Portable general timestamp format, not 2038-limited

Paul Rubin http
Sun Jul 1 17:33:38 CEST 2007

Roedy Green <see_website at mindprod.com.invalid> writes:
> >You cannot accurately compute
> >the number of seconds between Nixon's resignation and 1800 UTC today,
> >unless you take into account the leap seconds have been occurred
> >between then and now.
> There are two valid answers to those questions.  In a court of law,
> say did some document arrive before  deadline, you must use civil
> time.  Arguing leap seconds would not fly.

I'd say if the deadline is "the document must arrive before noon
on August 9, 2009", that is civil time, including any leap seconds.
We don't know the exact number of seconds until then because
there might be some leap seconds that haven't yet been announced.

On the other hand if the deadline is "the document must arrive
no more than 1 billion seconds after noon on January 20, 2001"
that is an exact number of seconds.  We don't yet know the exact
civil time because we don't know about the leap seconds to come.

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