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Wednesday, September 08, 2010

6, 7, 8, 9, 10....

Ahhhh. Now it's 06:07 08/09/10...  With a date that terrifying it can only mean one thing.  There must be a Derren Brown extravaganza live in Channel 4 this evening!!...

Last month, the Americans were making a big fuss about it being 8/9/10, but of course it wasn't. Duhh... Why on earth do they think that dates shouldn't go in size order ? (ie: Day, then Months, then Years) Interestingly there are only five countries in the world that use the same format as the United States:
  • Belize
  • Canada
  • the Federated States of Micronesia
  • Palau
  • the Philippines
That's really not that many. In fact in terms of numbers thats about 6% of the world's population using the "wrong" date format. Here's a graphical representation:

Description
Map showing what countries primarily use which calendar date format:
   dd-mm-yyyy
   dd-mm-yyyy and yyyy-mm-dd
   dd-mm-yyyy, mm-dd-yyyy, and yyyy-mm-dd
   yyyy-mm-dd
   mm-dd-yyyy
   mm-dd-yyyy and dd-mm-yyyy

Sort it out then....  Bizarrely, Central Africa don't have a clue what the date is according to this map ?  That's Wikipedia for you.

Actually, I've long been a proponent of the machine sortable date format (which many can attest to). Specifically this means putting the year first, then the month, then the date, and if you need to the time.  This way the generated number simply ascends or descends correctly in date order...

20100908 - 8th of September, 2010
20100907 - 7th of September, 2010
20100906 - 6th of September, 2010 etc.

From the looks of the data from Wikipedia a fair few countries are using this method along with the "English" method too.  Maybe we should have a campaign to get the whole planet going the right way round.  What do you think ?

Next interesting date is next month actually.  Already looking forward to 10:10 on the 10th of October 2010.... or 10:10 10/10/10

Fun times
 

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