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UTC is enough, or is it?

Time I recently came across this question in a blog post about Programming time, dates, timezones, recurring events, leap seconds... and started to wonder what if.

What if one lives in Zulu time?

Now to clarify, I am not writing about moving to a different country - although I am - but rather to change all clocks to UTC time no matter the time zone you are in. I am as well not going to focus on the programming aspect since I am not a programmer but rather what if there were no time zones and only UTC (Zulu timea).

After all our clocks just show a bunch numbers, right?

First, let's look back in history.

  • Calendar Some 30 000 years ago in today's France and Germany, the Aurignacian Culture - Early Modern Day Humans - used moon phases to record time. They also gave us the earliest Lunar Calendar ever found.
  • The terms "month" and "year" were eventually given by European ice-age hunters observing the moon phases and counting the days between them with scratched lines and gouged holes in sticks or bones 20 000 years ago.
  • Around 4 500BCE, Sumerians had a calendar that divided the year into 30 day months, divided the day into 12 periods, and divided these periods into 30 parts. These 12 periods and 30 parts correspond to 2 of our hours and 4 of our minutes each respectively.
  • Stonehenge's purposes apparently included the determination of seasonal or celestial events, such as lunar eclipses, solstices et cetera based on its alignment. Unfortunately there is no written record of it but it appears to have been built over 4 000 years ago.
  • 3 100BCE is the earliest year recorded in history with 365 days by the Egyptians. They devised this 365 day calendar when they realized the "Dog Star" or Sirius in Canis Major rose next to the sun every 365 days.
  • Babylonians adopted their arithmetic of 60 probably because of the many divisors - e.g. the zodiac cycle of 12 constellations. They based the adoption of 360 days for a year on the sun's movement at about 1 degree each day relative to fixed stars and their existing mathematics ca. 1 600BCE.
  • Between 2 600BCE and 1 500CE the Mayans had two calendars. One based on the sun & moon and the one on the planet Venus to establish 260 day and 365 day calendars. This spread across Central America reaching their apex between 250 and 900CE. Presently, we have the 365 day solar calendar with a leap year every four years.

That was quite a journey so far but history holds way more than that.

Egypt Obelisk Unfortunately the Sumerian culture was lost including their knowledge but the Egyptians followed suit in dividing their days into parts. An obelisk's moving shadow formed a kind of sundial determining morning or afternoon and the year's longest and shortest days. More subdivisions of time were marked around the base of the monument. Over the centuries sundials evolved into various forms for better accuracy.
Sundials, however, weren't very effective at night. Thus water clocks were among the earliest timekeepers that didn't depend on the observation of celestial bodies and could determine the hours at night by either water dripping out of a small hole at the bottom of a vessel or cylindrical or bowl-shaped containers filling with water at a somewhat constant rate.
Later on mechanized - The Tower of the Winds - combined a sundial and a 24 hour mechanized water clock. It also displayed the seasons of the year and astrological dates/periods.

Water is naturally difficult to control and the sun is not very accurate and doesn't shine at night, not much happened until the 14th century in Europe. Yes, we just jumped continents and about a millennium.

The first mechanical clock was recorded in a church in Italy around 1309. Whereas the oldest still working clock in the world is in Salisbury Cathedral from 1386. We have no prior evidence of working models to these clocks, which were weight-driven with a verge-and-foliot escapement. These clocks still weren't very accurate.
Christiaan Huygens introduced the pendulum and a clock's margin of error dropped to 1 minute a day at first and was later reduced to 10 seconds a day. In the early 1700s George Graham improved the accuracy to 1 second a day. Though all of these clocks were still set using sundials. By the way, the cuckoo clock was invented ~1775, the stopwatch in 1776 and the electric clock in 1840. Until the railways came in ~1840 each town in Britain had a different time and the international time zones including Greenwich Meantime (GMT) were formed in 1884.

Tower Clock

Now not to be confused: GMT (UTC+0) is the time zone and UTC is the time standard

Within the next century, nearly free pendulum clocks - like Siegmund Riefler's in 1889 - attained an accuracy of a hundredth of a second a day becoming the standard in many astronomical observatories a that time. Upon the introdcuton of R.J. Rudd's true free-pendulum principle in 1898, the W.H. Shortt clock - one of the most famous - was demonstrated in 1921 and almost immediately replaced Riefler's as a supreme timekeeper in observatories.

Another development in the 1920s were quartz crystal oscillators and clocks which quickly overtook Shortt's in performance. Their operation is based on the piezoelectric property of the crystals and had no gears or escapements as previous clocks. Quartz clocks and watches dominated the market in numbers because of their excellent price to performance ratio.

In the late 1940s, after the development of radar and high frequency radio communications, the first atomic clock based on amonia was built. Due to it's poor performance however, focus was quickly shifted towards the cesium based approach. This led, in 1955, the National Physical Laboratory in England to built the first practical cesium atomic frequency standard in collaboration with the U.S. Naval Observatory.
By 1960, cesium standards were refined enough to be incorporated into the official timekeeping system, leading to wide acceptance of this new technology.

Let's continue with the time zones

The most obvious and logical thinking here is: the day has 24 hours thus 24 zones, one per hour.
Wrong. There are 39 zones - some cross and overlap, some defy the sun and others are offset by 30 or 45 minutes.

Take Samoa, for example, they were on the western side of the date line but since their main trading partner was the US, they decided to switch to the eastern side (UTC-11) on July 4th 1892.
Yet again in 2011 Samoa split into American Samoa and Samoa. Now Samoa's main trading partner is Australia and New Zealand causing them to skip an entire day (December 30th 2011) when they went back to UTC+13/14 DST. Since then the two coutries - although only about 100km apart - have a 25 hour time difference.

Or China, they have 5 time zones but decided to only use Beijing time (UTC+8).
Thus in western China sunrise can be as late as 10:30 a.m., and sunset around midnight.

Moving to the unified time

So, why not take this approach and say when it's noon in Greenwich, Britain it is 12 everywhere.

  • What do those numerals mean anyway?
  • Wouldn't it be more logical to adhere to the sun as we have from the dawn of history?
Indeed there will be some adjustment but if Australia can handle their Winter in June, why not the rest of the world a unified time? Sure, people in New York or anyone on the same longitude will have breakfast at noon and dinner around midnight; while anyone around 150° longitude will have their sunset at about 7 a.m.
By the way, the time zones we have today are just about a century and a half old anyway..
In our globally networked era many indurstries already use Zulu time;
  • it is used in Aviation resulting in better communication and fewer incidents,
  • the military uses it to coordinate operations around the globe,
  • and the IT sector is widely using it for server administration (& the cloud).
Of course words like ante meridiem (before noon), post meridiem (after noon), Noon, Midnight, etc would soon become obsolete but imagine how easy it could be to schedule your next business meeting.
No more "10 a.m. your or my time?" but simply "10 o'clock". No more jet lag.
And perhaps only the metric system. (Yes, I mean you Americans. Even the British have adopted it by now.)

However, this entire concept is not new, visionary novelist Arthur C. Clarke suggested something similar in 1976, and many scientists as well as economists have been advocating for it since then.
Certainly there are some drawbacks but sometimes even time has to catch up on time.

Images (in order): A Pixabay B SSERVI C Pixabay D Pixabay

Explanations: a Time and Date

Sources & more information: 1 Zach Holman's take on time 2 Things of Interest 3 Smithsonian Magazine 4 Vice 5 Hacker News 6 Medium 7 New York Times 8 The Johns Hopkins University 9 NPR 10 Quanta Magazine 11 NRICH 12 NASA SSERVI 13 Human Origin Projekt 14 Encyclopedia Cengage 15 NIST 16 Ancient History

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UTC is enough, or is it? by Maximus Marcus Scaeva is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

#thoughts #time #world #change #life #whatif #reality #earth #planet #science #utopia #research

Breaking ashore - The Change

The Change

A clicking sound, a key turning. 'Oh no she found the key!', Leia thought but before she could react Mia stood in the door. "My turn.", she said. Michael looked at her as she was standing there in her black, white and red lingerie - "I must be dreaming", were the only words leaving his mouth. "We assure you this is real." Mia & Leia said simultaneously. "Leia leave" she insisted "no need to lock the door".

"Be gentle and don't break him, sis." - "No promises, sis. You, Michael is it? I am going to have some fun with you now." To begin with she let him kneel in front of her and kiss her hand and feet. He already wanted to get up but she took one step closer to push his face right into her panties. Grasping for air she kept a tight grip around his head and rubbing herself against it. This position allowed for only one escape; he grabbed her legs, lifted her up and through her on the bed. A little scream of fear, surprise and joy left her lips. She liked him trying to gain control but she took his arm, pulled twisted nearly dislocated it until she was back on top. "Nice try, sweety. Now lick it."

The pain in his arm was still present but Mia's commanding voice helped him focus on the task at hand and her taste fascinated him. Minutes turned into hours - 'Finally. She's quivering.', he thought. Her whole body was in fact. "Don't… You… Dare… Stop now!" she screamed in ecstasy, pushing herself harder against his tongue. Mia came squirting all over his face. Michael ceased the opportunity pushed her, in her vulnerable state, on her back and said "Now I'm on top".

Continue to the next Chapter (soon)

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Breaking ashore - The Change by Maximus Marcus Scaeva is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

#nsfw #beach #sex #love #life #erotic #threesome #fiction #dream #mouth-to-mouth #kissing

Breaking ashore - First Sight

First Sight

Entwined as they were, purely driven by lust, it was that moment he opened his eyes. Seeing her in all her beauty closer than ever before. "Look who finally decided to face reality. Don't be shy, you've already explored my body with your other senses. Now take a look.", she said. But before he could reply, someone knocked at the door. "Are you good in there? Do you want anything to drink? Or do you need an extra hand?", the other female voice from earlier shouted through the door.

"Give us a bit more time, Mia", Leia replied, "later you can join us. At the moment he is pretty exhausted." Even though this wasn't entirely true; he knew she wanted him to herself first, so they needed to be more careful and quite as her friend was probably still standing in front of the door. "Now to you my dear. Do you like what you see?". As a matter of fact, getting to know her body from top to bottom with his hands, gave his imagination enough to paint the picture. "My darling, I didn't need to see to experience and appreciate your beauty. You…"; - "Be quite already, you're making me blush all over. You know, I imagined this when we first met. I…" - "didn't know how to tell you", they interrupted each other.

Silence. Long uncomfortable silence. Neither of them seemed to have the ability or find the words left unspoken. Minutes passed by like seconds, they were starring into each other's eyes trying to find the thoughts, that one spark leading to this very moment, that one clue to find out whether it was all true or just an experiment. Yet again, he merely noticed it and didn't want to be the one quitting, although it wasn't a contest but neither of them bothered to answer whoever was knocking on the door.

But then he remembered the lyrics to a song. And so he began:

"I wish that I could tell you just how much you mean to me 
The way I think about you constantly
You've got me where you want me - you're the spider, I'm the fly
I can't break free 'cause I never try.
The fear of losing you is driving me insane
Even though I know you're not the one to blame
And we both can see how the end will be, so why do we still pretend?
From Dr. Jeckyll I turn into Mr. Hyde
The storyline for me and you is getting very near the end

Although she thought he couldn't sing at all, she let him go on for a while but then stopped him and said: "That was awful, do not ever attempt to sing again but I couldn't have said it better. I love you, too."

After they had said the unspoken, they continued giving into their insatiable longing for each other. Moving from one position to another trying to intensify feeling, pleasuring one another until few hours later they finished in Afternoon Delight1.

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Breaking ashore - First Sight by Maximus Marcus Scaeva is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Song lyrics excerpt of All For The Sake Of Love

Sex position explained here

#nsfw #beach #sex #love #life #erotic #threesome #fiction #dream #mouth-to-mouth #kissing

Breaking ashore - The Bedroom

The Bedroom

Some minutes later he was put on a bed of some sort, one of the women still holding his hand the other one left with by saying "Good luck, Leia. I'll come back later to check on you two". The door was shut and his hand let go, then there was a clicking noise. She must have locked the door from the inside.

"Now we are all alone, come on you can open your eyes. I know you are alive and enjoyed the show down at the beach." Michael didn't want to, he couldn't, not knowing if it is really her he would see, but her voice sounded very familiar. "Alright I get it, you don't know do you? Where you are, who I am, afraid you are not going see the woman of your dreams. Well, then let me make you understand." Leia climbed into the bed next to him, taking his hand gently kissing his cheeks and turning slowly to his mouth while moving on him."

He could feel her chest, her hips, her entire body on him. She stopped. "Still no clue who I might be, want open your eyes and find out?" The tension was unbearable but he didn't want to, even though he knew who she might be. She put his hand onto her body and said "Feel me, to understand who I am. See me with your every touch. You know I am yours, you know I want only you, no one else is going to see me like you do. But I'm not going to tell you my name, open your eyes to find out yourself."

He couldn't open his eyes. He touched her, started with her face - it was well defined; her neckline and shoulders just right; her breasts - perfect, as if they were designed for his hands. Moving down along her silhouette - not too much not too little and her skin cared for and soft, yet still firm.

"I know you now, your scent, your voice, your body. It all comes together now, yet I do not want this beautiful adventure to end", Michael said before Leia took his hand and pushed it further down her body. "You do not know me fully, let me guide you exploring my innermost parts." He stopped breathing for a moment or two, when well trimmed short hair stimulated his fingertips down her most sensitive, intimate part.

She tightened her grip around his hand, guiding him to feel her every last spot. "By now you must know.", she said short of breath. Overwhelmed by excitement, he took control of his hand, sat up and whispered "Thank you, my Love" close to her ear while pushing it into the warm welcoming home she offered.

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Breaking ashore - The Bedroom by Maximus Marcus Scaeva is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

#nsfw #beach #sex #love #life #erotic #threesome #fiction #dream #mouth-to-mouth #kissing

Breaking ashore - The Beach

The Beach

He felt pressure on his chest.

'Where is this coming from?', did Michael ask himself. But before he could answer it, air was being pushed into his lungs. Putting the pressure and air aside for a moment, he slowly began to realise where he must be. The waves of the sea were breaking ashore, the ground beneath him soft, and warm from the heat of the sun.

There it was again, the flow of air, powerful but gentle at the same time. The lips wrapping around his mouth were well defined and surprisingly pleasant. He began to enjoy the feeling, still wondering how or why… suddenly he realised… someone was performing CPR. Wait. He tried to move his arm someone was holding his hand and tightened the grip when they felt his movement. The mouth to mouth resuscitation evolved very slowly into sensual passionate extensive kissing.

Michael did not dare to open his eyes, he couldn't, not knowing who he would be seeing. However, from the scent his nose picked up and the taste of the skin, he was very confident to know who it might have been. He heard someone in the distance asking "Is he alive?". She stopped, her tongue and mouth moved back to reply "We will have to carry him inside". Soon he was grabbed by the feet and under his arms, trying not to make him as heavy as he was for the two ladies carrying him.

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Breaking ashore - The Beach by Maximus Marcus Scaeva is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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Breaking ashore - Chapter Overview

[Be aware it may not be suitable to read at work]


The Beach

The Bedroom

First Sight

The Change

To be continued

Creative Commons License

Breaking ashore - Chapter Overview by Maximus Marcus Scaeva is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

#nsfw #beach #sex #love #life #erotic #threesome #fiction #dream #mouth-to-mouth #kissing