Re: A lurker surfaces

From: Ashley Yakeley <ashley_at_SEMANTIC.ORG>
Date: Mon, 1 Jan 2007 03:34:53 -0800

On Dec 30, 2006, at 17:41, Jim Palfreyman wrote:

> The earlier concept of rubber seconds gives me the creeps and I'm
> glad I wasn't old enough to know about it then!

I rather like the idea, though perhaps not quite the same kind of
rubber as was used.

I'd like to see an elastic "civil second" to which SI nanoseconds are
added or removed. Perhaps this could be done annually: at the
beginning of 2008, the length of the civil second for the year 2009
would be set, with the goal of approaching DUT=0 at the end of 2009.
This would mean no nasty "unusualities", and match the common
intuition that a second is a fixed fraction of a day. If NTP were to
serve up this sort of time, I think one's computer timekeeping would
be quite stable. And of course this will work forever, long after
everyone else is fretting over how to insert a leap-hour every other
week, or whatever. Software should serve human needs, not the other
way around. Anyone needing fixed seconds should use TAI.

Actually I was going to suggest that everyone observe local apparent
time, and include location instead of time-zone, but I think that
would make communication annoying.

Ashley Yakeley
Received on Mon Jan 01 2007 - 03:35:15 PST

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