Sunday, August 16, 2015

North Korea To Go Back In Time, Literally?

Even though it might still be physically impossible under current technology, can North Korea go 30 minutes back in time literally?

By: Ringo Bones 

Most countries in the Korean peninsula are “busy” marking the 70th Anniversary of the end of World War II, while the secretive “Hermit Kingdom” of North Korea attempts to go 30 minutes back in time, literally. At least it is for largely political reasons. North Korea’s top lawmaking body – The Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly – decreed on Wednesday, August 12, 2015 that clocks in North Korea will be moved back by 30 minutes and the “New North Korean Time Zone” would take effect in August 15, 2015 so when the clocks in North Korea hit midnight in the evening of August 14, 2015, all clocks in the “Hermit Kingdom” should be rolled back 30 minutes, according to the report carried by the North Korea’s Central News Agency.  

North Korea currently shares a time zone with South Korea and the peninsula’s former colonial ruler, Japan. The decree would restore North Korea to a time zone that the country used before Japan colonized it. According to the report, The North Korean Presidium said in its decree: “The wicked Japanese imperialists committed such unpardonable crimes as depriving Korea of even its standard time.” 

North Korea’s “official version” of history glosses over the United States’ fight against Japan during World War II, including the role of the two atomic bombs in bringing about the end of the war. Instead, Pyongyang’s “official history” credits Kim Il Sung, North Korea’s founder, with fighting Japan off the Korean peninsula which Tokyo governed as a colony for 35 years until 1945. For good or bad, the majority of North Koreans will probably not even notice the 30 minute rollback of their “New North Korean Time Zone” given that they have no internet access or investing in the international stock exchange or are serious amateur astronomers. 

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Why Do Our Clocks Move Clockwise?

A very esoteric question with a somewhat not-so-esoteric answer, but have you ever wondered why most elementary school kids haven’t been taught on the reason why clocks move clockwise? 

By: Ringo Bones 

Well, the reason our clocks – most of them anyway – move clockwise and so does our steam gauges is that the modern clock is an evolutionary step above of the sundial and in the northern hemisphere – where most of the planet Earth’s people live and civilization first developed – a sundial’s shadow moves clockwise as the sun travels across the sky through the day. While in the southern hemisphere, a shadow cast by a sundial will move counterclockwise, making the modern clock a representation of daylight in the northern hemisphere. The seasons too are flipped. 

In a move that will probably educate the rest of us and help Bolivians find heir indigenous roots, Bolivian foreign minister David Choquehuanca launched the horological initiative that not only help Bolivians get in touch with their indigenous roots but also remind them that they are a people of Earth’s southern hemisphere. AS a grand gesture of their horological initiative, the large clock of the congress building of La Paz, Bolivia runs counterclockwise and the numbers are mounted in reverse in comparison to clocks developed in the northern hemisphere. If Bolivia’s Counterclockwise Clock fails to remind Bolivians of their southern hemisphere roots, I don’t know what will. 

Even though it is seldom mentioned in the story’s canon, DC Comics’ Hawkman and Hawkgirl’s home planet Thanagar has its dominant civilization and most of its people develop in the southern hemisphere of the planet. Because of this, their clocks and steam gauges move counterclockwise in comparison to ours. And if the Bolivian foreign minister gets his way, he may have Bolivia’s steam gauges – as in speedometers and other forms of tachometers – move in a counterclockwise fashion to remind Bolivians that they are citizens of the planet Earth’s southern hemisphere.