Sunday, November 6, 2011

Another Daylight Saving Transition

Here I sit again on the eve of another Daylight Saving Time change having just wandered the house updating the clocks that aren’t smart enough to update themselves.  So between now and 2am some of the clocks are already set to the non-DST time while other clocks are set to the actual real time making the next moment of consciousness completely insane.

I’m constantly amazed at the misinformation surrounding Daylight Saving and why it exists.  First of all, there is no ‘s’ on the end of Saving.  It is not plural.  It is Daylight Saving Time, no ‘s’ but most folks, including those in the media, call it Daylight Savings Time perpetuating the misinformation.

The reasons for DST are also not cut and dry.  It isn’t for the school kids nor is it for the farmers.  The reasons and misguided perceptions that led us down the DST path are well defined in 2 books. Spring Forward: The Annual Madness of Daylight Saving Time and Seize the Daylight: The Curious and Contentious Story of Daylight Saving Time are both excellent reads and do a great job clearing up the mystery.

My passion against DST began years ago when our governor wanted our state to begin observing DST.  I’ve lived in Indiana for most of my life and our great state for the most part didn’t bother to observe the non-sense.  Some of the counties up by Chicago and some down near Cincinnati did to try to make things easier for their residents but for the most part most of Indiana stayed on the same time year round.  Working in IT this made things easy, as our clocks didn’t have to be changed twice a year.

At hand was the issue of confusion, as no one knew what time it was during what part of the year in what part of our state.  To make it easier our governor pushed for the entire state to be on DST so at least you knew what time it was where as it was the same year round.  Our state is still split with the counties by Chicago observing Central time while the rest of the state observes Eastern Time but at least it was consistent.

I personally met with our governor and several of our local legislators to express my objections to DST however, despite my best efforts in April of 2006 DST was turned on for Indiana.  This provided numerous technical challenges with scheduling systems and other calendar based databases that were not coded to observe DST so a lot of work had to be done to make things work, which is one of the key reasons I opposed it.

Then to add insult to injury the federal government extended the DST observation period by 4 weeks starting in 2007 so we had to make it all work one way in 2006 and then change it up again for the extended dates in 2007 doubling my disdain for DST.

So as we sit on this eve where I wonder what time it really is I hope you have enjoyed this reflection of how we got here.  Additional posts pertaining to this crazinessare available here.

I hope you have enjoyed fooling yourselves regarding what time it is as much as I have.

Until the second Sunday of March………