They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me

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The End Of Time As We Know It


... people are beginning to talk about the impending absurdity which is the change in the Daylight Savings Time start and end dates for 2007-8. This was a bad idea when it was proposed, it's still a bad idea, and I understand that the bill authorizing this change is only for two years, so who knows if this is going to be permanent or whether more rational minds will finally prevail.

The Crux of the Problem

Moving clocks forward and backward by one hour is not really the issue here. The idea that we might save some energy is not really the issue here.

The problem is that 2007 is a very different era than say 1918 when Military Summer Time was first established during the Great War, i.e., World War I. Today we have computers and devices which have embedded computers. Some devices, like cell phones, get the time from the network and so will change without problem. Others have the rules for Daylight Savings Time built-in. If they can be updated AND someone has written a software patch AND you can download and install it, then the great March Time Debacle will not be a problem. Otherwise... you will have to manually spring forward once, then manually spring back to negate the automatic spring forward for the "wrong" date. In the fall, you'll have to manually fall forward to negate the automatic fall backward on the newly "wrong" date, then manually fall backward later to handle the "real" updated end of DST.


For Whom The Patch Tolls

If you use Microsoft Windows, there is probably good news if you are installing or deploying a machine with the new Windows Vista. Surely MS isn't too stupid to put the wrong Daylight Savings Time code in the new OS. Windows XP Service Pack 2 users and Windows 2000 Professional Service Pack 4 users will be able to download an install a patch from MS to fix their computers.

Users of Microsoft Windows 95, Microsoft Windows 98, Microsoft Windows Second Edition, Microsoft Windows Me and Microsoft Windows NT 4 -- you're S.O.L. No patch for you, despite the fact there are still some people using any and all of these operating systems.

To be fair, I don't know if there are patches from Apple for System 6, 7, 8 or 9.

I Apologize

I think I recall that a Michigan legislator is partly responsible for this nonsense. I apologize -- but I didn't vote for the man. And I'm truly sorry for all the fools in Congress who thought this was a good idea and voted for it.

They shall hear all about it from their constituents shortly.

I wish I could predict that this nonsense will be reset in 2007, even before the bill comes in to make the changes permanent. We don't need a year which is mainly DST. What we need is a world where we don't spend so much damned time at work and so little time at home with out kids and husbands and wives and dogs and kitties that we need to force extra time in daylight hours.

I will predict that somewhere, children will be going to school in the dark or someone will be snow shoveling in the dark after we go early to DST -- and whether injured or killed, their blood will be on the hands of the idiots in Congress. Science literacy is really important, folks. Really. These things matter.

Dr. Phil

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