[LEAPSECS] Possible outcomes ?

Poul-Henning Kamp phk at phk.freebsd.dk
Wed Aug 14 02:47:52 EDT 2013

In message <6F38763B-7F83-4FA0-B23D-CB1AC33A6950 at noao.edu>, Rob Seaman writes:

>On Aug 13, 2013, at 3:05 PM, Poul-Henning Kamp <phk at phk.freebsd.dk> wrote:


>> There are only two realistically possible outcomes:


>Interesting that you fail to mention other outcomes such as the

>consensus from the 2003 Torino meeting of calling a leap-less

>timescale something other than UTC. Among other things this would

>leave UTC for backwards compatibility.

I don't expect the worlds 300-odd countries to ammend their laws
just to cater for a bunch of astronomers hurt feelings about the
name of "their" timescale.

>Note also that the proceedings of the 2011 Exton meeting

>(http://www.univelt.com/book=3042), and soon the 2013 Charlottesville

>meeting, were published by the American Astronautical Society, not

>by the astronomy community.

That probably reflects more on where a hospitable organization was
under the influence of the organizers, than the optimal fit of the subject.

>And for another thing, leap seconds can't just "go". The long-term

>quadratic trend that was described in the 1999 McCarthy and Klepczynski

>article (http://gauss.gge.unb.ca/papers.pdf/gpsworld.november99.pdf)

>guarantees that we'll have to deal with the embargoed leap seconds

>at some point.

Well, and leap-seconds can't cope with it either in the long term,
so that argument points the same way either way.

>> or leap second stays until they create

>> enough havoc to be removed anyway (max 2 centuries)


>It is significant that even you are saying we have 200 years to sort this

>out. [...]

Which part of "max" didn't you understand ?

Poul-Henning Kamp | UNIX since Zilog Zeus 3.20
phk at FreeBSD.ORG | TCP/IP since RFC 956
FreeBSD committer | BSD since 4.3-tahoe
Never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence.

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