ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Science, Mathematics, Medicine, and Technology
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Reply
Old 7th January 2018, 02:09 PM   #201
Thor 2
Illuminator
 
Thor 2's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Brisbane, Aust.
Posts: 3,130
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
Do you still refer to people's heights in feet and inches? Because I do, and when I ask even young people their height they invariable say 5 ft 10 ins or whatever.

Yes that's a hard one to shake compared to the other metric units being accepted more readily.

The unit of weight as kilogram makes so much more sense than the stone. A stone is 14 lb. and a lb. is 16 oz .... yes that makes sense? So how do you describe parts of a stone?

Being involved in hydraulics in my working life the cubic inch/gallon thing has always been an irritation. 1 US gallon is 231 cubic inches (1 Imperial gallon 277 cubic inches) and hydraulic pump displacement has traditionally been expressed as GPM at 1200 RPM (1200 RPM being synchronous speed for the most common electric motors in the USA*).

Hydraulic cylinders have traditionally been made in imperial sizes and the bulk are still that way today. Therefore one is continually calculating volume flow rates in cubic inches/min and converting to US gallons - a real pain.


* Synchronous speed of electric motors is determined by the number of poles and the frequency of the alternating current. That frequency is 60 cycles/sec in the USA but 50 in most of the rest of the World.
__________________
There are billions of gods. One or more in the mind of every theist.

Last edited by Thor 2; 7th January 2018 at 02:15 PM.
Thor 2 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 02:09 PM   #202
zooterkin
Nitpicking dilettante
Deputy Admin
 
zooterkin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Berkshire, mostly
Posts: 39,118
Originally Posted by wobs View Post
We sometimes talk about losing a few pounds, but when we weigh ourselves we think in stones.
Well, exactly; we choose the unit according to the amount we're measuring. It just feels like there is a unit missing if you don't have stones between pounds and hundredweights.
__________________
The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.Bertrand Russell
Zooterkin is correct Darat
Nerd! Hokulele
Join the JREF Folders ! Team 13232
zooterkin is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 02:14 PM   #203
Thor 2
Illuminator
 
Thor 2's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Brisbane, Aust.
Posts: 3,130
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
The Imperial and metric ton(ne)s are very nearly the same.

.....

Short or long Imperial tons?
__________________
There are billions of gods. One or more in the mind of every theist.
Thor 2 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 02:22 PM   #204
Trebuchet
Penultimate Amazing
 
Trebuchet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: The Great Northwet
Posts: 14,736
Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Short or long Imperial tons?
The 2000 hundredweight kind.
__________________
Cum catapultae proscribeantur tum soli proscripti catapultas habeant.
Trebuchet is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 02:31 PM   #205
Thor 2
Illuminator
 
Thor 2's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Brisbane, Aust.
Posts: 3,130
Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
The 2000 hundredweight kind.

Well there are short and long hundredweights also, (100 and 112 lbs respectively). Non the less that is a ******* big ton at 200,000 or 224,000 lbs!
__________________
There are billions of gods. One or more in the mind of every theist.
Thor 2 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 02:43 PM   #206
GlennB
Loggerheaded, earth-vexing fustilarian
 
GlennB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Pie City, Arcadia
Posts: 21,583
Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Short or long Imperial tons?
Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Well there are short and long hundredweights also, (100 and 112 lbs respectively). Non the less that is a ******* big ton at 200,000 or 224,000 lbs!


Any of the ton/nes is better than saying that the bulldozer weighs 100,000 pounds!! Tonnes are multiples of cars, which we can visualise.
__________________
"Even a broken clock is right twice a day. 9/11 truth is a clock with no hands." - Beachnut
GlennB is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 02:57 PM   #207
GlennB
Loggerheaded, earth-vexing fustilarian
 
GlennB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Pie City, Arcadia
Posts: 21,583
Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
And this what I was getting at when I made the (apparently carnal sin level) mere suggestion that there might be an emotional and "perspective" angle to some use of some measurement in some contexts, a statement I wasn't aware was me declaring all out war on the very concept of the Metric system.

Little weird specific measurement that just pop in certain situations or an older measuring system still being used in certain situations because it just "feels" right is an interesting phenomenon worthy of looking at.

You still order your beer in pints, still measure your horses by hands, your Navy still uses fathoms and nautical miles.
I totally agree. I had to think a little when my (European) doctor asked me my weight, which I know in stones and pounds but had to dig in my mind to remember the metric equivalent.

But choosing to quote a large weight - that's approximate anyway - in many pounds when there are tons as larger units that convey the information better is my point.

I have the equivalent gripe in the metric system, where the size of household items is quoted in millimetres, things like fridges and kitchen cabinets. Those items (afaik) never have fractions of a a centimetre about them, so why 500mm when 50 cm is much easier to visualise?
__________________
"Even a broken clock is right twice a day. 9/11 truth is a clock with no hands." - Beachnut

Last edited by GlennB; 7th January 2018 at 03:03 PM.
GlennB is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 02:58 PM   #208
jimbob
Uncritical "thinker"
 
jimbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 16,164
Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post
And this what I was getting at when I made the (apparently carnal sin level) mere suggestion that there might be an emotional and "perspective" angle to some use of some measurement in some contexts, a statement I wasn't aware was me declaring all out war on the very concept of the Metric system.

Little weird specific measurement that just pop in certain situations or an older measuring system still being used in certain situations because it just "feels" right is an interesting phenomenon worthy of looking at.

You still order your beer in pints, still measure your horses by hands, your Navy still uses fathoms and nautical miles.
I'd think that a nautical mile makes sense in a marine situation, as it is related to minutes of lattitude.
__________________
OECD healthcare spending
Expenditure on healthcare
http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm
link is 2015 data (2013 Data below):
UK 8.5% of GDP of which 83.3% is public expenditure - 7.1% of GDP is public spending
US 16.4% of GDP of which 48.2% is public expenditure - 7.9% of GDP is public spending
jimbob is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 03:10 PM   #209
Elagabalus
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 1,907
Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Yes that's a hard one to shake compared to the other metric units being accepted more readily.

The unit of weight as kilogram makes so much more sense than the stone. A stone is 14 lb. and a lb. is 16 oz .... yes that makes sense? So how do you describe parts of a stone?

Being involved in hydraulics in my working life the cubic inch/gallon thing has always been an irritation. 1 US gallon is 231 cubic inches (1 Imperial gallon 277 cubic inches) and hydraulic pump displacement has traditionally been expressed as GPM at 1200 RPM (1200 RPM being synchronous speed for the most common electric motors in the USA*).

Hydraulic cylinders have traditionally been made in imperial sizes and the bulk are still that way today. Therefore one is continually calculating volume flow rates in cubic inches/min and converting to US gallons - a real pain.


* Synchronous speed of electric motors is determined by the number of poles and the frequency of the alternating current. That frequency is 60 cycles/sec in the USA but 50 in most of the rest of the World.

1 cycle per second makes a certain sense. The Continental Euros were just upset that they weren't able to shove metric time down every ones throats so they decided to go for the 50 cycle standard- which makes absolutely no sense.

Quote:
...AEG built the first European generating facility, its engineers decided to fix the frequency at 50 Hz, because the number 60 did not fit the metric standard unit sequence (1, 2, 5)...
This would come back to bite them all in the ass when television stations had to convert cinema movies from the Cinema worldwide standard of 24 fps to 25 fps by speeding up the film. Which is fine if it's overdubbed but native language speakers wonder why all the actors sound funny.

Meanwhile, all those countries using 60 Hz can just use the convenient 3:2 pulldown*. Hah!!!


*not much of a problem anymore thanks to modern HDTV tech.
Elagabalus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:08 PM   #210
quadraginta
Becoming Beth
 
quadraginta's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Central Vale of Humility
Posts: 20,024
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
The Imperial and metric ton(ne)s are very nearly the same.

There's more than just those two.

Quote:


So does the 18,000 yard trip to work, yet nobody says that. It's the specific attachment to "lots of pounds" that intrigues me.

For proper precision that should be measured in the carefully documented unit "football fields".
__________________
"It never does just what I want, but only what I tell it."
quadraginta is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:14 PM   #211
Mikemcc
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 1,650
Went to a pizzeria near me, the size options were 12" and half-metre...
Mikemcc is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:19 PM   #212
quadraginta
Becoming Beth
 
quadraginta's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Central Vale of Humility
Posts: 20,024
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
<snip>

I have the equivalent gripe in the metric system, where the size of household items is quoted in millimetres, things like fridges and kitchen cabinets. Those items (afaik) never have fractions of a a centimetre about them, so why 500mm when 50 cm is much easier to visualise?

I was pretty much teasing you about the 100,000 lb. thing. I don't really disagree, and was serious about the point of such a description was to make something sound bigger.

But I don't get the highlighted at all. How much cogitation does it take to shift a decimal point. Isn't that what the metric system is all about? That famous 'ease of use'?

500mm and 50cm visualize exactly the same to me, 'cause I don't see any difference in the two. I don't have to divide by 2,000 (or something else ). I just have to move a decimal point if I want it expressed in the other unit. (Not sure why I would though. At least for visualizing it.)
__________________
"It never does just what I want, but only what I tell it."
quadraginta is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:24 PM   #213
quadraginta
Becoming Beth
 
quadraginta's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Central Vale of Humility
Posts: 20,024
Originally Posted by Mikemcc View Post
Went to a pizzeria near me, the size options were 12" and half-metre...

That'sa bigga pizza pie! Yum.

Our next size up from 12" is usually 16". I guess 0.4 meters just doesn't sound as impressive.

20" would get their attention, though.

(They'd have to order special boxes for take-out, though.)
__________________
"It never does just what I want, but only what I tell it."

Last edited by quadraginta; 7th January 2018 at 04:26 PM.
quadraginta is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:33 PM   #214
Mikemcc
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 1,650
Originally Posted by quadraginta View Post
I was pretty much teasing you about the 100,000 lb. thing. I don't really disagree, and was serious about the point of such a description was to make something sound bigger.

But I don't get the highlighted at all. How much cogitation does it take to shift a decimal point. Isn't that what the metric system is all about? That famous 'ease of use'?

500mm and 50cm visualize exactly the same to me, 'cause I don't see any difference in the two. I don't have to divide by 2,000 (or something else ). I just have to move a decimal point if I want it expressed in the other unit. (Not sure why I would though. At least for visualizing it.)
With a background in manufacturing of scientific equipment we pretty much always deal in mm (apart from when we deploy the kit to the US!)

The thing that really gets me is wire gauges. WTF!? What a bizarrely silly system compared to mm2.

Last edited by Mikemcc; 7th January 2018 at 04:40 PM.
Mikemcc is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:51 PM   #215
Noztradamus
Illuminator
 
Noztradamus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 4,680
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
Do you still refer to people's heights in feet and inches? Because I do, and when I ask even young people their height they invariable say 5 ft 10 ins or whatever.
I wonder how many criminals have evaded capture over the years because people had been told to look for a 1.73m suspect.
__________________
The Australian Family Association's John Morrissey was aghast when he learned Jessica Watson was bidding to become the youngest person to sail round the world alone, unaided and without stopping.
Noztradamus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:54 PM   #216
Noztradamus
Illuminator
 
Noztradamus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 4,680
Originally Posted by GlennB View Post
What's 'ordinary life' about pounds? Is 154lbs somehow easier to visualise than 70 kilos, or is that larger number of pounds meant to sound impressive?
Dunno which would be easier. Eleven Stone is the right figure to grasp.
__________________
The Australian Family Association's John Morrissey was aghast when he learned Jessica Watson was bidding to become the youngest person to sail round the world alone, unaided and without stopping.
Noztradamus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:56 PM   #217
Senex
Philosopher
 
Senex's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,268
Originally Posted by Craig B View Post
If that is a reference to WW2 you should be reminded that at that time and for the next several decades the UK was non metric too.
That proves my point. We didn't need to puncture any Atlantic Wall to put troops into the UK. The UK even used to run the show once when using non metric.
Quote:
But perhaps it isn't a reference to WW2.
WW1, WW2, Cold War, going to the moon, building an atom bomb, running the show... yadda, yadda
Quote:
It looks very discourteous, and is hard to understand.
Get back to me when the Huns are at your gate.

Metric seems to lose wars, sink ocean liners, make supersonic airliners unprofitable, cause a loss of appreciation for your allies... and now a loss of humor.

Originally Posted by wobs View Post
We built Concorde, which some in NASA claim was a greater acheivement than Apollo missions.
I take it back. You haven't lost your sense of humor. (Oops, humour )
Quote:
Concorde was built using both metric & imperial.
And it seems clear now which system is superior.
Senex is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 04:59 PM   #218
ceptimus
puzzler
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 5,037
We had another thread about weird scales where bigger numbers mean a smaller size a while back. Wire gauges, camera apertures, and metric paper sizes were three of the items that came up. Seeing as this is a metric thread I'll recap the paper size one. Metric paper always has a height to width ratio of the square root of two - which makes sense as it's the only shape where when you cut it in half you get two pieces the same shape as the original. A0 paper has an area of one square metre, then each bigger number halves the size - so A4 paper commonly used by computer printers has an area of one sixteenth of a square metre.

B.A. fasteners (nuts and bolts) popular with model makers, also have sizes derived from metric - though in a convoluted and arcane way - and again bigger numbers mean a smaller size.
ceptimus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 05:40 PM   #219
Thor 2
Illuminator
 
Thor 2's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Brisbane, Aust.
Posts: 3,130
Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
1 cycle per second makes a certain sense. The Continental Euros were just upset that they weren't able to shove metric time down every ones throats so they decided to go for the 50 cycle standard- which makes absolutely no sense.

........

Oops ..... a slight bo bo there.

Not 1 cycle per second but 60 cycles per second therefore 1 cycle in 0.016666666.. seconds or 16.666666 ... milliseconds. Time does go metric when you start dividing the second into smaller bits.
__________________
There are billions of gods. One or more in the mind of every theist.
Thor 2 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 05:43 PM   #220
Pope130
Master Poster
 
Pope130's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Oregon
Posts: 2,583
We have, at least, pretty much universally adopted metric for artillery. US Army switched to metric designators for cannon during WW-II, for example the 3" bore was replaced by 76.2. The 75mm gun, and the 155mm Long Tom were metric from the start, as they were based on French designs. Mortars lasted in service much longer, and retained their inch measurements. The Navy kept inch measurements for their large guns much longer, because the earlier pattern large guns remained in use 'til replacement by missile systems.

The British held onto the "pounder" designations for cannon, and inches for mortars, until the adoption of the 120mm mortar, and the 105mm tank gun. The designation was based on the weight of a lead ball of the bore diameter. 17lb was a 76.2mm bore, 20lb was an 84mm.

The Germans went metric early, but used centimeters, rather than millimeters. The famous "88" was actually designated "8.8cm".
Pope130 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 05:52 PM   #221
quadraginta
Becoming Beth
 
quadraginta's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Central Vale of Humility
Posts: 20,024
Originally Posted by Senex View Post
<snip>

Get back to me when the Huns are at your gate.

<snip>

That's just silly.

Nobody bothers with gates anymore.
__________________
"It never does just what I want, but only what I tell it."
quadraginta is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 06:41 PM   #222
Trebuchet
Penultimate Amazing
 
Trebuchet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: The Great Northwet
Posts: 14,736
Originally Posted by Pope130 View Post
We have, at least, pretty much universally adopted metric for artillery. US Army switched to metric designators for cannon during WW-II, for example the 3" bore was replaced by 76.2. The 75mm gun, and the 155mm Long Tom were metric from the start...
Except the current USN 75mm, made by OTO-Melara, is actually 76.2. Three inches.

Oops, NavWeaps shows it as 76mm. Oh, well.
__________________
Cum catapultae proscribeantur tum soli proscripti catapultas habeant.
Trebuchet is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 06:42 PM   #223
Elagabalus
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 1,907
Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Oops ..... a slight bo bo there.

Not 1 cycle per second but 60 cycles per second therefore 1 cycle in 0.016666666.. seconds or 16.666666 ... milliseconds. Time does go metric when you start dividing the second into smaller bits.

Oh, touché! Good catch! However, I would argue that the the problems associated with the 24 fps to 25 fps conversion were due entirely because of a fragrant disregard for base 12 (and its awesomeness).
Elagabalus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 06:58 PM   #224
Elagabalus
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 1,907
Originally Posted by Pope130 View Post
Working in electronics, small arms, and scale modeling I find I can switch from between metric and Imperial with no difficulty for small things, and work with conventional fractions of an inch, or tenths, hundredths and mills. For anything larger than a foot I still think in feet, yards and miles. For range I keep a few rules for converting to yards from meters or arshins.
I've been doing a lot of SI slagging in this thread, but even for me, calling a thousandth of an inch a "mill" is truly beyond the pale.*


* A "mill" is a millimetre. It's in the name. And can lead to considerable confusion - some folks across the pond probably thought you were actually talking about millimeters. I fear for your safety, my friend ...
Elagabalus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 07:01 PM   #225
Mikemcc
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 1,650
Originally Posted by Craig B View Post
If that is a reference to WW2 you should be reminded that at that time and for the next several decades the UK was non metric too.

But perhaps it isn't a reference to WW2. It looks very discourteous, and is hard to understand.
Aye, a very good reason that the system is properly called Imperial! I had an argument with one of our colonial engineers calling it Standard. I asked him what was standard when it was only shared by them and two tiny countries? Pointing out the issues with the Mars Climate Orbiter finally shut him up.
Mikemcc is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 07:26 PM   #226
quadraginta
Becoming Beth
 
quadraginta's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Central Vale of Humility
Posts: 20,024
Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
I've been doing a lot of SI slagging in this thread, but even for me, calling a thousandth of an inch a "mill" is truly beyond the pale.*


* A "mill" is a millimetre. It's in the name. And can lead to considerable confusion - some folks across the pond probably thought you were actually talking about millimeters. I fear for your safety, my friend ...

What's in the name is division by a thousand. That is independent of the base unit.
__________________
"It never does just what I want, but only what I tell it."
quadraginta is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 07:34 PM   #227
Norman Alexander
Master Poster
 
Norman Alexander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,154
Originally Posted by Mikemcc View Post
Went to a pizzeria near me, the size options were 12" and half-metre...
Must have got their pans from Italy. That would be 30cm and 50cm.
__________________
...our governments are just trying to protect us from terror. In the same way that someone banging a hornets’ nest with a stick is trying to protect us from hornets. Frankie Boyle, Guardian, July 2015
Norman Alexander is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 07:36 PM   #228
Norman Alexander
Master Poster
 
Norman Alexander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,154
I sympathise with Americans struggling with the metric system. After all, they have 100 cents in their dollar, a weird arrangement if you ask me.
__________________
...our governments are just trying to protect us from terror. In the same way that someone banging a hornets’ nest with a stick is trying to protect us from hornets. Frankie Boyle, Guardian, July 2015
Norman Alexander is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 08:08 PM   #229
Trebuchet
Penultimate Amazing
 
Trebuchet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: The Great Northwet
Posts: 14,736
Obviously we need some shillings, guineas, and half-crowns.

Oh, and we may as well get rid of our cents, as have our neighbours to the north.
__________________
Cum catapultae proscribeantur tum soli proscripti catapultas habeant.
Trebuchet is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 08:10 PM   #230
Norman Alexander
Master Poster
 
Norman Alexander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,154
Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Obviously we need some shillings, guineas, and half-crowns.

Oh, and we may as well get rid of our cents, as have our neighbours to the north.
It's a very old problem you face.

__________________
...our governments are just trying to protect us from terror. In the same way that someone banging a hornets’ nest with a stick is trying to protect us from hornets. Frankie Boyle, Guardian, July 2015
Norman Alexander is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 08:32 PM   #231
Mikemcc
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 1,650
Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
I've been doing a lot of SI slagging in this thread, but even for me, calling a thousandth of an inch a "mill" is truly beyond the pale.*


* A "mill" is a millimetre. It's in the name. And can lead to considerable confusion - some folks across the pond probably thought you were actually talking about millimeters. I fear for your safety, my friend ...
using mills as a length measurement is confusing because there is the mil angular measurement (6400 mils = 360 deg). derived from it's approximation to a milliradian.
Mikemcc is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 08:40 PM   #232
Trebuchet
Penultimate Amazing
 
Trebuchet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: The Great Northwet
Posts: 14,736
Grads. Anyone here use grads?
__________________
Cum catapultae proscribeantur tum soli proscripti catapultas habeant.
Trebuchet is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 7th January 2018, 08:52 PM   #233
Noztradamus
Illuminator
 
Noztradamus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 4,680
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
But I can, because I grew up with the metric system. In the CRT era, a standard TV was 55cm, a big one 66cm. Computer monitors, OTOH, have always been measured in inches over here as well, so "42 cm" would be really confusing, as opposed to 17"
.
Here the unit for displays has always been the "inch". And a range of 1-99 covers everything from mobile phone screens , through to the biggest TVs
__________________
The Australian Family Association's John Morrissey was aghast when he learned Jessica Watson was bidding to become the youngest person to sail round the world alone, unaided and without stopping.
Noztradamus is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 8th January 2018, 01:41 AM   #234
zooterkin
Nitpicking dilettante
Deputy Admin
 
zooterkin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Berkshire, mostly
Posts: 39,118
Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
The unit of weight as kilogram makes so much more sense than the stone. A stone is 14 lb. and a lb. is 16 oz .... yes that makes sense? So how do you describe parts of a stone?
In pounds and ounces, of course. What else?
__________________
The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.Bertrand Russell
Zooterkin is correct Darat
Nerd! Hokulele
Join the JREF Folders ! Team 13232
zooterkin is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 8th January 2018, 02:11 AM   #235
Craig B
Penultimate Amazing
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 21,785
Originally Posted by Thor 2 View Post
Yes that's a hard one to shake compared to the other metric units being accepted more readily.

The unit of weight as kilogram makes so much more sense than the stone. A stone is 14 lb. and a lb. is 16 oz .... yes that makes sense? So how do you describe parts of a stone?
The same way as you describe fractions of other things. In the fifties and before, potatoes were sold retail by the stone, and my mother would send me go buy a half stone of potatoes, which I knew was seven pounds weight; or for a smaller amount, a quarter stone, or three and a half pounds. But the measure borne in mind by the purchaser was a quarter stone. That's what I would ask for. Perfectly straightforward. The shopkeeper didn't need to worry either because brass weights in stones, halves and quarters were there ready to be placed in one pan of the scales. In such transactions there was no need to know or care how many pounds make a stone.

Last edited by Craig B; 8th January 2018 at 02:19 AM.
Craig B is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 8th January 2018, 06:36 AM   #236
Senex
Philosopher
 
Senex's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 5,268
Originally Posted by Pope130 View Post
We have, at least, pretty much universally adopted metric for artillery.
Thank god this commie influence hasn't ruined us yet.

Originally Posted by quadraginta View Post
That's just silly.

Nobody bothers with gates anymore.
Yes, Maginot lines fail just as quickly when using metric.

Originally Posted by Norman Alexander View Post
I sympathise with Americans struggling with the metric system. After all, they have 100 cents in their dollar, a weird arrangement if you ask me.
We only have to struggle with success my friend.
Senex is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 8th January 2018, 09:48 AM   #237
Dr. Keith
Not a doctor.
 
Dr. Keith's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 14,472
Originally Posted by Elagabalus View Post
I've been doing a lot of SI slagging in this thread, but even for me, calling a thousandth of an inch a "mill" is truly beyond the pale.*


* A "mill" is a millimetre. It's in the name. And can lead to considerable confusion - some folks across the pond probably thought you were actually talking about millimeters. I fear for your safety, my friend ...
I remember using "kips" in some structural analysis classes in the early 90's. Obviously, these were kilo pounds, because "tons" was just too muddied at this point.
__________________
I once proposed a fun ban.

Suffering is not a punishment not a fruit of sin, it is a gift of God.
He allows us to share in His suffering and to make up for the sins of the world. -Mother Teresa
Dr. Keith is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 8th January 2018, 10:14 AM   #238
JoeMorgue
Self Employed
Remittance Man
 
JoeMorgue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Jacksonville, FL
Posts: 8,876
Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Obviously we need some shillings, guineas, and half-crowns.

Oh, and we may as well get rid of our cents, as have our neighbours to the north.
It takes 1.8 cents to make each penny. It's madness.
__________________
(Formally JoeBentley)

"Ernest Hemingway once wrote that the world is a fine place and worth fighting for. I agree with the second part." - Detective Sommerset, Se7en

"Hating a bad thing does not make you good." - David Wong
JoeMorgue is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 8th January 2018, 11:13 AM   #239
paulhutch
Master Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Blackstone River Valley, MA
Posts: 2,080
Originally Posted by aleCcowaN View Post
And that's just the beginning of it.

I got the story of the tower in the encyclopaedia Argentina, published in 1971 when I was 8 or 9, and I learnt the real name of the tower from it. So I was draftable when they decided to change the name of the park (not the name of the tower) from "Plaza Britania" (the official name it got in 1914 because of the tower, I've just learnt) to "Plaza Fuerza Aérea Argentina", which became an ordinance one year later or so, by the end of 1983 or beginning of 1984.

And there's no contradiction, but simply mistakes, when the WP article says «Tras la Guerra de las Malvinas en 1982, la Torre de los Ingleses fue rebautizada con su nombre original "Torre Monumental", aunque los ciudadanos siguen refiriéndose a ella con el nombre "Torre de los Ingleses".». "Torre de los Ingleses" never was its official name, but it was and it continues to be its popular name.

Let's not talk of the mistakes in Wikipedia in any language. There's no hope for it. My participation today is reduced to deleting commercial links or gruesome spelling mistakes.
Rather than give even one single source to back up your claim you expect me to believe your memory of something you read 46 years ago over dozens of sites including, official ones from the government, major news organizations (e.g. The Economist) and books published prior to 1930.

It seems like you just hate Wikipedia and don't really care about accurate information. I'll repeat, give me a source corroborating for your claim and I'll correct the article.

Last edited by paulhutch; 8th January 2018 at 11:42 AM.
paulhutch is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 8th January 2018, 11:15 AM   #240
Steve
Illuminator
 
Steve's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 3,156
Originally Posted by quadraginta View Post
That's just silly.

Nobody bothers with gates anymore.
Or Huns.
__________________
Caption from and old New Yorker cartoon - Why am I shouting? Because I'm wrong!"
Steve is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Science, Mathematics, Medicine, and Technology

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:56 AM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2014, TribeTech AB. All Rights Reserved.
This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.