6. Redefining & Simplifying Units of Time

Decimal Metric Time

The most logical division of time would be decimal metric time with its divisions of deciday (2.4 hours) and centiday (14.4 minutes). A decimal second (0.864 second) or 100,000th of a day, would also be used.

Swatch Internet Time

As an alternative. with some modifications, Swatch Internet Time could be adopted as the global standard method of time keeping, for both international and local usage. The next best thing would be to at least adopt it as the standard international time used worldwide instead of the Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), or Zulu Time (Z) systems. Swatch Internet Time (or beat time) divides the day into 1000 parts called “.beats”, each beat lasting 1 minute 26.4 seconds. Because this form of time keeping is decimal based, subunits such as centibeats could easily be created. Time keeping and calculation is greatly simplified because there are no hours or minutes with their non-logical, non-decimal numerical nesting. There are only beats and their decimal derivatives.

Additional simplification could be realized because time zones everywhere would be eliminated since no geographical area on the planet would ever be at a different time under this system. Furthermore, a thoroughly universally established time-keeping system would be immune to pressures to institute concepts like Daylight Saving Time since it would be counterproductive to people in the opposite hemisphere and the rigid nature of such a system would make it impractical to make local exceptions.

One major modification needed to make this a more thoroughly logical system would be to move the reference point for 000 .beats from the Central European Time zone (or UTC+1) to the International Date Line running down the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The International Date Line is the most logical place for beginning global reference systems due to the relative lack of closely neighboring, highly populated areas that would fall immediately to either side of the divide.

A couple of minor modifications to the Swatch Internet Time formatting may make it less confusing. Instead of writing the time as @730 or 730 .beats, for example, it may be better to use T 730 (the “T” being an indicator that the following number is a time) or 730 beats (without the “.” immediately before the word “beats”). Perhaps an entirely new symbol for “beats” could be developed so that just that symbol could be displayed, serving a purpose much like the $ sign for US currency.


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