MadHamster Creations - Products - Metric Time

Introduction
Metric Time is a system for measuring the time and date using powers of ten. It simplifies the measurement of in many ways. Instead of having arbitrary numbers like 60, 24, 12, and 365.25 permeate our time system, we can keep it very simple: 10 and 100. Needless to say, this aids conversion between time units as well.

For a closer look at Standard Time versus Metric Time, look at this chart:

 Standard Time Metric Time 1 Year = 365.25 Days = 12 Months = 28-31 Days or 3-4 Weeks = 24 Hours = 60 Minutes = 60 Seconds 1 Year = 100 Days = 10 Weeks = 10 Days = 10 Hours = 100 Minutes = 100 Seconds

Units
Metric units of time are similar to standard units, with the exception of their lengths. For example, a metric week is ten days, whereas a standard week is seven. It was considered using the SI prefixes (kilo-, hecta-, deci-, centi-, etc.) in addition to a base unit of time, but this idea was rejected as non user friendly. A closer look at the Metric Time units and the conversions derived from them is found in this chart. Please note that most conversions are approximate.

 Unit Abbreviation Standard to Metric Metric to Standard Metric Second mSec 1.154532 0.866152 Metric Minute mMin 0.696447 1.435860 Metric Hour mHr 0.417868 2.3931 Metric Day mDay 1.002883 0.997125 Metric Week mWk 0.702018 1.424464 Metric Year mYr 3.650495 0.273935

Outdated Conventions
Besides fixing unit conversions, Metric Time does away with several outdated conventions. For example, there are no time zones. The tradeoff involved in our current system is the sacrifice the of ability to pin an absolute time on an event worldwide, for the ability to say that at twelve o'clock PM, the sun is at it's highest point in the sky. In today's world, it seems that the need for absolute time outweighs the need for solar-based time.

Another unnecessary convention is the AM/PM system, which is already not in use by the military. Hours in Metric Time are simply numbered 1-10.

Dates in Metric Time do not include labels for each component. For example, there is no Monday, simply Day 0. Similarly, January is now Week 0. All dates are given in the form of year::week::day, and time as hour::minute::second. In addition, Metric Year 0 corresponds to the beginning of Standard Year 2000.

Day Length
A Metric Day is very slightly different from a Standard Day in that a mDay is based on the sidereal measure of time, whereas a Standard Day uses solar time. Solar time uses the sun as the reference point when determining what constitutes a rotation of the Earth (that is, a day), whereas sidereal time uses another star to measure this time period. Becuase of the variation of the speed of the Earth in its orbit, solar days vary over the period of a year, averaging in at 24 Standard Hours. When people say "the shortest/longest day of the year," this is what they are referring to, as the day is not exactly 24 Standard Hours.

Sidereal time is superior to solar time in that the length of a day is constant over time. A sidereal day is exactly 23.931 Standard Hours, or, preferably, 10 Metric Hours.

Year Length
The only major drawback of Metric Time is that a year does not correspond to the time it takes for the Earth to rotate around the sun. Unless the length of a day is changed (which defeats the purpose of measuring time at all), it is impossible for a number of days corresponding to a power of ten to add up to the period of time it takes for the Earth to rotate the sun. However, this drawback may fade into the background as humans and/or their prodigy move beyond Earth and into the rest of the galaxy.

Practicality
So this is all wonderful in theory, but nobody's going to use this, right? Well, probably not. But I happen to find it fun, and several people I have talked to think it is a good idea. I have written several programs, included in the package below, for use with Metric Time. If you would like to download them and play around, be my guest. If a large number of people become interested, I will continue to work on Metric Time on a regular basis.

Metric Time Package
The Metric Time package is currently in version 2.0, and includes two small applets for converting and measuring Metric Time, as well as the necessary items for replacing your Windows clock with Metric Time. The download link is shown below:

MTPack.exe (595,467 bytes)