[LEAPSECS] An example

Rob Seaman seaman at noao.edu
Tue Nov 2 17:00:08 EDT 2010

Warner Losh wrote:

> There's nothing magical about leap seconds. They are not an inherent property of time. They are a means to the end of relating the number of SI seconds that have elapsed to the angular orientation of the earth.

Indeed. Here are some other non-magical facts:

1) There is no pressing need to act now rather than 20 or 50 or 500 years from now.

2) Consensus has not been reached on the nature of the problem, let alone the solution(s) appropriate to the problem.

3) If the ITU-R were to table their rash proposal (amounting to "forget the whole thing and hope for the best") we would have time to seek consensus. It is the ITU-R who are standing in the way of such consensus.

4) There are risks and costs associated with this precipitous action. Others will say this applies to the status quo as well. Such issues should be part of any coherent proposal. No professionally competent proposal exists.

5) Every time we have one of these entertaining discussions, the one obvious fact is that nobody associated with pushing the issue through the ITU-R is choosing to participate in our forum.

Due diligence has not been satisfied.

Rob Seaman
National Optical Astronomy Observatory

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