Thursday, 31 December 2009

The last day of the decade? Only for the Mathematically illiterate

I have enjoyed a break from blogging while also enjoying the company of all the family, over various parts of the holiday. Today, I took my annual trip to Hawthorn Close at River, to see the lights and pay respect to the Kent air ambulance.

"The Helicopter"

There's still time to go along and contribute to the funds.

I liked this group of grazing reindeer, even though we couldn't remember all the names at the Red Lion Quiz night.

Today is of course the last day of 2009, and just like we got the wrong day for the last day of the millennium, the mistake continues! If you don't understand what I mean: Imagine I gave you ten pounds, an unlikely event I know, you wouldn't have spent it when you got to the last penny of pound nine, you'd still have the tenth pound to spend.


Anonymous said...

I don't agree! I am afraid that in modern terminology, a decade refers to the ten years beginning with the 0. Thus, the 1970s was the decade that started on January 1, 1970 and ended on December 31, 1979. It's still a full 10 years, just depends on when you want to start counting.


Anonymous said...

Did the 1960s begin in 1961?

Nina :-)

Tony Morris said...

I didn't expect agreement, there were books written about it at the end of the millennium, an the popularists won, because it was too difficult to get the logical concept accepted. I may be too fixed in my ideas, but it seems simple to me. If I was to start a new universe and devise a calendar, I would start at Jan 1st year one. a decade is ten years and therefore the decade ends on Dec 31st year 10. A century is 100 years and ends on Dec 31st year 100 and a Millennium is 1000 years and therefore should end on Dec 31st, year 1000. If this logic is wrong, then I'm wrong. I don't believe you'd start at year zero, it doesn't make sense. This is the zero year of existence? No you'd start at year one. All else then follows.

The fact that the currently used notation is the modern way doesn't make it right, it just makes it easy because we no longer expect people to be able to apply proper logic to problems.

Now the 1960's.It all depends what you mean. If the 60's are those years with sixty in the name, they started at 1960 and ended at 1969. However they are not an identifiable decade of the century. 1960 is the last year of the sixth decade, 1951 to 1960, and the last year of the seventh decade (1961 to 1970) isn't included as it is at "70".

Mike Watson said...

Hi Tony, I am sticking to the common sense approach (correct or otherwise;)) that the 'teenies' decade began on 1 Jan 2010. Btw I can imagine the tea cups and newspapers flying when the drake Brandling turned up on your feeder!, Happy New Year! Mike

Tony Morris said...

Mike, it isn't common sense, it is lazy and lacks intellectual rigour, but will be supported by the masses! The Brambling was in fact something I'd been looking for in the cold snap, but still a pleasant addtion at this time.