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houltmac

Time

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Being that I am British I was taught from birth how to tell time in the 24 hour clock (viz. 22:00 is 10:00PM). I was also taught that GMT is the time by which all others are taken and that for example EST is actually GMT-5 (or whatever it is, 5 I think).

 

It seems odd to me that in the US however kids simply don't know this, they were never taught. Maybe 10% of the Americans I know have any clue about the above, 5% don't even know the 24 hour clock exists! Is this a US phenomenon or is it also unknown throughout the rest of the world? Is there a reason Americans are in the dark about it? (There are so many jokes that can be made here, perhaps they are also the truth; I don't know. I am asking a serious question about an observation though, not purposely insulting anyone.)

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Wait, you mean they have other countries now?

 

No, just kidding, just kidding.

 

I know that when I went to school we certainly were taught about GMT, although not much time was spent calculating offsets. It was mostly one of those quaint foreigner things that did not matter very much.

 

Of course you were asking about the present tense, and I did all that book learning in a previous century.

 

And you're correct, EST = GMT -5

PST = GMT -8

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It seems like an odd phenomenon to me that students are not taught science properly. This falls into science, geography, mathematics... so many subjects. It is the basis of time, of meaning to the sad lives we now lead by the clock. It explains the light and the dark, night and day...

 

With so many Americans traveling across the world in planes now it amazes me that they cannot understand (let alone figure out) time differences. More disturbingly though they cannot figure out why there would be such a difference or what the lines on the map are for when setting their Mac clocks. :(

 

I can't think of any reasoning. Maybe we are odd, mad even, but at least we know the Earth spins. :D

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I have no idea what GMT is but I know it is on this forum so I played around with it until the time was adjusted. I was taught that the 24 hour clock is always Military Time, damn school funding, know they aren't even teaching us about time but they enought time for freaking testing.

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I have no idea what GMT is but I know it is on this forum so I played around with  it until the time was adjusted. I was taught that the 24 hour clock is always Military Time, damn school funding, know they aren't even teaching us about time but they enought time for freaking testing.

 

The military do use it because it so quickly tells the time and can't get the 12 hour difference (morning or afternoon) lost in communication. It's really quite simple because until 1PM the times are the same, from then on you just add an hour so 1PM is 13:00, 2PM is 14:00 and so on. Simple no?

 

I can't believe you aren't taught GMT. GMT is Greenwich Mean Time. It runs through Greenwich Village in England in a straight "vertical" line on the globe. The world is divided into 24 equal sections using these lines and every section is given it's own hour relative to GMT. West is negative, east is positive. So, France for example is GMT+1 so when it's say 2PM in the UK, it's 3PM in France. Thus if EST is GMT-8, when it's 9PM in the UK it's 1PM in that section of the USA. It's fairly simple, and the basis of time, day and night and many other things. Does that make sense? How can Americans understand jet lag if they don't know how world time works?

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I would say that many, not most, Americans understand the concept behind GMT with most of the details you've espoused above.

 

I did learn about the Prime Meridian in elementary school and it was assumed that we knew it by the time I got to secondary school; however, it was never emphasized.

 

Keep in mind that the United States is a country having difficulty making it's youth literally literate; cultural and scientific literacy is definitely not the top priority despite what the government says. It's quite a shame.

 

I NEVER learned the 24-hour clock in school. I taught it to myself while in the Boy Scouts and because it was used in the TV show MASH. Most of my students couldn't even recognize time told in 24 hours.

 

Also, the U.S. is just a tad egocentric. Is there a point in learning about inferior cultures? Really, GMT and the Prime Meridian were obviously set by people who were biased against the U.S.; otherwise, it would have been put in New York City or Los Angeles. ;)

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I used to call the 24-hour clock "Military Time". But on a daily basis, I use the 12 hour clock. I can use the 24-hour one but it takes a little bit of more thought because of the math involved. It would be much simpler for me if it were a 20 hour clock. What I mean is that the conversion from 3:00 p.m. to 15:00 is not instant, it takes about a second and is a bit annoying.

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I know everythign about time and timezones!!!

 

...but not spelling, typing, or pleasantries.

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There is also the Swatch Internet Beat.

 

I am a big fan of the swatch beat. This is a time concept that makes loads of sense for people that spend lots of time on the internet meeting & talking to people all over the world as there are no timezones.

 

An advanced description & all you would want to know is covered here

 

Basic concept is the Central European Time (UTC+1) 24hours is divided into 1000 beats, and the beats are counted up from Midnight. Its the same time for everyone ie @675 reads that time for anyone who is using a swatch beat clock.

 

So if I wanted to chat to someone online & we both have swatch beat clocks (an OSX widget for me) I just say see you online @454. Easy!

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I learned Military time when i was in Travel school...that seems like a lifetime away....one of the many careers i pursued! LOL :lol:

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I learned Military time when i was in Travel school...that seems like a lifetime away....one of the many careers i pursued! LOL  :lol:
What is travel school?

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For real confusion, try the International Date Line.

 

For your homework:

Is the International Date Line 12 hours ahead of GMT, 12 hours behind it, or neither of these?

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To become a travel agent. Was really lame but something different at the time.

Did that for 3 years or so a loooooooooong time ago!

Ya definitely learn alot about the travel industry :D

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The problem is that there is a plague in our public school systems. You see too many people were graduating without the basic skills you would expect of an average 10 year old. So the state governments came up with the grand idea of standardized testing for students at nearly every grade level. This has helped the prior problem, but has created a new one where students are taught only what they need to know to pass the exam.

 

People need to realize that there are smart kids who know they are smart, there are smart kids who think they are average. there are smart kids who think they are dumb, there are average kids who think they are smart, there are just plain average kids, there are average kids who think they're dumb, there are dumb kids who think they are smart, there are dumb kids who think they are average, and there are kids that are just plain dumb.

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You see too many people were graduating without the basic skills you would expect of an average 10 year old.

 

FYI, standardized testing hasn't solved or remedied this problem in any way. So extrapolating from your last post, I'd say we now have two problems: too many kids without basic skills and too much time spent on testing.

 

Fact: Here in the Clark County School district, elementary teachers spend a total of 8 weeks testing throughout the year. That's almost one quarter of their class time that should go to actual teaching, going to testing. I'm embarrassed to live here.

 

Opinion: We are creating a huge number of people who know how to fill in the bubbles on those little standardized test forms. If we can just find an international need for bubbling circles, the U.S. would be in good shape.

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Ignore that post, I was having an out of mind experience.

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