This is done periodically to keep our standard clocks (UTC) in sync with “mean solar time”, which is based on the Earth’s position and rotation. If we did not do that, then Earth-related events such as midnight and noon would gradually shift to different times of the day (likewise, without leap days, the equinoxes and solstices would gradually shift through the year).
At home, I could witness this historic event in the logs of my Linux-based server, bender.
Dec 31 18:59:59 Clock: inserting leap second 23:59:60 UTC
How did YOU spend YOUR leap second?
This entry was posted by alan on December 31, 2008 at 6:59 pm, and is filed under geeky stuff. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0.
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