[tz] Request RE: academic research question re: TZ database

Ben Turner ben.jg.turner at gmail.com
Thu Jan 9 23:40:48 UTC 2020

Assuming even distribution and not considering time changes/DST, the
difference between recorded time and the actual time of birth will be at
most 12 hours if you use noon, but up to 24 hours if you use midnight (born
at 23:59, but recorded as 00:00). That would make the average difference
(again, assuming even distribution) 6 hours for noon, but 12 hours for

On Thu, Jan 9, 2020 at 3:01 PM Brian Inglis <Brian.Inglis at systematicsw.ab.ca>

> On 2020-01-09 14:39, Paul Eggert wrote:
> > On 1/9/20 6:15 AM, Andrew Lyon wrote:
> >> if the hour of birth is unknown (for patients born 1930-41), that a
> birth hour
> >> of midnight is assigned as a default.
> >
> > If the birth hour is unknown you might be better off defaulting to noon
> than to
> > midnight. First, noon is likely closer to the actual birth hour.[1]
> Second,
> > you'll avoid some of these software glitches.
> >
> > [1] https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db200.htm
> That may be true for the 41 states of the US sampled, where most births are
> likely to be in hospitals, records may be accurate, and births may be
> induced to
> occur when staff are available, indicated by the reports of peak periods;
> however:
> "Noninduced vaginal deliveries had the most even distribution across the
> hours
> of the day, fluctuating close to the average of 4.2%."
> The other 9 states may be more rural and the distribution more even.
> In the rest of the world, where doctors, midwives, or families are likely
> to
> have to deal with births as and when they happen, a random time of day
> will be
> as accurate.
> However, dealing with noon (or 0400-2200) local time means you should
> never have
> to worry about changes.
> --
> Take care. Thanks, Brian Inglis, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
> This email may be disturbing to some readers as it contains
> too much technical detail. Reader discretion is advised.
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