DailyDirt: Calibration Time, Come On!

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Not all clocks are created equal. Some clocks lose a few seconds every month. Others are connected to cell phone towers and are constantly updating their time displays. We’ve come a long way from the VCRs that blink 12:00. Here are just a few articles on how we’re keeping track of every minute.

By the way, StumbleUpon can recommend some good Techdirt articles, too.

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Comments on “DailyDirt: Calibration Time, Come On!”

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abc gum says:

“there could be a redefined version of Coordinated Universal Time that eliminates any requirement to keep our time systems synchronized to the Earth’s rotation”

This sort of thinking is rather short sighted and will probably make the pencil neck MBAs happy, it has definitely caused a stir in the scientific fields. For some, the immediate problem will be tracking divergent time systems, others will not have a problem at all for many years. Eventually, Christmas in the northern hemisphere will no longer occur in winter. Not sure how Santa feels about that. There are several suggestions about how this should be addressed – not sure if any make more sense than simply staying with the system presently in place.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Yeah, that is always the problem: “we can have a system without all the artifacts and tweaks needed to calibrate it to the observed day” sounds great and good and swell – right up until you are telling people that noon is now at sunset and the winter solstice is in May. I understand that sciency types would really like a simple time system – I would like a simple time system – but ultimately, timekeeping is about day-to-day concerns, and no one cares that this is Second 1490384512897124956503250325681025863405 since the Adoption of Regular Time and leap seconds/minutes/hours/days are a thing of hte past, if it means they have to go to bed in the middle of the afternoon because that is 0:00 UTC now and work starts in 8 hours in the pitch dark.

Anonymous Coward says:

Leap Seconds

Proposals to somehow define leap seconds out of existence are misguided. The earth’s rotation is slowing down. That is a physical fact that we humans are powerless to change. So the solar second is gradually getting longer. The UTC second was based on the mean solar second of a past year and is constant. It needs to be constant to avoid yearly revisions of a whole bunch of physical constants. Navigators and astronomers like to use UTC and want it kept close to solar time, not drifting off. Thus leap seconds are inevitable. Weenies who are not coping with leap seconds need to toughen up and cope. Get the software fixed and stop moaning.

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