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M4... What???
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Old 12 Jul 2007, 12:45   #1 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default M4... What???

Been 5 years of fluffiness joy for me, but I STILL don't get the dating system!!

41.M4?!
M4.41?

What are we in???

M obviously stands for millennium...
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Old 12 Jul 2007, 14:15   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: M4... What???

M41 means "Forty Thousand".

To explain the 40K Date System, here is a sample date:

0424911M41.

Now, we will break it into its component segments:

0_424_911_M41

First is the "Authenitcator." This is a number between 0 and 8, reflecting accuracy of the source. 0 means the event occured within Terra itself, 1 is in direct contact with Terra, all the way up to 8, which is pretty much catching a stray astropathic signal from the other side of the galaxy, bouncing it through seven Astropaths and finding it's already 500 years late when you get it. 9 is reserved for when the date is extrapolated from another source (ie: converting a Tau date into an Imperial one). In shorthand, this number may be left out.

Now, the "Sort Code". These three numbers are a dating system used by the Administratum, breaking the Imperial Year into 1000 equal increments, numbered 000 to 999 (This means the Administratum's "Time Increment" is 0.37 Terran Days long, or 8.77 hours, or 525.96 minutes). This number is often left out.

Finally, the "Year" and "Millennium". Again, the Year is between 000 and 999, and the final MXX shows the Millennium. It helps to read it as "Year of the Millennium". So, 2007 in Imperial would be "Year 007 of the Third Millennium", or 007M3. If you wanted to be really picky, you could break it down "Century - Decade - Year / Millennium", so the year 1985 would be 985M2, meaning "The 9th Century of the 8th Decade of the 5th Year of the Second Millennium".

Yes, I did say third! A Millennium is 1,000 years. Thus, all the dates 0AD to 999AD are in the first millennium, 1,000 to 1,999 is the Second Millennium, and 2,000 onwards is the third. I have actually had people correcting me on this, but it is correct.

So, the Imperium use the proper Millennial count. When we say "Warhammer 40,000", it is because that is what M41 actually means in our calender. Clever, eh?


So, the current time as of this post is 15:30 UK time. This means the date as of now is:

0527007M3.

0 - We're on Terra.
527 - 12 July, 15:30. That means 4,623.5 hours have passed since the year began. 4623.5 / 8.77 = 527.19 (2dp), or just over halfway through the year.
007M41 - Seventh year of the Third Millennium.

Rockin'.
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Old 12 Jul 2007, 16:25   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: M4... What???

Thanks Wargamer. Your knowledge always enlightens me. lol.
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Old 12 Jul 2007, 21:17   #4 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: M4... What???

I actually really like the 40K dating system. Apparently, GW really thought this one through, since a separation into months/days has no real use in a galaxy where every planet has its own times, and the only reference to "old" Earth is the year, which makes sense, since you NEED some random figure to count the passage of time - and an Earth year is just as good as anything else.

Add the Authenitcator, and GW has really thought something up which just might be used one day in real life (should we ever have loads of colonies, that is ).
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Old 22 Jul 2007, 01:12   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: M4... What???

My friend and I were just thinking about this: Someone should make a progam that puts the date in Imperial format. I think that would just be awesome.
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Old 22 Jul 2007, 01:25   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: M4... What???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wargamer
000 to 999
Didn't you say that it was actually from 001-000, from looking in the BBB? I'd check for myself, but that would mean a lot of looking around trying to find the damn thing.
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Old 22 Jul 2007, 09:14   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: M4... What???

Yeah, I checked after writing this, it is 001 - 000.
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Old 22 Jul 2007, 15:47   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: M4... What???

Quote:
My friend and I were just thinking about this: Someone should make a progam that puts the date in Imperial format. I think that would just be awesome.
I tried an excel file a while back - a long while back. My grasp of Excel (and mathematics) has increased since then - I might have another go if I get time. I got an acceptable program, but it was problematic near either end of the year, IIRC.
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