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Why we should all switch to military, GMT time.

I’m sick of the current method for time.

Let’s think about it for a moment… Starting with the stupidity of the 12 hour system. The 12 hour system is nice in the sense it’s easy to count, but they really screwed up it’s implementation. Think about it… the number 12 acts as 0 as opposed to 12… So when your counting AM and PM, what should be PM is on the wrong end of the clock (12 PM is noon, 12 AM is midnight).

And then let’s throw in time zones… Ok, novell idea to keep people in the world believing certain times should be daylight, and certain times should be night… But most humans I would think would adapt to 8:00AM being at night, if that’s what all the clocks showed… Heck, it doesn’t take me long to adapt my ability to read a clock that is off by 3 hours and 21 minutes…

So that said… I am now of the firm belief that everyone should switch to a 24:00 hour clock (military time) and it should all revolve around GMT (or some other fixed location). That way when I say: 18:00 hours, and you live in Australia, you know exactly what time I’m talking about without having to adjust for time zone, daylight savings time, or any other stupid thing that might be getting in the way.

It would also make my life easier as a computer programmer… Because I wouldn’t have to worry about what timezone is displaying to the user.

End rant.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Alex November 10, 2008, 8:44 am

    Aha! I solved this problem this summer using zoneinfo ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zoneinfo ) and the mysql_tzinfo_to_sql command. Here's my write-up:


    With this method, mySQL will store everything in UTC. When you set the time_zone for your current mySQL connection, input will be converted from your tz of choice to UTC and output will be converted from UTC to your tz. Seamless!

    This way, you can have different users select different time zones (say, in a forum) and still coordinate all input to UTC.

  • Dan November 10, 2008, 2:32 pm

    +1 Alex. I did the same thing on buythechange.

    Really the only trick is to always (ALWAYS) use TIMESTAMP columns instead of DATETIME columns.

    And, interestingly, when I set it up for buythechange, luigi already had the tzinfo tables imported to MySQL. Which means you had figured this out at some point.

  • Justin Gehring November 11, 2008, 5:18 am

    Although what you said about the programming things is true, and yes, I have worked that way before, the point of the matter is, I shouldn't have to resort to yet another unreadable time format to solve my problems.

    Basically: I just want everyone to treat every second the same way. Just like I want everyone to speak english, and everyone to think the same way as me (that last one was a joke).

    I'm entirely against diversity when it comes to things like time, money, and spoken languages (although diversity in programming languages has been proven to be a rather good thing).

  • Richard November 11, 2008, 8:20 pm

    Ironically enough I was thinking something similar today, except I want everyone to be awake at the same time, not just have similar clocks. It's not fair that I have to stay up late for calls to India and then also get up early for calls to India.

  • PK November 13, 2008, 10:34 am

    I want more rant!

    I'm with Sim on this one, everyone is awake at the same time no matter when the sun is up – it works for people above the arctic circles.

    Interestingly enough, without the sun controlling time, humans naturally migrate to a 30 hour day.

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