Blog: Article

Global time

Having different time zones in the world is a confusing system. When it's 12:00 in the UK, why does it have to be a different time in the Philippines? Time is just a number, isn't it?

The only purpose of the time zones is so that 12 noon in any time zone coincides with when the sun is at its highest in the sky. So it means there have to be 24 different noons all around the world at different times.

It's long been argued that a global time system would be better, where it would be the same time everywhere in the world.

The reluctance to adopt a global time system, is probably because it's assumed that it would be based on our current hours of the day. This would be unfair, as one time zone would retain its familiar hours of the day - work starting at 09:00 - midnight at 00:00 - whereas other time zones would need to get used to work starting at 10:00, or 16:00 for example, and midnight at different hours of the day.

This unfairness could be avoided if we simply gave our hours a name instead of a number. This is not such a strange idea: The days of the week have names, as do the months of the year. There would need to be international agreement on the names, and the chosen names would reflect this international nature.

For demonstration purposes, let's assume the names chosen for the 24 hours are all flowers. For example:

Tulip, Daffodil, Poppy, Sunflower, Bluebell, Rose, Snowdrop, Cherry blossom, Orchid, Iris, Peony, Chrysanthemum, Geranium, Lily, Lotus, Water lily, Dandelion, Hyacinth, Daisy, Crocus, Jasmine, Lavender, Marigold, Pansy

Now, when it is Tulip hour in London, it is Tulip hour all around the world. If you want to call someone at Orchid hour, then it will be Orchid hour in your calendar as well as their calendar.

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