[LEAPSECS] Terminology question

Steve Allen sla at ucolick.org
Tue Mar 9 13:02:39 EST 2010

On Tue 2010-03-09T17:48:43 +0000, Tony Finch hath writ:

> But UT implies to me representating time as a count of days (in some

> calendar) and fractions of days (HMS). I think my friend wanted a term

> that implied a count-of-seconds representation (or perhaps count of some

> other arbitrary time unit) while being a bit more concise than "seconds of

> universal time since an epoch"...

The agreement at the IMC established an international convention to
answer the question "What time is it?"
That is the basis for most statutory definitions.

Ongoing developments covered by the Treaty of the Meter have created
international convention for another question "How many seconds have
elapsed?", but there is no international agreement on the epoch.

The thermometer on the wall of my office reads 68 degF and 20 degC.
I could report that the Delta T for my office is 48.
POSIX time_t and NTP are doing pretty much that sort of thing.

We need an international agreement on the use of an epoch based on TAI,
and in order not to invalidate existing local statutes, that epoch has
to be in the future.

Steve Allen <sla at ucolick.org> WGS-84 (GPS)
UCO/Lick Observatory Natural Sciences II, Room 165 Lat +36.99855
University of California Voice: +1 831 459 3046 Lng -122.06015
Santa Cruz, CA 95064 http://www.ucolick.org/~sla/ Hgt +250 m

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