RoBlog – Refactoring Reality

Discrete thought packets on .Net, software development and the universe; transmitted by Rob Levine

What is *more* of a leap year? 2007 or 2008?

by Rob Levine on 10-Jan-2008

I am being a little facetious with the title here, but it is a point I try to bear in mind (if only because it stops me falling into the year length trap repeatedly).
If you are thinking in terms of a calendar year then 2008 is a leap year and 2007 is not. Full stop.

But if you are working with periods of a year (be it insurance policies, people’s ages, shelf lives of products or whatever) then actually 2007 is more of a leap year.

A year from 1st Jan 2008 has 366 days. A year from 1st Feb 2008 has 366 days. But by the time we get to 1st March 2008 (i.e. we have passed 29th Feb 2008), a year in the future is only 365 days away.
In other words you only have 31+28 = 59 days in the year 2008 for which a year forward is 366 days (60 days if you consider one year past 29th Feb 2008 to be 1st Mar 2009)

But for 2007, once you have passed 28th Feb 2007, then a year forward is 366 days, not 365. In other words for over 4/5ths of 2007 a year in time is 366 days.

So I’d rather call 2007 the leap year thank you very much 😉

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