Plus ça change...!
Microsoft veteran Raymond Chen took to YouTube over the weekend to remind us of the time the Windows vendor accidentally sank Poland. Speaking on the Dave's Garage channel, run by former Microsoft engineer Dave Plummer, Chen added some flourishes to a story from decades ago regarding the neat time zone map that initially …
Anyone professionally involved in map-making should be well aware of the political sensitivities attached to it! The number of places around the world where the wrong name will get you into hot water is enormous. Google fudges the issue in some places (e.g. Falklands/Malvinas) but of course, that's only one of many similar issues. Antarctica is a special case with many different (and equally authoritative) naming authorities (see https://www.scar.org/data-products/place-names/) - and although territorial claims are "held in abeyance", they still exist!
Making maps of a territory is one of the ways that nations assert their sovereignty, and Foreign Offices are notoriously sensitive to such things. It's one of the very few issues where I have had to toe a political line!
This is a thing I've seen on every version of Windows and MacOS and every Linux distro: if you click on Rome to select CET time zone and locale it always selects Vatican City first, Rome after a few clicks around the neighboring pixels. I mean it's not like Rome is the largest city in Italy by size and population right?
Of those states, one of them is not just a city, but a city and surrounding area including several islands without urbanization yet. It is a state that only has one real city in it, but not a state that's entirely enclosed in a city. Another is a state that is entirely enclosed in a city, but that city is not enclosed in another city, which is what they were talking about. So there is only one state that fulfills their criteria.
Until Mussolini came along, Vatican City did not have any of the characteristics of a nation and it can strongly be argued that it still doesn't. Statehood was a legal fiction invented to resolve the "Prisoner in the Vatican" status of consecutive popes after the sovereignty of the Papal States was subsumed into the (then) Kingdom of Italy. Just like deposed heads of state of other countries were often given a legal status equivalent to ambassadors to avoid embarrassing legal questions being asked, being made head of state of a few ornately decorated buildings was a convenient solution to a diplomatic problem.
Unfortunately it conferred on a politico-religious interest group diplomatic influence hitherto only reserved for real nations, like the right to issue passports, the ability to sign and be party to treaties, to claim diplomatic immunity, to levy its own and avoid other nations taxes, and later, representation in the UN and its committees - something no other religion has, nor deserves.
No one has ever been born, grown up and lived, and died as a citizen of the Vatican City. The idea is inconceivable (pun intended). If every nation in the world cut off diplomatic relations with it tomorrow, nothing would disappear except some unearned privileges. It would also expose whatever is being concealed in certain archives to secular civil law, financial regulation and courts of human rights, something many religious institutions have painstakingly avoided for centuries.
Maybe if we all just starting ditching weird and 30-minute timezones and things like daylight saving time, we could just have 24 possibilities, named by "+1", "+2", etc. and solve the problem once and for all.
As it is Microsoft don't care about non-US timezones very much (and it's usually the cause of a lot of problems if you try to remove en-US everywhere even if you're not using it), but having to select "London" rather than "GMT + 0" is an annoyance I could really do without.
> There are bits of France (which is in the EU) that are in the Caribbean and South America, plus a handful of islands in the Indian Ocean and South Pacific.
And a hundred square miles, two seats in the French Parliament, off Newfoundland Canada.
"Saint-Pierre and Miquelon are the last piece of French territory in North America. They are quite distinct from Newfoundland and Labrador,"
Time zone UTC-03:00 • Summer (DST) UTC-02:00
Oddly, I am told that ALL of CHINA, many thousand miles, is ONE time zone. You get up when the pigs need feed, or the factory whistle blows, nevermind the Arabic clock numerals. (Actually: you keep Beijing time, even on the western frontier.) Russia has 11, France has 12.
Pedant alert! (2)
The EU isn't all 1 timezone. The Republic of Ireland has GMT/UTC in the winter and Irish Standard Time (UTC+1) in the summer, so its the same as it is the UK. It didn't follow that between 1968 and 1971 where it just adopted UTC+1 all year.
Portugal also has Western European Time (UTC) and Western European Summer Time (UTC+1), again the same as it is in the UK and Ireland. Although between 1992 and 1996 if followed Central European Time.
Also, Central European time, which is what most of the EU follows also has some non-EU states following it as well
I think you need to look at a time zone map.
"Most of Spain is West of the Meridian."
True, and some parts use UTC+0, but most of it uses UTC+1.
"Portugal is the same longitude as Dublin."
And it uses the same time zone as Dublin. WET, UTC+00:00 during standard time. Exactly what you'd expect it to use.
"Greece, Romainia, Bulgaria are really in +2."
Oh, I should call them and tell them they have to stay there, then, because all three of those countries are already in +2.
In trying to prove a point that the EU insists on a single time zone, which it doesn't, you missed that all but one, if we're being charitable, of your examples are simply wrong.
I didn't look hard enough.
Referring to https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/88/World_Time_Zones_Map.png
I'm wrong about Eastern Europe.
I'm wrong about Portugal
Spain is mostly in 0, I see no mid-country divider.
Frankly, France is too. A sane division would be between France, Belgium etc and Germany, Italy, etc.
...computer system designers would understand that:
1) Not everybody wants to run a computer clock based on their geographical time-zone,
2) There are countries where multiple languages are spoken,
3) There are languages that are not official languages in any country,
4) Country geographical borders do not make a categorical classification of planet surface.