colonial standard time

In case you’ve wondered which public (stratum 1) NTP servers you should be using, this page can hook you up. If, like me, you live in the Colony of Pudget Sound, you should use time-nw.nist.gov, except in the UW campus where you can use bigben.cac.washington.edu.

Stratum 0 servers are, of course, atomic clocks such as the NIST-F1 cesium clock. My friend Piet Schmidt used to work at the NIST clock in Boulder and is now in Innsbruck, where he does ion traps instead. But atomic clocks and neutral atom traps are very similar, and if he ever chose to make an atomic clock in that Austrian ski resort village, he promised me it would have a cuckoo. Thus, it would be the Best Clock in the World, and why else would you have a clock.

And while we’re on the subject of time, Niko’s dad Demetrios has arguably one of the best job titles ever, Director of Time, although privately we all call him a Time Lord. My favorite quote, when asked if the U.S. Navy would ever sell off the time standard: ‘No way,’ he says. ‘They need the time. Things have to work. If there’s a war on they don’t need some peacenik not giving them the time… ‘

Wow, I’m already on the last track of that Raconteurs album. Insidious.

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~ by Paul Pham on 23 February 2007.

One Response to “colonial standard time”

  1. I always called Niko’s dad “Time Czar.”

    Also, you listen to the Raconteurs? When’d you become a hipster? You need to tell me these things!!

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