky somewhere around 12:00 through political
        modification of timezone affiliation.

It follows trivially from there that it doesn't matter a dingos
fetid kidneys [2] to legal/civilian time what UTC does with relation
to the Sun, as long as it is not something ridiculous as monthly


[1] VCR's will probably still flash "12:00AM" though.

[2] Yes, I just saw the movie :-)

Poul-Henning Kamp       | UNIX since Zilog Zeus 3.20
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FreeBSD committer       | BSD since 4.3-tahoe
Never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence.
Received on Tue Aug 30 2005 - 10:47:54 PDT

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