A Clearer Layout For Viewing Timezones

After putting up a job post for SharedCopy at the 37signals job board, I’ve gotten quite a fair bit of response and in turn, had to propose timings for Skype calls very often.

I hate timezones.

For my purpose (i.e. propose a time where all parties are at least awake!) I figure I’d just need a simple view of everybody’s clock over a period of 1 day - which can be done in Ruby:

24.times do |hh|
  puts [+8, -7, -5].collect {|tz| Time.now.utc + hh + (tz * 3600) }.inspect
end

Functional, but a chore to run and the output is still a mess to pick out information from. Then I did a proper one in Javascript, in case I ever need to use it while on the move… ;-)

Timezone Comparison Viewer

[Update] A few notes:

  • The darker/shaded areas are ZZZ hours - so just look for horizontals where the "whites" align.
  • Your own timezone should automatically show up - so most usage is only 1 click.
  • URL changes as you add timezones - so you can even bookmark the page and remember a standard set of timezones.
  • Day-of-week is subtly indicated just so you can tell if its the same day or otherwise.
  • Name of location is used instead of numeric offset (and auto resized to fit) for a more humane experience

 

Try it out at http://dev.choonkeat.com/js/cleartz/index