The end of (GM)time?

A new definition of time – based on atomic clocks and not on the earth rotation – is threatening the Greenwich Meridian TimeĀ (GMT) standard.

GMT is the result of a battle between France and Great Britain at the end of the 19th century to be the standard bearer of time. The balance of forces in those days decided that time would be defined by the passage of the sun over the zero meridian line at the Greenwich Observatory (near London).

With the shift of “gravity” towards the East, one could have imagined a ’21st century struggle’ between India and China to be the new standard keepers. So far, it seems that China opposes any change (for some reason its astronomers want to retain earth-rotation based time) but we will have to wait until the result of the vote at the International Telecommunication Union (in January 2012) to find out whether China’s newly acquired soft power extends into the 4th dimension.