[LMB] Calendars

Zan Lynx zlynx at acm.org
Sat Feb 29 19:09:57 GMT 2020


On 2/29/20 6:52 AM, Howard Brazee wrote:
> In an interstellar society, I would expect multiple calendars and
> clocks.   Local days and years are still important for planet bound
> people.   In space habitats, Earth time may be the standard (GMT?)
> 
> A multi-planet empire may have a third standard.
> 
> Lois has spaceships adjusting their clocks to their destination
> planet.   I suppose to the space port time.   I don’t remember any
> inhabited planets having extremely different day lengths.

For interplanetary time I believe the generally accepted science-fiction 
standard is to pick a set of pulsars and define your time standard in 
terms of pulsar pulse counts.

Another way to do it that I've heard works even if you weren't counting 
pulses is to pick a set of binary and trinary star systems. Their unique 
combination of positions should give you a pretty accurate clock unless 
you're more than 100,000 years off. If you were you should be able to 
use galactic rotation vs distant galaxies to figure out which cycle you 
should be using.

Then no matter where you go inside the galaxy or how fast you get there 
or how much time dilation experienced, you have a common reference frame 
to use.

You could even call it a Star Date. :-)

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