#15 - Internet Time

Thursday, February 13, 2014 - 10:20 AM



In 1998 Swatch tried to completely reinvent our concept of time. Swatch Internet Time (or .beat time) would have been a new way to conceive of moments. There'd be no time zones, and also, no hours, minutes, or seconds. PJ talks to Gizmodo's Eric Limer and Swatch Creative Director Carlo Giordanetti about Swatch's plan to create time's version of Esperanto. 

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Comments [2]

Neil Carmichael from United Kingdom

The thing is, there was/is an internet time already. It's called "unix time" and its everywhere.


Apr. 14 2015 08:11 AM
Marvin from New Zealand GMT +13 hrs

I not surprised this has not been widely accepted.

I wouldn't have used it, as GMT works very well, for the same purpose and more broadly accepted commercially.

While very few in the mass population use it, if you are an airline operating around the world, a corporation operating in many countries or the militarythen GMT is very useful and is still in same units of minutes / seconds that we are all used to. 23:00 GMT is the same everywhere in the world at the same time.

I am pretty sure that all GPS readings are based on GMT, so it would have been better to just accept GMT and not try to make a new 1000 unit metric that is some odd number of minutes/seconds. I know it has a metric appeal, but just isn't meaningful to the units we are all so used to using.

If they had made a GMT watch and re-marketed it as Internet Time, it might have worked.

Nov. 02 2014 02:47 PM

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TLDR is a short podcast and blog about the internet by Meredith Haggerty. You can subscribe to the TLDR podcast here. You can follow our blog here. I tweet @manymanywords and @tldr.

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