Monday, January 10, 2005

Saving Time

This is odd:

The federal government has announced new plans to erect a security fence around the atomic clock in Boulder, Colo., that sets official U.S. time, but refuses to release information about its decision, Clint Talbott reported in his column for The (Boulder) Daily Camera's Web site on Friday. A local organization made an FOI Act request for documents relating to the fence, and although the government produced approximately 1,000 documents, none of which revealed very much about the need for the fence, another 481 documents were completely withheld for relating "solely to the internal rules and practices of an agency." Talbott quotes a government insider privy to those records as saying that there seemed to be no good reason for keeping the information secret.
I agree. The atomic clock is very important to the DOD aand DOT, who obviously depend on an extremely high level of coordination with Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). Military GPS systems rely on it, as do LORAN-C radionavigation systems. Once you've said that, you've said about as much as anyone needs to know to justify protecting the clock. The administration's refusal to explain itself is bizarre.

1 comment:

Thers said...

Sounds like someone's been reading Conrad's Secret Agent and is worried about a repeat attack on Time.