2020 is over. But is it really?
We spend our lives bound to a clock and calendar that tell us what to do and what to expect. But now, millions of Americans are newly jobless, untethered from structure and predictability. Hundreds of of thousands fight a virus that could cut their time on earth dramatically short. And all of us wait out a life-stoppage of unknown duration. And so, we may find ourselves outside of time. Passing it, but no longer marking it. Anthony F. Aveni, professor emeritus of astronomy, anthropology, and Native American studies at Colgate University, says that to understand our current time consciousness, we have to return to a land before time — or at least, time as we know it. Aveni and Bob talk about the history of timekeeping, and how we might find our orientation during this collective time-out.
This is a segment from our April 24th, 2020 program, On Matters of Time and Space.
The Wheel of the Year is an annual cycle of seasonal festivals, observed by many modern Pagans, consisting of the year's chief solar events (solstices and equinoxes) and the midpoints between them. While names for each festival vary among diverse pagan traditions, syncretic treatments often refer to the four solar events as "quarter days" and the four midpoint events as "cross-quarter days", particularly in Wicca. Differing sects of modern Paganism also vary regarding the precise timing of each celebration, based on distinctions such as lunar phase and geographic hemisphere.
Programming time, dates, timezones, recurring events, leap seconds... everything is pretty terrible.
The common refrain in the industry is Just use UTC! Just use UTC! And that's correct... sort of. But if you're stuck building software that deals with time, there's so much more to consider.
It's time... to talk about time.
As programmers, we’re kind of inherently built to want the ABSOLUTE BEST HIGHEST FIDELITY FORMATS OF ALL TIME. Like dammit, I need the timestamp down to the micromillinanosecond for every cheeseburger that gets added to my bespoke Watch-The-BK-Throne app. If I do not have this exact knowledge to the millisecond of when I consumed this BBQ Bacon WHOPPER® Sandwich From Burger King® I may die. ❧
I totally want this as a Post Kind on my website now!
Annotated on March 03, 2020 at 07:28PM
Humans are good at a lot of things, but putting time in perspective is not one of them. It's not our fault - the span of time in human history, and even more so in natural history, are so vast compared to the span of our life and recent history that it's almost impossible to get a handle on it.
The builders of Britain’s ancient stone circles like Stonehenge were using Pythagoras' theorem 2,000 years before the Greek philosopher was born, experts have claimed.
Atomic clocks are letting physicists tighten the lasso around elusive phenomena such as dark matter.
Including Time Out, Time Further Out, Time Changes, Countdown: Time in Outer Space, and Time In, this series of albums commonly known as the Time Series from Dave Brubeck and the Dave Brubeck Quartet is a masterclass in how important time is in music as well as how it can evolve.
Here you’ll find Brubeck experimenting with time signatures including recordings of “Take Five” in 5/4 time, “Pick Up Sticks” in 6/4, “Unsquare Dance” in 7/4, “World’s Fair” in 13/4, and “Blue Rondo à la Turk” in 9/8.
This is a great way to spend the day/night when you have some active listening time.