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Confused by time zones? You’re not alone, if family from out East calling me at 6 AM is any indication. I shouldn’t joke too much: I’ve made similar mistakes.
It’s easy to do, because time zones are abstract, which is why tools that help you visualize them are so helpful – they make things more concrete. Today on Cool Websites and Apps, we’re going to look at tools that will help make time zones easier for you by helping you picture them.
We’ve shown you tools for visualizing time zones in the past, of course, but the five tools below give you more options. Whether you need to coordinate group meetings across continents or just need to know what time it is in Amsterdam before you call your friend there, these five websites should help reduce your confusion.
Hours Apart: Quickly Visualize Different Time Zones
At times you just need a quick comparison. Hours Apart is an easy way to get just that. Add as many cities as you like, and you will see the time in each.
It simple sure but it’s effective, and a great place to start if you’re coordinating a widespread team.
Time Map (Android, Free): Full Time Zone Map With Current Times
Sometimes it helps to see times in context. Time map shows you the time and all of Earth’s time zones simultaneously. This free Android app couldn’t be simpler.
That’s right: it’s a map of the Earth, complete with all time zones and the current time for each.
XKCD’s Now: Comic That Functions as a World Clock
There’s a relevant XKCD for everything – even time zones. Comic 1335 isn’t so much a comic as it is an actual time zone tool, and it’s possibly one of the most useful ones on the web.
The outer ring stays the same, but the inner circle rotates throughout the day – letting you see roughly what time it is in different parts of the world. I’d pay to have this as an actual wall clock, but for now we’ll have to settle with going to XKCD.com/now.
Veern(iOS, Free): See What Time it is Where Your Friends are
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Courtesy is more complicated when it involves math, as anyone with a friend in a different time zone can tell you. If that’s you, Veern is worth checking out. This simple app lets you add friends with time zone and contact information.
The idea: you can open this app to see what time it is where your friends are. If it’s a decent time to talk you can call them. If not consider emailing or texting instead. It’s a simple way to avoid calling your overseas friends at 3 AM.
Miranda (iOS, Free): Simple Time Zone Clock With Scrolling
Sometimes you just want to quickly see a list of cities alongside the time, or adjust time quickly to get a comparison. Miranda is an iPhone app that lets you do just that.
You’ll see the current time right away, and can turn the wheel to scroll back and forth through time – perfect if you’re trying to schedule a meeting. Rotate your phone and you’ll see a quick visual letting you know where it’s day and where it’s night.
Reviewers on iTunes really like this one, and it’s free, so there’s no reason not to check it out.
What’s Your Favourite Time Zone Tool?
There you have it: five tools to help you better understand time zones. Of course, we’ve looked at other tools for this before. You can find the right time email anyone, or even add a world clock to Firefox if you really want to.
I want to know which tools you use for the job, though. Let me know in the comments below, along with what kind of topics you’d like to see for the next edition of Cool Websites and Tools. Let’s chat!
Image Credits: Standard Time Zones Via Shutterstock