Dear Victor and Calendar People

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Dear Victor and Calendar People

Phil De Rosa
Dear Victor and Calendar People,

Dear Victor and Calendar People,

I would never choose an observational calendar or a sundial (though I have one for décor only) even with clear skies, over a fixed mathematical calendar or a clock.

A) I agree with your choice of Midnight as the start of each day. I said either Midday or Midnight (in bold type) as opposed to the variable times of sunset or sunrise.

B) January 1 has no significance whatsoever, neither astronomical nor agricultural, so if we are reforming the calendar why not begin the year with the start of a season. Today the year begins 11 days into a season or 11 days off from the northern solstice. Why?

Though March 21 was generally used as the beginning of a year, in 153 BCE the Roman senate arbitrarily declared January 1, the date they usually assumed office, as the start of a new year. Julius Caesar only retained January 1 at the request of the Roman senate.

C) Did you mean to set year 0 at 46 or 45 BCE or just to rename Gregorian day 0 to Julian day 0?  It makes sense to me if you mean to begin the calendar 45 or 46 years earlier. To me BCE is not neutral but represents the same bias as BC. I feel that we should start the calendar as far back as possible using a verifiable date probably related to calendrics or astronomy but not necessarily. Any dates older than 46-45 BCE anyone?

D) It must be unnumbered or called the 365th day, Worldsday or whatever, but it must be outside of the 7 day weeks’ cycle in order to present the ISO, business, etc. with equal quarters totaling 91 days each, which allows a variety of month choices (30,30,31-30,31,30-31,30,30). This special day would also fall between the last Saturday and the first Sunday of a year, to allow continuity and not to interfere with the work week in many parts of the world nor the 3 major days of worship; Friday, Saturday or Sunday. The 364 +1 unnumbered day allows every year to begin on Sunday and end on Saturday.

Re-‘seven day week box’ assumption) The 7 day week was instituted by the ‘learned’ ancients who ‘observed’ only 7 planets ‘moving’ in the sky (Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn) and this erroneous number 7 was used by the authors of the Old Testament in their 7 days of creation. The 7 day week causes problems because it does not fit in well with calendar months of 29, 30, or 31 days. The World Calendar Association didn’t and the worlds’ business community won’t accept, a year consisting simply of 13-28 day months of 4-7 day weeks each because the year then can’t be divided into equal quarters containing only full months, plus the 28 day month is out of sync with the moon’s cycle of 29-1/2 days anyway.

Last query- see D)

Phil De Rosa – Linking Nature and Commonsense

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Re: Dear Victor and Calendar People

VictorEngel
Dear Phil and Calendar People,

You didn't quote anything, so I've lost the context of your post.

> I would never choose an observational calendar or a
> sundial (though I have one for décor only) even with clear
> skies, over a fixed mathematical calendar or a clock.

It seems to me that which is preferable depends on the purpose
of the calendar.

> A) I agree with your choice of Midnight as the start of
> each day. I said either Midday or Midnight (in bold type)
> as opposed to the variable times of sunset or sunrise.

Your ideas of calendar reform seem to be centered around normal
day-to-day running of businesses. I think it's pretty common
these days for most businesses to be active at noon, so it
surprises me you would prefer noon as a rollover time.

> B) January 1 has no significance whatsoever, neither
> astronomical nor agricultural, so if we are reforming the
> calendar why not begin the year with the start of a
> season.

Why should a year start at the start of a season? What
constitutes the start of a season anyway? In my opinion,
weather patterns are correlated with the seasons only to a
very approximate degree. And transitions tend to be gradual.
Synchronizing a hard start date with a rather nebulous phenomenon
then becomes problematic, kind of like shooting an arrow
into the middle of a cloud. How do you know if you've hit your
target? If you choose an equinox or a solstice, in my opinion,
you're not synchronizing with seasons but with descrete
astronomical phenomena. Nothing wrong with that.

> Today the year begins 11 days into a season or 11
> days off from the northern solstice. Why?

Why not?

> C) Did you mean to set year 0 at 46 or 45 BCE or just to
> rename Gregorian day 0 to Julian day 0?  

I don't recall doing anything of the sort. Are you, perhaps,
referring to someone else's post? Wait a minute. I recall
suggesting that if you want to use a starting date before
any other dates you are likely to refer to, that you simply
use the Julian day numbers. Instead of using the BC/AD
boundary, just start your calendar at the start of the Julian
day count. The gives you a few more thousand years to play with.

> It makes sense to
> me if you mean to begin the calendar 45 or 46 years
> earlier. To me BCE is not neutral but represents the same
> bias as BC.

I agree. But it has the additional benefit of confusing those
who don't know what it means.

> I feel that we should start the calendar as
> far back as possible using a verifiable date probably
> related to calendrics or astronomy but not necessarily.
> Any dates older than 46-45 BCE anyone?

Why not just use the epoch for Julian day numbers?

> D) It must be unnumbered or called the 365th day,
> Worldsday or whatever, but it must be outside of the 7 day
> weeks' cycle in order to present the ISO, business, etc.
> with equal quarters totaling 91 days each, which allows a
> variety of month choices (30,30,31-30,31,30-31,30,30).

Being outside the normal count doesn't present the community
with unequal quarters, only the illusion of such. Whatever you
wish to call the extra day (days on leap year), it is still
there.

> This special day would also fall between the last Saturday
> and the first Sunday of a year, to allow continuity and
> not to interfere with the work week in many parts of the
> world nor the 3 major days of worship;

You're naive if you think adding an extra day between Saturday
and Sunday won't interfere with worship.

> Friday, Saturday or
> Sunday. The 364 +1 unnumbered day allows every year to
> begin on Sunday and end on Saturday.

I'd say "forces" would be a better word than "allows".

> Re-'seven day week box' assumption) The 7 day week was
> instituted by the 'learned' ancients who 'observed' only 7
> planets 'moving' in the sky (Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury,
> Jupiter, Venus, Saturn) and this erroneous number 7 was
> used by the authors of the Old Testament in their 7 days
> of creation. The 7 day week causes problems because it
> does not fit in well with calendar months of 29, 30, or 31
> days.

It's not a problem. It's just an independent cycle. Currently, we
have only two commonly used uninterrupted cycles that I know
of: the Julian day number count, and the day of the week.
Your proposal would put an end to one of these uninterrupted
cycles. Furthermore, if you choose to retain the same weekday
names, you will have created unneeded ambiguity and confusion.
I think it's a very bad idea.

> The World Calendar Association didn't and the
> worlds' business community won't accept, a year consisting
> simply of 13-28 day months of 4-7 day weeks each because
> the year then can't be divided into equal quarters
> containing only full months,

The number of days in the year is not a multiple of 4. I think
we need to just accept this fact instead of trying to put our
heads in the sand and pretend it is not so by inventing days
in the calendar that don't exist, which is essentially what
you're trying to do.

> plus the 28 day month is out
> of sync with the moon's cycle of 29-1/2 days anyway.

So what? If I were to choose 28 day months, the reason would
be independent of lunation length.

Victor
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Consular year

Joe Kress
In reply to this post by Phil De Rosa
Philip wrote:

> Though March 21 was generally used as the beginning of a year,
> in 153 BCE the Roman senate arbitrarily declared January 1, the
> date they usually assumed office, as the start of a new year.
> Julius Caesar only retained January 1 at the request of the
> Roman senate.

These historical facts are confused. March 21 was never the
beginning of the year anywhere in the world. It was regarded as
the date of the vernal equinox since the fourth century and was
used as such in calculating Easter. Even then it was not the
beginning of the year. Even those lunisolar calendars which
placed their first month in spring, like the Hebrew calendar,
never began their year on the solar date of March 21.

>From at least 263 BCE, Roman consuls (not Roman senators) took
office on May 1. From 222 BCE until 153 BCE, the consular year
began March 15. From 153 BCE until the last consul in 541 CE, the
consular year began January 1. But Roman historians began their
AUC year on April 21, called "Founders Day", when Rome was
founded by Romulus and Remus. Because at least two "New Year's
Days" were used simultaneously, the Roman senate could not have
declared when the new year was to start. January 1 was the de
facto beginning of the year only because Romans usually named
their years for their consuls--it was not official.

Joe Kress
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Re: Dear Victor and Calendar People

Lance Latham
In reply to this post by VictorEngel
RE:

>> > D) It must be unnumbered or called the 365th day,
> > Worldsday or whatever, but it must be outside of
> the 7 day
> > weeks' cycle in order to present the ISO,
> business, etc.
> > with equal quarters totaling 91 days each, which
> allows a
> > variety of month choices
> (30,30,31-30,31,30-31,30,30).
>
> Being outside the normal count doesn't present the
> community
> with unequal quarters, only the illusion of such.
> Whatever you
> wish to call the extra day (days on leap year), it
> is still
> there.

Lance replies:
Proposals that attempt to place certain dates 'outside
of time' in the calendric sense are increasingly
unworkable in today's commercial and scientific
climate. Business is still going to be conducted,
regardless of what the calendar decrees. Any software
that deals with such a calendar is just going to treat
any 'special' day as a numbered day from the prior
month, for the purpose of calculation. So there is no
advantage to declaring 'special' days outside months,
because they will treated as such for most practical
purposes anyway.

The downside, of course, is that calculation with such
a calendar becomes more complex. Special provisions
have to be made to know that Monday is not necessarily
always followed by Tuesday, etc. And days of the month
are not always numbered, but named, etc. Basically,
it's a very expensive and generally pointless pain in
the ass.

-Lance


Lance Latham
[hidden email]
Phone:    (518) 274-0570
Address: 78 Hudson Avenue/1st Floor, Green Island, NY 12183
 




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