# Convert interval to hours

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## Convert interval to hours

 Hi:In perl/DBI, I have code that's getting me an "age" which returns something like... "-17 days -08:29:35".  How can I convert that to a number of hours (as a float I would presume) ?Thanks
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## Re: Convert interval to hours

 On Fri, Sep 14, 2018 at 11:51 AM David Gauthier <[hidden email]> wrote: > > Hi: > > In perl/DBI, I have code that's getting me an "age" which returns something like... "-17 days -08:29:35".  How can I convert that to a number of hours (as a float I would presume) ? > > Thanks > > > > I've done this as select extract(epoch from '-17 days -08:29:35'::interval)/3600 as hours; hours -------------------  -416.493055555556 (1 row) Others might have a better way, though. Pete
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## Re: Convert interval to hours

 On Fri, 14 Sep 2018 11:55:18 -0400 Peter Kleiner <[hidden email]> wrote: > On Fri, Sep 14, 2018 at 11:51 AM David Gauthier > <[hidden email]> wrote: > > > > Hi: > > > > In perl/DBI, I have code that's getting me an "age" which returns > > something like... "-17 days -08:29:35".  How can I convert that to > > a number of hours (as a float I would presume) ? Suggest using one of the date modules. One issue is that not all days are 86400s long: "leap second" is used to keep atomic clocks in sync with siderial time so that telescopes report consistent values over time. Catch is that simply dividing by 3600 doesn't always work if the times fall across the wrong days. You would normally want an integer for these rather than float as the result to avoid rounding issues on extract or with comparisions in or out of the database. You will normally not have more than one second precision on times (timestamps are a different matter). Q: What database are you using? Postgres makes it easy enough to cast the values or compute the difference is seconds. -- Steven Lembark                                     3920 10th Ave South Workhorse Computing                               Birmingham, AL 35222 [hidden email]                                    +1 888 359 3508
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## Re: Convert interval to hours

 On 09/14/2018 11:10 AM, Steven Lembark wrote: > On Fri, 14 Sep 2018 11:55:18 -0400 > Peter Kleiner <[hidden email]> wrote: >> On Fri, Sep 14, 2018 at 11:51 AM David Gauthier >> <[hidden email]> wrote: >>> Hi: >>> >>> In perl/DBI, I have code that's getting me an "age" which returns >>> something like... "-17 days -08:29:35".  How can I convert that to >>> a number of hours (as a float I would presume) ? > Suggest using one of the date modules. One issue is that not all > days are 86400s long: "leap second" is used to keep atomic clocks > in sync with siderial time so that telescopes report consistent > values over time. Catch is that simply dividing by 3600 doesn't > always work if the times fall across the wrong days. Can you give us a hard example of when this won't work? select extract(epoch from '-17 days -08:29:35'::interval)/3600 as hours; hours -------------------   -416.493055555556 (1 row) -- Angular momentum makes the world go 'round.
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## Re: Convert interval to hours

 In reply to this post by Steven Lembark On Fri, 14 Sep 2018 12:21:14 -0400 David Gauthier <[hidden email]> wrote: > I'm using postgres v9.5.2 on RH6. PG can convert the times for you. For times (not timestamps) you are always better off dealing with either time or integer seconds. There are a variety of issues with rouding that affect repeatability and accuracy of results using floats or doubles. Given that 10 and three are both continuing fractions in binary (e.g., 1/10 binary is an infinite series) division by 3600 will only cause you annoyance at some point. If you are subtracting times then you will (usually) end up with an interval, which can be cast to seconds in the query and give you precise, accurate, repeatable results every time. e.g.,     select         extract         (             epoch from ( time1 - time2 )::interval         )         as "seconds",     ... is one approach. In nearly all cases you are better off selecting and converting the time in SQL rather than converting the start and end times from numeric (time) to string (DBI) and then back from char * to float/double or int/unsigned. The charaacter conversion is expensive and numeric -> string -> numeric leaes you open to all sorts of rouding and conversion issues. Frankly, if you have to run the query more than once I'd suggest adding a view that does the select/convert for you (along with dealing with any NULL's that creep into things). PG makes it quite easy to add the view and quite in-expensive to apply it. -- Steven Lembark                                     3920 10th Ave South Workhorse Computing                               Birmingham, AL 35222 [hidden email]                                    +1 888 359 3508 -- Steven Lembark                                     3920 10th Ave South Workhorse Computing                               Birmingham, AL 35222 [hidden email]                                    +1 888 359 3508
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## Re: Convert interval to hours

 On Fri, Sep 14, 2018 at 2:42 PM Steven Lembark <[hidden email]> wrote: > > On Fri, 14 Sep 2018 12:21:14 -0400 > David Gauthier <[hidden email]> wrote: > > > I'm using postgres v9.5.2 on RH6. > > PG can convert the times for you. > For times (not timestamps) you are always better off dealing with > either time or integer seconds. There are a variety of issues with > rouding that affect repeatability and accuracy of results using > floats or doubles. Given that 10 and three are both continuing > fractions in binary (e.g., 1/10 binary is an infinite series) > division by 3600 will only cause you annoyance at some point. > > If you are subtracting times then you will (usually) end up with > an interval, which can be cast to seconds in the query and give > you precise, accurate, repeatable results every time. > > e.g., > >     select >         extract >         ( >             epoch from ( time1 - time2 )::interval >         ) >         as "seconds", >     ... > > is one approach. > > In nearly all cases you are better off selecting and converting > the time in SQL rather than converting the start and end times > from numeric (time) to string (DBI) and then back from char * > to float/double or int/unsigned. The charaacter conversion is > expensive and numeric -> string -> numeric leaes you open to all > sorts of rouding and conversion issues. > > Frankly, if you have to run the query more than once I'd suggest > adding a view that does the select/convert for you (along with > dealing with any NULL's that creep into things). PG makes it quite > easy to add the view and quite in-expensive to apply it. > In the original e-mail, the OP said > I have code that's getting me an "age" which returns something like... "-17 days -08:29:35". I took that to mean he was beginning with a string, which I suggested to cast to an interval.  If he's starting with a different type, then of course the fewer castings the better.  Also, it seems as though you two have had private communication, because I don't see an e-mail where he specified the DB type.  Perhaps he also showed more of the source data there. Pete