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Timezones... a better way!

 
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As a frequent traveller between UK and Australia and one who often makes phone calls across timezones I am struck by the silliness of the current arrangements. Differences in the applications of daylight savings and perculiar border arrangemtns in some parts of the world can make time very un-intuitive. I have a suggestion to remove all problems of this nature (and also make multinational software coding easier ):

Lets pick 1 timezone for the whole world.. I dont care which... No doubt the British woudl argue that GMT is the original standard and should be adopted, the Americans would no doubt insist that the rest of the world changes to become more like them and I guess a whole bunch of other nations would lay claim to keeping their current timezone - so how about we choose a timezone that almost nobody uses - I propose GMT-10.

Quite simply we dont need any daylight saving time anywhere we just call the time as it is.. In areas that currently like a DST arrangement in the summer simply adjust standard business hours back or forward one hour according to local tastes.

A typical days woud look something like this:
Australia - Get up 12:00, lunch around 17:00 bed at 04:00..
UK - get up at 22:00, lunch around 03:00 bed about 14:00..
East coast USA - up at 03:00, lunch around 08:00, bed at 19:00

Ok - I admit there would probably be a bit of an adjustment period whilst the world got used to things, but after a couple of weeks things would be much simpler! (I'd be able to look at flight timetables and work out how long it takes to get from Sydney to London without scribbling a whole bunch of numbers all over a piece of paper!)

Any thoughts people?
 
blacksmith
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I think we should use the Saudi time zone.
 
mister krabs
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Considering that the majority of the world does not have to calculate how long flights take, I think this is perhaps the nuttiest idea I have heard all day.
 
Alan Wanwierd
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Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
Considering that the majority of the world does not have to calculate how long flights take, I think this is perhaps the nuttiest idea I have heard all day.




..well yes, but calculating hong long flights last is only one example of things that get easier under my proposed system...

ANY inter-continental communication gets easier and in an increasingly global world this involves more and more of us!

Why should time be different just because you're in a different place? I would much rather have time be an absolute measure!

I cant possibly be the only one who has had to go through excessive clarification on a phone call just to say something like "I'll call you back at 9am".. at the moment I have to specify "I'll call you back at 9am tommorow my time, 11pm today your time" ..which just seems painfully unnecessary...

As call centres move to India etc etc, and global operations become the norm I can see a future where multinational corporate operations decide to standardise on a particular timezone internally - why not extend the idea globaly and set 1 standard?

Military already use a single timezone for worldwide co-ordination to avoid this type of confusion - I defend the idea and reject your "nutty" label!
[ September 09, 2004: Message edited by: Adrian Wallace ]
 
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Since all the call centers are moving to India, let us use Indian Time Zone
 
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Originally posted by Adrian Wallace:

A typical days woud look something like this:
Australia - Get up 12:00, lunch around 17:00 bed at 04:00..
UK - get up at 22:00, lunch around 03:00 bed about 14:00..
East coast USA - up at 03:00, lunch around 08:00, bed at 19:00



You are saying, there should be a table like this and everyone should keep it as a reference before ringing internationally?!!!
 
Alan Wanwierd
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Originally posted by Ashok Mash:


You are saying, there should be a table like this and everyone should keep it as a reference before ringing internationally?!!!



No no no.. I was just illustrating the point...

Sure you have to look up somewhere to see how the place you're ringing varies from where you are - so people in London still have to consider that New Yorkers are 5 hours behind and aussies are 10 hours infront etc etc (but you still have to do that under the current system)- but its a question of labelling... if everyone on the planet gives a specific point in time the same label, confusion would surely be reduced? (in my humble opinion)...
 
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problem is correct. solution incorrect.

[anyway no solution frm my side...suggest that u get new mobile handset which helps u while calling]
 
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Gives a whole new meaning to the term 'burning the midnight oil' when it is the middle of the day outside.
 
ranger
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The only problem that I see, is that some people would have noon at the middle of the night, and have to be at work when it is nighttime and not during the normal daylight hours.

When would I be able to play golf?



Mark
 
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Mark, you missed part of his point. while noon would be in the middle of the night for some people, they woulnd't be working then. they wouldn't work "9a to 5p", but maybe 1am to 9am.

In other words, set all clocks to GMT. So i, being in st. louis, work from 1500 to 23:00. my schedule wouldn't change, just what i called the time of day i start.
 
Thomas Paul
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Originally posted by Adrian Wallace:
I cant possibly be the only one who has had to go through excessive clarification on a phone call just to say something like "I'll call you back at 9am".. at the moment I have to specify "I'll call you back at 9am tommorow my time, 11pm today your time" ..which just seems painfully unnecessary...

So instead you say, I'll call at 9AM and they respond that 9AM is the middle of the night. And considering that the vast majority of the world never talks to anyone more than a couple of timezones away, this seems silly. Why inconvenience the majority of the world so that an insignificant minority can avoid 3 minutes clarifying what they mean by 9AM?
 
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I'd be happy if they'd just do away with Daylight savings time.

The reason it was instituted was to allow farmer's kids to get out of school in time to work the farm. The idea was to help kids not drop out of school because they couldn't do both.

That situation is not as important as it was in days gone by. Now its just a pain in the butt. Then you add areas that do not observe DST and you have a different adjustment half the year.
 
Mark Spritzler
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Originally posted by Ray Marsh:
I'd be happy if they'd just do away with Daylight savings time.

The reason it was instituted was to allow farmer's kids to get out of school in time to work the farm. The idea was to help kids not drop out of school because they couldn't do both.

That situation is not as important as it was in days gone by. Now its just a pain in the butt. Then you add areas that do not observe DST and you have a different adjustment half the year.



I agree completely. Like you said, the original idea behind it does not make sense, not with school buses, and motorized vehichles for those farmers.

Mark
 
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There could be a slight logistical problem with this idea. If, for example, GMT was used as the universal time, then in Australia the date would change mid way through the day. This could cause some problems if the date changed over from a normal working day to a holiday.

Another point to consider - if the date changed mid way through the day, should the day change as well i.e. if half way through the day it changes from the 13th to the 14th, should it also change from Monday to Tuesday, or should the day-name match the physical day? If the day name changes, then there could be a similar problem to the holiday problem above e.g. if the day changes to Sunday mid way through the morning then a religious person may refuse to continue working.
 
fred rosenberger
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I'd be happy if they'd just do away with Daylight savings time.


Maybe somebody from Canada can clarify this, but my good friend from PEI, who is known to tell tall tales, once said that there is an area in Canada that went 1/2 hour off from the rest of the time zone...

The reason he gave was that if they were in the 'normalized' time zone, the hockey games played in Vancouver would come on too late for them to watch (midnight). This way, they'd come on at 11:30...
[ September 13, 2004: Message edited by: fred rosenberger ]
 
Alan Wanwierd
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I dont know about Canada - but Australia has some screwed up timezones:

For half the year its like this:

W.A: GMT +8
N.T/S.A: GMT +9.5
VIC/NSW/QLD: GMT +10

Other half the year:
W.A: GMT +8
N.T: GMT +9.5
QLD: GMT +10
S.A: GMT +10.5
NSW/VIC: GMT +11


..and just to add to the confusion, Brisbane is considering having daylight savings (to keep inline with VIC and NSW) so that the timezones wont even be consistent across QLD in the summer months!!! The rest of QLD refuses to use DST because apparently the cows wouldnt be able to sleep so well... or the curtains will fade more in the extra sunshine or something like that!

There was talk during the Sydney olympics back in 2000 of having QLD use DST for the olympic fortnight only (so that tourists wouldnt be confused by the QLD/NSW time difference) - but thankfully the idea was dismissed as ridiculous!
 
Joe King
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I don't really see the point in having daylight saving hours any more. Sure years ago it helped with farming etc, but now there's no real reason why it should continue. What exactly do we gain from it in modern society? Surely it would be better just to stick to one time all year round. Apart from allowing me an extra hour in bed once a year and providing a trick answer to the pub quiz question "which is the longest day in the year", it doesn't really matter any more. What's to stop farmers just getting up an hour earlier/later instead of us all changing our clocks?

It seems silly to me that while I live just ten mins away from the G in GMT, I spend half my year an hour off from it.
 
Greenhorn
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Adrian I think you've got your head screwed on right!

Let's face it, we've all become global. Call it Eart-Time and and set it to the time zone that faces the sun at the exact moment a new year starts.

Besides when, in a couple of years time, we live mostly indoords we won't have a sentimental attachment to time - sunrise(06h00) or sunsets(18h00).

To quote a famous gardner - "time is relative"

cheers!
 
Alan Wanwierd
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Originally posted by Joe King:
I don't really see the point in having daylight saving hours any more.



There are some valid arguments for DST, they all revolve around having longer evenings in the summer, for example:
1) Having dusk later in the evening when peak traffic has died down should reduce the number of traffic accidents, particularly those involving kids playing in the street
2) Longer evenings means more time for kids to play outside thus improving their health by not having them stuck indoors infront of a TV...


..... of course all the benefits of DST could be gained by Schools and business simply operating 1 hour earlier during the summer (no need to change an clocks...)
 
Joe King
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Originally posted by Adrian Wallace:


There are some valid arguments for DST, they all revolve around having longer evenings in the summer, for example:
1) Having dusk later in the evening when peak traffic has died down should reduce the number of traffic accidents, particularly those involving kids playing in the street
2) Longer evenings means more time for kids to play outside thus improving their health by not having them stuck indoors infront of a TV...

..... of course all the benefits of DST could be gained by Schools and business simply operating 1 hour earlier during the summer (no need to change an clocks...)



This is what I don't understand - why not simply start and end the school day an hour earlier during the winter term instead of changing the clocks? Moving the school run an hour earlier would have a huge effect in reducing the amount of traffic in the business evening rush hour, so would be worth it for this alone.

Besides, how many kids are going to be playing outside in the winter anyway? Most kids just vegetate in front of their playstations these days.
 
Alan Wanwierd
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Originally posted by Joe King:


This is what I don't understand - why not simply start and end the school day an hour earlier during the winter term instead of changing the clocks? Moving the school run an hour earlier would have a huge effect in reducing the amount of traffic in the business evening rush hour, so would be worth it for this alone.

Besides, how many kids are going to be playing outside in the winter anyway? Most kids just vegetate in front of their playstations these days.




Daylight savings is a summer thing - not a winter thing (clocks moving forward 1 hour is the same as nto moving closkas and starting things earlier for the summer months)... Thus in the temperate climates of Northern Europe where such timekeepings fads first came from, summer IS the time when kids are most likely to get outside..

Of course, here in Queensland Australia going outside in the summer would be crazy... its too hot... much better to do your outside playing in the street in mid winter when its comfortable to be outside! (Not that kids do - you're right PS2 seems to have replaced the streets as the chosen play area for kids these days!)

I agree that changing school times to reduce traffic is a pretty good idea, but I'm sure parents who have to handle after school care arangements might have something else to say on the matter...
 
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On trashing timezones:

Great idea! Once we're all living undergound and in spacedonuts, our light will be carefully regulated. Eveyone in the whole galactic empire can rise and pay allegience to the overlord at exactly the same time, although the sound of a gazillion souls spread across the galaxy all flushing their toilets at the same time may have some dire unknown consequences for the stability of the universe.
[ September 16, 2004: Message edited by: Richard Hawkes ]
 
Thomas Paul
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Originally posted by fred rosenberger:

Maybe somebody from Canada can clarify this, but my good friend from PEI, who is known to tell tall tales, once said that there is an area in Canada that went 1/2 hour off from the rest of the time zone...

The reason he gave was that if they were in the 'normalized' time zone, the hockey games played in Vancouver would come on too late for them to watch (midnight). This way, they'd come on at 11:30...


Tall tales, indeed. There is a part of Canada that is offset 30 minutes... Newfoundland. Newfoundland juts out into the Atlantic Ocean further east than anything else in North America. They have been using the 30 minute offset long before Vancouver had a hockey team.
 
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Actually, Newfoundland is located in the Atlantic timezone which as a whole has an offset of 30 minutes (or was that 90 minutes) from the next one.
There's probably another timezone with a 30 minute offset somewhere else to compensate

But there's no need for all this "one timezone" idea. Every communication that need have a generic time uses Zulu already (GMT without daylight saving).
 
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