sorcerykid (sorcerykid) wrote in do_ne_ge_of_cu,

Unix time's 1234567890 second countdown

by Randy Krause

I thought some of you with a comp-sci or math background would find this discovery I made interesting!

Friday, February 13, 2009 marks another very significant date in computer history. Microcomputer clocks are based on the number of seconds that elapsed since midnight of January 1, 1970, which is a universal standard defined as the "epoch."

However, on Friday the 13th at 05:31:30 PM Central, personal computers worldwide will rollover to the highest possible number of consecutive clock digits in history: 1,234,567,890 seconds. Incidentally, this sequence matches the layout of the QWERTY keyboard perfectly -- certainly an indelible moment for the technophiles.

Surprisingly, we witnessed a similarly rare occurence in March of 2005 as Unix geeks worldwide waited in anticipation for a clock readout of 1,111,111,111 seconds.

If you missed that occasion, then be sure to mark your calendars. For this is the last historic numerological event of its kind to occur during our lifetime (using decimal notation at least). Most modern personal computer software only stores the date field as a signed 32-bit integer, rendering any longer patterns essentially "out of range."

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