[sf-lug] 12 am/pm controversy

Alex Kleider a_kleider at yahoo.com
Fri Dec 12 15:31:55 PST 2008

My argument has to do with what makes sense logically, not what is in common usage (which I believe to be "r-o-n-g," wrong:-)

Using the argument that am means ante meridian/before noon and pm means after noon leads to the ludicrous inescapable conclusion that it is impossible to designate the time we call noon, which is neither before or after noon; yet surely in any logical numbering system 12am and 12 pm must have some meaning. 
No one would dispute the meaning of  11:59am as being before noon
the next sequence of that series is one minute later which is noon and since we've identified that sequence as "am" it follows that ...
One can then continue for 11:59pm and conclude ...

of course you can avoid the issue all together if you choose. Using noon and midnight has been suggested and military time is another alternative.  I agree either one would be preferable in order to be unambiguous, 
but then the issue ceases to be of interest.


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