20110224

Double Summer Time

In the United Kingdom, proposals are repeatedly made to move the clocks forward.  Like most northern countries, the UK currently moves their clocks one hour forward in spring and back in the autumn.  From the last Sunday of October to the last Sunday of March, Britain is on Greenwich Mean Time, also known as Universal Time or Western European Time.  Then from March to October, they are on British Summer Time, i.e. one hour ahead of GMT.
There are now two different proposals being discussed.  One is to move the entire country one hour ahead of the current times all year, i.e. one hour ahead of GMT from October to March, and two hours ahead of GMT from March to October, which is called "double summer time".  The other is to keep Scotland the same, and change the rest of the UK, i.e. England, Wales and Northern Ireland, so that the country would be divided into two time zones.
The reason to exclude Scotland from the change is that the further to the north and west you go, the later the sun comes up, so that on the shortest days it wouldn't rise until about ten o'clock, and on the longest days it would set after eleven in the evening.  This is just too late for some Scots.  But having two time zones would obviously put parts of the country out of kilter.  One of the motivations for moving forward an hour is to be in the same time zone as most of the European Union, Central European Time.  Currently in the EU, only Ireland and Portugal are also on Western European Time.

It has been tried before.  During World War II, Britain was on the same system, being one hour ahead of GMT in winter, and two in summer.  And for three years, from 1968 to 1971, they were on Daylight Saving Time all year, i.e. GMT+1, although without double summer time.

I have never understood the desire to tinker with time.  Why not simply get up earlier in the morning?  All you have to do is change work schedules.  Why mess with the clocks?  Just let everyone quit (and start) work an hour earlier.  There are a number of arguments to advance the time, most of which seem specious to me.  I wonder what the real motivations are?

MJD 55616.477

20110216

MetricClockFree iOS apps by ecce software

Another post, another app.  This one may look familiar, because (as the name suggests) its a free version of ecce's MetricClock app for iPhone.  The differences are, first, iAds in the free version, and second, no ability to change settings, such as color, digital display, custom image background, etc., although you can still move the clock face around and resize it.  It also does not display the percentage of your life span.  So if you want to try before you buy, or you just don't care about any of that, you can now get this free app.

There are also iPad versions of both the paid and free apps, which I never noticed before, since I don't have one of those devices, yet.  They appear to be the same as the iPhone versions, just reformatted.

MJD 55609.125