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EU to recommend that member states abolish daylight saving time (theguardian.com)
602 points by bkfh 19 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 362 comments



As an Australian who lives in Berlin, I find this hilarious, remembering the (cretinous) debates about daylight saving back in Australia, particularly Queensland where I was born.

For 30 years, Queensland has been in a different time zone to NSW and Victoria during summer, because it has never adopted daylight savings. For this, such wonderful arguments were advanced such as "It will fade the curtains" (Wait, wat) and it will upset the cows to be milked at a different time.

And across the other side of Australia, Western Australia (always a, er, special place) has had FOUR referendums in the last 50 years on whether to adopt daylight savings. All were rejected.

So watching Europe deal with this pragmatically and quickly is quite pleasing to watch.


I've seen several studies that conclude that cows don't care what time they are milked, as long as it is done consistently. In many farms, the milking operation is actually entirely automatic -- the cows walk up to the milking stations by themselves.

https://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/23/nyregion/with-farm-roboti...


IIRC the consistency is the issue: when DST kicks in they have to shift the milking time by an hour which apparently (based on a vague memory from a news article I read years ago) breaks the routine for the cows and can create issues.

The obvious solution would be not to shift the milking time with DST but then it means that the truck picking up the milk for the factory will arrive one hour later which creates issues with conserving the milk properly, so you basically have the problem at one point or an other.


> but then it means that the truck picking up the milk for the factory will arrive one hour later which creates issues with conserving the milk properly, so you basically have the problem at one point or an other.

Don't know where this comes from..!

The milk is (was at least when I grew up) supposed to ve cooled down to 4 degrees (Celcius, that is) ASAP. As long as that is done and you follow the recommendations for washing and disinfecting everything you should be fine even with half a day delay or more

Source: grew up on a dairy farm, went to farming school.


> Don't know where this comes from..!

I've heard this before. I'm pretty sure it dates back to the days before refrigeration when the milk was transported from cow to consumer every morning.


Yeah I was going to say. You know how easy it is to hit a one hour delay when driving a truck? If milk was ruined over an hour here or there then dairy farming would be incredibly fragile!


Yup. Hence my former coworker's business, Promethean (coolectrica.com), which makes milk chillers designed for markets where there is grid power, but it's intermittent and you can't depend on it being up when you need it.


Almost all dairy farms have chilled bulk tanks. Depending on the size of the dairy, number of cows, etc the tank contents may be transferred to a truck daily or every few days. An hours difference is not likely to mess things up.


Unless the farmer is still milking and filling the tank when the milk truck comes. Which isn't permitted (at least not in my state) - the tank can't be filled while it's being pumped out, and it has to be cleaned after emptied. The larger farms probably have multiple tanks and it's not a problem, but smaller farms don't.

So if the milk truck driver follows DST, then you do too (or you need to pad your schedule by an hour to allow for a smooth transition to DST, which can be hard to do when you're first on the route and he comes at 7am)


Clearly they need to schedule things based on solar time (sundial) or UTC time.


Cows aside, the referendum was mostly to abolish the switch. But it wasn't decided yet which time to fall back to although it was part of the questionnaire.

So basically you'll use the same time all year but it will probably be up to every country to decide whether or not it's summer time. Cows rejoice, they will be milked at a constant time which may or may not differ by 1h from present time.

As a human I actually care about that 1h, it's not enough that we stop switching back and forth, I would personally like more daylight in the evening.


One could always vary working hours throughout the year.


Yeah, most problems that switching time twice a year is intended to solve could be solved much better by explicitly scheduling things relative to the available sunlight, and the circadian rhythm would cope better with the gradual change.

Want more sunlight in the evening? Find an employer who closes shop a fixed time before sunset.

Don't want to go to work in the dark? Find a job where you get to start a fixed time after sunrise.

Having both would lead to longer working days in summer and shorter ones in winter, but I think that would be acceptable in many cases.

The obvious reason why such a scheme wasn't implemented is that the calculations required would be annoying to do manually, but by now that can be taken care of by technology.


Where I work we must clock in 7h36m and a mandatory 30 minutes long lunchtime (and an additional 15 minutes break at 10:15) a day.

You can come in between 8:00 and 9:00 and leave between 16:00 and 18:00. The whole thing is beaned by an electronic box with a finger scanner.

Works pretty well. Tacit rule is overtime is used to extend an out-of-office lunch break but it gets converted into an obligatory off day when you hit the 8h bar.

You are not supposed to make more than 1 day and a half per month this way.


Where do you work? There is no way I could work under those conditions. I roll into work when I want, leave when I want, spend 1+ hours working out in the company gym, etc.


I used to feel that way about my jobs. Roll in when I like. Leave when I like.

Invariably for me, this meant I’d start when I woke up (06:00) and work through the evening (past 21:00 was the usual minimum)

My new job has a guarantee about starting no earlier than 08:00 and leaving no later than 19:00.

It’s amazing.


Eh, not me. I typically roll in somewhere between 9-10am. I work out in the gym between noon and 1:30. Then I head home around 5 or so. I almost never do any work in the evening.


So do I but when you put it that way it makes me feel lucky to work in this industry...


The parent sounds a lot like UK Civil Service working conditions.

Where do you work? Sounds great.


Is that a loaded question ?


Some people have this flexibility already and might even get over the clock change easier because of this.

But most jobs don't have it and switching jobs based on this is a tall order for the majority of people affected. It's more or less like saying "just find a job that pays a lot better". So whatever time is chosen some people will be left disappointed. One of them repeatedly downvoted me just for saying I'd rather have sunlight in the evening :).


That wouldn't solve the problem. Studies (random picks [0] [1]) showed that on that day when you wake up earlier than your body is used to there is a visible increase in road accidents, deaths in surgeries, etc. People are more likely to make mistakes. It also poses lots of logistical issues when an hour "repeated" itself or "disappeared".

The whole point is to not have to adjust your body's rhythm, and also to eliminate the planning glitches that occur around the moment of the switch, not just to save time on turning back a clock.

[0] https://journalistsresource.org/studies/environment/energy/d...

[1] https://edition.cnn.com/2016/03/11/health/daylight-saving-ti...


Some people like more daylight in the evening.

When the work day begins and ends varies widely for a lot of people.

And regardless of whether there is more daylight in the morning or evening because of a one time change, people will drift back to the times that work for them. Just as they would if we arbitrarily moved the clock ahead by 6 hours.


But it depends on your location, your latitude. The farther south you go towards the equator the less of an effect DST has on daily life.


There was no referendum, it was just an Internet consultation. As representative as a so-called poll on any newspaper website...

Oh, and the EU server broke when I tried to validate my answer...


You're right, not a referendum, I used the wrong term.

But you're wrong to assume it's as representative as a newspaper poll. It might not be binding but this doesn't change the fact that it's representative of people's wishes. A newspaper poll is not representative simply because each publication has a very specific audience. This consultation did not (unless you count "having internet" as very specific).


"this doesn't change the fact that it's representative of people's wishes"

Is it?

I wouldn't trust an electronic poll any more than I'd trust an electronic voting machine.


I guess it's all about what's at stake. Does abolishing the switch feel like the kind of topic with such an importance to warrant hacking the system? Especially since it was a consultation.

Every person I know in multiple countries is either very indifferent towards this decision or would prefer to abolish the clock change. It may be anecdotal but it supports the fact that in this day and age you really don't need to shift the hour anymore because there's no benefit to it. Plenty of disbenefits though. You don't need a hack to prove this is true and that people feel those disbenefits.


Growing up the cows on our farm were quite a bit moodier when DST arrived. They would calm down after one or two weeks until the next DST happened and the cycle starts again.

Not enough of a reason to warrant saving DST, but enough that there was definitely a difference in most of them.


> ... the cows ... were quite a bit moodier ...

I see what you did there. Nice!


Growing up in Indiana, we never had daylight savings time. Standard time year-round. It was finally adopted after tireless arguing about how it was difficult for business to be an hour different from the rest of the country for half the year. Those against adopting it did use the "milking the cows" argument also.

I don't think at the time people could foresee the impact of online business, when it really doesn't matter where you are or what time it is.


The problem was that the decision to adopt DST or not, or even what time zone to be on, was made at the county level, so you ended up with this patchwork. It was never a problem in Marion County, but the areas around Chicago and Evansville were pretty confusing.

My major problem is less about DST than the fact that all of Indiana should be on Chicago time all year. Mean solar noon is waaaaay off from clock noon, all year long. I got really f'ing sick of waiting at the school bus stop in the dark for 10 years.

The cow milking argument has always been pure idiocy. Let's make the "kids starting school before the cows even wake up" argument for once.


Figuring out what time it was in other states was always a pain. I worked at a call center pre-DST: Our opening hours shifted during DST to allow for proper call time from the rest of the nation.


That's a terribly small part of the world (I'm sitting there). Yes, it was annoying when we did switch to DST. The arguments were all economic (We need to match Indy!). I've known some famers that called DST slave time, as it just ended up making them work more.


Indiana was the worst. The western part (Purdue) were on central time. The rest on Eastern. For people in neighboring states it was painful.


When was the Lafayette (The purdue area) on central time? At least 23 years ago it was on eastern, though I think a couple counties to the west was central time, which was pretty common with cities dependent more on cities in Illinois than greater Indiana or Ohio. (Gary, for example, or Terre Haute might have been as well, though that memory is fuzzy).

Source: Graduated high school about an hour from there, then lived in different small towns outside of the area. Was pretty popular for folks to go party at purdue on the weekends if you knew someone there and had willing enough parents. This was both before the adopted DST and after.


Hmm... I may have been wrong. I guess the confusion is that some counties followed DST, and some didn't. And then some were on Central and some on Eastern.


> And then some were on Central and some on Eastern.

Currently are


My experience in my family and with my friends is that “it will fade the curtains” is said flippantly (my mother particularly likes it). Does anyone have any documentation of people that have said it seriously, or is it unsubstantiated and potentially urban myth?


It's often attributed to either Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen, or his wife Flo. I can't find a definitive source after a quick Google search, though.


I'm pretty sure it was him in the 1970s sometime. I don't know who complained that "the men would get their morning erections while on the bus" though.

Edit: Another Queensland premier Peter Beattie claimed daylight savings would increase skin cancer rates.

https://www.theage.com.au/national/now-daylight-saving-cause...


Peter Beattie’s statement doesn’t seem unreasonable to me; if daylight savings time causes people to spend more time outdoors when the sun is up, or that for the time they spend the sun is up more—which is basically the whole purpose of DST—then increased skin cancer rates is what you would expect. How much increased, I wouldn’t care to comment, and it’s difficult to measure most such things unless you have parallel measurable universes.


Yeah, living in Victoria (Australia) I’d love to push to scrap DST but I also know how incredibly useless Australian politicians are and that it’s just go nowhere and only end up wasting money.


I know, they could have a refer, err, pelebicite! That's always proven to be a crowd pleaser!


> always a, er, special place

Can you expand on this? Or is this an east vs west viewpoint?


A bit. In the West we mock the East. We're pretty sure they forget we exist half the time.


Actually, most Australian flat-earthers don't think Western Australia exists and you are all actors...


> For 30 years, Queensland has been in a different time zone to NSW

Ridiculous! That sounds like Portugal and Spain. If one lives in Porto and travels just north of the border to Vigo (Galicia), it's an hour ahead. Apparently it was done by Franco who wanted to be on the same time as Hitler [1]

1 - https://text.npr.org/s.php?sId=244995264


Well, not so ridiculous. Queensland extends for almost 3,000 km north to south, and they really don't need DST up in the tropics. (Although the vast bulk of the population is concentrated at the non-tropical end.)

That said, I live in NSW and run a team that needs to maintain a 24/7 rotation, and dearly wish they would nuke DST once and for all worldwide: Oct/Nov and Mar/Apr are a sequence of steady pain as various offices move by an hour in one direction or another, each on different weeks of course.


Of course, the European political instances don't care at all about the effect of their laws so it's easier...


About time! If people want to get up earlier or later, then they should do like the Iranians and go to work one hour earlier in the summer. Don't change the clocks.


I agree, but I think companies could make it more palatable if they instead describe it as coming in to work one hour later in the winter.

That way, rather than sounding like they expect something extra in the summer, it sounds like they are making a helpful accommodation in the winter.

(Also, it's probably not even necessary for those with desk jobs. Arguably it's worse because you are less able to experience at least a little daylight after work.)


Tragically, our legal system and business culture are so hidebound that the easiest way to make it acceptable for people to come into work earlier, shops to opening earlier and so on is to change what time shows on the clocks.


I had no idea the Iranians do that, definitely an interesting idea.


In Spain something similar also happens: in August many companies let employees opt for "jornada intensiva" from 8am to 3pm instead of the usual 9am 6pm with an hour for lunch.


You end up so hungry doing that though :D


Only for the first week or so, your body adjusts. At least mine adjusts pretty easily based on when its used to eating.


Given that its pretty easy to go for a few days without eating, once you let your body adjust to it, this sounds plausible to me. Besides, on days when I’m not working, I can easily go until 4 or 5pm before eating (and then only eat once more before bed).


I've been doing that for more than five years. Not five summers: five whole years. I only very rarely eat at the office. I guarantee that your body will adjust after a little. In fact, you'll probably be surprised about how little it takes to get accustomed.

In fact, I think this is why intermittent fasting is somewhat easy to adopt: it's surprisingly fast to adapt your body to a different meal schedule, as long as you're eating as much as you need.


Happens in Tunisia too. (and probably more countries). There is a special administrative time for summer.


It is not a regular practice. This year, because of high electricity consumption, working hours was changed to 6:30-13:30 for government organizations. It was in effect for two months in hot cities. DST shift was applied at the start of spring anyways.


I agree, and you could even extrapolate that thought to getting rid of timezones altogether and adopting UTC everywhere.

Also, I'm not sure if it was intentional, but I appreciate your pun. It is indeed about time.


Time zone are very useful for news, travelling, business, etc. Because if you know it's 3pm somewhere or 3am, you can make assumptions. If you know it's 3am everywhere, what does that mean that your plane land at 8 am in this countey or that the strike will start at 10 on that one ?


How often do you travel to another country compared to how often you phone someone in another country? Local timezones do indeed make a lot of sense for travelling in person, but global time is much better for scheduling conference calls etc., and these days that's the more common case.


It's terrible for scheduling conference calls. Instead of just converting timezones, you have to remember what a reasonable time of day is in each locality.

Or do you just expect Australia to adopt a nocturnal working pattern so they can use UTC?


Remembering what's a reasonable time of day in each locality is the same amount of information as remembering what their timezones are. Instead of asking what timezone, you'd just ask when are work hours, or when is noon.


Except now you've taken what is basically a culturally accepted standard (9-5 work hours, lunch is around noon, it's dark at 1am) and make it very ambiguous. If you are an employer, what are the work hours for the east coast vs. west coast? What about two cities that are kinda-sorta close in terms of latitude like Houston vs. Austin? Should work start at 13:45 in the Houston office and 13:35 in the Austin office?

If you take away timezones and just say "everybody use UTC and somehow figure out how to adjust it to your local conditions", you've just pushed the cost of figuring out reasonable start & end times for different geographies onto every single member of society. All that will happen is people will come up with their own mappings between UTC and local conditions and guess what? They will look pretty close to what we have with timezones right now only it won't be standardized at all--making a huge mess of things. Outlook calendar will have its own mapping and Google Calendar will have a different one. Your company might have its own internal mapping that is different from your suppliers. Whoa be the person who tries to coordinate an event across these mappings ("your company does lunch at 17:49? Ours does it at 18:42 because that is closer to when the sun is overhead and people like to get in around 12:42")

This is all fun to entertain as a thought experiment but we will never get rid of timezones because, quite frankly, they are far to useful.


> Should work start at 13:45 in the Houston office and 13:35 in the Austin office?

Yes. (Or better, give employees flexibility to come in at a time that works for them).

> If you take away timezones and just say "everybody use UTC and somehow figure out how to adjust it to your local conditions", you've just pushed the cost of figuring out reasonable start & end times for different geographies onto every single member of society. All that will happen is people will come up with their own mappings between UTC and local conditions and guess what? They will look pretty close to what we have with timezones right now only it won't be standardized at all--making a huge mess of things. Outlook calendar will have its own mapping and Google Calendar will have a different one. Your company might have its own internal mapping that is different from your suppliers. Whoa be the person who tries to coordinate an event across these mappings ("your company does lunch at 17:49? Ours does it at 18:42 because that is closer to when the sun is overhead and people like to get in around 12:42")

"Mapping UTC onto local conditions" is not a problem that you ever have to solve. There are two kinds of problems you need to solve: coordinating events that happen in one location, and coordinating events that happen at a particular instant with people from multiple locations. For the first kind it doesn't matter if every office has its own solution - indeed it's better if every office has its own solution that fits their own conditions and the Norway office can start work at 8 and the Spain office can start at 11 if that suits the local climate, rather than deciding that both those countries are on CET so they'd both better start at 9AM CET. For coordinating a simultaneous event, UTC is the only thing that works (because if you try to use your local time and you get the offsets wrong, neither of you will notice).

> Whoa be the person who tries to coordinate an event across these mappings ("your company does lunch at 17:49? Ours does it at 18:42 because that is closer to when the sun is overhead and people like to get in around 12:42")

What problem does this create that doesn't already exist? If you're trying to arrange a lunch today, some people have lunch at 12, 1 or even 1:30 local time.


I suspect it’s easier to get the offsets right than to change the entire world to UTC. Unless you think the USA is going to voluntarily agree to reform around a French standard.

EDIT: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/ng-interactive/2018...


> ask when are work hours

"Nine to five, what a way to make a living... "

> or when is noon.

12 PM. Noon means 12 PM. Changing this isn't really an option.

More to the point:

> Remembering what's a reasonable time of day in each locality is the same amount of information as remembering what their timezones are.

Hey, admitting your proposed change is a Bavarian Fire Drill is the first step towards recovery.


Noon also means when the sun is highest in the sky. If everyone uses the same timezone, one of these two meanings must be broken. It makes more sense to keep the definition that doesn't have an alternative name (you can always call 12:00 12:00).

> Nine to five

No? If everyone's on the same time zone, the answer to this is different everywhere.


... and yet DST changes this twice a year.


> It's terrible for scheduling conference calls. Instead of just converting timezones, you have to remember what a reasonable time of day is in each locality.

Sure, you still have to remember a time difference or negotiate back and forth. That part is the same amount of work. But you avoid a bunch of failure cases:

* Person from a large country with one official timezone (e.g. China) assumes that when the guy in New York says "10AM my time" that means the same as when the guy in San Francisco does. * Weekly call at 10AM New York time, person from elsewhere in the world assumes it's going to be at the same time this week as last week, but it isn't because US DST changed on a different week from everyone else's. * Both people misremember what the offset between their timezones is, think they've agreed on a time, neither notices until the call happens.


The solution to China making the crazy decision to have a single timezone or DST being an unnecessary complication isn't to get rid of timezones, it's for everyone to use them properly (i.e. no DST, everyone uses the correct geographical timezone (with adjustments if only a small part of a state or country is in a different timezones )).


Why? What China does works better - no timezone confusion, no ambiguous times. Just do that everywhere.


Ah yes, I can finally just say authoritatively that 2pm my time is a great time to call my family on the other side of the world. It'll be easy.


But if you don't travel or have business abroad or whatever, what's the point of having the same hour everwhere ?

Besides, if you phone somebody on another country, you still have to figure out if 3am utc is ok. It's the same amount of work and as easy to memorise than an approximate time zone.


> But if you don't travel or have business abroad or whatever, what's the point of having the same hour everwhere ?

If you communicate with people abroad then you need to be able to agree times with them, even if you never physically meet up. (Apart from anything else, this can be a more human-friendly way to do 24-hour support: have people who live in different parts of the world work on your product and cover support at different times, even if they rarely meet in person).

> Besides, if you phone somebody on another country, you still have to figure out if 3am utc is ok. It's the same amount of work and as easy to memorise than an approximate time zone.

True, but at least you both agree on what time 3AM is, and if you e.g. reverse the sign of the offset then you'll notice this when arranging the call.


Well, I have to post this here now: So you want to abolish time zones ttps://qntm.org/abolish


I have a link which works: https://qntm.org/abolish

The author fails to mention that we could solve the problems that article brings up by making everyone work from 0800 to 1700, globally, once everyone is on UTC. I think people are just bull-headed enough to make this work, even if it means some people never see the Sun ever again. If China can spread one time zone over five, spreading one time zone over twenty four is just a matter of The Same, But Stupider.


The thing about UTC is that it is everywhere.

You can use it any time you want.


I always thought it would be useful to have a global time standard expressed as the longitude where the sun is currently at the meridian.


I'd prefer Swatch Internet Time.


Internet time would actually have been an interesting innovation... if only Swatch were not involved.


The French failed to make people use decimal time, and they had guillotines.


This would also be a benefit if only half the companies did this, then we'd stagger rush hour a bit more.

Actually it would be more of a benefit if it were staggered in the winter since lots are on holiday in the summer.

So I propose scrapping summer time and bringing in winter time. That'll confuse the cows.


Here in Germany, the local cement factory offers this on top of daylight saving time


The reality is the time the sun rises changes throughout the year. To fix reality, we adjust the definition of time.

If an activity depends on the sunrise, and not the position of the hands on the clock, then maybe they should, I dunno, schedule around the sun instead of the clock. I know, seems like crazy talk. Farmers should have farming clocks, not break everybody else's clock to align with the sun.


> Farmers should have farming clocks, not break everybody else's clock to align with the sun.

Growing up on a farm, nobody hates DST MORE than farmers. DST was not setup for farmers, it was an energy saving device from WW1. Please stop spreading that DST is for Farmers, its plain wrong.


It was so successful, in fact, that Britain was on "Double British Summer Time" for the 2nd half of WWII - two hours ahead.


Farmers have nothing to do with daylight savings (country-raised person here!). They hate it. They live and work by the sun, not by the clock.

The entire concept is only kept alive today thanks to the golf industry, imho. The upper crust- politicians, bankers, the wealthy generally- like golfing. Poor people don't golf and often are unable to pay whatever fees are needed to even enter golf clubs or buy the needed equipment.

What does that have to do with golf? If the sun sets later, relative to the time you get off work, you can get more rounds of golf in. Now, you might ask "why not just leave work earlier?". Because then you look like a slacker who leaves work early to go golfing! But if all of society is told to get to and leave work early by an hour (relative to the sun's actual rise and set) then you're leaving at the same time as everyone else.


> Now, you might ask "why not just leave work earlier?".

Because most people aren't a SV engineer living in a bubble. They are shift workers (nurse, cashier, police officer, etc) and your hours are 8am -> 4pm. I have no stats to back this up, but a hell of a lot of people are shift workers and can't just roll in an hour later because they wanted to optimize around the sunrise. They get in when they are scheduled. You think an employer is gonna implement DST?

Much better to just level the playing field and shift the whole clock an hour forward or backwards so everybody can get the benefits of additional daylight. There are winners and losers to doing this, but on a whole society has determined it to be beneficial to shift the clock back and forward based on time-of-year.

PS: If it were me, I'd perma-shift the clock towards DST. Durning the winter months in the northern latitudes it gets pretty fscking dark and nothing is worse than leaving work and having no daylight.


> but on a whole society has determined it to be beneficial to shift the clock back and forward based on time-of-year.

You are mistaken if you think that society decided this. At least in Europe there wasn't a special referendum for it. It was just decided by politicians because of the oil crisis in the 70s and lingered around. The EU only standardized the date of the switches in 1996.


Shift workers don't usually golf though.

But the more important point is, there are a lot of shift workers, and some like the extra light in the evening, some hate the dark in the morning, and some just hate the clock adjusting around the house more than the dark-light issue.


When I was a kid in China, we have winter and summer school schedules separately. It's not only a time shift. To deal with the shorter day time in winter, the winter schedule is tighter overall like shorter noon breaks. Companies usually don't do that.

For me, DST is more like a too simple solution for a much complex problem and too inflexible.


Farmer here. Daylight savings time isn't for farmers. We aim to wake before daylight and that time changes daily. I always thought it was to give 9-5ers more daylight.


You're right, but specifically, more daylight at the end of the day.

I've never figured out how an extra hour of artificial light in the morning is more than offset by one less hour of artificial light in the afternoon.


It's a win for those who want to have more time to spend outside after work, during recreational hours.

Extra daylight in the morning helps my commute, which doesn't care about artificial light. Extra daylight in the evening can be spent biking, at the pool, etc.


Farmers have always hated having to switch because doing everything an hour earlier messes with the animals. They can't simply roll everything one hour forward in the summer, because their produce has to be loaded on trucks and then transported to markets quickly, so the entire food distribution chain would have to switch to one hour later in summer.


I never thought about that - farm animals also have to adjust twice a year!


Farm animals don’t adjust. They can’t tell time. The cows get milked when they are ready to get milked regardless of what DST says the time is. The farmers are the only ones who’s schedule gets messed up by DST.


> Farm animals don’t adjust. They can’t tell time.

I'm no farmer, but I'm pretty sure that they have a general idea of what time it is.


I think you missed the point on why they have to adjust - because the entire industry's schedule changes.


How would they adjust? Are you suggesting they will have their milk ready an hour earlier or be willing to hold the milk in their udder for an hour later just because DST is turning on/off? That's now how these things work.


You are pointing out the problem actually. E.g. being woken up an hour earlier/later for instance to get fed and milked isn't fun and quite arbitrary out of the blue.


Household pets that get fed on a schedule too :/


This made my day. We've assumed that animals can adapt changes as fast as we can.


There's no need to change time itself.

All you need to do is change your schedule.


> All you need to do is change your schedule.

Easy for you to say. Not so easy when you work in an industry with shifts (nursing, doctors, retail, manufacturing, etc). Not everybody gets the luxury of a flex schedule.


"There's no need to change time itself. All you need to do is change your schedule."

I think changing the time is probably a lot easier.


Sure, it's an easier way to compel others to have a different schedule, making it more likely for others to give you that schedule.

I personally don't think that is enough to make it better.


And schedule of public transport.


Farmers rise with the sun. Daylight savings time is supposed to save energy by having more of the day during daylight.


Yeah. Growing up [1] with 2 month polar day/polar night - and rapid week-to-week changes in-between - I never felt dst made much sense...

We have accurate clocks - have had for a long time. If you need to shift football practice or construction work or something... Just start at nine in the darkest period, eight in between and seven when there's light at seven. Or vice-versa for the evenings.

[1] https://www.timeanddate.com/sun/norway/tromso


i can't think of a reason why DST is relevant to farmers. Farmers wake up with the sun , regardless what the clock says


If it means people stop telling me I'm in UTC in the summer, this would be fantastic.

"we'll meet at four your time"

"great!"

"why weren't you there?? I googled 'current time utc!!'"

"because we're on BST, aka IST, aka UTC+1 in the summer"

But this rando website says UK/Ireland is UTC!!

Someday, somehow, we'll teach people that if you're using PST in the summer, there's a 99% chance you're wrong.


IMNSHO Always refer to _cities_ when talking about different civil time systems for a specific moment, e.g. "The call is at 14:30 Melbourne time" or "When you arrive it'll be 18:15 Montreal time".

The Olson TZ data works on cities (e.g. "Europe/London" or "America/Los_Angeles") but more importantly because a city has all these humans living in it there must actually be a real working answer, or it'd be chaos. Even if the person you're speaking to isn't _from_ or working/ living in the major named city, they will have a better idea what the time is in nearby major cities than how timezones work around the world. Nobody in, say, Nantes is confused as to what time it is in Paris but they may be unclear about PST vs PDT.


On that note, to this day I find it maddening that Microsoft insists on doing time zones differently than everybody else - I literally had to pull in a library in a recent project to map between "Windows Time" and IANA standards because we develop with .Net Core on Windows on deploy on Linux.


The company I work for uses Microsoft libraries, and we deal with timezones and DST all the time. In my opinion, Microsoft does a great job keeping track of the different changes instituted by politicians around the world.

It's unfortunate that the two systems aren't in sync, but they were developed in parallell and have different data structures.


Ireland is unusual in that it doesn't have a "summer" time as during summer we use Irish Standard Time (UTC+1) and switch to Greenwich Mean Time (UTC+0) for winter.

It doesn't actually make a difference. We still switch at the same time that the rest of Europe does.


I wasn't even going to get in to the whole IST thing. I usually just say BST when pressed. Was that a result of not wanting "standard" to be the same as Britain's standard?


Technically you are on GMT, which is a timezone that's aligned to UTC during normal time, and is on BST (UTC+1) during DST. UTC has no DST.

In my experience, people in the UK refer to their time as "GMT" all the year round.


I just say PT all year (Pacific Time). Problem solved.


Alas, Britain will likely not be in the EU by then.


It might just be wishful thinking on my part… but it looks like the people in charge of leaving are so mindbogglingly incompetent that Britain might have accidentally joined the Euro by then.

Accidentally.


Pretty sure they won't be changing tome zones differently from the rest of Europe. Or maybe I'm wrong and that's one of the freedoms Farage holds so dear.

Putting the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland in different time zones would be.. annoying, at the least.

Then again you said Britain, not the UK, but I can imagine the DUP protesting pretty loudly if NI were in a different timezone to GB.

Nomenclature is fun.


You can just do "time Dublin/London/city of choice" and it'll give you the right one.


Indeed, and I do. Unfortunately my frustration is with gently telling people that if they set a meeting at 6 PM UTC it's at 7 PM for me, and that's not ideal, and them wondering why I'm telling them they did something wrong.


yeah, I've had Americans say 6AM EST during the summer when it's EDT


I'm an American on Eastern time and I work pretty routinely with people in other US time zones. I get this pretty much all the time. I think people think that putting the "Standard" in makes it sound more "official".


For Europeans that would be logical, since the S stands for summer here, like CET and CEST.


There is very little understanding in the US that "Daylight" time stops being "Standard" time. (because why should it? why have two/three time zones when you only need one?)


This error can be sidestepped by stating "Eastern".


Problem is that there aren't any widely-accepted acronyms for time zones in the United States that don't include the current daylight savings time status. Eastern is way longer than EDT.


7 PM ET [1]

6 PM CT

5 PM MT

4 PM PT

? :)

[1] https://www.google.com/search?q=%227+pm+ET%22


The most surprising here isn't the landslide 80% in favor. It's the 4.6 million responses [0] for this type of citizen consultation. That's huge.

Hopefully t's will get crossed and i's will get dotted before winter time kicks in this year.

[0]: https://www.lemonde.fr/europe/article/2018/08/31/la-commissi...


I answered the poll. I'm happy with the current system but I answered that if we have to change it I'd take permanent daylight savings, which is what they are proposing now. The rationale is that I like to have light late in summer. Early morning will be colder in winter but it's always too cold anyway so who cares.

As a reference, Spain has been in the wrong time zone for decades (GMT+1 instead of GMT) but they have no problems with that.


Of course. If there is a... misleading argument in this discussion is the one about the "wrong" time zone. What's "wrong" supposed to mean in this context? Time zones and legal hour is just a convention. Whole Europe uses only three time zones and the whole world could just use UTC and nothing would happen. The legal hour doesn't change when the sun raises or sets, just what we call it and people would adapt very quickly. Companies will also adapt changing hours once the government stops meddling.

In Spain the real problem is the brain dead broken hours with a huge gap in the middle for "lunch". That's a relic from the time after the war when most people had two jobs and some companies are very reluctant to change it because of the butt-time mindset or other idiotic reasons.


> What's "wrong" supposed to mean in this context?

The sun reaches its highest point at a time sufficiently far from 12:00.

> the whole world could just use UTC and nothing would happen.

That is not true. What would happen is that times would lose all intrinsic meaning. When you schedule an international call, people can say "that's 5 o'clock in the morning for us". If the whole word were to use UTC, you would loose that, and we would have to invent a new way to say that. You know – some kind of "localized time" :).


The sun reaches its highest point at a time sufficiently far from 12:00.

That's answering by reformulating the question. Now I would ask why is having the noon "sufficiently far" from 12:00 wrong.

What would happen is that times would lose all intrinsic meaning.

You did it again.

When you schedule an international call, people can say "that's 5 o'clock in the morning for us". If the whole word were to use UTC, you would loose that, and we would have to invent a new way to say that. You know – some kind of "localized time" :).

Is scheduling internation calls really the biggest problem that would arise? Good.

Anyway, you would say: "we are available from 22:00 to 4:00" and that is all. The way to say what time of the day is already exists: morning, afternoon...


>>> What's "wrong" supposed to mean in this context?

>> The sun reaches its highest point at a time sufficiently far from 12:00.

> That's answering by reformulating the question. Now I would ask why is having the noon "sufficiently far" from 12:00 wrong.

No, that's you moving the goalpost. I answered your question.

>>> nothing would happen.

>> What would happen is that times would lose all intrinsic meaning.

> You did it again.

I did what again? I explained how "nothing" is not what would happen.

> Is scheduling internation calls really the biggest problem that would arise? Good.

This might seem lazy, but I discovered in another answer here that somebody made this point already way better than I ever could: https://qntm.org/abolish.

Anything that is difficult right now due to time zones will stay difficult. It is difficult because of humans and their desire for daylight. You always need two time systems: One that represents local usage of time and one mostly for machines. We already have that.


Actually it causes a lot of problems according to some sources here,https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/feb/22/spania...

It's also odd getting up at 7am here and it's still pretty darkish in August.


>As a reference, Spain has been in the wrong time zone for decades (GMT+1 instead of GMT) but they have no problems with that.

Only that their lifestyle is approximateley 1 hour shifted. Stuff like eating at 21:00 or 22:00.


Portugal eats at that same time and aren't shifted one hour. Dinner is just later than most for us southerners.


honestly that's hours 2-3 hours shifted compared to anywhere I've been, most of the people eat dinner at 18-19 unless you work late


Wait, what? So sun is in the south at 1pm, not noon? I mean sure, we have compasses. But that just seems wrong.


> Hopefully t's will get crossed and i's will get dotted before winter time kicks in this year.

I agree, it would be great if the recommendation to abolish daylight saving gets passed within the next months.

actually abolishing it should be planned at least one year into the future, it would be a nightmare otherwise. There are so many systems in place that are automatically switching between time zones, and all of them need to be deprecated.

such a change cant be done within ~2 month.


Russia moved over to constant DST with around 6 weeks notice a few years ago.

It was chaos.


It's not huge at all: it is less than 1% of the population. The fact that this is used to justify 'the people want it' is hilarious.

1) People who care about abolishing it are way more likely to vote. 2) It depended heavily on media broadcasting the fact that it exists. This is why 90% of the 4M people are German; their media picked it up.

Whether you want to get rid of it or not; both are fine. However, this poll isn't a reasonable argument in favour of it.


Respectfully disagree 1% of the population answering a public consultation by the EU is low. On the contrary, it strikes me as fairly large.

It wasn't a widely advertised referendum where everyone was asked for their opinion. It was a consultation that got picked up by a few media outlets (and HN if memory serves me well). Public interest was high enough that millions took note and answered. Plus, it's the EU - which nobody ever hears about in my neck of the woods.

Most of the time, nobody hears about these consultations [0] except the small circle of interest groups that lobby EU institutions. Much like on Capital Hill across the pond, their input, rather than that of the general public, is what makes or breaks legislation. In that context, getting 4.6M answers from the general public is a reasonable argument in favor.

[0] https://ec.europa.eu/info/consultations_en


It's basically become the first EU-wide referendum on a topic completely disjointed from party politics. As such, it's historic.

If "your" media didn't pick it up, blame them. What happens in the EU matters more than national squabbles.


> 90%

65 %.


People who didn't vote are fine with either way. But it's only a poll.


Are you aware how slowly the wheels of EU bureaucracy turn?


Indeed, but there's nothing in the institutions that should prevent anything from going fast when planets align, and that one looks like a no brainer.

They consulted at the request of the Parliament. Junker took note of the unusual popularity of the consultation and the strength of the consensus. Northern countries (Finland, Baltic countries) have been calling for it for years.

More cynically, it's unusual enough for the Commission to have a popular topic on their plate. So better get media attention for that, than for sulfurous topics like the migration crisis or boring ones like the EU's multi-annual budget.


It's a recommendation after all so once it's voted the speed is really determined by each local government/member state.


i think it was actually 84% for abolishing change and majority for keeping summer time, 3mil of participants Germans, i was one of those outside Germany, found out about it last day of survey, dunno why this was not publicly announced for more representative results

i am not even sure it was anonymous, but you could provide them also reasoning, my was - good luck explaining small baby/child why it has to move its sleep by one hour, children need routine, otherwise have problem to sleep

never experienced this nonsense in eastern Asia, anyway everyone use artificial lightning, no matter what time you are following

as for swift change, i think it was already approved we will change hours until 2024 until they will also cancel agreed plan


I see that most people here (and people I know) would like to keep the "summer time" all year, because they like to get out early from work. But why not start working at 7am instead of 8am, while keeping the "true" solar horary, instead of our clocks be almost 1,5h away from the reality? Time is relative, I guess.. :)


If your job requires no interaction with the rest of society, that would work. As it is, people's lives ironically revolve around the clock and not the sun, so you're expected to be available from a certain hour of the day to a certain hour of the day regardless of the position of the sun.


In general I suppose I'd prefer to get off work around 10 am or so (if we're adjusting work to fit daylight to our free time). But I suppose there's indeed a cultural bias towards dragging everyone (in offices anyway) to 8-16 rather than 7-15 or 9-17.


Depending on where in the EU you are, it's already off.


Because we want 12 o clock to be the middle of the practical day, not the middle of the sun-day.


In typical 9-17 jobs, 12 is definitely not the middle of the practical day. I don't know anyone whose sleep schedule puts 12 at the middle of their waking period either.


They are also saying that each country then can choose if they want to keep winter or summer time... That's going to be chaotic!

Imho the summertime should be abolished for all member states..


>They are also saying that each country then can choose if they want to keep winter or summer time... That's going to be chaotic!

Given that we already have a bunch of timezones within the EU how is that any more chaotic than what we have today?


Most of us are on CET, from westernmost Spain to Poland if my memory serves me correctly.


Which already is an issue because realistically there are over 2 timezones between western Spain and eastern Poland. While people are getting up in bright daylight in Poland, people in Spain won't see the sun for at least another hour.


A bunch of three.


Not quite true. It is one of the proposals but really all the article says is that lots of people are in favour, now how are we going to do it? In other words there isn't really any traction because it will depend on the detail and there won't be much agreement.


I don’t think that’s unworkable, as long as it is fairly limited. I expect the smaller countries to follow whatever their main trading parties do. The Netherlands would follow Germany, for example.

I also expect that, as in the USA, the dates to switch to DST and out of it would be uniform within the EU, just as they are in the USA (if you have DST, switch the second Sunday in March and the first Sunday in November in the USA, last Sunday’s of March and October in the EU)

It could get interesting at times, though. My personal record is four time changes in a day, on a trip from Minneapolis to LA with a stop in Phoenix.

1. Switch to DST the night before leaving Minneapolis (triple-checking alarm clock settings)

2. Switch to what I thought would be Phoenix time.

3. Upon learning that (most of; see https://www.timeanddate.com/time/us/arizona-no-dst.html) Arizona doesn’t do DST, switch to Phoenix’s non-DST time.

4. Switch to LA time.


> the dates to switch to DST and out of it would be uniform within the EU

You misunderstand, the twice-yearly variation is what happens now. The proposal is to do away with it.


I understand, and understood, but, knowing that the EU didn’t historically require that (starting date was uniform from 1981 on, but the ending date was different between continental Europe and (the UK and Ireland) until 1995), wanted to indicate I don’t think this will become a free for all (if one hour is beneficial, wouldn’t moving 10 minutes each month, or 2-ish minutes each Sunday, be more natural? :-) )


The Netherlands, Belgium and France were actually switched to German time when they were occupied during WW2. They should really switch back[0] to WET/GMT, as their eastern borders coincide pretty well with 7.5° east. Not that they will, though; they'll follow Germany for sure.

[0] For the Netherlands that would only be a partial switch back, as they were on GMT+0.20' before that.


Nah...summertime is actually the better one. You get more light in the evening, rather than at 4 in the morning.


Winter time is definitely crap for western europe, but I don't know how good or bad it is for eastern: CET is used from poland to france to spain so it covers a fair bit of territory, and the difference between solar and standard time is already negative: http://blog.poormansmath.net/images/SolarTimeVsStandardTimeV...

FWIW remaining on summer time is the recommendation.


Up here in the Baltic states it gets dark at 4pm in winter. Sticking to summer time would make it slightly more bearable. It's dark to wake up and head to wherever one has to be one way or another.

"Outdoors" season pretty much starts at ends with DST switching.


Summer time year around is going to suck in the winter for Northern Europe. I continue to be surprised that no one is willing to learn from Russia. They tried permanent summer time, and had to switch to winter time one last time.

It's not that people in Scandinavia isn't used to having pitch black mornings in the winter, it's about the sun not rising until 10 - 10:30.


Sitting in an office from the morning I couldn't give a toss when the sun rises. But I would like the sun to be up when I leave, so I could actually enjoy the sunlight.

But this does seem to be a pretty polarizing issue.


This. It'll kill morning productivity, and children will have to go to school in pitch dark.

Permanent winter time is the way to go.


Why? More daylight after work. I'll happily take walk in daylight over breakfast in daylight.


It's the other way round. Implementing daylight savings time ("summer time") moves the effective timezone 1 hour to the East. It's worse for Western European countries. Even CET normal time is already very lopsided. France and Spain should really be part of GMT.


I'd guess that if permanent summer time were instituted, France and Spain would drop back an hour (to permanent GMT+1 instead of permanent GMT+2).


Spain could even drop to GMT. Most of it is west of London, and that would align it with Portugal.


In fact, all of Spain is west of 7.5° east, which squarely puts it in GMT territory (there's a little sliver west of 7.5° west).


Does Spain want to be aligned with Portugal, though?


Reverse way for France

Summer time is equivalent of UTC+2 Winter time is equivalent of UTC+1


That's right. But I can't imagine France would want to be on +2 year-round. (Paris mean time is only nine minutes ahead of GMT.)


In the end does it matter though?

I mean, if it had a proven benefit for kids, schools could start at different hours depending on the seasons.

Companies can decide to start at 10 or 8 instead of 9, etc.

More light in the evening doesn’t seem to make sense to me as we are the ones deciding when is “evening”


Serious question: In other parts of the country or world, do "companies" all open at the same time? They certainly do not, anywhere I've ever lived. If that is the case, that must be an interesting lifestyle. How does anyone get anything done if there's never a non-overlapping interval of "the bank is open but my employer is closed" type of problem?

I've also lived almost all my life in a "recreational paradise" state far from the coasts where its totally normal for there to be at least one, often many, "in-season" work hours vs "out-season" work hour thru the year. Much like agonizing over average temperatures is heard but isn't an issue, its not a problem for the millions who live around here.


> How does anyone get anything done if there's never a non-overlapping interval of "the bank is open but my employer is closed" type of problem?

This is a fairly big problem in modern life, as far as I can see.

Traditionally, I assume what happened was that you worked at your employer, and your wife went to the bank.


In my experience smaller companies tend to adjust to the rhythm of their biggest clients.

If one of the behemoth decides to start working at 11am -> 9pm, a lot of contractors and related services will move to the same time tables.


Yes they do. Plus nothing is open on Sundays. You get to work a bit later, or duck out for a bit to go to the bank, or go while you're doing outside work anyway.


Apparently it's easier for our collective society to agree that what was 9:00 yesterday is now 10:00, rather than allowing companies to start at 10:00 instead of 9:00.

I fully agree with you, but in many people do not agree with your argument. Interestingly in my experience whether people agree with this is different depending on whether that person has a STEM/non-STEM study or job, STEM people tend to agree.


Humans have a sleep cycle driven by circadian rhythms, and most jobs in a country work similar clock hours in order to coordinate with other companies more easily.

So in fact, it's much easier to change what the clocks say than it is to change either of these.


> In the end does it matter though?

Yes.

> More light in the evening doesn’t seem to make sense to me as we are the ones deciding when is “evening”

Western society has pretty much embedded the idea that the day is centered around 16:00 (4PM) and "night" around 03:00~04:00.

Lights out being when the vast majority of people are asleep with no light when they're actually up is stupid.


> Western society has pretty much embedded the idea that the day is centered around 16:00 (4PM) and "night" around 03:00~04:00.

Where I'm from, 4PM is late in the day, just a few hours from bedtime, and 4AM is nearly time to wake up.


You're ok.

There are at least 4 or 5 hours in difference between dinner time in western societies. From 6 PM in some Anglosaxon countries to 8/10 PM in Italy (North / South) to 10/11 in Spain.


Dinner is at 10pm in Spain, and 11pm in the summer? Interesting.


You might find this article interesting http://spanishsabores.com/2015/06/17/spain-dining-guide-when...

But remember that they are in the wrong time zone, so they always get one extra hour of light in the evening and one less in morning. This could account for the one hour of difference with comparable latitudes in Italy.


But you don't want more light in the evening, you want it to be dark earlier. Especially with summers getting hotter due to global warming.

The past summer was a good example, you can't spend any time outside before the sun goes down because it's just too hot in direct sunlight. If anything we should move the clock back an hour in summer, not an hour forward. It doesn't start being nice to be outside until after dusk.


> you want it to be dark earlier

At the cost of having the sun out at 3:30 AM? I'm not sure I like that idea.


You go to bed earlier.

Either way, Spain solves it by having siesta (at the peak). We don't have that in France or Belgium or The Netherlands.

Because when it is very warm, the best thing to do is not waste any energy and the best way to do that is rest/sleep instead of work.


But if you would have to go to bed earlier, how is that better than staying up later?


You get more vitamin D, light is good against depression, and its easier to sync yourself with the daylight.


Why not ? Light-blocking curtains are a thing.

You can keep the sun out of your house a lot easier than keeping it out of all of the outside world.


This isn’t true for most any location in the EU, except maybe southern Italy.


It's not even true of places like Florida, where the vast majority of us prefer daylight savings time.

>State Sen. Greg Steube, who sponsored the bill, said that the idea of year-round daylight time has enormous support among Floridians.

"I've heard from mayors across the state that it's going to save them money because they don't have to light their softball fields at night," Steube said, according to the Miami Herald. "I can't tell you how many people have come up to me who have said even my high school-age kid, it's hard to get him up in the morning when we fall back the clocks."

https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2018/03/08/591925587...


The hard to get up in the morning is the worst argument for DST ever. It's hard to get up because we are disputing the rhythm by changing the clock around. It's like saying "The Japanese time zone is terrible. Everytime I traveled there I get jet lag."


It's not like saying that at all.

Live in a non-DST timezone, and nothings bad.

Live in a timezone observing DST and you get the time shift twice a year, without fail.

I'd say it's more like saying - "Travelling is terrible because I hate jet lag".

I agree that it's not a very good argument. I'd say a better one that it's a weaker version of is: DST kills people:

https://www.businessinsider.com/daylight-saving-time-is-dead...


> It's not even true of places like Florida, where the vast majority of us prefer daylight savings time.

Except the sun goes down a LOT earlier in Florida which is much closer to the equator than northern Europe. In summer the sun doesn't go down until after 10PM here. If you want to have a BBQ and not burn alive while doing it, you have to start at 22:30 at the earliest. That's just not a realistic time if you have to work the next day.

edit: Also, in Florida the days get shorter during the summer, over here they get longer.


> edit: Also, in Florida the days get shorter during the summer, over here they get longer.

I'm not sure what do you mean, but it doesn't seem right.

Either the days in Florida get longer during the summer relative to the winter, as they do in Europe, or the days in Florida get shorter as the summer advances, as they do in Europe (the longest day everywhere in the Northern hemisphere is around June 21).


I believe all of Florida is north of the tropics, so no you don't get the interesting effect of the sun swinging north of you in mid June. You might have a sense of earlier dusk during the part of the year that has frequent cloud cover and afternoon thunderstorms.

When you are in the real tropics, that adds a surprising twist to the experience of seasons, including disorientation when your shadow points towards the opposite pole for part of the year!


>In summer the sun doesn't go down until after 10PM here.

Ah, I was just thinking about the heat, but that's a good point.

>edit: Also, in Florida the days get shorter during the summer, over here they get longer.

No they don't. Like other places in the northern hemisphere, the summer solstice is the longest day of the year in Florida - and the winter solstice is the shortest.


Not only northern Europe. Rome is as far north as NYC.


For what it matters Rome is north of NYC. NYC is slightly to the south of Naples. As hot in summer, much colder in winter.


The climate is different but it highlights the district in daylight variance.


It most certainly was true in the summer here in NL, EU. The best times were somewhere between 3 and 11 in the morning. The other times, it was simply too hot. But that depends on factors such as the wind as whether you have sea climate or land climate (the third climate is the Mediterranean climate, though I'm unsure Scandinavia has a separate climate).

However whether the better solution is to just wake up earlier or officially shift the time, I do not know. That question is entirely up to what's easier for society to organise.


I'm in the Netherlands. It was true here this summer and has been for the last few years.

It's probably true for most places in Europe except southern Italy. Remember that the farther north you go the more daylight you get.


Not really. I'm too far north for DST to make a difference. Summer nights are light enough I can easily read outside without other illumination. December days are 4 hours or something. The only real reason to be on DST here is make international stuff easier.


The United States is spread across six time zones and has some areas that don't observe DST (Arizona, Hawaii, and most of the territories); we don't have too much chaos in regards to time.


Can we just stick to the Daylight time year round?

I am 100% for getting rid of this dumb system.


That's what's probably going to happen, sadly:

"The European commission will recommend that EU member states abandon the practice of changing the clocks in spring and autumn in favour of staying on summer time throughout the year."


Why is it sad?


Because it is not the "natural" time but the artificial one that is chosen.


How is the other one natural? It's all based on artificial boundaries and divisions anyway. Seems to me the sun is highest several hours after noon and midnight is closer to sunset than sunrise.


> Seems to me the sun is highest several hours after noon and midnight is closer to sunset than sunrise.

The definition of noon is when the sun is at its highest point. Yes, due to timezones real noon may be half an hour from clock noon — but that's all (modulo places which are on a neighbouring timezone for reasons; regardless, being more than 1½ hours from real time is political stupidity).

Are you in China? I understand the PRC believes that all Chinese should be on Beijing time — c.f. above, under political stupidity.


> The definition of noon is when the sun is at its highest point.

A historically tenuous regional decision about naming, does not influence global reality beyond being contextually incompatible. So what?


I know it would "feel" right to have the centre of daylight hours at 12PM on summer solstice... but it's much more useful to have lighter evenings that mornings in my opinion.

+1 1PM middday.

Full disclosure : I am not a morning person.


Humans already don't plan their day strictly around sunlight. Otherwise we wouldn't go to bed at 10pm and get up at 6am (or even later) but rather go to bed at 8pm and get up at 4am.


> Humans already don't plan their day strictly around sunlight.

For maximum health & energy efficiency, though, we probably ought to (just like we probably ought to build our houses so that air conditioning is optional & heating is efficient).


I would argue they still plan according to the sun. Why have most westerner cultures slowly adapted to a 9 - 5 schedule when older generations used to work 8 - 4? Daylight savings slowly convinced society to start the work day 1 hour later.


Unless you like keeping track of time with a sundial that doesn't seem like a very strong argument.


There's nothing that makes summer time more natural than winter time other than that winter time precedes summer time. Both essentially are societal constructs, though.


Summer time is on average further off from solar time.

For instance normal time is pretty close to solar time when you're around Berlin.


It's the time matching how most of western society (if not humanity) works.

Most people don't center their night around 00:00, it's usually centered around 03:00~04:00


You get the job of re-labeling all the sun dials, I guess.


That's a jip! We should be changing to Winter time and get the hour we lost back! We're going to get shafted in this deal!


I know! Let's split the difference, half an hour to each side.


Russia tried switching to summer time permanently, it didn't work. If you need to pick, you need to go for winter time all year round. Otherwise you get really dark winters in Northern Europe, but people forget that, because they want sunlit evenings in the summer time.


This doesn't make any sense. I'm in semi-northern Europe and we get like 6-hours of light at the lowest point. How does it make the winter darker if that light is from 10-16 rather than 9-15 ?

Better to have the light even later in winter, instead of while inside during work, like 14-20.


It may seem like it would be better, but the russians actually tried it, and it turns out that's it's not. The argument in Russia was that permanent summer time cause stress and health issues (https://www.timeanddate.com/news/time/russia-abandons-perman...).

The part that's weird is that everyone have arguments as to why DST would be better, but the country that actually tried it switch to permanent winter time after few years.

Between 1948 and 1981 Denmark didn't even have summer time and Germany managed just fine without DST from 1949 to 1980, so why can't we go back to not having it?


And this is probably why Iceland doesn't have DST - no point in having it that far north. (Although they're on UTC year-round when they're "naturally" on the western edge of UTC-1, so you could say they have year-round DST.)


I think you might have it backwards. Permanent DST would result in more light in the evenings. (Unless there's a difference between EU and US daylight savings that I am misunderstanding).

As it is now, in November we will subtract one hour from the time on our clocks. This means that if it gets dark at 7pm on November 3, on November 4 it will instead get dark 6pm since an hour has been lost.

I am actually an advocate for going in the other extreme--make current DST the default (that is, +1 always), but in the winter set clocks forward another hour (+2 total), so it stays lighter in the evening. This way we get more daylight in the winter when we actually need it! I'd rather have daylight after work than before work so I can actually enjoy it.


Can confirm - permament summer time was an awful idea. Both from personal point of view and some economical conclusions.

Rigth now (since 2014) we have only "winter" time for all regions except for a few (like Altai for example)


We get really dark winters no matter whether we're on DST or not. Makes absolutely no difference.


Please no. Winters will be absolutely miserable for one. For another, my internal clock is most comfortable with waking up at 9AM. It doesn't understand numbers and clocks, so in the summer that means 10AM. Going to work at 10 is ok, but 11 starts getting a bit uncomfortable, though luckily I've so far picked jobs that let me do that. But the discrepancy between the clock showing nearly noon and my internal clock believing it's morning does cause me a bit of anxiety. You can always do whatever you want after dark, but I can't sleep when I'm driving to work.



also

Single time zone earth please



Do you like the idea of having to remember that stores in japan open at 23:00 UTC, somwehere else at 3:00 UTC etc.?


That sounds like a way less annoying issue than trying to schedule things across borders


No, it just shifts the problem to needing to know which are the working hours at each location you want to interact with. Timezones and Daylight Saving are completely different issues that appear related. Both have flaws, but at least local timezones are a sensible abstraction for general societal behaviour in a given location.

If you want a fixed standard time, we already have UTC, - get used to it and the offset of the _local_ times you need to know.

https://qntm.org/abolish


Unless you’re proposing everyone on earth work during the same hours, you’re still going to have to know the standard working hours in the region they’re in. Time zones are basically a standard version of that. Not to mention, a single solar day makes dealing with weekends/holidays way harder.


Yes!

Also, just like you don't need to remember timezones today (you can just google them), you won't need to remember daylight hours (or whatever the terminology will end up being) in a single timezone future (because Google will know)!


> because Google will know

Yes! Why have a single, standard system known as timezones when each and every calendaring app can have their own "not a timezone" timezone mappings. That way Apple, Google and Microsoft can have three incompatible mappings between UTC and local time.... er.... accepted local customs. It will be great!


Then think only in UTC! Global Infrastructure has been using this single timezone for over 40 years.

Also, once you know the easy-to-remember-or-lookup offsets of the locations you interact with you can even translate in your head to save others the effort.


I bet the Japanese would remember that pretty quick. If I visit Japan, I don't know customs and practices of local business and have to look things up or go with a local anyway. I certainly don't like people forgetting what timezone I'm in and scheduling important meetings for 6pm on the Friday before a long weekend, or having to stop and look stuff up because I can't remember whether or not I'm in sync with the next state of over during this time of year. The fact is time is different everywhere but we hide that in the way we represent it, making it harder to deal with it.


> scheduling important meetings for 6pm on the Friday before a long weekend

Have you ever considered that people might be just assholes? :)


I consider that all the time, but people I work with often have no idea I spend most of my time in another timezone.

You already have to do that - if you're in France and it's within a couple of hours of when the sun is highest in the sky the shops are probably shut. On a Sunday they probably don't even open at all.


[flagged]


I work on sundays. I'm french. I have a life. Your comment is weird.


I thought most French people did not want to work on Sundays, turns out the majority is not so big (60% according to [0] in 2014, 53% in 2015 [1]). My bad.

[0] http://www.lefigaro.fr/flash-actu/2014/12/04/97001-20141204F... [1] https://www.lesechos.fr/06/12/2015/lesechos.fr/021536423616_...


I already have to deal with the fact that shops in Australia close at 5pm (local time), not at 10pm like they do in my home country.

This is a weak argument for keeping timezones around imo.


Do you often find it necessary to remember when stores open in other countries? Even within my town all the stores open/close at different times from each other.


That’s a stupid idea.

Not only will all references to times in movies etc stop making sense. It will not even help to solve any of the perceived problems, like scheduling calls. You might be able to specify the time without a time zone, but you still have to look up if that time is within their daytime.

Literally the only people who would profit are those tasked with maintaining time-related functions in operating systems... who would lose their jobs.


All references and depicted cultural practices in movies, novels, plays, etc, become dated over time anyway. The world keeps changing.


What does UTC lack for you to fulfill that role?


I said it half-jokingly, trying to continue the train of thought of OP. The current system is quite fine.


Globally this would be too much, but why not in EU? It is +1 for some, and -1 for others, not that much. Just stretch to CET, just like Spain already does.


I suspect most supporters of that idea live near Greenwich latitude but I might be wrong...


Longitude, you presumably mean.


exactly, sorry.


also

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planck_units

but only when the Gravitational constant is measured with more precision.



I still remember my "Swatch The Beep" watch =)


Swatch Internet Time feels to me like a prime example of adding another standard for no reason whatsoever, other than to attach a brand to a timezone for promotion of course. I don't know why people keep bringing it up.


At a time when people were still wearing watches, you could have an alternative time standard, on your wrist, in actual hardware.

Nowadays, you could have that easily as an app on your smart watch, but of course, there are far fewer people wearing smart watches.

Also don't forget the egalitarian approach of using a time format that's equally foreign to everybody.


It is a pretty nifty concept - having time in a day measured as divisions of 1000 (a "beat", a minute and some seconds) is aesthetically more pleasing and probably easier to deal with rather than divisions of 60, 24, and 12.

Kinda like how SI units are easier to reason about than imperal ones.

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