1061: "EST"

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rhomboidal
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1061: "EST"

Postby rhomboidal » Mon May 28, 2012 4:07 am UTC

Image

Title Text: The month names are the same, except that the fourth month only has the name 'April' in even-numbered years, and is otherwise unnamed.

If it can help create a calendar without leap years and doomsdays, I'm all for it.

Kename Fin
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Kename Fin » Mon May 28, 2012 4:14 am UTC

Anything to help payroll calculate quicker, school schedules make sense, et cetra

um.. still 8 days a week?

Also - could we get a good cross-reference with http://xkcd.com/320/

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glasnt
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby glasnt » Mon May 28, 2012 4:15 am UTC

1958 was kind of a good year. It shouldn't really not happen.

Unless it's like that Goosebumps thing, where the kid knocks 1988 off a grandfather clock, and then doesn't have an evil sister, then I guess it's cool.

Edit: 1988, not 1986. Twas http://goosebumps.wikia.com/wiki/The_Cu ... ck_of_Doom, the 3rd episode of the TV series of the same name.

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Quicksilver
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Quicksilver » Mon May 28, 2012 4:21 am UTC

It looks like the time discussion on php.net. I also hate Daylight Savings.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby herm43506 » Mon May 28, 2012 4:27 am UTC

For the first five or so lines, I thought he was being serious... then, it got crazy, and I remembered that I was reading xkcd...

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby da Doctah » Mon May 28, 2012 4:31 am UTC

This reminds me of the rules I once wrote for posting in my imaginary Usenet newsgroup, alt.restrictions.arbitrary:

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby brakos82 » Mon May 28, 2012 4:33 am UTC

For the sake of 1958, I protest this. Not funny Randall.
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JohnSmith1
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby JohnSmith1 » Mon May 28, 2012 4:57 am UTC

Is the year 1958 a reference to anything or is it just a random year?

Goplat
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Goplat » Mon May 28, 2012 4:58 am UTC

At least it's not as bad as Universal Coordinated Time, in which it's impossible to predict whether a given day will contain a "leap second" or not.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby mschmidt62 » Mon May 28, 2012 4:59 am UTC

Sometimes it takes me a while to figure out just how xkcd is funny. I think this time it took about five minutes before I started laughing. But I'm still not exactly sure why I'm laughing.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby FCN » Mon May 28, 2012 5:03 am UTC

Started out in high nerd. Ended up "And everyone has to wear their underwear outside of their pants, so we can check."
Spoiler:
LuNatic wrote:
Dear FCN,
You are:
a) Terrible, but in an awesome way.
or
b) Awesome, but in a terrible way.
I'm having difficulty deciding which.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Eternal Density » Mon May 28, 2012 5:13 am UTC

As soon as I read the list of things EST is, I immediately prepared myself for it to be exactly the opposite. I was not disappoint.
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby leifbk » Mon May 28, 2012 5:33 am UTC

brakos82 wrote:For the sake of 1958, I protest this. Not funny Randall.


Agreed, on behalf of the Kate Bush fans of the world.

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CorruptUser
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby CorruptUser » Mon May 28, 2012 5:40 am UTC

But I liked the old rules! Leap year every 4 years except on centuries unless that century is divisible by 400 (2000 was a leapyear, 1900 wasn't), timezones 1 hour apart except for the ones that aren't such as Venezuela, spring forward fall back, etc.

Mercurywoodrose
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Mercurywoodrose » Mon May 28, 2012 5:43 am UTC

we have 3 periods to consider: the year, the month (as in moon cycle), and the day. they dont sync. so why not just make the best of it. 30 days per month at 12 months, leaves 5 extra days. hey, the four seasons, and new years. solved (except for leap year adjustments, etc). doesnt sync to the moon, but who cares? 30 is a nice number. but, it doesnt sync with weeks. fuck 7 day weeks. 5 weeks of 6 days each. now, we have a perpetual calendar, if the 5 days dont have a "day" name but are just individually named, and arent counted as part of any month. each year, each date has the same day. twice a week is now rational, as is 3 times per week. and, if we keep the 2 day weekend, we all get a shorter work week. funny how we have a 7 day week, in honor of the bible, but the days are named after norse gods mostly. what a weird world.

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CorruptUser
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby CorruptUser » Mon May 28, 2012 5:57 am UTC

I thought the 7 days comes from the moon, not the bible; 28 days in the moon cycle, half that is a fortnight, half that is a week.

bazza
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby bazza » Mon May 28, 2012 6:11 am UTC

Goplat wrote:At least it's not as bad as Universal Coordinated Time, in which it's impossible to predict whether a given day will contain a "leap second" or not.


That's planetary orbital dynamics for you; unpredictable.

There's a simple way of sorting out the leap second issue in UTC. Modify NTP to transfer a table of known and historical leap seconds. Update time functions in operating systems, basing them on the routines in the International Astronomical Union's SOFA library (pdf):

http://www.iausofa.org/2012_0301_C/sofa/sofa_ts_c.pdf

Then every computer will automatically be able to deal properly with leap seconds, and time calculations will also take them into account. Hooray!

Make it so, number 1.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Arky » Mon May 28, 2012 6:11 am UTC

FCN wrote:Started out in high nerd. Ended up "And everyone has to wear their underwear outside of their pants, so we can check."


This is my new favourite description of XKCD's sense of humor.
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Aulis Vaara
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Aulis Vaara » Mon May 28, 2012 6:29 am UTC

On a more serious note... why don't we have a year of thirteen months of four seven day weeks each? That leaves you with one day to celebrate the new year that simply doesn't really count on calendars. The first of January would always be a Monday. In fact, the first, eighth, fifteenth, and twenty-second of EVERY month would be Mondays.

If any adjustments need to happen to any given year, they must be done on Newyearsday. IE in a leap year, Newyearsday is two days. This way, everything is predictable except leapseconds, but at least you know when they might occur. Although I'm more for the idea to wait until the change has become big enough to add an extra hour or so. It's just less silly.

dns_server
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby dns_server » Mon May 28, 2012 7:02 am UTC

This reminds me a lot of discordian date:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Discordian_calendar

You can get the current date in linux useing the ddate command.

The current day acording to the discordian calendar is:
Today is Pungenday, the 2nd day of Confusion in the YOLD 3178

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby sla29970 » Mon May 28, 2012 7:05 am UTC

bazza wrote:There's a simple way of sorting out the leap second issue in UTC. Modify NTP to transfer a table of known and historical leap seconds. Update time functions in operating systems, basing them on the routines in the International Astronomical Union's SOFA library (pdf):


Much simpler to move the leap seconds out of the radio broadcasts and into the zoneinfo. All of the necessary bits are already deployed and testable. See a worked example at http://www.ucolick.org/~sla/leapsecs/right+gps.html

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klausok
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby klausok » Mon May 28, 2012 7:06 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:I thought the 7 days comes from the moon, not the bible; 28 days in the moon cycle, half that is a fortnight, half that is a week.


Where does this idea that the moon cycle is 28 days come from? Check a calendar has moon phases. You will see that the moon is full every 29½ day. Or as Wikipedia puts it:

Orbital period 27.321582 d (27 d 7 h 43.1 min)
Synodic period 29.530589 d (29 d 12 h 44 min 2.9 s)

Aulis Vaara
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Aulis Vaara » Mon May 28, 2012 7:31 am UTC

klausok wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:I thought the 7 days comes from the moon, not the bible; 28 days in the moon cycle, half that is a fortnight, half that is a week.


Where does this idea that the moon cycle is 28 days come from? Check a calendar has moon phases. You will see that the moon is full every 29½ day. Or as Wikipedia puts it:

Orbital period 27.321582 d (27 d 7 h 43.1 min)
Synodic period 29.530589 d (29 d 12 h 44 min 2.9 s)


So if you want a time period to represent one phase, you're stuck with either 7 or 8.

Besides, when they invented this stuff, people weren't that good at exact measurements yet.

Whys
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Whys » Mon May 28, 2012 8:12 am UTC

Randall just tossed a grenade. What a mess! :D

pulse width violator
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby pulse width violator » Mon May 28, 2012 8:35 am UTC

This messes up my 28 hour day...

Image

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rundlesm
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby rundlesm » Mon May 28, 2012 8:51 am UTC

Yeah. "...clocks run backwards" made me laugh.

hujackus
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby hujackus » Mon May 28, 2012 9:36 am UTC

Reminds me of the Corpus Clock at Cambridge.

BigglesPiP
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby BigglesPiP » Mon May 28, 2012 9:58 am UTC

HAHA!

Take that Apple devs, my iPhone alarm would never work!

simanthropy
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby simanthropy » Mon May 28, 2012 10:25 am UTC

I think it's odd how no one has checked the accuracy of the year yet, so to give Randall credit, here goes as accurately as possible (ie google caluclator):

1 EST year = 12*30*1444 minutes + 8 hours*(1 EST year/29.53059 days) + 4*(1 EST year/1 year)*43 minutes

First term is the standard length.

Second comes from the fact that the clocks run backward for 4 hours and forward for 4 hours, so adding 8 hours to the day. A lunar cycle is 29.53059 days long, so this happens 1 EST year/29.53059 days per EST year.

Third comes from adding 43 minutes (the number of non-prime minutes) every solstice/equinox. A solstice/equinox happens four times every (old) year, so this happens 4*(1 EST year/1 year) times per EST year.

If you 'guess' that 1 EST year = 1 year, and then keep on feeding the remainder back into google calculator, you get that an EST year is 93.549449 milliseconds longer than a regular year - so a second will have to be subtracted every 10 years or so. This is actually MORE accurate than the system we have at the moment (leap seconds are inserted slightly less than once per year on average).

Pretty good achievement.

Wlerin
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Wlerin » Mon May 28, 2012 10:28 am UTC

Hmm. Seems legit.

Steroid
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Steroid » Mon May 28, 2012 10:34 am UTC

Sometimes I think that the only reason XKCD runs "serious" comics like the radiation analysis and Money (980) is to fool us on something like this.

Ran
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby Ran » Mon May 28, 2012 10:44 am UTC

Earth Standard Time... this is even more brilliant than the Common Era stuff.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby W3ird_N3rd » Mon May 28, 2012 10:54 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:I thought the 7 days comes from the moon, not the bible; 28 days in the moon cycle, half that is a fortnight, half that is a week.

Half that is a wild Vegas weekend gone wrong.

Initially I liked the idea.. Then the clock had to run backwards, but I figured "could finally catch up on some sleep..". Then, things went crazy.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby mesdale » Mon May 28, 2012 11:23 am UTC

I'd like to protest on behalf of 1958 and the UK! (Still at least it's April that gets it in the neck and not August - otherwise that would have been a triple-whammy)

This is a non-linear algorithm since during the period FM - 4 <= t <= FM + 4, the clock direction is not deterministic.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby randomguy3 » Mon May 28, 2012 11:27 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:I thought the 7 days comes from the moon, not the bible; 28 days in the moon cycle, half that is a fortnight, half that is a week.


The ancient Babylonians had a seven-day week, named for the sun (Sunday), moon (Monday) and five planets (that they were aware of) that together they believed controlled fate (cf astrology). Consider the French days of the week: Tuesday is Mardi (Mars-day), Wednesday is Mercredi (Mercury-day), Thursday is Jeudi (Jupiter-day), Friday Vendredi (Venus-day) and Saturday/Samedi is obviously Saturn-day.

Don't forget the Jews were captives of Babylon for a time.

Other cultures have had different week lengths - 8 for the Romans, for example. 9-day and 9-night weeks (dividing a sidereal month into three) also crop up occasionally.

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby radtea » Mon May 28, 2012 11:41 am UTC

bazza wrote:
Goplat wrote:At least it's not as bad as Universal Coordinated Time, in which it's impossible to predict whether a given day will contain a "leap second" or not.


There's a simple way of sorting out the leap second issue in UTC...

Then every computer will automatically be able to deal properly with leap seconds...


There needs to be a thing like that checklist for why your great anti-spam idea won't work.

First, anyone proposing a "simple" solution to a problem that has remained irritating and unsolved for decades is missing something.

Second, only that very small fraction of computers connected to the 'Net are addressed by your scheme, leaving out all the vast multitude of embedded systems, including the ones in watches.

I'm generally in favour of 12 months of 30 days each with a 5 day Saturnalia at the New Year, but I recognize it's never going to happen. Calenders have almost nothing to do with time--which is handled quite nicely by Julian Day Number--and everything to do with human convenience, and "what we have now" is almost always more convenient than "what we would really like to have plus all the work necessary to get there."
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thevicente
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby thevicente » Mon May 28, 2012 12:17 pm UTC


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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby orthogon » Mon May 28, 2012 1:12 pm UTC

mesdale wrote:I'd like to protest on behalf of 1958 and the UK!


Me too. How come the UK gets to be the one with the weird non-SI unit? I'm convinced that NASA could have put a human being on Mars, if not Jupiter, by now if they'd cut out the 200% overhead of converting between horse-power-fortnights and poundal-furlongs etc. in each step of the calculations.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

cogitoergocogito
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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby cogitoergocogito » Mon May 28, 2012 1:13 pm UTC

This time becomes a major problem when considered on a smaller scale: an average solar day is 24 hours (+- 2ms) so after the first full moon by this calendar, midnight would be occurring before sunset (it is shifted back six to eight hours from the starting position depending on how many 24-hour 4-minute days had passed). Therefore this calendar is unworkable.

What is Randall parodying?

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Re: 1061: "EST"

Postby caractacuspotts » Mon May 28, 2012 1:14 pm UTC

I think Randall missed the biggest calendrical problem of them all here. Weeks. The fact is a 7 day week is exactly the worst of all possible numbers of days. 5 days of work is too long and 2 days is too short a weekend. So we all walk around stress all the time and that's why we're so mean to each other.

The correct number of days in a civilised week is 6. Then you can have 4 days of work and a 2 day weekend - not stressful at all. You can even break it up into 3 day mini-weeks - 2 days on, 1 day off. Or if you're doing shift work you can do 3 on 3 off and your business doesn't need to have people absent on weekends at all - just stagger the work week. All of which is infinitely preferable to 5 on 2 off.

And then the calendar is really easy to do. 5 weeks in a month makes 30 days. 12 months makes 360 days. And you do a 5 day holiday called Yule at the end of the year. Slap in a 6th Yule day every 4 years instead of hacking February.

What a beautiful world we would live in if only a week was 6 days long. It would be a paradise. And such a simple change ...


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