Re: [LEAPSECS] building consensus

From: Warner Losh <imp_at_BSDIMP.COM>
Date: Mon, 05 Jun 2006 10:52:02 -0600 (MDT)

> Warner Losh wrote:
> >A rule implies that it is long term, I guess. Maybe there's a better
> >word for that implication.
> In the realm of calendars the terminology is "arithmetic" versus
> "observational". That's one of the things I included at the start of
> this thread. I'd also like to throw in the word "deterministic".

I missed that terminology, and I like it a lot better than the
terminology I've been using. Thank you! UTC is an observationally
based time scale... I like how that sounds...

> There is the alternate point of view that the calendar in actual civil use
> in a particular locality, changing between different arithmetic calendars
> at different times, constitutes an unpredictable observational calendar.
> Perhaps we need a concept of "calendar zone" analogous to time zone,
> with a calendar zone database to match.

The Theory file in the current time zone files has some very
interesting information about this. There's a 'Calendrical Issues'
section that talks about these issues. There's a reference to a book
which is good. The problem is that many authoritative sources on
these matters often disagree what happened. I'm sure that someone has
taken this as the basis for starting a more comprehensive database.

Here's a few of my favorite entries:

>> In 1700, Denmark made the transition from Julian to Gregorian. Sweden
>> decided to *start* a transition in 1700 as well, but rather than have one of
>> those unsightly calendar gaps :-), they simply decreed that the next leap
>> year after 1696 would be in 1744 -- putting the whole country on a calendar
>> different from both Julian and Gregorian for a period of 40 years.
>> However, in 1704 something went wrong and the plan was not carried through;
>> they did, after all, have a leap year that year. And one in 1708. In 1712
>> they gave it up and went back to Julian, putting 30 days in February that
>> year!...

>> Russia
>> From Chris Carrier <72157.3334_at_CompuServe.COM> (1996-12-02):
>> On 1929-10-01 the Soviet Union instituted an ``Eternal Calendar''
>> with 30-day months plus 5 holidays, with a 5-day week.
>> On 1931-12-01 it changed to a 6-day week; in 1934 it reverted to the
>> Gregorian calendar while retaining the 6-day week; on 1940-06-27 it
>> reverted to the 7-day week. With the 6-day week the usual days
>> off were the 6th, 12th, 18th, 24th and 30th of the month.
>>If your source is correct, how come documents between 1929 -- 1940 were
>>still dated using the conventional, Gregorian calendar?
>>I can post a scan of a document dated December 1, 1934, signed by
>>Yenukidze, the secretary, on behalf of Kalinin, the President of the
>>Executive Committee of the Supreme Soviet, if you like.
Received on Mon Jun 05 2006 - 09:53:06 PDT

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