Re: [LEAPSECS] interoperability

From: Poul-Henning Kamp <phk_at_PHK.FREEBSD.DK>
Date: Mon, 09 Jan 2006 08:20:40 +0100

In message <>, Rob Seaman writes:

>As I pointed out close to five years ago, the ultimate long term
>remediation will likely involve redefining the length of the second:


I think this shows how little you understand of the entire thing.

Several SI units are defined relative to the second these days and
therefore everybody involved in metrology have had nothing but
contempt for the notion of changing the second length.

To cut this part of the topic out in cardboard for you:

1. The Earths rotation and to a lesser degree its orbital motion
   are lousy timekeeping devices, many orders of magnitude worse
   than the best atomic frequency normals.

2. In metrology you use the best available method to implement a
   fundamental unit.

But there is something else which bugs me.

Throughout all of these interminable discussions it has become
clear to me that you argue backwards from the end ("there must
be a UTC with leapseconds") rather than forward from the
beginning ("SI seconds are constant lengt").

In our most recent little exchange, you started out proposing a two
(or three) timescale solution without leap seconds, and then when
I showed that it worked out just the way we wanted, you started
to redefine the timescales so that one of them had to be UTC with

You also keep harping about how day and night will switch places
without leapseconds, while at the same time dismissing the
governmentally defined local timezones as "irrelevant", despite the
fact that they do the heavy lifting (four orders of magnitude more
than leapseconds) of holding the sun high in the sky at noon.

In other words, you are not arguing in good fait and behave
more like a religious zealot than anything else.

That is deeply unserious behaviour of a scientist Rob.


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 Sun Jan 08 2006 - 23:31:27 PST

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