Times & Dates

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Dana Nutter

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Feb 7, 2005, 11:32:42 PM2/7/05
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I'm wonding if someone can point me in the right direction here.
I'm looking for information on how different languages express
times & dates. So far this seems to be one of those areas where
languages tend to have a lot of idiomatic usage.


------------------------------
Dana Nutter
dn2...@nutter.net

RI SASXSEK RATIS.
http://www.nutter.net/sasxsek

Wolfgang G. Gasser

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Feb 9, 2005, 10:50:40 AM2/9/05
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Dana Nutter wrote:

> I'm wonding if someone can point me in the right direction here.
> I'm looking for information on how different languages express
> times & dates. So far this seems to be one of those areas where
> languages tend to have a lot of idiomatic usage.

The following doesn't deal with "time & date" as they are, but it
deals with them as they IMO could or should be in future languages:

------ begin quote ------ http://members.lol.li/twostone/IC.html ------

A simple internationally accepted calendar time NOT based on TIME ZONES
could be advantageous in several respects.

Main requirements for such a calendar are:

1) Internal simplicity
2) Independence of religions and cultures
3) A clear relation to the most widespread calendar

I propose here a solution to these requirements which may serve at
least as an encouragement to others to find a better one.

The world-wide dominant international time, GREENWICH MEAN TIME, is
based on the Gregorian calendar. The Gregorian calendar is not only
strongly linked to Christianity but also far from being simple. It is
based on six different units of time: year, month, day, hour, minute
and second (with decimal places).

All but two (year and day) of these six units of time should be
discarded in a new calendar because of internal simplicity. Time
calculations will then become both simpler and more transparent.

An important point of any calendar is its start. A compromise between
the requirements 2) and 3) is a start on 1 January 2000, at 00:00:00
GMT. This moment becomes 0:000.0 in the new calendar.

0:000 2000/01/01
0:000.1 2000/01/01, 02:24:00
0:000.2 2000/01/01, 04:48:00
0:000.5 2000/01/01, 12:00:00
0:000.999 2000/01/01, 23:58:33.6
0:001.001 2000/01/02, 00:01:26.4
0:030 2000/01/31
0:031 2000/02/01
0:365.9 2000/12/31, 21:36:00
1:364.5 2001/12/31, 12:00:00
9:364 2009/12/31

An effective solution to expressing times and dates before calendar
start consists in introducing a further digit:

neg = n = -1

This digit should be used only at the first position of a number.

n37 = -1*100 + 3*10 + 7 = -63
137 = 1*100 + 3*10 + 7

So we can express the years before calendar start without mirage at the
origin of the calendar as in present-time calendars.

1999 n9 neg nine
1990 n0 neg zero
1945 n45 twoneg four five
1900 n00 twoneg zero (zero)
1899 n899 threeneg eight zero four
1001 n001 threeneg zero seven nine
1000 n000 threeneg zero (zero (zero))
999 n8999 fourneg eight nine nine nine
1 n8001 fourneg eight zero zero one
0 n8000 fourneg eight (zero (zero (zero)))
-1 n7999 fourneg seven nine nine nine
-322 n7678 fourneg seven six seven eight
-1000 n7000 fourneg seven
-2000 n6000 fourneg six
-8000 n0000 fourneg zero
-98000 n00000 fiveneg zero
-998000 n000000 sixneg zero

(It could also be useful to introduce in additon to an INTERNATIONAL
CALENDAR an ASTRONOMICAL CALENDAR which is based on the time unit
year (365.2422 days) alone, whereas the former is based on days and
years of either 365 or 366 days. Because of this leap year problem,
there is at most one year which can start at exactly the same time
according to both calendars. Unfortunately the begin of the year zero,
a leap year, does not qualify for synchronization between the two
calendars.)

n9:361.9 (IC time) n9.99 (AC time)

------ end quote ------------------------------------------------------

The use of the unit 'day' for small time intervals such as minutes
and seconds isn't a problem, if a language presents a number system
allowing to express the order of magnitude as efficiently as the
significant digits. (See http://members.lol.li/twostone/zahlen.html)

In the absense of such an efficient number system, we can use the
normal auxiliary coefficient-words such as deci-, centi-, milli-,
micro-, nano- and so on:

deciday = 2.4 h = 2 h 24 min
centiday = 0.24 h = 14.4 min = 14 min 24 sec
milliday = 0.024 h = 1.44 min = 1 min 26.4 sec
microday = 0.000024 h = 0.0864 sec

Who knows how many milliseconds make a whole day?
Who knows how many microdays make a whole day?


Cheers, Wolfgang


Peter T. Daniels

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Feb 9, 2005, 11:13:13 AM2/9/05
to
Wolfgang G. Gasser wrote:

> A simple internationally accepted calendar time NOT based on TIME ZONES
> could be advantageous in several respects.
>
> Main requirements for such a calendar are:
>
> 1) Internal simplicity
> 2) Independence of religions and cultures
> 3) A clear relation to the most widespread calendar
>
> I propose here a solution to these requirements which may serve at
> least as an encouragement to others to find a better one.
>
> The world-wide dominant international time, GREENWICH MEAN TIME, is
> based on the Gregorian calendar. The Gregorian calendar is not only
> strongly linked to Christianity but also far from being simple. It is
> based on six different units of time: year, month, day, hour, minute
> and second (with decimal places).

> An important point of any calendar is its start. A compromise between


> the requirements 2) and 3) is a start on 1 January 2000, at 00:00:00
> GMT. This moment becomes 0:000.0 in the new calendar.

Why would you base your "new calendar" on a miscalculation of the year
of the birth of Jesus?

Why don't you start with the new Maya era, which begins in 2012?
--
Peter T. Daniels gram...@att.net

Dylan Sung

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Feb 9, 2005, 11:40:45 AM2/9/05
to

"Peter T. Daniels" <gram...@worldnet.att.net> wrote in message
news:420A36...@worldnet.att.net...

Or use the Julian Date current in astronomy, which is counted by the day
rather than year. Began in 4713 BC apparently.

Dyl,


Logan Kearsley

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Feb 9, 2005, 12:18:50 PM2/9/05
to
The system for representing times before the start of the calendar
seems needlessly complex. Why not simply have the 'n' (or other symbol)
indicate that years should be counted backwards from the base time
rather than forward, like the B.C.(E.) prefix does in the current
system?

Dana Nutter

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Feb 9, 2005, 6:42:46 PM2/9/05
to
temu [Wed, 09 Feb 2005 16:13:13 GMT] ["Peter T. Daniels"
<gram...@worldnet.att.net>] mi pis ra ...

> Why would you base your "new calendar" on a miscalculation of the year
> of the birth of Jesus?
>
> Why don't you start with the new Maya era, which begins in 2012?

Interesting site on the subject of calendars:

http://www.fourmilab.ch/documents/calendar/

Wolfgang G. Gasser

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Feb 10, 2005, 6:32:10 AM2/10/05
to

We need a clear and SIMPLE RELATION to the most widespread calendar
which is obviously based on "a miscalculation of the year of the birth
of Jesus":

3000 --> = 1000 ...
2150 --> 150 = 0150 ...
2003 --> 3 = 03 = 003 = 0003 ...
2000 --> 0 = 00 = 000 = 0000 ...
1999 --> n9 = n99 = n999 = n9999 ...
1990 --> n0 = n90 = n990 = n9990 ...
1989 --> n89 = n989 = n9989 ...
1900 --> n00 = n900 = n9900 ...
1899 --> n899 = n9899 ...
1596 --> n596 = n9596 ...
1000 --> n000 = n9000 ...
999 --> n8999 ...
1 --> n8001 ...
0 --> n8000 ...
-1 --> n7999 ...

The most probable years of the birth of Jesus are n7993 - 7997 in the
new calendar, all of which aren't special numbers such as e.g. zero,
one or thousand.


Logan Kearsley wrote:

If we are consistent in 'counting backwards' then we should also count
days (weeks, months) backwards. And we should not forget that originally
there was no year zero, only a first year after the birth and a first
(resp: last) year before the birth.

The solution with the additional digit n = -1 is more consistent than
counting backwards. It may seem more complicated, because we are less
accustomed to it. From an apriori point-of-view however it is actually
more concise and therefore simpler than the use of two different
counting directions.


Cheers, Wolfgang


Dylan Sung

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Feb 10, 2005, 9:10:40 AM2/10/05
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"Wolfgang G. Gasser" <si...@homepage.li> wrote in message
news:cufgma$mkv$1...@atlas.ip-plus.net...

> Peter T. Daniels wrote:
>> Wolfgang G. Gasser wrote:
>>
>> > A simple internationally accepted calendar time NOT based on TIME ZONES
>> > could be advantageous in several respects.
>> >
>> > Main requirements for such a calendar are:
>> >
>> > 1) Internal simplicity
>> > 2) Independence of religions and cultures
>> > 3) A clear relation to the most widespread calendar
[snip]

>>
>> Why would you base your "new calendar" on a miscalculation of the year
>> of the birth of Jesus?
>>
>> Why don't you start with the new Maya era, which begins in 2012?
>
> We need a clear and SIMPLE RELATION to the most widespread calendar
> which is obviously based on "a miscalculation of the year of the birth
> of Jesus":
>
[snip]

> 1 --> n8001 ...
> 0 --> n8000 ...
> -1 --> n7999 ...
>
> The most probable years of the birth of Jesus are n7993 - 7997 in the
> new calendar, all of which aren't special numbers such as e.g. zero,
> one or thousand.

There is no year 0, as you mention further down in your reply,

> ... And we should not forget that originally
> there was no year zero, ....

The above not withstanding, the correlation you propose is just an arbitrary
number to be added on to the 'western' calendar year.

What makes you think this arbitrary number is going to any more useful than
the current usage? If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Dyl.


Skraedder

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Feb 11, 2005, 5:19:02 AM2/11/05
to

"Wolfgang G. Gasser" <si...@homepage.li> wrote in message
news:cudbcd$hqu$1...@atlas.ip-plus.net...

>
> A simple internationally accepted calendar time NOT based on TIME ZONES
> could be advantageous in several respects.
>

Yeah yeah yeah. I invented stuff like this when I was 10 too. The reality is
different.

Skraedder


Paul J Kriha

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Feb 11, 2005, 7:53:47 AM2/11/05
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Skraedder <Skra...@skraedder.com> wrote in message news:cui0qm$f7g$1...@rdel.co.uk...

>
> "Wolfgang G. Gasser" <si...@homepage.li> wrote in message
> news:cudbcd$hqu$1...@atlas.ip-plus.net...
> >
> > A simple internationally accepted calendar time NOT based on TIME ZONES
> > could be advantageous in several respects.

Something like Moscow Time on Trans-Siberian trains? :-)
pjk

Dana Nutter

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Feb 11, 2005, 1:12:17 PM2/11/05
to
temu [Sat, 12 Feb 2005 01:53:47 +1300] [Paul J Kriha] pis ra ...

>
> Skraedder <Skra...@skraedder.com> wrote in message news:cui0qm$f7g$1...@rdel.co.uk...
> >
> > "Wolfgang G. Gasser" <si...@homepage.li> wrote in message
> > news:cudbcd$hqu$1...@atlas.ip-plus.net...
> > >
> > > A simple internationally accepted calendar time NOT based on TIME ZONES
> > > could be advantageous in several respects.
>
> Something like Moscow Time on Trans-Siberian trains? :-)
> pjk

The really screwed up ones are the zones that are a half hour
off like in India or W. Australia. I still don't know how they
become like that.

Dana Nutter

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Feb 11, 2005, 1:16:18 PM2/11/05
to
temu [Wed, 9 Feb 2005 16:50:40 +0100] [Wolfgang G. Gasser] pis
ra ...

> Dana Nutter wrote:
>
> > I'm wonding if someone can point me in the right direction here.
> > I'm looking for information on how different languages express
> > times & dates. So far this seems to be one of those areas where
> > languages tend to have a lot of idiomatic usage.
>
> The following doesn't deal with "time & date" as they are, but it
> deals with them as they IMO could or should be in future languages:

What I was actually trying to find were some good examples of
expressions used in different languages to indicate dates and
times.

N. Aslanidis

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Feb 12, 2005, 6:12:49 AM2/12/05
to
Dana Nutter wrote:
> temu [Sat, 12 Feb 2005 01:53:47 +1300] [Paul J Kriha] pis ra ...
>
>
>>Skraedder <Skra...@skraedder.com> wrote in message news:cui0qm$f7g$1...@rdel.co.uk...
>>
>>>"Wolfgang G. Gasser" <si...@homepage.li> wrote in message
>>>news:cudbcd$hqu$1...@atlas.ip-plus.net...
>>>
>>>>A simple internationally accepted calendar time NOT based on TIME ZONES
>>>>could be advantageous in several respects.
>>
>>Something like Moscow Time on Trans-Siberian trains? :-)
>>pjk
>
>
> The really screwed up ones are the zones that are a half hour
> off like in India or W. Australia. I still don't know how they
> become like that.
>

Isn't there something even worse in some US-States, which do not accept
daylight saving time, although the native americans in the same states do?

Someone (who actually knows what I am talking about) please freshen up
my memory...

Niko

Jan Dijkman

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Feb 12, 2005, 10:56:11 AM2/12/05
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On Saturnday, 12 February 12005, "N. Aslanidis" <ni...@aslanidis.de>
scrawled the following message across the Holy Marbles. Upon discovering
this gruesome sacrilege, the priests screeched, "We have lost our
Marbles!"

Arizona? I know AZ doesn't do DST, but i'm not sure about AZ's
indigenous people...otherwise, maybe Alaska, or Hawaii.

Jan Dijkman

Dana Nutter

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Feb 12, 2005, 1:23:19 PM2/12/05
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temu [Jan Dijkman] pis ra ...


Arizona and Hawaii are the only two I know about. I wish they
all would get rid of daylight savings.

I live in a state with two time zones. There have been
instances where I've forgotton and showed up at job sites an
hour early.

Rupert Barnes

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Feb 12, 2005, 1:18:54 PM2/12/05
to
Aye, well I thought I was just being boringly conformist in doing
nothing more radical than finding new names for existing days and
months.

For the months I just took the beginnings of the months' English /
International names and stuck "munth" at the end ("Janmunth",
"Febmunth", "Marmunth", "Appmunth", "Maimunth" etc.)

For the days I was never quite settled on a system. On my website I just
reshaped the English names ("Loodsdei", "Mundei", "Tjusdei", "Wensdei",
"Thoosdei", "Freisdei", "Shabatdei".) That is an unfortunate mixture of
the Christian with the Pagan. I thought about naming the days of the
working week according to their themes in Genesis Ch I.


In message <kgtp015kuo411cm96...@4ax.com>, Dana Nutter
<dn2...@nutter.net> writes


>
>What I was actually trying to find were some good examples of
>expressions used in different languages to indicate dates and
>times.
--

Rupert Barnes

Prai Jei

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Feb 12, 2005, 3:33:07 PM2/12/05
to
Rupert Barnes (or somebody else of the same name) wrote thusly in message
<6KwbxKBO...@rahbarnes.demon.co.uk>:

> For the days I was never quite settled on a system. On my website I just
> reshaped the English names ("Loodsdei", "Mundei", "Tjusdei", "Wensdei",
> "Thoosdei", "Freisdei", "Shabatdei".) That is an unfortunate mixture of
> the Christian with the Pagan. I thought about naming the days of the
> working week according to their themes in Genesis Ch I.

For Hallon I'm stuck for a decent name for Monday, the rest being named
according to Christian feasts/fasts that occur on those days:
Sunday Toja Rulat (The Lord's Day)
Monday ----
Tuesday Toj'Usleva (Day of Shriving ref. Shrove Tuesday)
Wednesday Toj'Ovasha (Day of Ashes ref. Ash Wednesday)
Thursday Toja Mandat (Day of Command ref. Maundy Thursday)
Friday Toja Galuva (Day of the Cross ref. Good Friday)
Saturday Toja Sabbat (Sabbath Day)
Since there seems to be no major Christian commemoration that always falls
on a Monday, I'm a wee bit stuck. Any suggestions anybody?

The wicked suggestion Toj'Ovadil-dos-mushoda has just come to mind, a
translation of Russian ponedelnik, literally "after-do-nothing" :)

Or how about Toja Li-u-sulasha - "Back-to-work day" :))

--
Paul Townsend
Pair them off into threes

Interchange the alphabetic letter groups to reply

Dana Nutter

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Feb 12, 2005, 6:04:08 PM2/12/05
to
temu [Rupert Barnes] pis ra ...

Names aren't so much what I'm after, but HOW these are expressed
in different langauges. What types of phrases are used and
their syntax. Phrases like:

What time is it?
It is X o'clock.
etc...

In English and many other languages, time references seem to
have very idiomatic constructions. I'm trying to find out about
languages that may or may not have a more logical approach.

N. Aslanidis

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Feb 13, 2005, 2:10:49 AM2/13/05
to

I found what I was looking for.

It is actually Arizona, which does not observe DST, although the Huge
Navajo Reservation in Arizone does. Strange, isn't it?

Something else, which I find strange, is that China, although a huge
country, does only have ONE time zone. Of course this is practical as
well as unpractical, for various reasons.

I remember a trip to London (from Germany) in 1992, where we had an hour
difference, when we left, but no time difference, when we returned,
because, if I recall correctly, the time had changed in Germany while we
were in London, but it had not in England. Strange experience.

Niko

Dana Nutter

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Feb 13, 2005, 4:16:16 AM2/13/05
to
temu [N. Aslanidis] pis ra ...

> Dana Nutter wrote:
> > Arizona and Hawaii are the only two I know about. I wish they
> > all would get rid of daylight savings.

> > I live in a state with two time zones. There have been
> > instances where I've forgotton and showed up at job sites an
> > hour early.

> I found what I was looking for.

> It is actually Arizona, which does not observe DST, although the Huge
> Navajo Reservation in Arizone does. Strange, isn't it?

Indian reservations are almost sovereign nations but I do find
it strange they would hang on to such a silly idea as daylight
savings, especially if those around them do not observe it.


> Something else, which I find strange, is that China, although a huge
> country, does only have ONE time zone. Of course this is practical as
> well as unpractical, for various reasons.

The USSR used to have a single time as well. I'm not sure what
they do now.

> I remember a trip to London (from Germany) in 1992, where we had an hour
> difference, when we left, but no time difference, when we returned,
> because, if I recall correctly, the time had changed in Germany while we
> were in London, but it had not in England. Strange experience.

It must have had something to do with daylight savings as well.
The UK is on GMT while Germany would be on MEZ.

Try Australia sometime because there can be up to a 2 hour
variance because their "daylight savings" is opposite ours.
Right now there is a 16 hour difference between New York and
Sydney, but the difference will only be 14 hours during the
other half of the year.

N. Aslanidis

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Feb 13, 2005, 8:14:43 AM2/13/05
to
Dana Nutter wrote:
> temu [N. Aslanidis] pis ra ...
>
>
>>Dana Nutter wrote:
>>
> Indian reservations are almost sovereign nations but I do find
> it strange they would hang on to such a silly idea as daylight
> savings, especially if those around them do not observe it.
>

I would't necessarily call it silly. Of course it is plainly NOT
NECESSARY, but the driving force behind this is simply money, is it not?
When I need to turn on the lights in my office building for one more
hour every day that is bound to make a difference on my elecricity bill,
right?

>
> Try Australia sometime because there can be up to a 2 hour
> variance because their "daylight savings" is opposite ours.
> Right now there is a 16 hour difference between New York and
> Sydney, but the difference will only be 14 hours during the
> other half of the year.
>

This is great! :-) I never thought about that!

Niko

Dana Nutter

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Feb 13, 2005, 6:32:48 PM2/13/05
to
[N. Aslanidis] pis ra ...

> Dana Nutter wrote:
> > temu [N. Aslanidis] pis ra ...
> >
> >
> >>Dana Nutter wrote:
> >>
> > Indian reservations are almost sovereign nations but I do find
> > it strange they would hang on to such a silly idea as daylight
> > savings, especially if those around them do not observe it.
> >
>
> I would't necessarily call it silly. Of course it is plainly NOT
> NECESSARY, but the driving force behind this is simply money, is it not?
> When I need to turn on the lights in my office building for one more
> hour every day that is bound to make a difference on my elecricity bill,
> right?

I do call it silly. The same could be achieved by just having
"Winter hours" and "Summer hours" which some establishments do
anyway. I don't see where it really "saves" much of anything.
First there is the time wasted by setting and resetting clocks.
Then figure out how much is lost because of those who forget to
change their clock and end up late or early for work. The idea
originated long before electric lights. It was supposed to get
everyone started earlier during the Summer when the days are
longer back in a time when people generally worked from dawn
until dusk.

Finally there's that one part that really irritates me. At the
start of daylight savings, there is a one hour loss of time
before "last call", but in most places an extra hour is not
gained at the end of daylight savings.


> > Try Australia sometime because there can be up to a 2 hour
> > variance because their "daylight savings" is opposite ours.
> > Right now there is a 16 hour difference between New York and
> > Sydney, but the difference will only be 14 hours during the
> > other half of the year.
> >
>
> This is great! :-) I never thought about that!

I have a friend in Australia that I correspond with a lot so I
have noticed the difference. Technically I'm 15 times zones
behind, but daylight savings always offsets that by an hour in
one direction or the other.

Arnold Victor

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Feb 13, 2005, 8:45:18 PM2/13/05
to
Dana Nutter wrote:
> temu [N. Aslanidis] pis ra ...
>
>
>>Dana Nutter wrote:
>>
>>>Arizona and Hawaii are the only two I know about. I wish they
>>>all would get rid of daylight savings.
>
>
>>>I live in a state with two time zones. There have been
>>>instances where I've forgotton and showed up at job sites an
>>>hour early.
>
>
>>I found what I was looking for.
>
>
>>It is actually Arizona, which does not observe DST, although the Huge
>>Navajo Reservation in Arizone does. Strange, isn't it?
>
>
> Indian reservations are almost sovereign nations but I do find
> it strange they would hang on to such a silly idea as daylight
> savings, especially if those around them do not observe it.
>

Actually, it is those around them who cause them to keep "California"
time: they are on the California border and have more to do across the
border than with Arizonans across the desert.


> ...
--
++====+=====+=====+=====+=====+====+====+=====+=====+=====+=====+====++
||Arnold VICTOR, New York City, i. e., <arvi...@Wearthlink.net> ||
||Arnoldo VIKTORO, Nov-jorkurbo, t. e., <arvi...@Wearthlink.net> ||
||Remove capital letters from e-mail address for correct address/ ||
|| Forigu majusklajn literojn el e-poŝta adreso por ĝusta adreso ||
++====+=====+=====+=====+=====+====+====+=====+=====+=====+=====+====++

Dana Nutter

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Feb 14, 2005, 12:26:35 AM2/14/05
to
[Arnold Victor] pis ra ...

> Dana Nutter wrote:
> > temu [N. Aslanidis] pis ra ...
> >
> >
> >>Dana Nutter wrote:
> >>
> >>>Arizona and Hawaii are the only two I know about. I wish they
> >>>all would get rid of daylight savings.
> >
> >
> >>>I live in a state with two time zones. There have been
> >>>instances where I've forgotton and showed up at job sites an
> >>>hour early.
> >
> >
> >>I found what I was looking for.
> >
> >
> >>It is actually Arizona, which does not observe DST, although the Huge
> >>Navajo Reservation in Arizone does. Strange, isn't it?
> >
> >
> > Indian reservations are almost sovereign nations but I do find
> > it strange they would hang on to such a silly idea as daylight
> > savings, especially if those around them do not observe it.
> >
>
> Actually, it is those around them who cause them to keep "California"
> time: they are on the California border and have more to do across the
> border than with Arizonans across the desert.

I suppose that could be flipped around too. Most reservations
make money from gambling these days so they may be catering to
the Californians because they like their money.

Jim Gillogly

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Feb 14, 2005, 1:17:30 PM2/14/05
to
On Sun, 13 Feb 2005 04:16:16 -0500, Dana Nutter wrote:
> Try Australia sometime because there can be up to a 2 hour
> variance because their "daylight savings" is opposite ours.
> Right now there is a 16 hour difference between New York and
> Sydney, but the difference will only be 14 hours during the
> other half of the year.

Speaking of Australia, I just spent 10 days on Heron Island,
on the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Queensland. QLD
doesn't observer Summer Time, but the resort on Heron Island
does -- their time is the same as Sydney's. The resort shares
the island with a research station run by the University of
Queensland, and the research station is on Queensland time.

The entire island is only 1.7 km in circumference.

Is this the smallest land mass with two time zones?
--
Jim Gillogly

Angelos TSIRIMOKOS

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Feb 15, 2005, 10:32:17 AM2/15/05
to
Dana Nutter <dn2...@nutter.net> wrote in message news:<l3gg015b17iljpdid...@4ax.com>...

> I'm looking for information on how different languages express
> times & dates. So far this seems to be one of those areas where
> languages tend to have a lot of idiomatic usage.
>
I will try to answer your question instead of rambling on and on about
unrelated matters...
In my own native language (Greek), times and dates are expressed in
(what appears to me as) a simple and logical way. Thus,

&#931;&#964;&#953;&#962; &#960;&#941;&#957;&#964;&#949; = At the (pl.)
five or, more emphatically,
&#931;&#964;&#953;&#962; &#960;&#941;&#957;&#964;&#949; &#951;
&#974;&#961;&#945; = At the (pl.) five the hour = At five o'clock
&#931;&#964;&#953;&#962; &#960;&#941;&#957;&#964;&#949;
&#954;&#945;&#953; &#948;&#941;&#954;&#945; = At the (pl.) five and
ten =At 5:10
&#931;&#964;&#953;&#962; &#960;&#941;&#957;&#964;&#949;
&#954;&#945;&#953; &#956;&#953;&#963;&#942; = At the (pl.) five and
half = At 5:30
&#931;&#964;&#953;&#962; &#960;&#941;&#957;&#964;&#949;
&#960;&#945;&#961;&#940; &#948;&#941;&#954;&#945; = At the (pl.) five
short-of ten = At 4:50

(&#931;&#949;, shortened to &#963; before the article, is an
all-purpose local preposition, meaning 'in, on, at, by, to, into...'.
Greek learners of English find distinctions such as 'in the box, on
the table, at my side, by the fireplace, to London, into the bag'
quite baffling.)

&#932;&#951; &#916;&#949;&#965;&#964;&#941;&#961;&#945; = the (acc.)
Monday = on Monday
(likewise, without a preposition, with all days of the week.
Incidentally, their names mean "Lord's day", "second", "third",
"fourth", "fifth", "preparation" and "Sabbath".)
&#932;&#951;&#957; &#960;&#949;&#961;&#945;&#963;&#956;&#941;&#957;&#951;
&#916;&#949;&#965;&#964;&#941;&#961;&#945; = the (acc.) past Monday =
last Monday
&#932;&#951;&#957; &#940;&#955;&#955;&#951;
&#916;&#949;&#965;&#964;&#941;&#961;&#945; = the (acc.) other Monday =
next Monday
&#932;&#951; &#916;&#949;&#965;&#964;&#941;&#961;&#945; &#964;&#959;
&#956;&#949;&#963;&#951;&#956;&#941;&#961;&#953; = the (acc.) Monday
the (acc.) midday = Monday afternoon

&#932;&#951;&#957; &#960;&#961;&#974;&#964;&#951;
&#924;&#945;&#961;&#964;&#943;&#959;&#965; = the (acc.) first of-March
= on March 1st
&#931;&#964;&#953;&#962; &#960;&#941;&#957;&#964;&#949;
&#924;&#945;&#961;&#964;&#943;&#959;&#965; = at the (acc.) five
of-March = on March 5 [and likewise with all dates but the 1st]
&#932;&#951; &#916;&#949;&#965;&#964;&#941;&#961;&#945;
&#960;&#941;&#957;&#964;&#949;
&#924;&#945;&#961;&#964;&#943;&#959;&#965; = the (acc.) Monday the
(acc.) five of-March = on Monday March 5
&#932;&#959; &#924;&#940;&#961;&#964;&#953;&#959; = the (acc.) March =
in March
&#932;&#959; &#954;&#945;&#955;&#959;&#954;&#945;&#943;&#961;&#953; =
the (acc.) summer = in summer OR next summer OR last summer
T&#945; &#954;&#945;&#955;&#959;&#954;&#945;&#943;&#961;&#953;&#945; =
the (acc.) summers = in summer (habitually)
To 1960 = the (acc.) 1960 = in 1960
[less frequent] &#931;&#964;&#945; 1960 = at the (acc. pl.) 1960 = in
1960
&#931;&#964;&#959;&#957; &#949;&#953;&#954;&#959;&#963;&#964;&#972;
&#945;&#953;&#974;&#957;&#945; = in the twentieth century
[but curiously] &#964;&#959;&#957;
&#960;&#949;&#961;&#945;&#963;&#956;&#941;&#957;&#959;
&#945;&#953;&#974;&#957;&#945; = the past century = in the last
century


Curiosities I have gleaned from contacts with other languages:
In Hungarian, one literally says "on Monday, on Tuesday..." but
"Sunday" [without a preposition]
In German, and in other languages (i.a. Hungarian) influenced by
German, one says "half six" to mean "half past five". It is, after
all, the half-point of the sixth hour!

Let's hope whatever servers and conversions the Greek words have to go
through before being displayed on this forum will not mangle them to
badly!

Angelos TSIRIMOKOS, Brussels

N. Aslanidis

unread,
Feb 15, 2005, 6:24:26 PM2/15/05
to
Angelos TSIRIMOKOS wrote:
> In German, and in other languages (i.a. Hungarian) influenced by
> German, one says "half six" to mean "half past five". It is, after
> all, the half-point of the sixth hour!

It is, my dear Angele, a bit worse even in southern Germany and Austria.
There "viertel fünf" (lit. "quarter five") is in use at a quarter past
four and "dreiviertel fünf" (lit. threequarters five) is in use at a
quarter to five, as these two are one and three quarters of the fifth hour.

Nikolaos

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