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How companies prepared for the leap second

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Yesterday i think God gave us an extra second to do what is right because i am a believer but science had its own opinion. People had to manually reset their watches because it’s impossible for a watch to read 11:59:60. Most companies had the opportunity to take advantage or adopt to the natures provided magic. The leap second was added to the clock to account for a discrepancy between Earth’s rotation and the atomic clock.

Companies like Google that do most of their work using computers had to come up with strategies to ensure that they accommodate their systems with the time irregularity. In June 30th, 2012 when a leap second was added many websites had issues. The affected websites were Qantas, LinkedIn and Yelp.

As a safeguard, U.S. stock markets ended their trading early. The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission requested plans of action last month from exchanges, according to NASDAQ. Google explained its approach for handling the leap second in a 2011 blog spot. The company adopted an approach they call the leap smear.

Google modified their internal NTP servers to gradually add a couple of milliseconds to every update, varying over a time window before the moment when the leap second actually happens. This meant that when it became time to add an extra second at midnight, our clocks had already taken this into account, by skewing the time over the course of the day. All of our servers were then able to continue as normal with the new year, blissfully unaware that a leap second had just occurred. We plan to use this “leap smear” technique again in the future, when new leap seconds are announced by the IERS.

Google depends on time to run most of their daily work. They have to keep replicas of data up to date, correctly reporting the order of searches and clicks, and determining which data-affecting operation came last are all examples of why accurate time is crucial to our products and to our ability to keep your data safe. Google demands that demands that time be well-synchronized and expect that time always moves forward.

“Our systems are engineered for data integrity, and some will refuse to work if their time is sufficiently ‘wrong,'” a company blog post said. “We saw some of our clustered systems stop accepting work on a small scale during the leap second in 2005, and while it didn’t affect the site or any of our data, we wanted to fix such issues once and for all.”

Amazon Web Services said last month it would spread out the leap second over the course of many hours to ensure all of its systems are caught up by midnight and unaffected by the change. Reports abc News.

Also read: It is time to abandon cultures that hinder progress of Science and Technology

What is your opinion on the topic?
Erick Vateta
Tech Editor at Kachwanya.com



Erick Vateta is a lawyer by training, poet, script and creative writer by talent, a model, and tech enthusiast. He covers International tech trends, data security and cyber attacks.


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