I personally do not like any of the Stardate systems that are about at the moment, and decided to create my own. This system is based on the 365 day year (and 366 for leap years), and was developed in conjunction with ideas provided by Kyle S.
Simply the first two numbers, i.e. 55, represents our present year 2002. As such 2002 is represented by the number 55. However for one year to pass to the next 1000 increments must follow. Thus, if you take the number of days in the year and divide that into this 1000 increments you obtain a ratio by which to multiply a given day's position in our 365 or 366 days long year, and obtain the remaining part of the stardate. (A 3 significant figure system has been used in the below two calculations).
For a 365 day year 1000 / 365 = 2.740
For a 366 day year 1000 / 366 = 2.732
Now to obtain a stardate you simply take the day, say 23rd of November (non leap year), and calculate the number of days in 365 (or 366 if a leap year) this is. The below table can ease this calculation.
|Month||Standard Year||Leap Year|
Thus 23rd of November would be, in a normal 365 day year, 23 + 303 = 326 days.
With this figure we can now work out the 1000 digit increment: Simply take the appropriate figure above i.e 2.740, and multiply this by the number 326.
326 x 2.740 = 893.240 and round this off to one significant figure = 893.2
This can then simply be tagged to the appropriate year number, i.e. 2002 = 55, thus the stardate for 23rd November 2002 = 55893.2
Simple maths, which can easily be reversed to get the actual date.
Why do you remove -1 from the days chart, i.e. why is the 1st of January day -1?: Simply put, stardate 55000.0 is January 1st 2002, but using the above would not get you with answer, it would be 55002.7, thus removing one day from all the calculations makes this possible, as it should be.
Why is 2002, 55, and not 54? The show, in the US, runs over from one year to the next, i.e. season 5 of Voyager airs over 1999 and 2000. Things would get confusing if we tried to match that system, and the show only does this because of TV scheduling dates. Thus we take the second part of the year as the stardate year. Trying to keep the game running at exactly the same time as the show would be a logistical nightmare, where a year in the show would run into two years of real life.. and so on. This keeps it simple, and means we can plan the game accordingly to sit nicely with the show itself.