Time Zone Madness

Christian Stredicke
CEO of Vodia Networks

Last week the news had a story that called us for action. Rumor has it that the changing of clocks did not help making president Putin bootstrapping procedure faster. So Russia has decided to change their time zones again. They essentially switched back to what they had before and buried the idea of saving time in summer. Hopefully forever.

This came just after the European time zone switch which occurred yesterday. This switch is not in sync with the US time zone switch, so that we have difficulties calculating the difference between Europe and the east coast. Usually it is a convenient 6 hour different, now it is 5 hours for a couple of days. The summer savings keeps us busy.

What is a very understandable step for the people in Russia causes a lot of problems on the technology side. Now that all sorts of products have adopted the new Russian time zones, we can all go back and change it essentially back to what is was before. Thankfully the new time zones at least don’t have any daylight “savings”, which makes not only life easier for people and animals, it also makes it easier for us and the automatically provisioned IP phones to get the time right.

There are countries like Israel or Iran, who have schedules that cannot be automatically provisioned at all. The dates when the clocks gets changes are so random that there is no rule that we can provision into the phone to get the time right. I have doubts that the desk phone is a reliable source for the current time. If I had my way, the world would eliminate the whole daylight savings madness in the various countries anyway. Life is too complex anyway, and the last thing that we need is man-made additional complexity.

I can see only one good reason for keeping us busy with time zone changes. Those who are looking for another reason to keep their PBX up-to-date, updated time zones another reason. It will be included in the next build, which be readily available before the old Russian time zone change kicks in.