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When the 24-hour day is
divided into thirds, most people
sleep in the first third (0000-0800),
work in the middle third (0800-1600),
and relax in the last third (1600-2400).
This schedule made good sense for
most of human history, when the
majority of people worked outdoors
that required good
In most of the industrial world
these conditions no longer hold.
most jobs could now just as well be
done at any time
of day, people are still
forced to stay inside
working during the pleasant daylight
hours now best suited to recreation and
Today it makes more sense to work
in the first third of the day (starting at
midnight), relax in the second,
and sleep in the third.
A few people enjoy
flexible enough employment
arrangements that they could do
this if they really wanted to, but only at
the price of being out of phase
with the rest of society. The real
answer requires *everyone* to shift to
the same modern, more sensible daily
Unfortunately, society has such deeply
ingrained notions of "appropriate"
clock times for various activities that
it might be difficult for many
people to accept the
idea of starting work at midnight.
The best solution, then, allows
people to maintain their familiar
clock schedules by shifting each
time zone negative eight hours
from their current UTC offsets. The times on
the clock would then occur eight hours
earlier (with respect to the sun)
than they did before the adjustment.
A simple and gradual way to
accomplish this shift would be to observe daylight savings time at the
beginning of the summer, but
not return to
standard time in the fall,
for eight years.
(Potential problems with this idea
might arise from the way the body
uses sunlight to trigger awakeness
and tiredness, and also from
auto accidents caused by people
driving to work in the darkest hours of the night. Modern lighting technology can help with both these problems, to at least some extent.)
A Day in the Night of America
a book about
people who work at night. [johan, Aug 12 1999, last modified Oct 04 2004]
28 Hour Days
more arguement for alternative hours ( I read once that if you put someone in a cave with no indication of the outside time their body will settle into a 28 hour day schedule...and they will go insane) [blahginger, Aug 12 1999, last modified Oct 04 2004]
||as you suggest, towards the bottom, I imagine this would come up against the body's circadian rhythm. without a complete lack/change of natural stimuli (ie, the sun), I get the feeling the body'd never adjust to the new "setting", if even then.
||My personal experiences support your assertion that most of "society"
needs to adjust its notion of when people can be expected to be awake and
in public, though some regions or cities are better than others.
||I've been thinking that we could buy a brief respite from a lot of
"load-related" societal problems such as auto traffic, or lines at the
stores, by encouraging (really just "supporting") up to 66% of people to
shift work into traditionally "non-work" time zones. Even if you have a
coherent team of people who need to interact, you can still work it out
where there's a little overlap, and people don't have to come into a
meeting when they'd normally be sleeping.
||Why not just eliminate weekends? If anybody could take whatever 2 days off a week they wanted, traffic, etc. would be reduced by 2/7. This also supports different sabbaths for the different religions. (I want mine on Wednesday.) <rant> While we're at it, let's make it daylight savings time YEAR ROUND! If it's too dark in the morning to work, go to school, etc, then START THINGS LATER rather than making EVERYONE change the freaking CLOCKS TWICE a freakin YEAR! </rant>
Mar 02 2000, last modified Mar 03 2000|| |
||Setting the clocks back an hour for Daylight Saving is my favorite day of the whole year. I think we should do that every week. (see 28 hour day link at left for even better idea)
||My M-F workday runs from after 2:00 pm. until between 4:00 and 5:30 depending on workload. Second shift after 7:00 pm until between 10:00 and 12:00 Midnight depending on workload. In a major city, this has distinct advantages, not the least of which is Traffic. It has its downsides, but my mind and body have more resources to tap than if I were to do it the tradtional '9-5' way.