6

For some reason I seem to totally suck at converting the proposed meeting dates and times here into my local time, even when I try to use the recommended websites to do so.

I am forced to assume I'm not the only one who finds this a pain. (Because I don't think I'm particularly stupid.)

Can we try brainstorming some other ways to propose meeting times?

For instance is there some website or service that would give us a way to paste a link here that would use each user's browser's knowledge of its own timezone to show that time automatically converted for each user? (Possibly with a manual override for people that do stuff like keeping their computer set to their home timezone even when travelling in some other timezone.)

  • I'm now looking for a plain text date + time + timezone parsing function, preferably in JavaScript / node.js so I might make my own for everybody to enjoy. – hippietrail Mar 7 '13 at 3:10
5

permatime.com

With this site you just make a URL in a standard date format and everybody clicking on that URL will see it converted to their preferred timezone if they set it up, or in the timezone of their OS / browser if they haven't set it up.

A URL should be in this format:

http://permatime.com/UTC/2013-03-07/21:00

You can of course use markdown to write it in plain English however you like and make it a link like this:

[10pm on March the 7th, 2013](http://permatime.com/UTC/2013-03-07/21:00)

Which would render like this:

10pm on March the 7th, 2013

4

Hmm. I always just google "Current time in X" where X might be Vancouver, Christchurch, London or even GMT. I then do the requisite maths in my head. But I also do timezone calculations on a daily basis when emailing people, so I'm fairly used to it, and can totally understand others may find it frustrating - I've made errors myself, especially when different countries/states implement daylight savings at different times/days :)

  • That offset math can get tricky when it's several days before or after today especially if you factor in 12 hour vs 24 hour clock and accidentally confusing the day of the week in your timezone with the one written on the page. – hippietrail Mar 7 '13 at 3:18
  • 1
    @hippietrail Agreed. I'm sure there must be a site where you can have it detect your timezone and you give it a url with a date in it, so when you click it it shows you it in your time, but I can't for the life of me figure out the google-fu to find it :/ – Mark Mayo Supports Monica Mar 7 '13 at 3:21
  • I'm going to ask on webapps.SE but I think they may have adopted the "Asking if a webapp to do X exists is bad mmkay" policy ... )-: – hippietrail Mar 7 '13 at 3:23
  • @hippietrail assumed you forgot the word 'exists' in there, added it in. When you do ask it on webapps, post it in our Travel Chat and we can go support it. – Mark Mayo Supports Monica Mar 7 '13 at 3:37
2

How about we start by mandating a specific standard date / time / timezone format?

One good example would be the RFC2822 / IETF date syntax (RFC2822 Section 3.3).

Mon, 25 Dec 1995 13:30:00 GMT

This would make it easier to cut and paste the times and dates suggested into software and tools that take such inputs.

And it's not too hard for us humans to manually edit suggested times and dates to match such a format, but it can get tricky for computers whose programmers have to think of all the combinations and permutations in advance.

  • 2
    Also possible is ISO 8601. Using your example: 1995-12-25 13:30:00 UTC – mindcorrosive Mar 7 '13 at 8:34
1

There's a question on our sister site, webapps.SE, about ways to convert timezones on the web:

Convert time zones with Google?

I'm currently evaluating which come closest to the criteria in my question ...

0

There's one website that I find quite handy for converting timezone's visually: everytimezone.com

  • Pretty site! Is there a way to have GMT/UTC at the top or to link to a specific date and time? – hippietrail Mar 9 '13 at 8:28
  • @hippietrail Yeah, drag the slider to the time you want, and then click the "link to this site" page at the top right corner. This gives you a URL in your address bar you can send to someone. – Ankur Banerjee Mar 9 '13 at 11:31
  • Hmm but I have to keep my eye on London in the middle while I drag and I seem to be only able to drag about one day left or right. And what about dummies who don't even realize UTC is London Time? (And is there daylight savings in London in summer?) – hippietrail Mar 9 '13 at 11:47
  • 1
    @hippietrail Yes, Britain does use daylight saving (and the site adjusts for that). I know it doesn't provide more than +/- 1 day but the idea is that timings will be equivalent for timeshifted days (unless there's a DST switchover). It's just a more visual way of interpreting timezone data, I find it very helpful when say trying to set up Skype calls to drag the slider to see what times suit me/my friends. – Ankur Banerjee Mar 10 '13 at 0:46
0

Greenwichmeantime.com, despite having a hideous colour scheme, provides conversions for meeting times etc., groks daylight saving times and has various useful functions.

I use it whenever setting up meetings where I know some attendees use Outlook and others use Notes, as these don't always play nicely.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .