[tz] Utah may drop DST

Zoidsoft zoidsoft at gmail.com
Thu Oct 16 08:58:37 UTC 2014

I was thinking of the Seti at home app that used to be popular back in the
90's.  Before that I always had to set the time on all my devices.  In my
experience my cell phone has updated time change info on something other
than the tz database.  I don't know how Verizon did it (unless it's through
complex shape files), but when driving by Vidal, it was on Arizona time; 6
miles north it switched to Pacific time.  I know because I let the tz
database know about this strange little town which Verizon somehow knew
about and kept time with (probably only a population of about 12).

Perhaps an iterative process like this could help improve accuracy when
users change the time standard when it is wrong sending that info back to a
server that the tz database reads?

On Thu, Oct 16, 2014 at 4:25 AM, Jonathan M Davis <jmdavisProg at gmx.com>

> On Thursday, October 16, 2014 03:49:56 Zoidsoft wrote:
> > This might seem like a stupid question, but now that most of the world is
> > connected by computers, smart phones, etc... why don't we develop an app
> > that collects time settings and standards along with GPS for every device
> > world wide as to what is showing on the clock?  Such an app could then
> > automatically generate zone rules along with location data for each of
> > those rules.  It would be a complex exercise in set theory getting the
> > program to recognize "groups" of similar data but I think it could be
> done.
> The first question that comes to mind is how on earth each of those
> computers
> would get the time in the first place. Its the TZ database that this list
> is
> for that's used to give most of them the information that they need to give
> the time in a local time zone rather than UTC. All that stuff like NTP
> does is
> give the current time in UTC, so without something like the TZ database,
> all
> any of those devices would know about would be UTC.
> Also, time zone rules change over time, and we often need to know what they
> are ahead of time, so trying to figure out what they are via AI would not
> only
> be a mess, but it wouldn't even have the information that we need when we
> need
> it. If all you cared about was generating a database of what a bunch of
> devices _thought_ that the time was in a given time zone at different
> points
> in time was, that would be one thing, but we care about having the correct
> rules over pretty much as large a time span as possible - both in the
> future
> and in the past. And what you're suggesting wouldn't work for that at all.
> AI
> can be great for heuristics, but it's horrible if you need to know the
> exact
> anwser to something - like what the time zone rules are _exactly_ for a
> given
> time zone at any given point in time.
> But really, what you're suggesting pretty much comes down to generating
> information from a group of devices instead of looking it up in exactly the
> same place that they look it up, because the only way that they know
> anything
> about the local time zone that they're in is because of the TZ database.
> They
> don't magically learn it just because a government announces it. They
> learn it
> because their TZ database files get updated with it.
> - Jonathan M Davis
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