• Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k
    Brief background[u/]
    .
    At the CALNDR-L mailing-list, alternative calendar reform proposals (among other calendar-topics) are often discussed, and there’s sometimes disagreement or question about which alternative calendars would be accepted by more people...but almost entirely without any outside input.

    .Our currently-used civil calendar is referred to here as the Roman-Gregorian Calendar, because its months are unchanged since Roman times, and its leapyear-rule is the one instituted by Pope Gregorius in the 16th century.
    .
    The four calendars described in this post have a few things in common:
    .
    1. They’re “fixed calendars”, meaning that every year starts on the same day of the week, and is always the same, except that leap-years have an extra week appended to the end of the year.
    .
    2. Their months are regularized, simplified (…and one of the calendars doesn’t have months).
    .
    How it’s ensured that each year starts on the same day of the week:
    .
    A common (non-leap) year has a whole number of weeks (not more than 52). That means that the current and next year will start on the same day of the week.
    .
    Because a 52 week year is less than the 365.2422 day mean-tropical-year, an extra week is periodically added.
    .
    Because what’s added is a whole week, the next year still begins on the same day of the week.
    ---------------------------------------------
    The Calendars:
    .
    ISO WeekDate Calendar:
    .
    ISO stands for “International Standards Organization. The ISO has published internationally agreed-upon standards, including standards for various ways of naming dates. The ISO WeekDate Calendar is one of those.
    .
    The ISO WeekDate Calendar is internationally widely-used by governments, businesses and organizations. And similar calendars are used by many other entities, such as many schools, etc.
    .
    It’s the minimal calendar. No months. Weeks are numbered, and dates are expressed as a week-number and a day of the week.
    .
    Advantages:
    .
    It’s immediately obvious, from the date itself, what day of the week that date is.
    .
    No need to rewrite annual schedules each year, because the weekends occur on the same dates each year. (That advantage is had by all four of the calendars in this post).
    .
    Months can be regarded as an unnecessary complication for a calendar, and a calendar without months can be simpler to use.
    .
    ISO WeekDate’s “Nearest-Monday” year-start rule:
    .
    Each year’s first week starts on the Monday that’s closest to the January 1st of the currently-used Roman-Gregorian Calendar for that year.
    .
    Though the Nearest-Monday year-start rule is based on our Roman-Gregorian Calendar, Nearest-Monday achieves a fixed calendar that’s very briefly-defined.
    .
    Though not explicitly, Nearest-Monday results in some years having 53 weeks instead of 52, making it classifiable as a leap-week calendar.
    .
    In ISO WeekDate, the date is expressed by the week, and the day of the week.
    .
    Because days-of-the-week have different names in different languages, then, for international-communication, the day-of-the-week is expresses by a number, starting with Monday as day #1 of the week.
    .
    For example, today, Tuesday, Roman-Gregorian November 20th, this is week 47, and today’s date is expressed as:
    .
    2018-W47-2
    .
    …or, more compactly, as:
    .
    2018W472.
    .
    (…saving storage-space, and usable in systems that only have alphanumeric characters.)
    .
    30,30,31 Quarters:
    .
    In this proposal, too, the Nearest-Monday year-start rule is used. Each year starts on the Monday that’s closest to January 1st of our current Roman-Gregorian Calendar for that year.
    .
    30,30,31 with Nearest-Monday is the alternative calendar that is currently being proposed and getting some media attention. It’s known as “The Hanke-Henry Calendar”, though 30,30,31 quarters, and Nearest-Monday predate the current proposal that combines them.
    .
    Each quarter consists of two 30-day months, followed by a 31-day month. All quarters are identical in that regard.
    .
    When there are 53 weeks, the last week can be counted as part of the last month &/or the last quarter, or can be counted as an extra week not part of a month or quarter.
    .
    (The #3 position of the 31-day month in the quarter is for the purpose of minimizing departure from our current Roman months, and minimizing difference in number of weekends per quarter.)
    .
    Of course the date in 30,30,31 looks just like the date in our current Roman-Gregorian calendar. The date will usually differ from Roman-Gregorian’s date by a few days, typically only 1 or 2 days.
    .
    Today, Roman-Gregorian 2018 November 20th, is:
    .
    November 21, in the 30,30,31 quarters system.
    -------------------
    Those first two proposals have current use or current media mention, and are minimal in some way (no months, or minimally-changed month-system). The next two are more radical departures, but have been used, and have had some popularity.
    .
    Proposed as complete, radical departures, they’re often proposed with an independent new leap-year system. An proposed here, an extra week, a “leap-week” is explicitly added to the year when necessary to minimize the calendar’s periodic cyclical displacement with respect to the seasons.
    -------------------
    28X13:
    .
    Each month is 28-days. There are 13 months per year. (An extra week is added in leapyears.)
    .
    Advantages:
    .
    Months, though not necessary, can be convenient as explicitly-named payment periods, and seasonal-markers.
    .
    All of the 28-day months are entirely identical (…unless the extra week in leap-years is considered part of the last month.)
    .
    Each month starts on the same day of the week.
    .
    A variation of 28X13 was used for quite a while by the Eastman Kodak company.
    .
    30X12:
    .
    30-day months, 12 of them. The week is 10 days instead of 7 days, making this calendar the most radical departure described in this post.
    .
    …so, of course, in leapyears, the extra week added to the end of the year is a 10-day week.
    .
    In this version, every other year is a leap-year, and so the years alternate between 360 days and 370 days.
    .
    A different version of 30X12 was used in ancient Egypt, and in France for a while after the French Revolution (The French-Republican Calendar).
    .
    Advantage:
    .
    The days of the week are named as consecutive numbers, so that the day-of-the-week of the 27th day of any month will always be a “Seven”.
    ------------------------------
    Proposals of 28X13 and 30X12 usually have astronomically or seasonally-named months that give them special appeal.
    -----------------------------

    .Which of the following four calendars (defined above) would be most acceptable to or liked by you?

    Michael Ossipoff
  • Terrapin Station
    6k
    If we're going to change the calendar, I want something that's going to be more fun and wacky, not something that's like an accountant designed it.
  • Terrapin Station
    6k
    I wouldn't be surprised re calendar changes in the U.S. if someone were to propose sponsorship of day, week, month, year names.

    On 9:00 a.m. on Staples Day of Walmart Month in the Year Coca-Cola . . .
  • Terrapin Station
    6k
    How about if we "roll," via a random number generator, for the length of each day, number of days per week, number of weeks per month, number of months per year, plus we also roll for each type of job whether they'll have particular days off (with a 3/7 chance of it being a day off for any given type of job on any given day), where we keep the length of hours the same, and the rolls are always done 2000 hours in advance (so you know approximately 3 months (old system) ahead of time just what your schedule will be).

    That way you might get a month with 500 days in it, ranging in length from 9-hour days to 36-hour days, and you have 350 of those days off.

    Or some days it might be, "Crap--I have to work on Microsoft Day this week . . . oh, but wait. Microsoft Day is only three hours. So I only have to work for an hour." (We could make a rule that employers are not allowed to schedule shifts for more than 1/3 of the day-length, up to only, say 10 hours max.)

    Now that would be fun and wacky.
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k


    28X13 and 30X12 are fun.

    For example, the 30X12 French-Republican Calendar is full of interesting environmental-seasonal references.

    The 12 months are all named for their seasonal qualities.

    For example, one of its months is called "Germinal" (Month of budding of plants), and the following month is "Floreal". One of the winter months is named for snow.

    In fact, each day of the year is labeled (in addition to its month and day-of-month) for something seasonal, or an agricultural-implement.

    Likewise the 28X13 versions have often had seasonal or astronomical month-names, and sometimes interesting new day-of-week names.

    Michael Ossipoff
  • Hanover
    4.2k
    For the new calendar, I propose making today yesterday and yesterday tomorrow and last week just a minute ago.
  • SophistiCat
    647
    There was a table set out under a tree in front of the house, and the March Hare and the Hatter were having tea at it: a Dormouse was sitting between them, fast asleep, and the other two were using it as a cushion, resting their elbows on it, and the talking over its head. 'Very uncomfortable for the Dormouse,' thought Alice; 'only, as it's asleep, I suppose it doesn't mind.'

    The table was a large one, but the three were all crowded together at one corner of it: 'No room! No room!' they cried out when they saw Alice coming. 'There's plenty of room!' said Alice indignantly, and she sat down in a large arm-chair at one end of the table.

    'Have some wine,' the March Hare said in an encouraging tone.

    Alice looked all round the table, but there was nothing on it but tea. 'I don't see any wine,' she remarked.

    'There isn't any,' said the March Hare.

    'Then it wasn't very civil of you to offer it,' said Alice angrily.

    'It wasn't very civil of you to sit down without being invited,' said the March Hare.

    'I didn't know it was your table,' said Alice; 'it's laid for a great many more than three.'

    'Your hair wants cutting,' said the Hatter. He had been looking at Alice for some time with great curiosity, and this was his first speech.

    'You should learn not to make personal remarks,' Alice said with some severity; 'it's very rude.'

    The Hatter opened his eyes very wide on hearing this; but all he said was, 'Why is a raven like a writing-desk?'

    'Come, we shall have some fun now!' thought Alice. 'I'm glad they've begun asking riddles. — I believe I can guess that,' she added aloud.

    'Do you mean that you think you can find out the answer to it?' said the March Hare.

    'Exactly so,' said Alice.

    'Then you should say what you mean,' the March Hare went on.

    'I do,' Alice hastily replied; 'at least — at least I mean what I say — that's the same thing, you know.'

    'Not the same thing a bit!' said the Hatter. 'You might just as well say that "I see what I eat" is the same thing as "I eat what I see"!'

    'You might just as well say,' added the March Hare, 'that "I like what I get" is the same thing as "I get what I like"!'

    'You might just as well say,' added the Dormouse, who seemed to be talking in his sleep, 'that "I breathe when I sleep" is the same thing as "I sleep when I breathe"!'

    'It is the same thing with you,' said the Hatter, and here the conversation dropped, and the party sat silent for a minute, while Alice thought over all she could remember about ravens and writing-desks, which wasn't much.

    The Hatter was the first to break the silence. 'What day of the month is it?' he said, turning to Alice: he had taken his watch out of his pocket, and was looking at it uneasily, shaking it every now and then, and holding it to his ear.

    Alice considered a little, and then said 'The fourth.'

    'Two days wrong!' sighed the Hatter. 'I told you butter wouldn't suit the works!' he added looking angrily at the March Hare.

    'It was the best butter,' the March Hare meekly replied.

    'Yes, but some crumbs must have got in as well,' the Hatter grumbled: 'you shouldn't have put it in with the bread-knife.'

    The March Hare took the watch and looked at it gloomily: then he dipped it into his cup of tea, and looked at it again: but he could think of nothing better to say than his first remark, 'It was the best butter, you know.'

    Alice had been looking over his shoulder with some curiosity. 'What a funny watch!' she remarked. 'It tells the day of the month, and doesn't tell what o'clock it is!'

    'Why should it?' muttered the Hatter. 'Does your watch tell you what year it is?'

    'Of course not,' Alice replied very readily: 'but that's because it stays the same year for such a long time together.'

    'Which is just the case with mine,' said the Hatter.

    Alice felt dreadfully puzzled. The Hatter's remark seemed to have no sort of meaning in it, and yet it was certainly English. 'I don't quite understand you,' she said, as politely as she could.

    'The Dormouse is asleep again,' said the Hatter, and he poured a little hot tea upon its nose.

    The Dormouse shook its head impatiently, and said, without opening its eyes, 'Of course, of course; just what I was going to remark myself.'

    'Have you guessed the riddle yet?' the Hatter said, turning to Alice again.

    'No, I give it up,' Alice replied: 'that's the answer?'

    'I haven't the slightest idea,' said the Hatter.

    'Nor I,' said the March Hare.

    Alice sighed wearily. 'I think you might do something better with the time,' she said, 'than waste it in asking riddles that have no answers.'

    'If you knew Time as well as I do,' said the Hatter, 'you wouldn't talk about wasting it. It's him.'

    'I don't know what you mean,' said Alice.

    'Of course you don't!' the Hatter said, tossing his head contemptuously. 'I dare say you never even spoke to Time!'

    'Perhaps not,' Alice cautiously replied: 'but I know I have to beat time when I learn music.'

    'Ah! that accounts for it,' said the Hatter. 'He won't stand beating. Now, if you only kept on good terms with him, he'd do almost anything you liked with the clock. For instance, suppose it were nine o'clock in the morning, just time to begin lessons: you'd only have to whisper a hint to Time, and round goes the clock in a twinkling! Half-past one, time for dinner!'

    ('I only wish it was,' the March Hare said to itself in a whisper.)

    'That would be grand, certainly,' said Alice thoughtfully: 'but then — I shouldn't be hungry for it, you know.'

    'Not at first, perhaps,' said the Hatter: 'but you could keep it to half-past one as long as you liked.'

    'Is that the way you manage?' Alice asked.

    The Hatter shook his head mournfully. 'Not I!' he replied. 'We quarrelled last March — just before he went mad, you know — ' (pointing with his tea spoon at the March Hare,) ' — it was at the great concert given by the Queen of Hearts, and I had to sing

    "Twinkle, twinkle, little bat!
    How I wonder what you're at!"

    You know the song, perhaps?'

    'I've heard something like it,' said Alice.

    'It goes on, you know,' the Hatter continued, 'in
    this way: —
    "Up above the world you fly,
    Like a tea-tray in the sky.
    Twinkle, twinkle — "'

    Here the Dormouse shook itself, and began singing in its sleep 'Twinkle, twinkle, twinkle, twinkle — ' and went on so long that they had to pinch it to make it stop.

    'Well, I'd hardly finished the first verse,' said the Hatter, 'when the Queen jumped up and bawled out, "He's murdering the time! Off with his head!"'

    'How dreadfully savage!' exclaimed Alice.

    'And ever since that,' the Hatter went on in a mournful tone, 'he won't do a thing I ask! It's always six o'clock now.'
  • Sir2u
    1.4k
    A place I worked at used the 13 month calendar, six months work then two vacation twice a year. They used to close the whole factory down for maintenance for the two weeks. Good system.
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k

    Eastman Kodak was using it until some time in the '80s. It simplified scheduling, with weekends and holidays always on the same date, and and its identical months with exactly 4 weeks made various book-keepng calculations transparent.

    Michael Ossipoff
  • 4thClassCitizen
    7
    Six days per week. There has been talk of companies shortening the work-hours. There could be four work-days for each two days off, for the previously full-time workers.

    I used to think we should change to base six system. You could count to 35 with ten fingers,using each hand to represent one digit.
    On the base six calendar, weeks would be 6 days, 10 in base six.
    Months would be 36 days long, 100 in base six.
    There would be ten months, then a separate six day special week. Every six years.the special week would be subtracted.

    Every year, and every month, would start on the same day of the week.....
  • andrewk
    1.8k
    I vote for 30X12 because then we could use those great old month names like Thermidor, Brumaire and Prairial. And I like the fact that the fact 30 doesn't divide into 365 is handled by a balancing minimonth of five or six days at the end of the year.

    Sure the Terror was an awful time in history, but there were a few silver linings in it, one of which was the calendar.

    Plus it goes beyond months. It has ten-week days, ten-hour days and 100-minute hours. How cool is that?
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k


    Yes, the French-Republican Calendar is beautiful, with its rural nature references. It's a seasonal calendar, and a nature seasonal calendar, and that's my favorite kind.

    Not only are the months seasonally-named, but each day the year, in addition to being named as a day of a month, is also named for some element of rural life--A plant, animal, agricultural-implement, or mineral.

    A rural nature seasonal-calendar would be my favorite, and I'd want it to have the French-Republican Calendar's rural nature references.

    Of course, as an international calendar, a seasonal calendar's season names and references would be only for people either north or south of the equator, and might also be specific to particular climate-zones.

    So, for fully general international date-communications, it might be better to otherwise name the months. Numbering them would be one solution, but I'd prefer naming them for the solar-declination that brought a particular season.

    So, Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn would become:

    South, Northward, North and Southward (referring solar-declination)

    So this month, Frimaire would be Southward3 (the 3rd month of the Southward season).

    But, for date-communication that's entirely north or south of the equator, then of course the seasons could be named as Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn, and the months could keep their original French Republican names.

    French Republican has the nice convenience that the date tells the day of the week, because the units-digit of the day-of-the-month is also the name of the day of the week.

    Yes, the French Republican Calendar added 5 festival-days to the end of each year, for the 5 days that aren't in a month. ...and a 6th one for leapyears, Those 5 or 6 days were "blank-days" not any day of the week.

    28 Frimaire (Frost-Month) CCXXVII (French Republican Calendar of 1792)
    Truffle
    December 19th (Roman-Gregorian Calendar)
    December 20th (Hanke-Henry 30,30,31 Calendar)
    2018-51-3 (ISO WeekDate Calendar)
    2018-52-3 (South-Solstice WeekDate Calendar)

    Michael Ossipoff
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k
    Six days per week. There has been talk of companies shortening the work-hours. There could be four work-days for each two days off, for the previously full-time workers.4thClassCitizen

    Yes, and whatever the calendar, the population would unanimously support a shorter work-week...all the more feasible with increasing automation.

    If a time eventually came, a grand new era, when people want a drastic departure from the past, then a completely new calendar would likely be wanted. I like a seasonal calendar, but I'd like whatever calendar the other people like.

    Maybe there'd come a time when people want a new number-base. Only with a base-6 number-system would a calendar with 6-day week have French-Republican's convenience that the units-digit of the day-of-the-month could be the same as the name as the day of the week.

    But changing the number-system-base would be an extra drastic change, But I don't object to drastic change at a hypothetical future time that I call a "Utopian Epoch".

    Who knows what people would like or want then? Things that are fresh, new, and drastically-different. How different and what different, of course there's no way to guess what they'd want.

    28 Frimaire (Frost-Month) CCXXVII (French Republican Calendar of 1792)
    Truffle
    December 19th (Roman-Gregorian Calendar)
    December 20th (Hanke-Henry 30,30,31 Calendar)
    2018-51-3 (ISO WeekDate Calendar)
    2018-52-3 (South-Solstice WeekDate Calendar)

    Michael Ossipoff

    I used to think we should change to base six system. You could count to 35 with ten fingers,using each hand to represent one digit.
    On the base six calendar, weeks would be 6 days, 10 in base six.
    Months would be 36 days long, 100 in base six.
    There would be ten months, then a separate six day special week. Every six years.the special week would be subtracted.

    Every year, and every month, would start on the same day of the week.....
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k
    My reply was about a month late because I didn't receive notification about the posts that I replied to today.

    Michael Ossipoff

    28 Frimaire CCXXVII
    Truffle
  • Edgar Burnett III
    1
    I like the first one the best. But honestly, we should just count the days individually. Why do we need weeks and months?? We should just do the year and day. That's it. Forget all the extras. Today is 352-2018. Simple and easy
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k
    I like the first one the best. But honestly, we should just count the days individually. Why do we need weeks and months??Edgar Burnett III

    It's been argued that months are helpful as payment-periods, But we could just make payments every 4th week, in the WeekDate calendar.

    I'd say the main value of months is to name the parts of the year for denoting seasons, Our Roman months have been in use for about 2000 yiears, and so everyone everywhere knows what weather and temperature and other environmental conditions tend to go with each month.

    For alternative calendars, I like seasonal calendars whose months are named by the season they're in, and their numerical order in that season.

    So, I'd say that seasonal marking is the only justification for months, Sure, WeekDate's week-number tells you something about the season, especially if the weeks are numbered from near the South-Solstice (as are the weeks of South-Solstice WeekDate). But a calendar with seasonally-named months makes the seasons explicit, and that has appeal.

    But no months or even weeks? The trouble with that is that the week is too important for all of our social and societal interactions. No, not having weeks would be inconvenient,

    I have to admit that Iike the minimal-ness of ISO WeekDate and South-Solstice WeekDate. But there's something nice about explicitly seasonally-named months. I've proposed two calendars with such months.

    The French-Republican Calendar is the stand-out rural nature seasonal-calendar, and is probably the earliest one that I've heard of.

    December 22 (Roman-Gregorian Calendar)
    December 23 (Hanke-Henry Calendar)
    2018-W51-6 (ISO WeekDate Calendar)
    2018-W52-6 (South-Solstice WeekDate Calendar)
    1 Nivose (Snow-Month) CCXXVII (French Republican Calendar of 1792
    .....Peat (Each French Republican day of the year is named for an element of rural life.)

    We should just do the year and day. That's it. Forget all the extras. Today is 352-2018. Simple and easy

    The ISO has an official format for annual day-numbering, but the week is too important in all of our affairs to not have it,

    Michael Ossipoff
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k





    2019-W01-1 (South-Solstice WeekDate)
    2018-W52-1 (ISO WeekDate)
    2019 South1 Week 1 Monday (6-Seasons -3 wk Offset)
    2019 South1 Week 1 Monday (6-Seasons 0 Offset)
    2018 December 24th (Roman-Gregorian)
    2018 December 25th (Hanke-Henry)
    3 Nivȏse CCXXVII (French-Republican)
    .

    Let me mention my favorite alternative-calendar proposals--my own alternative-calendar proposals. ...two of them:
    .
    They’re both seasonal calendars, and they both start their year on the Monday closest to the South-Solstice. Today (Roman-Gregorian December 24th, 2018) is such a Monday, and is the first day of the calendar-year for both of the calendars that I propose.
    .
    Here’s the more briefly-described minimal seasonal calendar:
    .
    South-Solstice WeekDate Calendar:
    .
    As I said, it starts its year on the Monday closest to the South-Solstice (…by the standard that I specify in another section below). From that year-start day, it numbers the weeks, and states the date by the week-number and the day-of-week number (…where the 1 to 7 numbering starts with Monday.)
    .
    By the South-Solstice WeekDate calendar, today (Roman-Gregorian December 24th, 2018) is:
    .
    2019-W01-1
    .
    (The first day (Monday) of the first week of 2019)
    .
    South-Solstice WeekDate, as I said, is the minimal seasonal calendar.
    .
    Other than the year-start rule, South-Solstice WeekDate is identical to the widely-used ISO WeekDate.
    .
    (ISO WeekDate, using a different version of Nearest-Monday, starts its year on the Monday that’s closest to Gregorian January 1st.)
    -------------------------------------------
    Now, as for my more elaborate astronomical-terrestrial seasonal calendar-proposal:
    .
    I might as well start with the name for that proposed calendar. I call it 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset.
    .
    Maybe not euphonious, but descriptive.
    .
    First a few descriptive comments that tell what was intended to be achieved with this calendar (…after which, the complete and concise definition of the proposed calendar):
    .
    I prefer a seasonal calendar. …a calendar with months that are seasonally-named. More specifically, it’s an astronomical-terrestrial seasonal calendar, by which I mean that it starts its calendar-year near a cardinal ecliptic-point (solstice or equinox…specifically the South-Solstice), and its month-naming is about our terrestrial seasons (named in terms of solar-declination).
    .
    It’s a “month-start uniform” calendar, by which I mean that every month of every year starts with the same day of the week (Monday).
    .
    That also means of course that every year starts on the same day of the week, which means that one printed calendar can be used for every year, and that regularly-annual events needn’t be re-scheduled for the new year due to different correspondence between dates and weekends. A calendar with this latter property is called a “fixed-calendar”.
    .
    Nearly all alternative calendar proposals are fixed-calendars.
    .
    6-Seasons -3 wk Offset designates the day-of-the-month by specifying the week-of-the-month and the day-of-the-week. …so that, as with the WeekDate calendars, the date itself tells you what day-of-the-week that date is. I’ve found that that date format is by far the most convenient one for a calendar with months.
    .
    For example, today, 2018 December 24th, is, in this proposed calendar:
    .
    2019 South1 Week 1 Monday.
    .
    (“South” because, when it’s Winter north of the equator, the solar-declination is south declination)
    .
    South1 is the first month of the year in this calendar, and this is this calendar’s 1st day of 2019. As I mentioned above, the calendar year is defined as starting with the Monday that starts on the midnight that’s closest to the South-Solstice.
    .
    (…actually, though it’s pretty-much the same thing, it specifies an _arithmetical approximation_ of the South-Solstice, which I describe in another section below)
    .
    As I’ll describe below, “South” is this calendar’s name for “Winter, north of the equator”. I’ve named the seasons for the solar-declination that they’re the result of. Winter north of the equator is the result of the southmost solar-declination, and so I call that season “South”.
    .
    Of course, naming the seasons by solar-declination, instead of the conventional season-names, is chosen because, if the seasons were named for their names north of the equator, then the names would be meaningless south of the equator.
    .
    This calendar recognizes 6 seasons instead of just 4. Many seasonal calendars try to shoehorn the seasonal-year into 4 seasons, and it doesn’t work very well.
    .
    There’s a lot of agreement that 6 seasons are more realistic.
    .
    March isn’t really very Spring-like, but it’s also not plain Winter either. It definitely heralds the arrival of Spring, even if Spring hasn’t arrived yet. So I call March “Pre-Spring”. Pre-Spring, in my calendar, closely coincides with our Roman-Gregorian March. Of course, symmetrically, the calendar also has a Pre-Autumn.
    .
    (..but of course those are instead called Pre-Northward and Pre-Southward, in keeping with the naming of seasons for solar-declination….about which more below.)
    .
    There’s a widespread consensus, and has been for some time, that the South season (Winter north of the equator, and Summer South of the equator) arrives with the beginning of December.
    .
    …and, likewise, that the North season (Summer north of the equator, and Winter south of the equator) arrives with the beginning of June.
    .
    My astronomical-terrestrial seasonal calendar starts its named seasons consistent with that consensus about December and June, and in keeping with what I said about 6 seasons, with Pre-Spring and Pre-Autumn.
    .
    Year-Start Rule:
    .
    This calendar uses a version, a variation, of the general class of year-start rules that I call “Nearest-Monday”.
    .
    It’s designed to 1) Start every year on a Monday; and 2) keep the year-start as close as possible to some “intended-time”, which, for this calendar is the South-Solstice.
    .
    …actually an arithmetical-approximation to the South-Solstice. …just as our Gregorian leap-year rule is intended to arithmetically approximately track the March Equinox, so as to accurately place Easter with respect to that equinox.
    .
    Specifically:
    .
    The year starts with the Monday that starts on the midnight that’s closest to the (below-specified) “intended-time”.
    .
    Here’s what the intended-time is:
    .
    The South-Solstice. But, just as our current Gregorian leap-year rule is intended as an arithmetical approximation to track the March Equinox, so as to place Easter as accurately as possible with respect to that equinox--so I choose, for the intended-time, an arithmetical approximation of the South-Solstice, for the purpose of starting this calendar as near as possible to that approximate South-Solstice. Here’s the arithmetical approximation:
    .
    Because, roughly every 365.2422 mean-solar-days the Sun returns to the same ecliptic-longitude, and the seasonal-year returns to the same seasonal-time:
    .
    …So, every 365.2422 days, the end of that 365.2422 day period is the intended time, for the purpose of starting a year with the Monday that starts on the midnight that’s closest to that intended-time.
    .
    …where the first 365.2422 day period, in that sequence of end-to-end 365.2422 day periods, starts at the South-Solstice (Winter-Solstice north of the equator) of the Gregorian calendar year 2017.
    ----------------------------
    That’s this calendar’s year-start rule. It’s an arithmetical rule intended to approximate the South-Solstice for years after 2017, for the purpose of starting the year on the Monday closest to that solstice.
    .
    Other than the year-start rule, South-Solstice WeekDate is identical to ISO WeekDate.
    .
    (ISO WeekDate, using a different version of Nearest-Monday, starts its year on the Monday that’s closest to Gregorian January 1st.)
    .
    With the same year-start rule, both calendars, South-Solstice WeekDate, and 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset, start their 2019 calendar-year today, on Roman-Gregorian December 24th.
    .
    …which is the Monday that’s closest to the South-Solstice, as described above.
    ------------------------------
    The Month-System for the 6-Season -3 wk Offset Calendar:
    .
    If they were named only for the latitudes north of the equator, the 6 seasons would be called:
    .
    Winter, Pre-Spring, Spring, Summer, Pre-Autumn, Autumn.
    .
    But, named for the solar-declination that causes the seasons, they’re called:
    .
    South, Pre-Northward, Northward, North, Pre-Southward, Southward.
    .
    Here are the month-lengths (in weeks) in each season. Each numeral after a season-name is the length (in weeks) of one of its months :
    .
    South 544, Pre-Northward 5, Northward 44
    .
    (Of course, symmetrically, North, Pre-Southward and Southward follow the same pattern.)
    .
    Here are those seasons’ month lengths (in weeks) written in a single-row, without the season-names:
    .
    544 5 44
    .
    In order for the South season to start (approximately) when December starts, the South season is defined to start 3 weeks before the calendar-year begins. (As I said, the calendar year begins on the Monday that starts on the Midnight that’s closest to the (approximated) South-Solstice.)
    .
    …hence this calendar’s name: 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset
    --------------------------------------------
    In each season, the months are named by consecutive numbering. In each month, the weeks are named by consecutives numbering.
    .
    But, because the South season starts 3 weeks before the calendar-year starts, then, unavoidably, the South season is split between two calendar-years. …and the South1 month described above is likewise split.
    .
    So the first 3 weeks of the South season (the part of the South season in the old year) are designated as a month called “Early South”. The remaining 2 weeks of the South season (the part of the South season in the new year) are designated as a month called “South1” (because it’s the first South season month that’s in the new year).
    .
    Of course, as individual months, Early-South and South1 each has its own numbering of its weeks. Of course the next (5th and last) month of South is South2. …followed of course by Pre-Northward, a season with only one month, and designated as a month.
    .
    Other than that, way of dealing with the split-season, the seasons and their months are named as described above.
    .
    Yes, the splitting of a nominal-season between two calendar years causes a bit of naming un-neatness and structural-asymmetry. …an unavoidable price for starting the calendar-year near the South-Soltice and also complying with the consensuses about the South and North seasons starting with December and June, and about 6 seasons with March as Pre-Spring.
    ---------------------------------------------
    As I said, these named seasons comply with the consensus about the South season beginning when December starts, and the North season beginning when June starts. …and the consensus about there being 6 seasons, with March being Pre-Spring.
    ---------------------------------------------
    What? This calendar doesn’t have the month-system simplicity that other alternative-calendars have, and is too drastically different, to be adopted? Of course. As I said, I only propose it for some hypothetical future time (which will probably never arrive) when people demand complete departure from any unnecessary copying of how things were done in that past.
    .
    That’s why I call it “Science-Fiction.
    ---------------------------------------------
    In fact, of course _any_ calendar-reform at all is science-fiction. Practically no one is interested in an alternative calendar, and, when the subject is mentioned, practically everyone expresses strong opposition to changing the calendar.
    .
    Anecdotal report: I spoke to someone who doesn’t want a new calendar, and she said that the only alternative calendar that could be acceptable to her at all would be Hanke-Henry. …the calendar whose each quarter has months of 30,30, and 31 days, and which starts its year on the Monday closest to Gregorian January 1st. Among the alternative fixed calendars with regularized months, Hanke-Henry is the minimal-change calendar proposal.
    .
    But, though Hanke-Henry is currently being proposed, and has a website, and has had some favorable media-mention, of course practically no one has heard of it, and, as I said, practically no one is interested in changing the calendar when they hear of the subject.
    .
    I should add here that, if it were desired to have the 30,30,31 quarters that Hanke-Henry uses, but to not make the year-start dependent on the Gregorian year (as Hanke-Henry does), then Nearest-Monday could still be used in a different version:
    .
    Just use the arithmetical rule that I describe above for year-start for my 3 calendar-proposals.
    .
    …but start the sequence of end-to-end 365.2422 day periods on the January 1st of any previous year whose date/season correspondence you want the new calendar’s seasonal year to stay close to.
    .
    In conversations at forums, including this one, people who are favorable to changing the calendar have unanimously expressed preference for one of the ones that’s more radically-different than Hanke-Henry is.
    .
    …including ISO WeekDate, Asimov’s World-Seasonal, Eastman’s International-Fixed Calendar, and the French Republican Calendar of 1792.
    .
    But of course I wouldn’t expect even _them_ to like the less-simple month month system, and the bigger changes, of 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset.
    .
    But, most likely, South-Solstice WeekDate would be acceptance-competitive with ISO WeekDate, Asimov’s World-Seasonal, French-Republican and Eastman’s International-Fixed.
    .
    …though nearly everyone strongly opposes changing the calendar.
    .
    So what’s the point of discussing a calendar that’s un-adoptable anytime soon? For one thing, that can be said of _all_ of the alternative calendar proposals. If you’re going to write fiction, it might as well be good fiction, fiction that you like.
    .
    Anyway, it’s of interest what an astronomical-terrestrial seasonal calendar would be like if it actually recognized and modeled the seasonal consensuses that I described (South season starting with December, and North season starting with June, and there being 6 seasons including a Pre-Spring (approximately March) and a Pre-Autumn.
    .
    Anyway, it’s alright that there’s no chance of changing the calendar, because there’s nothing wrong with our current international standard calendar, the Roman-Gregorian calendar.
    .
    Roman-Gregorian is seasonally accurate—For any date, that date always closely coincides with nearly the same solar ecliptic-longitude. …and therefore the same seasonal time-of-year. What drift-rate there is, is slow enough to not be problematic (probably not even noticeable) in a person’s lifetime.
    .
    Though Roman-Gregorian doesn’t have the conveniences that the alternative calendar proposals have, everyone is completely satisfied with Roman-Gregorian.
    .
    It’s been claimed that the lengths of the Roman months require the rhyme “30 days hath September…” , but that isn’t true. Actually the Roman months alternate almost perfectly between long and short months. The only exception to that alternation is the adjacent July & August and December and January. …the extreme hot and extreme cold pairs of months.
    .
    February is different from all of the other months, with its shortness and its leapday, but February is unique and notable anyway, as the first month that shows signs of approaching Spring. …and therefore can be said to deserve its calendrical uniqueness.
    .
    This concludes my definition and discussion of my 2 alternative-calendar proposals, South-Solstice WeekDate and 6-Season -3 wk Offset; and my Nearest-Monday year-start rule proposal; and these comments about alternative-calendars and calendar-change in general.
    .
    Michael Ossipoff
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k


    I should add that a simple numbering of the year's days would work alright if a 10-day week were used.

    Then, the date, that simple day-number, would tell what day of the week it is. For example, if the day number is 129, then you know the day-of-the-week is a "Nine",, the 9th day of the week.

    As for payment periods, payments could be made every 3 weeks.

    Michael Ossipoff

    2019-W01-1 (South-Solstice WeekDate)
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k





    But actually months don't serve any purpose in a seasonal-calendar. Instead of having seasonally-named months, just have nominal-seasons.
    .
    Then the week's number within the season gives an obvious immediate measure of how far through the season that week is.
    .
    ...something that's obscured by weeks numbered within months.
    .
    "Early-South" and "Late South" label two parts of the same divided South-season, which are separately week-numbered.
    .
    ...because they're in different calendar-years, and so that the new year can start with all numbers set to zero.
    .
    Of course this goes without saying, but I'd like to mention it anyway:
    .
    Though the variability of weather and temperature at any particular time of year is greater than the astronomical inaccuracy of Nearest-Monday, people could nonetheless prefer maximal astronomical accuracy over maximal convenience.
    .
    ...in which case they'd prefer and choose a non-fixed calendar.
    .
    For my 3 proposed alternative calendars, or any calendar, that would just mean
    substituting the words "The midnight nearest to the intended-time" for "The Monday that starts on the midnight nearest to the intended-time".
    .
    That could be called "Nearest-Day", or "Nearest-Midnight" as opposed to "Nearest Monday".
    .
    2019-W01-2 (South-Solstice WeekDate)
    2019 Late-South Week 1 Tuesday (6-Season -3 wk Offset)
    .
    Michael Ossipoff
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k
    Year-divisions other than the week can’t be justified other than by their marking of the seasons.
    .
    Months as payment-periods? With WeekDate, make payments every 4th week, every week-number divisible by 4.
    .
    So I proposed South-Solstice WeekDate, and a calendar with nominal seasons
    .
    And I’ve referred to two previously-proposed seasonal calendars, one of which was actually adopted and used by a country, and I’ve cited their shortcomings, and showed how those shortcomings can be avoided.
    .
    The nominal seasons of 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset coincide closely with the seasons of experience, perception and wide consensus. …as I described in my previous post.
    .
    The Roman-Gregorian months can be called seasonal, because, with about 2000 years’ experience, everyone everywhere is familiar with what season, weather and temperature tend to arrive with each Roman month.
    .
    But I wanted an astronomical-terrestrial seasonal calendar, and a calendar for a hypothetical time when people want a complete departure from the past, and therefore don’t want to keep using the Roman months.
    .
    The proponents, at of 28,35,28 quarters have utterly failed to explain what their funny “months” are good for, or are supposed to mean, or why there’s any reason to name them after the Roman months, or why it’s desirable to start their “January” near that of Roman-Gregorian (…when the month-start times bear little resemblance to those of Roman-Gregorian).
    .
    By the way, as a possible justification for why some would want to say that Winter begins at the Winter-Solstice, I suggested that maybe some want to emphasize that the worst cold of Winter typically arrives after that time.
    .
    But, with 6-Season -3 wk Offset, the names for the parts of South before and after New-Year’s Day, “Early-South” and “Late-South”, also mark that distinction between Winter’s somewhat more modest early part, and its more severe later part.
    .
    By the way, I suggested that the nominal seasons be divided only by weeks, with no months. Though I prefer that, it remains true that, in the 6-Seasons versions with months, those months (contrary to what I said before) do express a measure of progress through the seasons.
    .
    So the 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset calendar that I proposed would be fine, with and without months. I like the simplicity without months, but some, not liking the number 13, might object to the fact that there’d be 13 numbered-weeks in the North Season.
    .
    As I said, the 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset calendar would be fine either with or without months.
    .
    2019-W1-5 (South-Solstice WeekDate)
    2019 Late-South Week 1 Friday (6-Season -3 wk Offset)

    Michael Ossipoff
  • Hanover
    4.2k
    My prediction is the none of these calendar proposals will be adopted and that next year we'll still be using the same sort of calendars we always have.
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k
    My prediction is that none of these calendar proposals will be adopted and that next year we'll still be using the same sort of calendars we always have.Hanover

    Of course. That's obvious. Though pretty much all of the calendar-reform proposals bring some more convenience, and that's usually how they're justified, no one finds our current Roman-Gregorian Calendar inconvenient.

    Our Roman-Gregorian Calendar is an idiosyncratic patchwork quilt, with months unchanged since Roman times. Some of the months are named for Roman deities, some are named for Roman emperors, and some are named for a numbering that no longer applies.

    (September, October, November and December are named for being the 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th months. But of course they're now the 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th months.)

    Completely arbitrary and idiosyncratic.

    But that's fine. There's nothing wrong with our Roman-Gregorian Calendar, and everyone is satisfied with it.

    You're right. A new calendar won't be adopted. Calendar-reform is purely hypothetical topic. But what's wrong with hypothetical? This is a philosophy-forum, after all.

    Anyway, descriptions of the orderly, minimal, calendar proposals serve as a foil, to display the endearingly picturesquely arbitrary and idiosyncratic Roman-Gregorian, and its beautifully completely unrelated and mutually-independent variations of year, month and week, in all of their natural haphazard constantly changing permutations.

    There's been criticism of the lengths of the Roman months, and a claim that they need the rhyme "30 days hath September..." No, the Roman months alternate nearly perfectly between long and short months--the only exceptions being the 2 hottest months and the 2 coldest months as pairs of adjacent long months.

    February? It uniquely has only 28 days (sometimes 29).. But why not? February _is_ unique, as the first month that shows signs of approaching spring.

    Though there are alternative calendar proposals that are more seasonally-accurate than Roman-Gregorian, Roman-Gregorian is nonetheless accurate enough, whether judged by periodic cyclical seasonal displacement, or by long-term drift.

    The Gregorian drift is un-problematic (probably un-noticeable) during a human lifetime.

    No, I just mention alternative calendars because they're of some hypothetical interest.

    Michael Ossipoff

    2019-W02-6 (South-Solstice WeekDate)
    2019-W01-6 (ISO WeekDate)
    Late-South, Week2 Saturday (6-Seasons -3 wk Offset)
    South, Week2, Saturday (6-Seasons 0 Offset)
    January 5th (Roman-Gregorian)
    January 6th (Hanke-Henry)
    15 Nivose (Snowy) CCXXVII (French Republican Calendar of 1792)
  • DiegoT
    313
    I think I stick to the Gregorian calendar, because it recognizes periods of the year that are very meaningful to me and which are lost in the alternatives. Also because the Roman-Gregorian calendar was calculated by Spanish scientists (from Universidad de Salamanca, which is the oldest European university). What I do favour, is changing the decimal system for the duodecimal system. It is very practical and more in tune with nature and with ancient traditions of many cultures of the world. It would also make maths easier to learn for children.
  • Michael Ossipoff
    1.5k


    Yes, the Roman-Gregorian Calendar is a seasonal calendar, because the seasonal meanings of the months are familiar to us all, everyone everywhere.

    For example, now, in early January, we all know that we're getting into the coldest part of Winter.

    As you said, that seasonal meaning of dates would be lost if we changed to a different calendar.

    It's true that, if we changed to South-Solstice WeekDate, then today's date of 2019-W02-7 would soon imply cold weather to people north of the equator. ...as would any week-number close to 1 or 52.

    But the seasonal meaning of early January has been familiar to all, for over 2000 years, and
    2019-W02-7 can't match that.

    My drastic-departure seasonal calendar proposals...

    South-Solstice WeekDate, 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset, and 6-Seasons 0 Offset...

    ...are intended for some hypothetical (almost surely fictitious) future time when people demand a complete break with the past ways of doing things.

    And, if there were such a time, then by explicitly dividing the year into nominal-seasons, the 6-Season calendars would still say something about the season.

    For example, today's 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset date is Late South, Week2, Sunday. The calendar year starts (near the South-Solstice) with Late-South, which, as its name implies, means that we're deep into the season resulting from extreme south solar-declination. Deep winter.

    So, though 6-Seasons -3 wk Offset is a drastic departure, without the familiarity of Roman-Gregorian, its dates nonetheless say something about the season.

    Practically no one wants a change in the calendar. I'm not pushing for it either. Roman-Gregorian is perfectly good.

    I've been to Spain, and I liked it very much. It's the only continental European country I've ever been to.

    Michael Ossipoff

    January 6th (Roman-Gregorian)
    January 7th (Hanke-Henry)
    Late-South, Week2, Sunday (6-Seasons -3 wk Offset)
    2019-W02-7 (South-Solstsice WeekDate)
    2019-W01-7 (ISO WeekDate)
    16 Nivose (Snowy) CCXXVII (French-Republican Calendar of 1792)
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