The end of GMT? Fancy a day with 25 hours?

  anskyber 10:04 19 Dec 2008

We face a 61 second final minute to the last minute of this year, there will be another leap second added to take account of the slowing spin of the earth. click here

One solution is to have a leap hour which means the end of the symmetry between GMT and universal Co-ordinated time, the time line would effectively drift east until the hour is added.

Is nothing sacred these days (?)

  laurie53 10:16 19 Dec 2008

Since the hour would only need to be added every hundred years or so I don't think I will find it too much of a problem!

  Quickbeam 10:46 19 Dec 2008

"revellers in Trafalgar Square will notice nothing unusual"
There's an understatement, they wouldn't miss a 24 hour correction at that time!

  interzone55 10:50 19 Dec 2008

A leap hour added every 600 years.

Do you really think something that won't happen for at least 600 years has the slightest baring on today?

  spuds 10:56 19 Dec 2008

And there was me thinking that moving over the worlds time zones 'gain or lose a day' was bad enough ;o)

  anskyber 11:17 19 Dec 2008

I think it's more some of the practical issues I was thinking of, most of which can be resolved I'm sure eg,

"Britain would have legal issues to grapple with because GMT has been enshrined in law since 1880 as the standard by which national time is calculated."

It also seems to me that time is correctly judged by the true passage of a day ie it's relevance to the spinning of the earth rather than some artificial atomic clock. So I think we should devise ways of respecting the earth time, for that reason I would keep the leap seconds.

In years gone by (many years!!) the day lasted about 22 hours, the rhythm of life I think.

  Mr Mistoffelees 13:21 19 Dec 2008

The quoted figure of 600 years makes no sense. Based on the number of seconds added from 1972 until the end of this year, 34 seconds in 36 years, as stated in the story, we are looking at a leap hour every 3811 years. Perhaps by then someone will have come up with a better idea.

  interzone55 14:08 19 Dec 2008

The issue is that we have to keep the atomic clocks in tune with the rotation of the earth, because they're also linked to the GPS satellites. If the satellite time signal was allowed to get out of sync then satellite navigation devices would become increasingly inaccurate. Not much of a problem for your average Tom Tom, but vital for ships & aircraft.

This story explains it better than I can
click here

  jack 14:27 19 Dec 2008

'Perhaps by then someone will have come up with a better idea.'
The best idea is one which I have lived by for many years.
I gave up wearing a watch and live life at my own pace.

  Forum Editor 16:41 19 Dec 2008

will notice nothing unusual"

But TV viewers will, at least those who watch BBC.

There'll be a short item filmed inside the Westminster Clock tower, showing how they reset Big Ben to deal with the extra second, and yours truly almost made it into the clock-room to watch it all happen. Unfortunately I couldn't get the necessary security clearance in time, so the kind BBC person who tried to wangle it for me couldn't get me in.

  interzone55 17:28 19 Dec 2008

That's just as disappointing as something that happened on my last job.

The commercial director was (and still is I suppose) good friends with Ron Dennis and managed to get me an invite to a function McLaren's HQ.

The week before the function I was "released" from my contract, so someone else got to go.

I'm not sure what I was most gutted about, losing the job or losing the trip to McLaren...

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