[Python-Dev] an alternative to embedding policy in PEP 418

Glenn Linderman v+python at g.nevcal.com
Sat Apr 7 02:30:59 CEST 2012

On 4/6/2012 4:11 PM, Cameron Simpson wrote:
> Another alternative is the public lists-of-clocks.

After watching this thread with amusement and frustration, amusement 
because it is so big, and so many people have so many different 
opinions, frustration, because it seems that few of the clocks that are 
available are anywhere near ideal for any particular stated 
characteristic, and because none of the APIs presented provide a way for 
the user to specify the details of the characteristics of the desired 
clock, I think this idea of a list-of-clocks sounds better and better.

Hopefully, for each  system, the characteristics of each clock can be 
discovered, and fully characterized in available metadata for the clock...

tick rate, or list of tick rates
maximum variation of tick rate
maximum "helicopter drop" jump delta
frequency of rollover or None
base epoch value or None
behavior during system sleep, hibernate, suspend, shutdown, battery 
failure, flood, wartime events, and acts of God. These last two may have 
values that are long prose texts full of political or religious 
rhetoric, such as the content of this thread :)
any other characteristics I forgot to mention

Of course, it is not clear that all of these characteristics can be 
determined based on OS/Version; hardware vendors may have different 

There should be a way to add new clock objects to the list, given a set 
of characteristics, and an API to retrieve them, at least by installing 
a submodule that provides access to an additional clock.
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