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Thread: Metric Time

  1. #21
    にゃん runvardh's Avatar
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    Also, the logistics of the change are very real and more expensive than what many may be willing to pay to have the change over happen. There would need to be an actual benefit to the change other than a few spaced Ns who have trouble remembering the date.
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    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    I don't see how the Metric system is an improvement on the current one. It's just different.
    What kind of improvement do you not see? The structure is more internally consistent, compactly expressible, and is a much simpler mental object series to hold in mind when thinking about time over longer periods. That's technically an improvement.

    If you mean that it doesn't produce any observable immediate results that benefit people, then I guess you're right, but you have a very results-oriented definition of improvement.

  3. #23
    Habitual Fi LineStepper JocktheMotie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    What kind of improvement do you not see? The structure is more internally consistent, compactly expressible, and is a much simpler mental object series to hold in mind when thinking about time over longer periods. That's technically an improvement.

    If you mean that it doesn't produce any observable immediate results that benefit people, then I guess you're right, but you have a very results-oriented definition of improvement.
    You're looking at it too microscopically, without any consideration as to what time actually is and how we as a culture and species have come to define it. While yes, a steadily increasing unit of measurement does benefit from a far more effecient system like the metric system, Time as we experience it has a cyclical component that must be accounted for. The earth cycles around the sun, and you have a year. The moon cycles around the earth, and you have a month, etc. Every 365 times the earth spins, this cycle repeats. Having a completely increasing, and linear method of recording this process, is I think, counter-intuitive.

    However, like previously mentioned, once we as a species leave earth, that method of experiencing time will no longer be applicable or intuitive. So then, it may change.

    So, just because an idea or system is more internally consistent and seems relatively scale invariant in terms of the current system, doesn't mean it automatically describes what it's measuring any better. I'd argue that it doesn't.



  4. #24
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    There are 6 hours either side of high/low tide. If it is high tide at 6pm today then I know it will be hightide at 7pm the next day (and low tide will be 6 hours before it and after it) and so on.

    This method of calculating the tides is very useful and practical in real life so don't go changing anything silly intuitives.

    6 hour tides is so much simpler than 3.6 hour tides.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    You're looking at it too microscopically, without any consideration as to what time actually is and how we as a culture and species have come to define it. While yes, a steadily increasing unit of measurement does benefit from a far more effecient system like the metric system, Time as we experience it has a cyclical component that must be accounted for. The earth cycles around the sun, and you have a year. The moon cycles around the earth, and you have a month, etc. Every 365 times the earth spins, this cycle repeats. Having a completely increasing, and linear method of recording this process, is I think, counter-intuitive.

    However, like previously mentioned, once we as a species leave earth, that method of experiencing time will no longer be applicable or intuitive. So then, it may change.
    Yes, yes, that's what I had in mind. That's what this change should be in preparation for. It will make people more comfortable with the idea of leaving the Earth, because it will help wean them off of defining things in Earth-based terms. Which in turn will unconsciously lead to increased support for the space program.

    And I guess what I'm asserting is that the way people have come to define time as a culture and species is a flawed definition that doesn't accord with the actual nature of time as something that moves ever forward. In fact, it's somewhat illusory, the way people behave as if holidays commemorate historical events because "it's that day again." That's a flawed perspective, it's not that day again just because some cycle repeated, and it never will be. That maybe how people are defining time, but that's NOT how time actually works.

    I mean, think about it... you only age older and older, you don't revisit your youth. Your life is a straight line between birth and death. People like to define time in a way that helps them ignore or avoid acknowledging this to some extent, so that they can fool themselves into believing that they can hold onto past a little longer, that they've still got a kind of connection to it they don't really have.
    So, just because an idea or system is more internally consistent and seems relatively scale invariant in terms of the current system, doesn't mean it automatically describes what it's measuring any better. I'd argue that it doesn't.
    I suppose it depends on whether you think the concept of time should measure/include anything other than the distance between the present and a scheduled point in the future. I don't know about other people, but when I use time, that's really all I'm using it for. So for me, including anything else in the definition is cumbersome junk I have to maneuver around to get to my main purpose in using the system.

    Eh, I guess I'm just another Idealist with no sense of practicality.

    Quote Originally Posted by Quinlan View Post
    There are 6 hours either side of high/low tide. If it is high tide at 6pm today then I know it will be hightide at 7pm the next day (and low tide will be 6 hours before it and after it) and so on.

    This method of calculating the tides is very useful and practical in real life so don't go changing anything silly intuitives.

    6 hour tides is so much simpler than 3.6 hour tides.
    But that's EXACTLY the kind of thinking I want to eliminate. Thinking in Earth-based, localized terms. We should hold everything back just because the tides on one planet happen to behave a certain way that accords with a cycle? LOL.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    But that's EXACTLY the kind of thinking I want to eliminate. Thinking in Earth-based, localized terms. We should hold everything back just because the tides on one planet happen to behave a certain way that accords with a cycle? LOL.
    But I don't want to go fishing on Venus?
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  7. #27
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    The tides on one planet.. the one we happen to live on. You seem to think that's a teensy meaningless detail that people are focusing on unnecessarily.

    Our current methods of timekeeping make a lot of sense given that we live on Earth, and we're nowhere near colonizing other worlds right now, so switching to this would be arbitrary and annoying to most people. I don't think annoying people is the way to get them ready to accept space travel.
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  8. #28
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    The tides on one planet.. the one we happen to live on. You seem to think that's a teensy meaningless detail that people are focusing on unnecessarily.
    I don't just think that. I KNOW it.
    Our current methods of timekeeping make a lot of sense given that we live on Earth, and we're nowhere near colonizing other worlds right now, so switching to this would be arbitrary and annoying to most people. I don't think annoying people is the way to get them ready to accept space travel.
    But, but... this way of measuring time doesn't reflect anything about how time really works, how it's really just the measurement of a distance between two points, and consistently moves forward. They seem to have far less trouble trouble defining/understanding points in space correctly, so why is it so hard for them to get rid of the weird artifacts in time measurement?

    Ah, well, I guess this annoying, small, local/practical perspective is what everyone is going to use, so it doesn't matter. I swear, I'm surrounded by blind people.

  9. #29
    Habitual Fi LineStepper JocktheMotie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    I don't just think that. I KNOW it.


    But, but... this way of measuring time doesn't reflect anything about how time really works, how it's really just the measurement of a distance between two points, and consistently moves forward. They seem to have far less trouble trouble defining/understanding points in space correctly, so why is it so hard for them to get rid of the weird artifacts in time measurement?

    Ah, well, I guess this annoying, small, local/practical perspective is what everyone is going to use, so it doesn't matter. I swear, I'm surrounded by blind people.
    For some reason, you're having trouble understanding why the time and date system we use now is better at describing how it passes on earth than the system you propose, and I cannot determine why that is.

    Think of what you're proposing. Your theory doesn't describe the physical system it is designed to describe better than the current one. It falls short. There's no point in changing to a system that's better at describing how time passes in space, when, you know, we're not in space.



  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    For some reason, you're having trouble understanding why the time and date system we use now is better at describing how it passes on earth than the system you propose, and I cannot determine why that is.

    Think of what you're proposing. Your theory doesn't describe the physical system it is designed to describe better than the current one. It falls short. There's no point in changing to a system that's better at describing how time passes in space, when, you know, we're not in space.
    Time doesn't describe a "physical system," AFAIK. And it doesn't really pass differently on Earth than anywhere else. It's all forward movement in the 4th dimension happening at a consistent rate, and time measures the distance between those points. If you think it's tied to anything physical, that's an illusion created by relying on physical indicators and mistaking them for the underlying concept.

    Is this not obvious?

    Note that the errors in understanding only occur with smaller units. When you look at years and longer units like decades and centuries, the way time is understood comes closer to my understanding. With smaller units, it inexplicably breaks down into muddy, arbitrary, localized divisions that aren't meaningful.

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