The Bitter  Network Administrator

                                                A Website Dedicated to Computer Professional...and some not so Professional

Why Computers and BigFoot Can't Keep Time
By Doug Chick

The Network Administrators Handbook, (a fictitious book that seems to only exist in my head) states that every network should have a Time Server so that other computers on a network may synchronize with it. On my network, I have a server that at midnight goes out across the Internet and synchronizes with a Time Server that is kept by the U.S. Navy. So every morning when someone logs on to their computer, their profile commands their computer to synchronize with my server and everyone can enjoy the same time everyday. This is particularly important for a computer that has the company's time clock system on it. 

Why would so many computers continually need to calibrate with a Time Server? The simple answer to this is because freakin computers can't keep time. Oh yes, computers make lousy watches because they lose time. 

If a computer can't keep time then maybe it is also true that when an end-user says their computer didn't work and when you get there it suddenly does work, maybe it is the computer? Na, that's just bunch of crazy talk. But there is something to why computers can't keep accurate time. 

Maybe this whole time thing is the cause of other problems that computers seem to constantly have, like: Being used as a device to vote in major elections. (Or at least elections here in Florida.) Maybe time also plays an important role in returning peoples voters registration cards because it's been 3 months and they haven't sent me mine yet. (But I'm certain that they haven't sent me mine because I didn't select a party.) 

Maybe time plays an important role with the computers that calculate Social Security, because if there is a SS Slush fund then not only are they taking out too many taxes from my check, but the SS slush fund always vanishes with every new administration. (Yes, this article is going to have bits of political sarcasm--bastards.) 

Maybe time is too relative for a computer to accurately keep. Or it is accurately displaying what I perceive as time and I'm always 4 minutes behind everyone else. That seems more likely.

Or just maybe, computers can't keep accurate time because they suck.

And as far as BigFoot not being able to keep time, well to be perfectly honest...I couldn't find a decent picture for this one.