[time-nuts] New Years Eve TV countdown

Chuck Harris cfharris at erols.com
Thu Jan 1 10:31:06 EST 2015

It is not that they don't care about time sync, it is that they
have to follow the rules of causality.

Because the whole digitization, broadcast, and display process
of digital TV processes seconds to minutes of material at a time,
You cannot make an event show at an exact time unless the event
was pre-staged...  How do you pre-stage a live event that must
happen at a specific time, such as the ringing in of the new year?

In the old days of analog TV, the problem was similar, but the
smallest unit of data was a screen, which took about 1/30th of
a second... added to the un avoidable transport delays... fiber,
microwave, or satellite hop.

-Chuck Harris

Rex wrote:
> TV doesn't seem to care about time sync much these days. It also depends a lot on the
> path getting to you,
> I get most of my TV via satellite (Dish network). The receiver I have also can get
> OTA. I have happened to notice, once, that I had a local channel on two TVs. One was
> receiving the local via satellite and one was tuned to OTA local broadcast. The
> satellite was many seconds (at least 5, probably more) behind the OTA. I walked from
> one room to the other and had a brief period of deja vu. Hmm, just occurred to me, an
> earphone on the early one while watching the later one with friends would make you a
> living room Jeopardy game show super star.
> But that satellite delay all makes sense.
> One thing annoys me though. Many channels don't care much about start and stop times.
> If I program something to record using the schedule, often I miss the end of it. They
> frequently go over the half-hour or hour mark by a minute or two. Occasionally they
> complicate it more by starting a show a little early too. That irks me.
> But for New Years, I didn't try to measure anything exactly, but I know they were off
> by about 3 hrs. I live in California. I was watching New York's events on my TV and
> the ball dropped at about midnight local time. I am enough of a time nut to know that
> should have happened at 9 PM local time.
> See, you just can't trust the media for accuracy these days.

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