Re: [111attendees] timing

Toerless Eckert <tte@cs.fau.de> Thu, 29 July 2021 14:37 UTC

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Date: Thu, 29 Jul 2021 16:37:43 +0200
From: Toerless Eckert <tte@cs.fau.de>
To: Alexandre Petrescu <alexandre.petrescu@gmail.com>
Cc: 111attendees@ietf.org
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Subject: Re: [111attendees] timing
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AFAIK, it is quite the opposite of what you say, see also:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coordinated_Universal_Time

UTC does minimize the amount of errors and conversion steps you need
to do when collaborating internationally. If your reference time is
some TZ, you need to understand not only your own local TZ offset and
DST rules, but also that of the reference TZ offset and DST rules.
And you effectively translate from one to the other going through UTC.
When UTC is your reference you only need to understand your local TZ
offset and DST rules.

As to whether or not UTC exists, thats a matter of "exists" wrt to
TZ. I guess your "exist" is that only those TZ exist that are adopted
by some territorial entity. And while Ghana and Iceland adopt UTC+0, no DST,
i would agree that recommending some countries whose TZ rules nobody
knows is but a hack for the normal user.

Nevertheless, adoption of TZ by territorial governments is but one
type of adoption/existance. UTC is the universal standard in aviation and militaries as
well as i think a lot ofthernationally coordinated organizations are
adopting UTC directly without a need to declare themselves to be
in Ghana or Iceland. The same is logical for IETF.

Of course, we may not need to call it UTC. NATO for example
calls UTC ZULU time. If we wanted to confuse the heck out of
participants to make a good joke & pun (which is always a good
reason to confuse people IMHO), we could call it iTime (Internet Time, IETF time).

Cheers
    Toerless

On Wed, Jul 28, 2021 at 06:48:59PM +0200, Alexandre Petrescu wrote:
> There is a difference in opposing noon start times and opposing UTC
> references.  I oppose the latter.
> 
> Using UTC is a big source of errors: artificial two-step conversion and
> and an ambiguity of a third step which is the daylight savings (UTC does
> not respect daylight savings, and UTC is the same as London times some
> times).
> 
> Time should be talked about in terms of geography (cities, oceans, what
> have you) but not in absolute terms like 'Unviersal'.  There is no
> Universal time however one might turn it.
> 
> UTC is an anchor to go to when one does not have where to go to.  But it
> does not really exist.
> 
> Alex