07 May 2006

Your hint for daily living

From the National Institute of Standards and Technology

Are noon and midnight 12 a.m. or 12 p.m.?
This is a tricky question. The answer is that the terms 12 a.m. and 12 p.m. are wrong and should not be used.

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To illustrate this, consider that "a.m" and "p.m." are abbreviations for "ante meridiem" and "post meridiem." They mean "before noon" and "after noon," respectively. Noon is neither before or after noon; it is simply noon. Therefore, neither the "a.m." nor "p.m." designation is correct. On the other hand, midnight is both 12 hours before noon and 12 hours after noon. Therefore, either 12 a.m. or 12 p.m. could work as a designation for midnight, but both would be ambiguous as to the date intended.

5 comments:

cameo said...

you are a wealth of information. i like that.

SUEB0B said...

I do what I can to help, LOL

J.R. Kinnard said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
J.R. Kinnard said...

My head hurts now. My life is a lie! Aaaaahhhhhh!

(I was so disoriented I had to publish this comment twice!)

spotted elephant said...

And I was just getting the hang of, commas. Now I, have more to struggle with!

And seriously, I know it's wrong to end a sentence with a preposition. But I can't bring myself to write in a stuffy way: "Now I have more with which to struggle."

Ugh, I'm not a Klingon after all.

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