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你知道时间的故事吗?(二)

[实用英语]      来源:

 

Although humankind has been able to accurately measure the passage of solar time for many centuries, international aGREement on a framework to coordinate and standardize time zones around the globe is a relatively recent development, dating from the late 19th century.

 

尽管人类从很多世纪前就能准确地度量日历时的推移,但全世界为协调和规范时区的框架而达成国际一致还是最近的事,大约就在19世纪晚期。

 

 

The International Meridien Conference of 1884 established GREenwich Mean Time, referring to the mean solar time at the Royal Observatory in GREenwich, near London. GREenwich thus became established as the location of the prime meridian of longitude, and the base line for calculating time zones around the world.

 

1884年,国际子午线大会确立了格林威治标准时间(GMT),即伦敦附近的格林威治皇家气象台(the Royal Observatory in GREenwich)的平均太阳时间。由此格林威治不仅作为起初子午线的所在地,也成为全球计算时区的基准线。

 

 

This was quite a victory for England, which ultimately derived from the remarkable ingenuity of a 18th century British watchmaker with no formal education, John Harrison, who solved the centuries-long scientific mystery of how to establish accurate time-keeping on seafaring vessels, thus enabling accurate calculation of longitude.

 

这是英国的巨大胜利,而它的最终缔造者是一位没有受过任何正规教育的18世纪英国钟表匠——约翰•哈里逊。他解决了困扰人类几个世纪之久的海上计时难题,使经度的准确计算成为了可能。

 

 

Without a reliable measure of longitude, seafaring explorers, naval and merchant vessel captains had for centuries never been sure of their exact location while on the high seas. Thousands of lives and many vessels were lost as a result, until Harrison’s breakthrough invention of the marine chronometer.

 

没有可靠的经度测量,航海探险家、海军和商船船长在几个世纪内都无法确定自己在远海的准确位置,无数生命和船只因此魂断汪洋,直到哈里逊突破性地发明了航海天文钟。

 

 

After the 1884 Convention, GREenwich officially became the place where every day, year and century began. The main international system of nomenclature for time zones around the world was thus referenced to GREenwich Mean Time (GMT). A more recent invention is Universal Coordinated Time (UTC), which for all practical purposes refers to the same time zones by a different name.

 

1884年大会以后,格林威治正式成为每一天、每一年及每一世纪开始的地方。国际上主要时区系统的命名也都与格林威治时间有关。最新发明的协调世界时(UTC)从实用出发,将相同的时区进行了重新命名。

 

 

The basic framework of international time zones is that there is about one hour difference in solar time for every 15 deGREes of longitude. In the case of the continental U.S., for example, the approximate distance between the west and East coasts is 2,600 miles, equivalent to roughly 60 deGREes of longitude. Thus, the continental U.S. (not counting Alaska and Hawaii) has four time zones.

 

国际时区的基本框架是经度每隔15度,太阳时就相差一小时。例如在美国大陆,东西海岸之间的距离约为2,600英里,相当于横跨60度经度,因此美国大陆(不含阿拉斯加和夏威夷)共分为四个时区。

 

 

The four continental US time zones, like most time zones around the world, are known by one set of names for domestic purposes, and in reference to GMT for international purposes. For example, New Yorkers know their time zone as Eastern Standard Time (EST), and only a regular international traveler would recognize it as GMT-5. Likewise, the U.S. west coast time zone is known to most Americans as Pacific Standard Time (PST) zone rather than GMT-8.

 

和世界许多时区一样,美国的四个时区在国内使用一套名称,但在国际上则参照格林威治标准时间。例如,纽约人都知道他们地处东部标准时区(EST),但只有经常跨国旅行的人才知道纽约位于格林威治标准时间西五区。同样,大多数美国人都知道美国西海岸位于太平洋标准时区(PST),却不知道它也叫做格林威治标准时间西八区。

 

For national and regional governments, solar time is just one consideration, and not always the most important one. As a result, a review of global time zones reveals examples where governments have chose variations on solar time to define their domestic time zones.

 

对国家和地区政府而言,太阳时只是备选方案之一,但并不见得总是最重要的。结果,检视一下全球的时区,就会发现,很多政府选择用不同的太阳时来规定国内时区。

 

 

China and India are cases in point, where there is one time zone from East to west. In China, the decision in 1949 to establish a single national time zone on Beijing time replaced the previous system of five time zones which had been established in 1912.

 

中国和印度就是如此,两国从东到西都只有一个时区。1949年,中国设定北京时间为全国统一时区,取代了1912年划定的5个不同时区。

 

 

GREater China falls within the GMT+8 time zone, which is the most populous and geographically expansive time zone on the planet, comprising states, regions and countries from western Australia in the Southern Hemisphere to North Korea, Mongolia and parts of Russia in the Northern Hemisphere, including large parts of Southeast Asia as well.

 

大中华区位于格林威治标准时间东8时区内,东8时区是这个星球上人口最稠密、地域最广袤的时区,包括南半球的西澳大利亚及北半球的朝鲜、蒙古和俄罗斯部分地区在内,还有东南亚大部。

 

 

I have been a resident of the GMT+8 time zone for nearly 40 years. Apart from being a huge and populous time zone, it has been the earth’s fastest developing region for 30 years, and is very much the focus of global interest and attention.

 

我在东8时区居住了将近四十年。除了幅员辽阔、人口众多之外,东8时区还是过去30年间增长最快的地区,也是全球关注的焦点。

 

 

A hot topic in China these few years has been going global, and what individuals and organizations need to do to be successful at it. The answer has many facets to it, but undoubtedly begins with revisiting how we think about things. We’ll get nowhere by always thinking from a “local” perspective.

 

近年来,“走出去”以及个人和组织为成功实现这一目标应采取哪些行动——在中国成为热议的话题。答案涉及很多层面,但无疑都会从反思自己的思维模式开始。如果总是从“本地”视角出发,肯定哪儿也去不了。

 

 

An unfortunate paradox of globalization is that mutual understanding has not kept pace with global shrinkage. International communications and transportation networks are light years ahead of what they were 30 years ago, and yet we still routinely, and sometimes profoundly, misunderstand each other.

 

不幸的是,全球化的矛盾之一就是世界虽然正在缩小,但相互之间的理解却没有相应地跟上。当今国际通讯及交通的发展已经抛开30年前若干光年的距离,但我们仍会经常性地、有时甚至是深深的误会彼此。

 

 

 

 

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你知道时间的故事吗?(二)文章来源头牌英语[实用英语]
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