During this west coast travel in the States, I started to think about daylight saving time (DST), in my own way.
The whole idea of daylight saving is, there are many more additional hours of daylight in summers than winters. Since we always define 12:00 as noon when the sun is at the highest position, there are two hours of more daylight in the morning, and in the evening.
The other fact is, people tend to extend activity to the evening, instead of morning. The evidence is, lighting (candles, or electronic) are most used at evening than in the morning. Most people just don’t wake up in the morning, lit the light, and do something. Modern activities, like movies, sports, entertainments, after work life, and even education tend to leverage the hours in the evening.
Based on the two facts that listed above, it makes sense to shift the clock and leverage the additional hours. There are two ways to do it. Either make morning longer by shifting the main time frame toward evening or make evening longer. Obvious the later is more promising.
So the way people do it is, adjust the clock clockwise by one hour.
To help me understand it easier, I would visualize it as “Follow Japan”. For example, today, the sun came out at around 5:06 AM. If we follow Japan, the new time would be 6:30 AM. The sunset for today is 6:57 PM, and it would be 7:57 PM – bingo! more time in the afternoon without affecting early raisers.
That sounds such a good idea, but it turned out that it does not help the energy saving that much as people thought. I am happy that China finally abandoned the confusing shifting. Why?
Actually, if you want, you can do it yourself. The basic idea is, in summer, the Sun is raising up earlier and earlier every day. When the sun started his work in the morning, you are still sleeping. If you just adjust the schedule and be up with the sun, you are running your own daylight saving time. Very few people realized that we can and should change our schedule according to the sun. Why always wake up at 8:00 AM? We can do it at 6:00 AM, which is identical to 8:00 AM in winters. I would take the chance of the early raiser habit jet lag gave me to try it out.
Do you know China used to have five time zones plus DST like United States, but people at that time don’t have enough clock, watch and radio to tell time, so unified time zone became the ultimate solution.
I know China had DST before, but I never know that China has five time zones. When was it? I will do some research on this topic. Thanks Stephen.