Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Reason for this Blog

This blog will concentrate on the reasons for doing away with Daylight Saving Time (DST). Even in a simpler era, the trains fought DST for a very good reason. It caused them a lot of problems. Back then times were much simpler. Today we have television, radio, Internet, airplanes, and problems with even something so simple as Microsoft Windows and Linux both setting the clock differently. At least until recently, Microsoft Windows Windows set the real clock (hardware) to local time and Linux set it to UTC (also called GMT and Zulu) time.

Today we have TV channels with people who still cannot get it right. Take the History channel for an example. If I go to it selecting the Mountain Time Zone, their web site has it fouled up. They show "The Universe: Secrets of the Space Probes" as coming on at 10:00 PM MT. It has been this fouled up for years now. If you want to see when it comes on, select PT. Then add one hour unless you are in Arizona. During winter that is what you do there. During the summer which has DST every place in the Mountain Zone except Arizona that is still what you do since Mountain time is one hour ahead of Pacific Time. But Arizona does not use DST. So during the summer they do nothing in Arizona since the Pacific Time (PDT) has de-facto become the same thing as MST and it is thus at the same time.

Confusing? Of course it is. How should the History channel do it? Stop specifying their two feed times (one for eastern and one for pacific) in local time! Express them in UTC time. To calculate the viewing time just subtract the proper amount of hours depending on which feed is used. If you get the eastern feed you subtract from it. But I can guarantee they will never get it correct until DST is abolished.

Kazakhstan has abolished DST, citing health complications as the reason. That is probably because it caused so many headaches with things like this. Russia has about eight time zones and Kazakhstan still has ties with them for television and other things.

So tell the golfers in Congress to just shift to doing things an hour earlier so they can go out and play golf. They can do that very simply without the added complexity of Daylight Saving Time (English Summer Time).