A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Frank Reed
Date: 2022 Jun 15, 19:52 -0700
Tony, you wrote:
"You've called the list "idiosyncratic", I don't know the meaning of that word.
Ah. Sorry. It specifically means a personal or personalized or individualistic selection of locations. More broadly the word can be interpreted as peculiar or quirky or just "odd". I think both fit here because this system of occultation timings was created (originally) decades ago by a very small group of people. And at some point some individual found a database of airport locations, which I suspect was a product of the former US "Defense Mapping Agency". Back in the 1970s and 80s, they created some of the earliest, widely-available collections of digital geographic information. Someone at IOTA presumably found this database and used it as the basis for a "quirky" or "idiosyncratic" list of places which continues to serve as a global location dataset for their occultation listings. These are generated automatically today, and they serve almost no purpose, so I doubt anyone is worrying about updating the internal machinery. The quirky list will last...