OT but interesting; a new calendar proposal



#2

This article describes a proposal for a new calendar in which a given date would fall on the same day, forever!

Get ready to change all the days-between-dates algorithms.


#3

Didn't the French try something like this around 1800?

I'm guessing the probability of this calendar being generally accepted is pretty much zero.


Still, it is a neat idea.


- Pauli

#4

I like it, another guaranteed round of Y2K-like programming work, I'll be able to retire in style! :)

#5

I don't mean to hijack your thread but if you haven't done so already you should pick up a copy of Theoni Pappas' 2012 Math Calendar: Link

It's guaranteed to entertain.

Happy New Year!

John

#6

Here is an interesting page that includes a FORTRAN subroutine to determine which years get the extra week to keep in synch with the sun. FORTRAN forever!!

#7

I'm not sure that I see a real need here, although the concept is interesting. If Pope Gregory's monks had come up with it, it might have stood a chance. But I think their goal was to fix the Julian calanedar with as little impact as possible, other than skipping 10 days in October 1582. I always thought that a more sensible arrangement of the number of days in the months would have been as follows:

January - 30 days 
February - 31 days
March - 30 days
April - 31 days
May - 30 days
June - 31 days
July - 30 days
August - 31 days
September - 30 days
October - 31 days
November - 30 days
December - 30 days in common years
December - 31 days in leap years
So in leap years, just add an extra day at the end of the year. Rules for leap years would be the same as the 97/400 Gregorian calendar. Of course the above has no real practical advantage over the curent system (of which I can think) but at least does not seem so random with regard to the numbers of days in the months.

#8

Thanks Jeff. I agree, it is an interesting concept, but it seems to be a solution in search of a problem. I don't know of any business or indvidual that has a problem with the current system; a given date falls on a different day each year. So what. It's been that way for as long as I can remember. Even folks born on February 29 are able to celebrate their birthday each year. Heck, I wish I had been born on Feb. 29; then maybe I'd be 30 instead of 61!

I do see huge problems with adding another week at the end of the year every 5 or 6 years. Parents of school-age kids currently struggle to take care of their kids during the typical 2-week school vacation; how could they accomodate 3 weeks? And I would think that extra week would cause businesses lots of troubles.

The author also proposes everyone on earth use the same time (Greenwich time, UTC, or whatever it's called these days). I've often thought that that might have advantages, we'd just have to get used to "9 to 5" being a variable. Even if we didn't have time zones, localities would still want people working and going to school during the daylight hours, so the actual hours of work would vary based on geography.


#9

Quote:
The author also proposes everyone on earth use the same time (Greenwich time, UTC, or whatever it's called these days).

I've had a similar (even less likley to be adopted by anybody!) idea, but (as an astronomer) suggest that we all use Greenwich Sidereal Time (GST in astronomy parlance), which is the time kept by the stars.

Everybody could still have a "9 to 5" job (or whatever other hours you choose), but those hours would rotate throughout the year with respect to day and night. At times, you would go to work in the daytime, 6 months later you would go to work in the dark - so nobody would have a permanent "night shift"! Also, your day would be 3m 57s shorter, and you would gain an extra day each year, which should be a holiday!

For an even more radical alternative view, check out the Jan 1, 2012 Foxtrot cartoon.

#10

Quote:
...it seems to be a solution in search of a problem. I don't know of any business or indvidual that has a problem with the current system; a given date falls on a different day each year. So what.

I agree completely.

But another thought did occur to me. Following their own logic, I think Hanke and Henry did not go far enough. With their system, the days of the months will still wander about the days of the week. Why not propose thirteen 28 day months? That way each date of each month will fall on the same day of the week as in every other month. They would still need to add their extra week every 6 or 7 years. In that case just make the 13 month 35 days long. Or call it the fourteenth month. Seems like this would further simplify figuring out the days between dates. Perhaps they considered it and worried that the triskaidekaphobes would protest too much.

In any case, I think I have probably devoted enough thought to these concepts. But thanks for bringing it up.

#11

Quote:
Heck, I wish I had been born on Feb. 29; then maybe I'd be 30 instead of 61!

I think you may be only 15 instead of 61 !

As anyone may agree, today's teenagers don't know how to divide !

#12

Isn't this what the current system originally was before the New Year was moved from March to January? Well with the Gregorian adaptations which came later.


- Pauli

#13

I think it would be easier to slow the Earth's orbit than adopt a new calendar!


#14

Quote:
slow the Earth's orbit

Not exactly slowing the Earth's orbit around the Sun, but didn't Superman, in one of those movies, race around the Earth in a westward direction in order to get the Earth to reverse the direction of its rotation, so that he could "turn back time" and rescue someone who had died?

An idea that has always intrigued me (thanks to Carl Sagan I think) is that, if we could travel faster than the speed of light, we could race away from the Earth and, with a powerful enough telescope, see ourselves being born. But the physicists have always told us that nothing can travel faster than the speed of light. I believe that recently someone found something that could....


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