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sarongsong
2003-Jul-02, 07:33 AM
A long history of trying, culminating in:
"...as part of his budget-cutting efforts, President Ronald Reagan disbanded the U.S. Metric Board in 1982..."
http://www.weatherwise.org/articles/June03.htm

EpsilonIndi
2003-Jul-02, 07:39 AM
The Stonecutters are keeping it down. :lol:

kilopi
2003-Jul-02, 09:47 AM
Perhaps it's just inherently unnatural (http://mentock.home.mindspring.com/metric.htm). :)

glen chapman
2003-Jul-02, 12:22 PM
What a backward iliterate argument that article made. Might have helped if the author admited were the metric system comes from.

So lets do a score check

Nations with Metric - 198

Without - 2 - one of which (Burma) is working hard to return to the stone age.

Glen Chapman

SeanF
2003-Jul-02, 01:09 PM
What a backward iliterate argument that article made. Might have helped if the author admited were the metric system comes from.

Which article are you referring to, the original that sarongsong posted or the second one that kilopi posted?

If it's the second one, I'm guessing you don't know who the author is, do you? :)

kilopi
2003-Jul-02, 02:36 PM
I think he means mine, but I know he's just joking. I mean, c'mon, he mispelled illiterate:

What a backward iliterate argument that article made. Might have helped if the author admited were the metric system comes from.

SeanF
2003-Jul-02, 02:49 PM
I think he means mine, but I know he's just joking. I mean, c'mon, he mispelled illiterate:

What a backward iliterate argument that article made. Might have helped if the author admited were the metric system comes from.

He also misspelled "admitted" and "where" (and you misspelled "misspelled," but I bet you'll say that was intentional, too, eh? ;) ). Maybe the lack of smiley threw me on his joking.

sarongsong
2003-Jul-02, 05:11 PM
Without - 2 - one of which (Burma) is working hard to return to the stone age.
...and doesn't Burma make three?

Hale_Bopp
2003-Jul-02, 06:48 PM
I think it was near Cincinati back in the 1980s when I saw the following road sign...

"Federal Test Area
Metric Road Signs
Next 30 Miles"

I laughed out loud.

TheGalaxyTrio
2003-Jul-02, 06:58 PM
I'll avoid the obvious Mars probe joke.

What I found most fascinating is that the head of The Weather Channel is named Ray Ban.

tracer
2003-Jul-02, 10:13 PM
"...as part of his budget-cutting efforts, President Ronald Reagan disbanded the U.S. Metric Board in 1982..."
This is true, but misleadingly phrased.

Here's the U.S. Metric Association (http://lamar.colostate.edu/~hillger/history.htm)'s take on what happened:

"From the late 1970s to early 1980s, the U.S. Metric Board [USMB] held some meetings in various USA cities, but did little to forward the transition to metric. In 1982, President Reagan retired the USMB, stating that it had served its purpose. After disbanding of the USMB, a Metric Program (MP) Office was established under the Department of Commerce. Its duties were to provide metric information and respond to queries on metrication."

glen chapman
2003-Jul-02, 11:08 PM
Hey I have a sense of humour and can laugh at myself - nup the typo's were just that - teach me to write slower in future.

However my opinion of the article really hasn't changed. I work for an American Corporation in Australia - and I have to say, we loose sales because customers can not be bothered mucking around converting information from metric to imperial - when other suppliers can offer the same product in metric to begin with

Since it was first proposed, the metric system has undergone a number of corrections. The current measuing system is as good as we can get with the technology of today. Also the way the metric system is used has improved. Some measurement have gone - all in the name of clarity.

Back in the Seventies, the story went that the US wouldn't convert because of the cost to manufactures to change over their equipment. Perhaps in a world of half and half systems, this is a valid arguement, but not today.

The petition mentioned in the article is equally weak. To use the logic displayed, then Henry Ford should never have begun production on his cars, because one day the oil will run out, and we'll just have to change to another type of motor.

Glen Chapman

Beaver
2003-Jul-02, 11:13 PM
kilopi

Perhaps it's just inherently unnatural. :D

Great site :D I never saw the imperialist empire system till at least my tweenty's and it made no cents to me (Cents divides by tens). I just wondered if we had ten fingers and two thumbs, would counting by twelves be natural.

Charlie in Dayton
2003-Jul-02, 11:23 PM
I think it was near Cincinati back in the 1980s when I saw the following road sign...

"Federal Test Area
Metric Road Signs
Next 30 Miles"

I laughed out loud.

There's still a couple of road signs on I-75 South heading out of Dayton that list distances to Cincinnati in miles and kilometers.

And by the way, as I recall from my misspent youth, that particular herbal nonsense was sold by the 'key', not 'ki'...don't ask...

RickNZ
2003-Jul-03, 12:33 AM
Hi yanks.
Ive always wondered: How many imperial gallons do you guys get per hecter on your 1 and 1/4 american tonne vehicles? And how many royal thumbs are required to make a commoner yard?

RBG
2003-Jul-03, 12:42 AM
Canada is metric.

No one except scientists have any idea what any of the measurements mean.

And I'm not sure how successful the metric police have been with their "re-education" efforts. After a big push, I see grocery stores slowly returning to selling by the pound.

Canadian football is still measured in feet. That must really irritate the MP.

I laugh with a gufaw at the Metrically Correct (on behalf of the Canadian Unwashed) who insist upon changing all references of Canadian aircraft flight heights to meters (oops, metres) (ie: in newspapers) when the international aviation world itself uses feet.

As a metric rabble-rouser, I deliberately use "centegrade" instead of celsius.

And I say kil-OHM'-meter instead of kiloh-meters (as you are supposed to say in Canada.)

All this from a guy with a Science degree. Tch-tch. I even support the concept of metric. (And, okay, since no one asked me... what I detest is the god-awful every-day oppressive language-poetry of it all. I tried singing "A hundred kilometers" and "I can see for kilometers" and say such things as "I'd walk a kilometer for a Camel" and "Gimme a litre of beer" and watch movies like "The Longest Meter" or "The Green Kilometer" and wear a ten litre hat... but it's just not right. The metric system will never do for everyday poetic language.)

Hey, I just noticed how much (metrically) higher I am above you all from this soapbox. I'll get down now.

Cheers,
RBG

Peter B
2003-Jul-03, 02:03 AM
Canada is metric.

So is Australia.


No one except scientists have any idea what any of the measurements mean.

Most people in Australia seem to have no problem.


And I'm not sure how successful the metric police have been with their "re-education" efforts. After a big push, I see grocery stores slowly returning to selling by the pound.

Everything is sold in kilograms here.


Canadian football is still measured in feet. That must really irritate the MP.

Well, Australian Rules Football, Rugby League and Rugby Union all have their measurements done in metric.


I laugh with a gufaw at the Metrically Correct (on behalf of the Canadian Unwashed) who insist upon changing all references of Canadian aircraft flight heights to meters (oops, metres) (ie: in newspapers) when the international aviation world itself uses feet.

True that the aviation world uses feet for altitude, but for those unfamiliar with distances in feet, conversions in brackets can be useful.


As a metric rabble-rouser, I deliberately use "centegrade" instead of celsius.

You rebel you. :P Still, here in Oz, we know that 30 degrees is hot, 20 degrees is mild, 10 degrees is cold and 0 is (literally) freezing. If it gets over 37 degrees, the media will often talk about the temperature hitting "the old century".


And I say kil-OHM'-meter instead of kiloh-meters (as you are supposed to say in Canada.)

You're kidding me! Canadian authorities actually tell people how to pronounce the words?

Mind you, my Latin teacher said that kilolitre (not a frequently used word, by the way) should be pronounced with the emphasis on the second syllable. But she was just being a pedant.


All this from a guy with a Science degree. Tch-tch. I even support the concept of metric. (And, okay, since no one asked me... what I detest is the god-awful every-day oppressive language-poetry of it all. I tried singing "A hundred kilometers" and "I can see for kilometers" and say such things as "I'd walk a kilometer for a Camel" and "Gimme a litre of beer" and watch movies like "The Longest Meter" or "The Green Kilometer" and wear a ten litre hat... but it's just not right. The metric system will never do for everyday poetic language.)

Well, all the words soon generate their own slang. So "kilometres" are "kays" or "klicks", while "kilograms" are "kilos", and "millilitres" are "mils". So when someone talks about 100 kilos, we know they mean kilograms, not kilometres or kilolitres.

And as for beer, well, that always comes in stubbies or middies. :D


Hey, I just noticed how much (metrically) higher I am above you all from this soapbox. I'll get down now.

Don't worry, I had it for a centihour. :wink:

freddo
2003-Jul-03, 02:22 AM
I just don't get it....

I am from Australia - a country that claims exclusivity of the metric system in our lives - and the Imperial system makes not a single word of sense at all... How many yards in a mile again?

But enough of that... Face facts - units of measurement, as a facet of language itself, is evolving....

I am not very olde, nor have i taken a wyfe - and you will not see me express myself with such spelling (this sentence excepted). The English language is now in a different form - these words are no longer considered correct (from a spelling point of view)...

So it is also true with our units of measurement.

I am living in a time (and country - i guess this is a factor), where the metric system is the prevailing 'language.' I speak it, others around me speak it as well. Someone comes at me with an Imperial measurement, I need to translate it. It is not my (first) language, and the measurement has no meaning until I can put it into my native context.

Other people around the worlds are in a different age (i won't postulate which is more modern - what's the point - which came first: japanese or english (doesn't matter)?), and they speak a different language of measurement. Their prevailing system works, in spite of its' convolutions.

Whether or not there should be one prevailing system for all is a different kettle of fish.... Different spoken/written languages have been coping for millenia, and the current intermingling of the two measurement systems is an everyday occurence (ie: aviation; I know how my altitude in feet, but my fuel capacity in litres, not pounds).

Of course, there is an unfortunate spacecraft that might tell a different story.

nebularain
2003-Jul-03, 02:34 AM
Hi yanks.
Ive always wondered: How many imperial gallons do you guys get per hecter on your 1 and 1/4 american tonne vehicles? And how many royal thumbs are required to make a commoner yard?
(For some reason, this made me remember this . . .)

One rancher boasts to another:
"I've got so much land, I can drive my pick-up truck at the crack of dawn from one end and not reach the other end until sunset.

The other rancher nods and replies:
"Uh-huh. Had me a truck like that once!"

Peter B
2003-Jul-03, 03:20 AM
I am living in a time (and country - i guess this is a factor), where the metric system is the prevailing 'language.' I speak it, others around me speak it as well. Someone comes at me with an Imperial measurement, I need to translate it. It is not my (first) language, and the measurement has no meaning until I can put it into my native context.

And some more examples from the Land Down Under.

One of my hobbies is wargaming (battles with toy soldiers). The rules we use are from the UK (DBM if you're interested). The toy soldiers we use are glued to bases with a standard width of 40 millimetres. Yet movement distances are measured in inches. Everyone who plays the game can think in inches, and it's another measurement system I can use for convenience.

When babies are born, it's traditional to express the baby's birth weight in pounds and ounces, though I can never remember how many ounces there are in a pound, and how many pounds in a stone. In this regard, I always think of people's weight in kilograms, not pounds, and have to stop to think when converting between the two, as Freddo described.

Petrol (gasoline) is sold by the litre. The tank on my car takes 40 litres, and I can usually do about 600 kilometres on a tank. A standard can of drink is 375 mL, and milk is sold in 1 litre, 600 mL and 300 mL cartons. I understand that 600 mL is close to the old pint. But I'm completely unfamiliar with Imperial volumes, and so measurements like gallons, quarts and pints have essentially no meaning to me.

freddo
2003-Jul-03, 03:58 AM
[quote="freddo"]<snip>[quote]

And some more examples from the Land Down Under.

One of my hobbies is wargaming (battles with toy soldiers). The rules we use are from the UK (DBM if you're interested). The toy soldiers we use are glued to bases with a standard width of 40 millimetres. Yet movement distances are measured in inches. Everyone who plays the game can think in inches, and it's another measurement system I can use for convenience.

When babies are born, it's traditional to express the baby's birth weight in pounds and ounces, though I can never remember how many ounces there are in a pound, and how many pounds in a stone. In this regard, I always think of people's weight in kilograms, not pounds, and have to stop to think when converting between the two, as Freddo described.

Petrol (gasoline) is sold by the litre. The tank on my car takes 40 litres, and I can usually do about 600 kilometres on a tank. A standard can of drink is 375 mL, and milk is sold in 1 litre, 600 mL and 300 mL cartons. I understand that 600 mL is close to the old pint. But I'm completely unfamiliar with Imperial volumes, and so measurements like gallons, quarts and pints have essentially no meaning to me.

I also dabbled in the world of tabletop wargaming (Games Workshop & Warhammer to be precise), and this is an excellent example of metric/imperial mish mosh... While it's quite easy over time to work out how far a 4" move is going to be on the table, it's quite another to take it to other facets of life... I don't look at my coffee mug and go "gee that must be about 5" tall...

Of course, looking at my computer screen I can tell you i have a 17" viewing area. But don't ask me how many centimeters that is, because I can't do those kind of conversions off the top of my head (ie: <10 response time).

As for the rest of your comments, I think you're hinting on the point I was trying to express earlier (and more or less submerged into lengthy musing). All day long I'm exposed to Imperial terminology - I understand it, but only in its' context (ie: the weight of a baby)... Unless it's used in describing an item where such a measurement conveys meaning (15" monitor - I'm 5'11"), then I do not understand it, nor can I visualise and quantify.

RBG
2003-Jul-03, 04:53 AM
I just don't get it....

Think soccer ("football") in the USA.

RBG

Glom
2003-Jul-03, 11:19 AM
Europe is all metric, which is main problem when it comes to getting Britain metric. The public see the metric system as a European thing and therefore instinctively hate it. If the government, any government, would get on with it and just change the road signs, it would be simple. At the moment, metrication efforts come in the form of Eurocrats bullying groccery shop owners. So far, we buy our petrol in litres and the weather forecast is given in celsius.

AstroSmurf
2003-Jul-03, 11:26 AM
So, you might say that the UK is slowly approaching the metric system, inch by inch?

Glom
2003-Jul-03, 11:27 AM
So, you might say that the UK is slowly approaching the metric system, inch by inch?

On Question Time, Mary Archer did say that the metric system was inching its way forward.

I also forgot to say that only the metric system is taught in schools.

kilopi
2003-Jul-03, 12:19 PM
The petition mentioned in the article is equally weak.
Are you familiar with that petition? Do you have a link by any chance? They published a small book about it that I read in a library. I couldn't find an online description of it.

nebularain
2003-Jul-03, 01:58 PM
Of course, looking at my computer screen I can tell you i have a 17" viewing area. But don't ask me how many centimeters that is, because I can't do those kind of conversions off the top of my head (ie: <10 response time).


I can send you a 12" ruler with inches on one side and centimeters on the other side. Easiest way to do such conversions. We do it all the time here (if there's such a need - i.e. scince class).

Donnie B.
2003-Jul-03, 04:07 PM
Europe is all metric, which is main problem when it comes to getting Britain metric. The public see the metric system as a European thing and therefore instinctively hate it.
This is ironic to many Americans, who think of Britain as a European nation! :D

tracer
2003-Jul-03, 08:09 PM
Whether or not there should be one prevailing system for all is a different kettle of fish....
How many kettles are there in a hogshead, again?

Chuck
2003-Jul-03, 10:31 PM
What a backward iliterate argument that article made. Might have helped if the author admited were the metric system comes from.

So lets do a score check

Nations with Metric - 198

Without - 2 - one of which (Burma) is working hard to return to the stone age.

Glen Chapman
Number of world superpowers using the English system: 1

Number of world superpowers using the metric system: 0

The English system isn't as confusing as all those conversion charts would indicate since no one uses all of the units on them. Depths aren't measured in furlongs and horse races aren't measured in fathoms. There's never any need to convert between them. People use the units they need for the task at hand.

Besides, the metric system seems boring by comparison.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-03, 11:39 PM
Boring, yes. Worse than Imperial, no.

tracer
2003-Jul-04, 12:23 AM
The English system isn't as confusing as all those conversion charts would indicate since no one uses all of the units on them. Depths aren't measured in furlongs and horse races aren't measured in fathoms. There's never any need to convert between them. People use the units they need for the task at hand.

How many ounces in a pound? 16, right? Not if you're using Troy weight, it's not! There are only 12 Troy ounces to the Troy pound, and the Troy ounce is still used to this day when trading gold, silver, and other precious metals in the Spot and Futures markets. Worse, although a Troy ounce is larger than an ounce avoirdupois (a "normal" ounce), a Troy pound is smaller than a pound avoirdupois. If you want to know how many pounds your Troy-ounces of gold or silver weigh, for purposes of shipping it on an American truck that weighs its cargo in pounds avoirdupois, you have to divide by 14.58333. :P

A pint's a pound the world around, right? Wrong! It's 16 fluid ounces. One pint of water weighs in at around 16.691 ounces avoirdupois. And that's just in America -- in Great Britain, one pint is 20 fluid ounces. But these aren't the same fluid ounces we have here in the U.S. -- they're ever-so-slightly smaller, so that while one British pint is exactly 20 British fluid ounces, it's only around 19.2 American fluid ounces. And the more die-hard British pubs will still use the British pint to this day.

How many pounds in a ton? 2000 if it's a U.S. (short) ton, and 2240 if it's a British (long) ton. International shipping, as far as I know, still recognizes both short tons and long tons for freight, and has to treat them differently. Not only is conversion between the two a nuisance, there's always that niggling chance of a costly (and potentially dangerous) miscommunication when somebody says they're loading down the barge or the boxcar with "200 tons" of something.

"Grains" are still used to weigh bullets. "Yards" are still used in American (and even Canadian!) football. "Fathoms" are still used to measure water depth. "Knots" and "Nautical miles" are still used in both the maritime arena and in aviation. "Furlongs" are still used in horse races. "Dry quarts" are still used for selling strawberries and cherry tomatoes. "Bushels" (American bushels, not the slightly-larger British bushels) are still used for trading corn and soybeans on the Chicago mercantile exchange. The "U.S. survey foot", which is almost but not quite the length of a conventional foot, is still used when measuring land and has doubtlessly caused consternation in property-line disputes.

Bleah.

Chuck
2003-Jul-04, 04:03 AM
I don't remember ever having done any of the above conversion nor have others told me they've had to. It's the metric system's unnatural units of measure that make conversions necessary.

I buy some stuff by the yard, some by the pound, some by the quart, and some by the ounce. No conversion needed.

GarethB
2003-Jul-04, 04:41 AM
You're right you know. Multiplying and dividing by factors of 10 is so hard.

How many inches to the foot, feet to the yard, yards to the mile?
Grains to an ounce, ounces to a pound, pounds to a stone, or to a ton?
Fluid ounces to a quart, or a pint, quarts or pints to a gallon?

Milligrams to a gram (1000) grams to a kilogram (1000), kilograms to a tonne (1000), tonnes to a kilotonne (1000), kilotonnes to a megatonne (1000), megatonnes to a gigatonne (1000).

millilitres to a litre (1000), litres toa kilolitre (1000, Kilolitres are hardly ever used), kilolitres to a megalitre (1000), megalitres to a gigalitre (1000).

millimetres to a centimetre (10), centimetres to a metre (100, also 1000 millimetres to the metre), metres to a kilometre (1000), I've never heard anyone say "megametres", but if they did, it would be 1000 kilometres. Same for "gigametres", I've never heard anyone use it, but it's 1000 megametres.

There are a few other odd units in the decimal system, decigramme (10th's of a gram), decilitre (10th's of a litre) and decimetres (10th's of a metre). Decagrams (10's of grams. note the decA, instead of decI), decalitres (10's of litres) and decametres (10's of metres). There's also centigramme (100th's of a gram) and centilitres (100th's of a litre).

yeah, multiplying and dividing by 10, 100 or 1000 is so very hard, isn't it Chuck? The base unit could be any arbitrary distance, mass or volume, that's a spurious argument, but the dog's breakfast of ratios for the larger and smaller units from the base units within SI is the real issue.

Boring? Maybe metric is boring, but which units do I multiply by 12, which ones by 16, which ones by 3, etc? No thanks, you can keep it.

Chuck
2003-Jul-04, 05:05 AM
When something is being measured in miles no one cares how far it is in feet. People use the unit of measure appropriate for the job.

kilopi
2003-Jul-04, 11:27 AM
Boring?
Yeah, yeah, we know how it works. :)

We'll get there eventually, probably 'bout the same time that football (http://www.fifa.com/index.html) converts to metric.

Iain Lambert
2003-Jul-04, 11:41 AM
Ah. So thats why I thought I was being ripped off whenever I bought a pint in the US.

I was.

Useless nation with its wussy "I can't handle my beer" pints. How cheap can you get?

:wink:

ocasey3
2003-Jul-04, 12:37 PM
Yeah, but can you buy your beer by the case? 8)

frenat
2003-Jul-04, 03:33 PM
Don't forget miles to AUs. AUs to Light Years and Light Years to Parsecs. If someone could fill in the appropriate conversion factors I would appreciate it. I'm just feeling too lazy right now.

kilopi
2003-Jul-04, 03:36 PM
Don't forget miles to AUs. AUs to Light Years and Light Years to Parsecs. If someone could fill in the appropriate conversion factors I would appreciate it. I'm just feeling too lazy right now.
What about kilometers to AUs, etc? Are you saying we'd have to give up lightyears if we converted to metric?

Chuck
2003-Jul-04, 04:08 PM
Yes. Alpha Centauri is now about 40 petametres away.

kilopi
2003-Jul-04, 05:26 PM
Petametres? You're not from Arizona, are you?

But that means that a lightyear is about 10 petameters. Cool, I think that'd go over big in the junior highs.

Kaptain K
2003-Jul-04, 05:31 PM
How many pounds in a ton? 2000 if it's a U.S. (short) ton, and 2240 if it's a British (long) ton.
Or 2205 pounds to a metric ton (tonne).

Kaptain K
2003-Jul-04, 05:39 PM
AUs to Light Years and Light Years to Parsecs.
One little bit of trivia I picked up is that there are 206,265 AU's to the parsec* (also the number of arcseconds to the radian), There are 3.26 light years in a parsec. So, there are 63,271.5** AU in a light year.

* Actually 206264.806247096355156473357330779
** Actually 63271.4129592320107841942813898094

informant
2003-Jul-04, 06:41 PM
This debate seems a bit black and white to me so far.
I don't believe that american football will ever switch to metres, but then why should it? My country uses the metric system, but there are always exceptions. The navy still uses knots and nautical miles. In aviation feet are still used. In certain areas, the ancient units will probably be kept, out of tradition. But I don't think that matters for the overal use of metric units.

kilopi
2003-Jul-04, 06:59 PM
We'll get there eventually, probably 'bout the same time that football (http://www.fifa.com/index.html) converts to metric.
Check out the link, I wasn't talking about American football. :)

informant
2003-Jul-04, 07:45 PM
My reference to American football was actually inspired by tracer's post.
But your link is another good example of how non-metric units will not vanish entirely just because a country adopts SI units for trade and science.

sarongsong
2003-Jul-04, 09:32 PM
Peter B wrote:

Well, all the words soon generate their own slang. So "kilometres" are "kays" or "klicks"...
Watching a TV war movie recently, the dialogue used "clicks" in describing how far away a target was. I phoned the local military base's Information Officer to ask for a definition. Well, you'd think I was asking for nuclear codes---he finally told me a "click" was a thousand yards. This sound right?

TriangleMan
2003-Jul-04, 09:43 PM
Peter B wrote:
he finally told me a "click" was a thousand yards. This sound right?

A meter is about 1.09 yards (39 inches) so a "click" i.e. kilometer, is 1000m x 1.09 = 1090 yards.

Of course, that's IF the military slang for "click" refers to a kilometer. . .

If so, its not a great margin of error for long distances, hope that military guy wasn't planning on firing long-range missiles. :wink:

sarongsong
2003-Jul-04, 10:43 PM
Of course, that's IF the military slang for "click" refers to a kilometer. . .
It was an American movie and an American Information Officer, so I just "assumed" the term "clicK" was in straight yards, but now it seems we're suddenly in the ancient Tower of Babel's Math Department. :o

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 02:33 AM
Up here klick (yes, with a "k") means kilometre (yes, with "re"). Just so you know. :wink:

wedgebert
2003-Jul-05, 02:49 AM
Of course, that's IF the military slang for "click" refers to a kilometer. . .
It was an American movie and an American Information Officer, so I just "assumed" the term "clicK" was in straight yards, but now it seems we're suddenly in the ancient Tower of Babel's Math Department. :o

I'm in the army and we use Klick as slang for a kilometer (death to those who spell it kilometre). All military maps are in grids that are 1000 meters per side.

It's quite bad actually. We'll get convoy briefings that say "we're heading to <blah blah> which is 10 kilometers away. Convoy spacing is 100 meters and convoy speed is 25 miles per hour and the azmiuth of fire (I'm in artillery) is 3200 mils (messed up military version of degrees, 6400 mils = 360 degrees)

So I'm sit there trying to do all these weird calculations to bring everything into the same measurement system. Of course then it becomes irrelavant because the true convoy speed is "however fast the commander feels like going" and there's a ground guide who tells you where to park.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 02:53 AM
(death to those who spell it kilometre)

And I 'spose you pronounce it "kil-O-meter" as well... :D

Sorry to hear about your measurement problems. Our Army uses only metric. Probably one heck of a lot easier to use a single system, no matter what it is.

sarongsong
2003-Jul-05, 02:58 AM
"In many military-related movies and television shows, characters describe distances in terms of "klicks", causing many people to wonder what a "klick" (also sometimes spelled "click", "klik", or "clic") is. This term is shorthand/slang for a "kilometer".
Military slang for a kilometer, 1,000 meters or .62 of a mile"
http://www.combatsystems.net/htm/fun/How_Far_is_a_Klick.htm
Next time, I'll use the computer instead of the phone :oops:

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 03:00 AM
Now you have to ask yourself, 'Why did that army guy lie to me?" Is the term "klick" a matter of national security? Sheesh. Or could it be that this guy just didn't know? Somehow that's a tad more worrying... :o

Archer17
2003-Jul-05, 03:02 AM
As far as I'm concerned, "klick" is the sound my joints make when I get out of bed in the morning

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 03:07 AM
Well at least it's not: Snap! Crunch! Squelch!

Hmmm... sounds like a cereal...

Archer17
2003-Jul-05, 03:08 AM
I ain't that old, maybe next year

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 03:16 AM
Seriously though, you hear those sounds in that order, see a doctor, and quick too!

Archer17
2003-Jul-05, 03:22 AM
I would trust me!! .. although I'd probably not make it in time!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 03:33 AM
Depends what part of your body the sounds come from, I guess...

Archer17
2003-Jul-05, 03:44 AM
trust me .. if your body makes all those noises and you're under 60 .. it's "Last Rites" time :wink: (If anyone is 60 or over, I might be off on my timeline, don't bust a vein over my remarks :D)

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 03:51 AM
Well I have to disagree. Say the sound comes from your neck. Well obviously the result is *thud*. If it comes from your chest, you might be able to get to a doctor, but the result is usually *step* *step* *thud*. But if it comes from your elbow, you probably won't go *thud* but will probably have to be in hospital for a few months.

Any way that you look at it, though, it's still not going to be a walk in the park. :wink:

wedgebert
2003-Jul-05, 03:53 AM
(death to those who spell it kilometre)

And I 'spose you pronounce it "kil-O-meter" as well... :D

Sorry to hear about your measurement problems. Our Army uses only metric. Probably one heck of a lot easier to use a single system, no matter what it is.

No, I still pronounouce it kill-om-ah-ter. I only use the "correct" spelling of meter (and armor, honor, color, etc) :lol:

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 03:56 AM
:o Why sah, I think those ah fightin' words! Ah you tryin' to tell me that I have no honour? Pistols at dawn, sah! Pistols at dawn!

wedgebert
2003-Jul-05, 04:53 AM
:o Why sah, I think those ah fightin' words! Ah you tryin' to tell me that I have no honour? Pistols at dawn, sah! Pistols at dawn!

I'm afraid I must decline. You only suggest a duel because you are mocking my country's lack of free health care. :P

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 04:55 AM
Well, maybe a little. :D

BTW, if you had said yes, you probably wouldn't be the one who needed healthcare!

wedgebert
2003-Jul-05, 05:14 AM
Well, maybe a little. :D

BTW, if you had said yes, you probably wouldn't be the one who needed healthcare!

I dunno, the Army only trained me to use the M-16, not handguns. And by trained, I mean they let me fire about 200 rounds or so, spread out over the course of 5 days before qualification. And to qualify they said "you gotta hit 22 (21?) out of 40 targets and you have 40 rounds *cough* plus another dozen or so "hidden" in your foxhole *cough*.

I also got to fire a few bursts from an M-249 and throw, not one, but TWO live hand grenades.

Fear me for I am a highly trained Army of One!

sarongsong
2003-Jul-05, 05:54 AM
wedgebert:

I'm afraid I must decline...
Whew! Otherwise you'd all have to learn the 25 rules, pick seconds, and "pace" yourselves...
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/duel/sfeature/rulesofdueling.html

SeanF
2003-Jul-05, 12:23 PM
When something is being measured in miles no one cares how far it is in feet. People use the unit of measure appropriate for the job.
That's true, but how come the speed of a baseball pitch, which only travels about 60.5 feet and takes about two seconds, is measured in miles per hour? :D

wedgebert
2003-Jul-05, 02:12 PM
When something is being measured in miles no one cares how far it is in feet. People use the unit of measure appropriate for the job.
That's true, but how come the speed of a baseball pitch, which only travels about 60.5 feet and takes about two seconds, is measured in miles per hour? :D

Because it sounds more impressive than 30 feet per second. And basebal is so boring it needs all the help it can get.

Chuck
2003-Jul-05, 02:38 PM
It's because the radar gun readout is in miles per hour. The radar gun was designed to measure the speed of traffic in the U.S. which is measured in miles per hour.

snowcelt
2003-Jul-05, 03:39 PM
Well all you people ought to try this. When I was a boy in school we were imperial. (For all of you americans), that is what you play with today with a few exceptions. Well, I knew my inches and pounds like any other red blooded Canadian. Then we went metric. No problem. Joined the army. The army was metic. Retired from the army. Then it got bad! 20 years after I was taught metric I went to school. I am thinkking in Mils (6400 to a circle) and my professor is talking in Degrees! Went completley stupid. Could not pass the course because I was not able to convert from metric to Imperial. The University was still in imperial 20 years after I had converted!

tracer
2003-Jul-05, 07:08 PM
That's true, but how come the speed of a baseball pitch, which only travels about 60.5 feet and takes about two seconds, is measured in miles per hour? :D
60 feet + 6 inches is the distance from the pitching rubber to home plate. The pitch actually travels a considerably shorter distance than this, because the pitcher plants his back foot on the pitching rubber and leans forward as he throws.

Oh -- and the travel time to home plate for a typical Major League fastball is less than one-half second, not two.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 07:42 PM
Wedgebert: That's still more training than I have!

I should have said swords at dawn. I can fence. :wink:

wedgebert
2003-Jul-05, 08:23 PM
Wedgebert: That's still more training than I have!

I should have said swords at dawn. I can fence. :wink:

Ok, but I get to have my back to the sun

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-05, 08:36 PM
No problem. But I get to wear shades.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-05, 09:45 PM
Then I get a lightsaber (not sabre)

Musashi
2003-Jul-06, 01:21 AM
Way off the original topic, but strangely in the vein of the newer posts...

Lightsabers... If struck at someone with a lightsaber and they blocked with a lightsaber, could I switch mine off so as to pass the block and then switch it on again and make the strike? Would that work?

wedgebert
2003-Jul-06, 01:59 AM
Way off the original topic, but strangely in the vein of the newer posts...

Lightsabers... If struck at someone with a lightsaber and they blocked with a lightsaber, could I switch mine off so as to pass the block and then switch it on again and make the strike? Would that work?

Seems to me like lightsabers should be a lot more deadly than they are. Since all the mass of the weapon is in the hilt (and I mean ALL, not just most), you should be able to just flick your wrist and kill someone. There's no need to pull back for those dramatic swings and thrusts (aside from making it look cool).

Go pick up a heavy flashlight and see how fast you can redirect the beam. while holding it with one or two hands.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 02:01 AM
Musashi: Well, if they were stupid enough not to strike you while you're doing it, yes.

Oh, BTW Wedgebert, if you get a lightsaber, I get a lightsabre. Seems only fair...

wedgebert
2003-Jul-06, 02:15 AM
Musashi: Well, if they were stupid enough not to strike you while you're doing it, yes.

Oh, BTW Wedgebert, if you get a lightsaber, I get a lightsabre. Seems only fair...

Ok, but when you blade comes out backwards and impales you because of the way you spelled saber, don't blame me :)

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 02:46 AM
Hey, if I wanted a double-sided lightsabre, would I spell it lightsaberre?

wedgebert
2003-Jul-06, 02:54 AM
Hey, if I wanted a double-sided lightsabre, would I spell it lightsaberre?

Sounds like something the French use to surrender with when it's dark out.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 03:04 AM
:o :lol:

Musashi
2003-Jul-06, 05:23 AM
TSC: What if you were coming in for an overhead strike...opponent raises saber to block...at the moment before contact, you switch off and then on again..splitsecond.. now you are past their guard...end of story for them!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 05:26 AM
Okay, that would work. What I thought you meant was if you strike on a diagonal and he parrys on the opposite diagonal. You would both be swinging. By turning off your sabre, you would let his through as well and you both die. But again, the way you say it, it should work out fine.

Musashi
2003-Jul-06, 05:45 AM
Yeah, I know what you mean, I thought through that scenario first and then I thought, "If you don't have to block his shot... hmmmm."

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 05:47 AM
You know, if you have the technology for a laser that intelligent (stops other lasers, limited range) you'd think you could program it to turn off automatically in the right situations.

Kebsis
2003-Jul-06, 06:51 AM
I read in a magazine once that Celsius is weird, in that 7degrees Celsius is the temperature of cold mountain air, while 11 degrees Celsius is the temp of molten rock...or something like that. Is this true or is it just REALLY bad science, because that's what it sounded like when I read it.

kilopi
2003-Jul-06, 08:30 AM
I read in a magazine once that Celsius is weird, in that 7degrees Celsius is the temperature of cold mountain air, while 11 degrees Celsius is the temp of molten rock...or something like that. Is this true or is it just REALLY bad science, because that's what it sounded like when I read it.
Good one (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=109777#109777).

That 11 degrees was a typo, I am absolutely certain.

Beaver
2003-Jul-06, 02:34 PM
I read in a magazine once that Celsius is weird, in that 7degrees Celsius is the temperature of cold mountain air, while 11 degrees Celsius is the temp of molten rock...or something like that. Is this true or is it just REALLY bad science, because that's what it sounded like when I read it.

If that were true(witch its not) You would need a heck of lot of decimal places to describe any temprature.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 04:20 PM
Even 7 degrees for cold mountain air is suspect. Lordy, have you seens Everest? Or any other large mountain? IT'S COLD!!! REALLY COLD!!! BELOW FREEZING COLD!!! Sorry, it's just very cold. :wink:

nebularain
2003-Jul-06, 07:26 PM
If that were true(witch its not)

Which witch is that? (The one that is "not," I mean.) :P

Beaver
2003-Jul-06, 07:31 PM
If that were true(witch its not)

Which witch is that? (The one that is "not," I mean.) :P

My spell checker does not filter idiocy :P

sarongsong
2003-Jul-06, 09:32 PM
Aha! The U.S. DOES have a metric system after all---one everyone understands!

...The metric by which candidates will be judged is their fundraising prowess...
http://www.thescrum2004.com/archives/week_2003_04_20.html

wedgebert
2003-Jul-06, 10:13 PM
Just as a side note, legally, the metric system is the official system of measurement for the U.S. and has been since 1893. All of the usual measurements are defined in terms of the metric system (1 foot = 0.3048 meters and 1 pound = 453.59237 grams).

In fact, the U.S. was one of the offical singers of the Treaty of the Meter in 1875. U.S. scientists and engineers have been leaders in improving and expanding the metric system, except for NASA it seems.

The problem is just the general public. Despite a large portion of everyday items being measured in SI units (2 liter sodas, 800 milligram Motrins, and so forth), the public doesn't want to let go of it's miles and gallons. Heck, even our foods are measured in the metric system, with grams of fat and even calories (1 = calorie = energy to raise 1 gram of water one degree celsius)*.

One idea to help convert the public is to swap the measurement information on products. Instead of 12 oz (355 mL) it should be 355 mL (12 oz). Then slowly decrease the font size of the conversion so that eventually it just says 355 mL. Heck, I'm sure the soda industry would like that, since 350 is a more round number, they could drop 5 mL from each soda and probably save millions.

But I think the only way to really solve the problem is to give up on most of the public and focus on the younger children. Put a major focus on the metric system and only give a general overview of the Imperial system. Parents might complain, but they should want what's best for their child and not dislike something just because they don't understand it. There mght even be a slight increase in some grades since it's a lot easier to do math problems with the metric system than the imperial.

Then after a decade or so later, make a federally mandated program where all states have to replace all roadway signs and other markers with something like Speed Limit 80 kph (50 mph). Houston: 120 km (75 iles). Finally as time goes on, less and less people will need the conversions to Imperial and all new markers won't need them.

But that makes too much sense and so will never happen.

* Note, before some chemisty or physics major jumps on me. A calorie is technically called a "gram-calorie" and is the amount of energy needed to raise one gram of water from 14.5 C to 15.5 C. This is because as water becomes warmer it takes more energy to heat up, so you have to include the temperature range into account as well. Also, food calories are technically kilocalories and are equal to 1000 normal gram-calories.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 10:36 PM
Ah yes, the problem of re-educating the great unwashed. (Don't get mad, we have them too). Your system does make sense. It also will never happen. Nuts.

Glom
2003-Jul-06, 10:43 PM
In Britain, schooling is all metric without a hint of imperial so all the annoying old people will die and we'll be left with a race of pure metric blood. (how maniacally insane :D )

The one thing I can't see disappearing is the good old pint of beer. But, I fail to see why that should go with the road signs.

I would like to note that The Matrix Reloaded featured a good bit of metric and since that movie was an all purpose guide to popular culture at the turn of the millenium, it goes to show how the youth may be getting into metric. After all, what kid would want to be seen measuring things in the same units as his parent?

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-06, 10:53 PM
Yes, all that we are taught is metric, but I still can't stand the old fogies who use Imperial. Also, being so close to the Great Anti-Metric to the South, we are constantly being bombarded with Imperial nonsense! Shame on you Yanks! Shame! :)

Humphrey
2003-Jul-06, 11:59 PM
Yes, all that we are taught is metric, but I still can't stand the old fogies who use Imperial. Also, being so close to the Great Anti-Metric to the South, we are constantly being bombarded with Imperial nonsense! Shame on you Yanks! Shame! :)

Ahhh...But Vote for me and all your problems will go away! Metric for everyone!




Another plus nof going Metric (in the shoirt term). It just sounds better saying that your car tops out at 193 km/hr than 120 mi/hr. :-)

I have a feeling that eventually the U.S. will go metric. All sciences use it and engineering too. Eventually this will become the standard.

It is just sad that the first day of a science college course here in the U.S. is teaching the Metric system.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-07, 12:05 AM
Just another little note, America doesn't use the Imperial system. The Imperial system is what the British use. In our arrogance, we have even modified that to produce our measurement system. That's why American pints are smaller than Imperial pints among other things.

Just to make things more confusing we just use the same names. Very similar to a certain neighboor to the North that uses our currency names, but with smaller values.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 12:16 AM
Hey, hey, hey! :evil: Our dollar is catching up! Plus it looks better too. Green and brown? Pah! No character at all!

And the reason we call the American system Imperial is because it is easier that way. We like simplicity. Hence the metric system.

Humphrey
2003-Jul-07, 12:20 AM
Stupid Q: What is the system the U.S. uses called then?

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 12:21 AM
I seem to remember it as US Standard. But I'm probably wrong...

wedgebert
2003-Jul-07, 01:13 AM
I believe it's known as the Asanine system.

Humphrey
2003-Jul-07, 01:36 AM
I believe it's known as the Asanine system. :lol: :lol:

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 04:26 AM
You guys take this too serious. What's a little arithmetic?

If we didn't get practice doing conversions, we might get lazy. I mean, look at what's happened to the rest of the world. :)

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 04:33 AM
Nobody likes it. If you can get away with doing less by using metric, all the better. We're just lazy. Like everyone else. :D

<edit>

Hey, did you edit your post while I was writing mine? They seem similar! :o

</edit>

Musashi
2003-Jul-07, 05:00 AM
Practice doing conversions? Just go here:
http://www.worldwidemetric.com/metcal.htm

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 05:04 AM
I think they made a mistake. It's not Kg/cm, it's Kg/cm^2.

See how fast I did that? Yes, I am annoying. :P

SeanF
2003-Jul-07, 02:18 PM
That's true, but how come the speed of a baseball pitch, which only travels about 60.5 feet and takes about two seconds, is measured in miles per hour? :D
60 feet + 6 inches is the distance from the pitching rubber to home plate. The pitch actually travels a considerably shorter distance than this, because the pitcher plants his back foot on the pitching rubber and leans forward as he throws.
True, but the catcher also sets up behind the back corner of home plate. But overall, you're right, it's probably less than 60.5 feet - except for those fastballs that get away and go all the way to the backstop!


Oh -- and the travel time to home plate for a typical Major League fastball is less than one-half second, not two.

Dang math errors. ::grumble, grumble, mutter::

tracer
2003-Jul-07, 03:59 PM
Just as a side note, legally, the metric system is the official system of measurement for the U.S. and has been since 1893.
Not quite. The Federal Fair Labelling and Packaging Act (FLPA), passed in the 1960s, required consumer products to be labelled only in inch-pound units. It was amended in the 1970s to require consumer products to be labelled in both inch-pound units and metric units, and only last year a proposal was put before whatever Congressional subcomittee deals with this issue to amend the FLPA again to allow (but not require) consumer products to be labelled in metric-only units.

Furthermore, a clause in the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1978 outlawed the use of any Federal road sign funds for metric road signs. (!) This clause was repealed 3 years later.


One idea to help convert the public is to swap the measurement information on products. Instead of 12 oz (355 mL) it should be 355 mL (12 oz). Then slowly decrease the font size of the conversion so that eventually it just says 355 mL. Heck, I'm sure the soda industry would like that, since 350 is a more round number, they could drop 5 mL from each soda and probably save millions.
The above proposed amendment to the FLPA might help this happen. Products which are already sold in metric units (like 2-liter soda bottles) will probably choose to drop the inch-pound units from their labels entirely. I don't know if the proposed FLPA amendment would allow for the inch-pound units to be the ones in parentheses (as opposed to how the metric units are the units in parentheses these days), or if they would allow the inch-pound units to appear in a smaller typeface than the metric units.

Avatar28
2003-Jul-07, 05:05 PM
And I'm now seeing soft drinks sold in half liter bottles instead of 20 oz. Sadly, I don't think they've dropped the price any (but I haven't paid close attention really), it's still over a buck for one. :-(

Hypatia
2003-Jul-07, 05:14 PM
You guys take this too serious. What's a little arithmetic?

If we didn't get practice doing conversions, we might get lazy. I mean, look at what's happened to the rest of the world. :)

I'm a Cdn - grew up Imperial & was in on the switch to metric about 15 years ago (& have lived in good ol' GA for the last 7 years).

Just let me say - you DO NOT do a lot of conversion! Oh, at first you try to convert the price of gas back into gallons or hamburger into pounds ($0.99/lb = $2.20/kilogram); but you soon get used to to adjusted price & don't bother. We came here with our CDN cars, with both miles & kms on the speedometer. You learn after one trip that 90kph = 65 mph and drive at 90 kph. (in Atlanta, that usually means you get run over by the other cars!)

Actually, U.S. businesses are sneaking in metric measurements everywhere. Almost everything is sold with both measurements on them. Pepsi just introduced a 12 pack of 16.9 oz bottles (you guessed it - 500 ml)!

A downer with Imperial - did you ever stop to think that we use "ounces" to measure of both a volume & weight? I never noticed until I used an English cookbook that weighs the ingredients.

A downer with metric - we don't have common names for fixed quantities -like cups and gallons. We don't say use 400 liquid oz of flour in a recipe; we say 5 cups. A metric recipe will say "add 2500 ml of flour" - let's see, my 500 ml measuring "cup" goes into that 5 times.....yuuuch!

And, considering this is an astronomy bulletin board, you guys missed the most obvious metric-Imperial mix-up.... telescopes are usually sold in inches & feet (10"/ f/5); but the eyepieces are ALWAYS sold in metric. To calculate magnification, you divide the scope focal length by the eyepiece focal length - a major conversion pain!
Fortunately, most of this stuff is now from the Far East and made in metric, although they usually advertise it converted to feet/inches. I own a 10", f/5 Orion Skyquest Dob - but it is labelled with the actual dimensions in metric.

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 05:26 PM
You learn after one trip that 90kph = 65 mph and drive at 90 kph
Reminds me of a point I brought up earlier--how come you all use "hours"? That's not a metric unit of measure. :)

tjm220
2003-Jul-07, 05:33 PM
You learn after one trip that 90kph = 65 mph and drive at 90 kph


Doing 65mph in a 90kph zone is likely to get you a speeding ticket at least here in Calgary where photoradar is very popular.

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 06:00 PM
I'm sure she meant 55mph is 90kph--you get used to those sort of slipups from the conversion-impaired. :)

informant
2003-Jul-07, 06:11 PM
You learn after one trip that 90kph = 65 mph and drive at 90 kph
Reminds me of a point I brought up earlier--how come you all use "hours"? That's not a metric unit of measure. :)

No one said non-metric units should be abolished altogether. Some of them are useful, within reason (http://physics.nist.gov/cuu/Units/outside.html).

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 06:16 PM
No one said non-metric units should be abolished altogether. Some of them are useful, within reason.
Seems to me that they're all useful--at least, the ones being used are useful. :)

informant
2003-Jul-07, 06:28 PM
I don't think the usefulness of non-metric units is in question. Rather simplicity and rationality.

Hypatia
2003-Jul-07, 06:40 PM
I'm sure she meant 55mph is 90kph--you get used to those sort of slipups from the conversion-impaired. :)

Gees, I am NOT conversion impaired. I live in a speed-shifted zone - Atlanta. Everyone drives at 75 mph in a zone posted 55 mph. You only get a ticket if your wheels fail to touch the road once in a 1 mile stretch.

Hypatia
2003-Jul-07, 06:52 PM
You learn after one trip that 90kph = 65 mph and drive at 90 kph
Reminds me of a point I brought up earlier--how come you all use "hours"? That's not a metric unit of measure. :)


First we have to wean the reactionaries off pecks, chains and gills.....then time is next!!

Actually, hours works well for astronomers because it fits so well into trignometry, which is based on 360 deg in a circle.

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 08:31 PM
Gees, I am NOT conversion impaired.
They all say that. And they all say "You learn after one trip that 90kph = 65 mph" too. Sad. :)

Actually, hours works well for astronomers because it fits so well into trignometry, which is based on 360 deg in a circle.
They tried to convert time and degrees into metric too. Failed miserably. We all have our reasons for resisting.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 08:36 PM
What exactly is the metric unit for time anyway?

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 08:56 PM
What exactly is the metric unit for time anyway?
The second

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 09:01 PM
Thought so... if it's the second, I don't think I'd have a problem with the continued use of the minute or the hour. Within reason sounds good to me!

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 09:02 PM
Thought so... if it's the second, I don't think I'd have a problem with the continued use of the minute or the hour.
Nobody does (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=110617#110617). That's my point.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 09:11 PM
And a good point it is, too. :D

But of course, you have to define within reason...

kilopi
2003-Jul-07, 09:23 PM
But of course, you have to define within reason...informant (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=110976#110976) already tried that. Unfortunately, it seems to include hours, arcminutes, and knots! And those are officially OK. Prepare to be assimilated, you're already part of the way there (http://mentock.home.mindspring.com/metric.htm).

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-07, 10:40 PM
Ya know, eventually the metric system will be ripped apart, re-formed and will be easier to use. That's when the US will adopt it.

tracer
2003-Jul-08, 02:36 AM
In Britain, schooling is all metric without a hint of imperial [ ... ] The one thing I can't see disappearing is the good old pint of beer.
I can think of a way to help get rid of the old 20-fluid-ounce British pint:

Which would you rather drink, a pint of beer, or a liter of beer? ;)

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 02:44 AM
Touché

wedgebert
2003-Jul-08, 02:47 AM
Ya know, eventually the metric system will be ripped apart, re-formed and will be easier to use. That's when the US will adopt it.

What could you really do to make it easier to use?

tracer
2003-Jul-08, 02:48 AM
A downer with Imperial - did you ever stop to think that we use "ounces" to measure of both a volume & weight? I never noticed until I used an English cookbook that weighs the ingredients.
Not only that, but there are two kinds of ounces-of-weight (avoirdupois and Troy), and there are two kinds of ounces-of-volume (U.S. fluid ounces and British fluid ounces).

And you'd think that a "fluid ounce" would have gotten its name because a fluid-ounce of water weighs one ounce-of-weight -- after all, "A pint's a pound the world around," right? Wrongo! One U.S. fluid ounce of water weighs noticeably more than one ounce avoirdupois (it's over 1.2 grams heavier). One British fluid ounce of water weighs only a teensy weensy bit more than one ounce avoirdupois (it's less than 0.1 gram over), which is good enough for most uses, but a British pint isn't 16 British fluid ounces, it's 20 fluid ounces. Which means that the phrase "A pint's a pound the world around" isn't true anywhere!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 02:52 AM
wedgebert: I can be made simpler if it is standardized and if some older measurements are adopted. Like the hour. I refuse to measure time in kiloseconds. Not gonna happen!

tracer
2003-Jul-08, 02:58 AM
Another thing that's going to have to go by the wayside, if the metric system is ever to be as clear and unambiguous as it's supposed to be, is the overloading of the prefix "kilo" to mean 1024 when talking about bytes of computer information storage.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 03:00 AM
That's due to the fact that the whole computer system is based on the number 8. It isn't metric.

tracer
2003-Jul-08, 03:01 AM
I am not chopping off two of my fingers just to switch to octal!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 03:05 AM
Convince IBM and Intel to switch to 10 bit bytes. See how far you get.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-08, 03:26 AM
That's due to the fact that the whole computer system is based on the number 8. It isn't metric.

Actually computers are based on the number 2. As machines evolved from punch cards to actual computers, they started needing more and more data to store the characters they wanted. Originally they just had room for the alphabet (A - Z, uppercase only), the digits 0 - 9 and the + and - symbols. This is why old telegraphs say "blah blah STOP yadda yadda yadda STOP", there was no period.

Eventually they moved up to a 64 character "alphabet" and used 6 bits to do it. At that time, Bob Bemer came to work at IBM. It was realized that if you added the lower case characters, it would take more than 6 bits to store them all. So while some people proposed used 7 bits, Bemer went by his mantra of "Powers of 2 are magic" and suggested 8 bits.

This is eventually what was used, however ASCII only standardized the first 128 characters and some people were using 7-bit "bytes". Eventually everyone moved up to full 8-bit bytes and at one point IBM was using parts that used 9-bit bytes.

Computers don't care about bytes, just bits. Bytes just make it easier for people to work with binary numbers. Now if only they would stop measuring some things in megabits and other in megabytes and then stop using decimal megabytes.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 03:39 AM
Yes I know. I just stupidly left out the fundamental level (binary) :oops:.
Of course you are absolutely correct, I've just made a blunder. Whoops again!

wedgebert
2003-Jul-08, 03:47 AM
Yes I know. I just stupidly left out the fundamental level (binary) :oops:.
Of course you are absolutely correct, I've just made a blunder. Whoops again!

See my sig :roll:

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 03:48 AM
If I thought that I knew everything, would I have admitted my mistake? :wink:

wedgebert
2003-Jul-08, 03:50 AM
If I thought that I knew everything, would I have admitted my mistake? :wink:

I know, I just like boasting that I *DO* know everything :)

Kizarvexis
2003-Jul-08, 03:50 AM
You could always use Swatch time! (http://www.swatch.com/fs_index.php?haupt=information&unter=sitemap) :o

A day is divided into a thousand 'beats', so one beat is ~26.4 seconds. Swatch time doesn't use time zones. See the link above.

Kizarvexis

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 03:52 AM
wedgebert: I know, I'm just trying to avoid the unpleasant truth... :D

Kizarvexis: But that's not metric either!

Kizarvexis
2003-Jul-08, 03:58 AM
wedgebert: I know, I'm just trying to avoid the unpleasant truth... :D

Kizarvexis: But that's not metric either!

Didn't say it was metric, just that you could use it instead of min, hrs and secs. :)

Kizarvexis
Good night see you tomorrow.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 04:01 AM
Well you've got me there!

wedgebert
2003-Jul-08, 04:07 AM
Ok, here's my metric time proposal.

First we have the second.

10 seconds = 1 minutes
10 minutes = 1 hour
10 hours = 1 day
10 days = 1 week
10 weeks = 1 month
10 months = 1 year

then it goes on like normal
10 years = 1 decade
10 decades = 1 century
10 centuries = 1 millenium
10 milleniua (sp/?) = 1 Great Books class.

Now all we gotta do is speed up the Earth's rotation to make the days the correct length of time, then slow down it's orbit to make the years right.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 04:09 AM
I take it you don't like the classics. :P

kilopi
2003-Jul-08, 04:24 AM
Ok, here's my metric time proposal.

First we have the second.

10 seconds = 1 minutes
10 minutes = 1 hour
10 hours = 1 day
10 days = 1 week
10 weeks = 1 month
10 months = 1 year

Somehow you've forgotten the metric prefixes, but that's OK. I told you that would happen.


Now all we gotta do is speed up the Earth's rotation to make the days the correct length of time, then slow down it's orbit to make the years right.
Dude, you'd speed up it's orbit! It'd be going around the sun seven or eight times faster than Mercury.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-08, 04:33 AM
I take it you don't like the classics. :P

A classic is something everyone wants to have read but noone wants to read.

I think my problem was that I don't take well to having stuff forced down my throat just because someone thinks it's important.

Take Shakespear. I think he was a hack, his stories are neither intresting nor well-written. The characters are pretty shallow, the stories drag on at many times and the plots are pretty shallow as well. I guess that was okay back then when there's wasn't much competition, but they haven't stood the test of time very well.

We never read books like the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings which are just as influential in today's culture as anything written hundreds of years ago. LotR is largely responsible for Dungeons and Dragons and all modern fantasy as we know it.

What about works my Heinlien? Or Verne? Their books are everybit as important as well. Arthur C Clarke is responsible for most of what we take for granted today (he invented the communications satellite).

And of course, I have to be biased and say what about the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan? That even surpassed the LotR for me and is my all-time fantasy series and I think destined to be a classic in the years to come :)

Basically the stuff are considered "classics" are important only because the people who make up the ciriculums here taught that they were important and since everyone is forced to learn them as "classics" they will remain classics for a long time to come. It's a never-ending cycle of doom.

Celestial Mechanic
2003-Jul-08, 04:46 AM
As I mentioned in another thread, there were two experiments with "metric time" during the French Revolution. In one of them, the day was divided into 20 hours of 100 minutes each with 100 seconds to the minute, keeping the hour roughly the same. The other divided the day into 100,000 seconds, thereby keeping the second roughly the same, so that each day had ten hours of 100 minutes and again 100 seconds to the minute. Laplace used these "centesimal seconds" in Mecanique Celeste.

They also experimented with a metric angular measure by dividing the right angle into 100 grads, and some of you might even have calculators that calculate trig functions using grads in addition to degrees and radians. This fit in very well with the meter being defined as one ten-millionth the length of a meridian from the pole to the equator, so that one grad was 100 kilometers.

Both of these faltered on the need to divide time and angular measure by divisors such as 3, 6, 8, etc.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 04:50 AM
Wedgebert: Shakespeare is fine, as long as you are watching a play, not reading it. It's like reading the script to a movie. It just doesn't work.

kilopi
2003-Jul-08, 04:59 AM
Shakespeare is fine, as long as you are watching a play, not reading it. It's like reading the script to a movie. It just doesn't work.
Works for me. The guy was awesome. But I like Heinlein too.

I can see how someone with ADD might not appreciate it so much.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:00 AM
Of course. I would never slight Heinlein.

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:20 AM
Don't take this wrong, I love the WoT series, but sometimes Jordan's writing is a little so-so. In some of the later novels in the series, I just skipped pages and pages to keep from falling asleep, it's like reading unabridged Victor Hugo or something (he talks A LOT about how Paris was in the 18th century and how different it is 15 years later and on and on...).
Plus, his books are practically a pastiche of Tolkein anyhow. His characters are developed better, but his plot is just an iteration of LoTR. There is nothing wrong with cribbing from Tolkein at all. Like I said, I like the Jordan books.

Back to Classics. There are some very interesting Classics. Beowulf, the Aurthurian Romances (esp. Chritien de Troyes), Ceasar's War Diaries, Arrian's Ars Tactica, the Chinese classics Romance of the Three Kingdoms, the Japanese Book of Five Rings, and many others. Most of them will give you a better understanding of the Fantasy and Sci-Fi that we all love so well. Tolkien was an voracious reader of many of the Northern European classics. A lot of the feeling of LoTR comes from that. Many of the customs of people in books like the Wheel of Time or Thieve's World are based on actual historical cultures. If you like fantasy and you ever want to see how the classics influence fantasy writers, read Morgan Llywelyn's book Druids, and then read Ceasar's War Diaries. Another good Fantasy series with solid backing in history is The King of Ys books by Poul and Karen Anderson.

Sorry to rant, and I hope no one takes offense. :D

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:23 AM
Of course not! *Secretly takes offense* :lol:

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:37 AM
Well, Canadians are allowed to take offense! :wink:

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:37 AM
Well okay then. *Overtly takes offense*

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:38 AM
I guess it's war then!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:40 AM
What? Why? Uh-oh. :o

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:43 AM
Truce?

(You cannot make another post so soon after your last; please try again in a short while.) heh!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:44 AM
Fine. Truce.

And just watch me post... hehehe... :P

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:45 AM
I could keep this up all night! Maybe I'll be a bad intern by tomorrow!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:46 AM
Could happen. I started today with 730 some odd posts. Whoops.

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:47 AM
Are we ruining these threads for everyone else?

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:49 AM
Nah, they can jump in any time they want. We won't stop them.

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:51 AM
They go to bed with a question and check the board first thing in the morning.

"Yeah! Three new pages of posts! I bet there is a lot of good stuff in here!"

-twenty minuites later...

Grumble, grumbe, "I'll never read TSC or Musashi's posts ever again!"

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:52 AM
Good point so, uh, how about that metric system, eh?

(Seriously though, we better stop :wink: )

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:54 AM
Metric system....

I have been using Lightwave to make 3D models and I am using the metric system even though ti would be much much easier for me to us the silly American system. I have to keep converting everything into meters and such. i am hoping that immersion will work for learning metric. I have three pages of conversions in front of me right now!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 05:56 AM
:o Well in some cases, mybe the American system is better. Like when it prevents 3 pages of conversions.

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 05:58 AM
Well, I am hoping that soon I will have an inherent understanding of metric sizes. Also, I have to find a metric tape measure! And the math practice is always good.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 06:01 AM
I was about to suggest a short trip across the border for a tape measure, but then I noticed Ca for your location. Long drive.

Anyway, good luck with your mathematics. (Ouch)

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 06:02 AM
Should've done it when I was visiting my brother in Seattle two weeks ago. Ah well, I can always order one.

As for the earlier inanities, at least they weren't puns!

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 06:04 AM
Wow, that would have been bad. I'll say it again. Ouch.

Musashi
2003-Jul-08, 06:05 AM
The hardest part is the fractional inches. Fraction to decimal to metric. I really don't need the extra steps. :-?

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 06:06 AM
Feel free to blame the French. They invented metric.

sarongsong
2003-Jul-08, 08:09 AM
wedgebert writes:

...Take Shakespear. I think he was a hack, his stories are neither intresting nor well-written. The characters are pretty shallow, the stories drag on at many times and the plots are pretty shallow as well. I guess that was okay back then when there's wasn't much competition, but they haven't stood the test of time very well...
21st century George W. Bush meets Willieboy's 16th century King Henry V http://www.uoregon.edu/~rbear/shake/hv.html

kucharek
2003-Jul-08, 08:16 AM
Feel free to blame the French. They invented metric.
And along with fries and kisses, it proves that not everything the French did was bad. Maybe the US government should call it "freedom meter", "freedom liter" and "freedom kilogram" - that may boost the metric system... ;-)

tracer
2003-Jul-08, 05:27 PM
Uh ... the French contribution to the invention of "French" Fries has been disputed (http://www.straightdope.com/mailbag/mfrenchfry.html). And as far as those rather sensuous kisses go, the French themselves refer to them as "English kisses" (and since chimps and bonobos have been observed doing them, they probably pre-date civilization).

And don't even get me started on the French horn, which is an Austrian instrument.

tracer
2003-Jul-08, 05:39 PM
The hardest part is the fractional inches. Fraction to decimal to metric. I really don't need the extra steps. :-?
I agree. If the initial measurements had been done in metric, none of these hairy conversions would have been necessary.

(And don't go telling me it's easier to measure something in inches + fractions of an inch than it is to measure something in centimeters or millimeters.)

David Hall
2003-Jul-08, 05:43 PM
Actually computers are based on the number 2. As machines evolved from punch cards to actual computers, they started needing more and more data to store the characters they wanted. Originally they just had room for the alphabet (A - Z, uppercase only), the digits 0 - 9 and the + and - symbols. This is why old telegraphs say "blah blah STOP yadda yadda yadda STOP", there was no period.

Uh, correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the telegraph preceded the computer by some 75 years or so. In Morse code, the full stop signal is the period.

Morse code (http://www.outfo.org/science/telecommunication/morse_code/alphanumeric/)

informant
2003-Jul-08, 06:39 PM
Uh ... the French contribution to the invention of "French" Fries has been disputed (http://www.straightdope.com/mailbag/mfrenchfry.html). And as far as those rather sensuous kisses go, the French themselves refer to them as "English kisses"

Yummy link. :) Are you sure about "English kisses", though?

wedgebert
2003-Jul-08, 07:43 PM
Actually computers are based on the number 2. As machines evolved from punch cards to actual computers, they started needing more and more data to store the characters they wanted. Originally they just had room for the alphabet (A - Z, uppercase only), the digits 0 - 9 and the + and - symbols. This is why old telegraphs say "blah blah STOP yadda yadda yadda STOP", there was no period.

Uh, correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe the telegraph preceded the computer by some 75 years or so. In Morse code, the full stop signal is the period.

Morse code (http://www.outfo.org/science/telecommunication/morse_code/alphanumeric/)

I'm sorry, I meant to say telegrams. When they printed the telegrams out, the machines didn't have any special characters other than + and - so they used STOP.

The Supreme Canuck
2003-Jul-08, 08:10 PM
informant: Yup, they call'em English Kisses. *Verified!*

tracer
2003-Jul-08, 10:47 PM
I'm sorry, I meant to say telegrams. When they printed the telegrams out, the machines didn't have any special characters other than + and - so they used STOP.
I doubt that. All the old movies that show people reading telegrams show the word as =STOP=, with equals signs on both sides.

CthulhuBob
2003-Jul-08, 10:54 PM
Just to interrupt you two for a minute :lol: . Musashi you forgot about Sun Tzu's Art of War, Plato's Republic, Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, Beowulf, and of course my favourite.... Ren n' Stimpy :) . But seriously, the first 4 books have had a profound affect on modern warfare and diplomacy, utopian ideals, Apocalypse Now, and LotR/modern fantasy respectively. And Shakespeare is fascinating when well acted, after all without Sir Ian McKellan we wouldn't have Gandalf or Magneto on the big screen. :)

wedgebert
2003-Jul-09, 12:27 AM
I didn't care much for Beowulf either. And I still disagree about Shakespeare. Even in when well-acted (like Mel Gibson's version of Hamlet), I still find it lacking.

I don't see them discussing Sun Tzu much in school, nor Republic. Anything that smacks of politics, warfare or anything even remotely offensive tends to be banned because students might learn, uh I mean be offended.

Musashi
2003-Jul-09, 02:45 AM
CthuluBob, I totally agree. My list was not meant to be exhaustive, or it would've been ten times longer! :D By the way, nice name. Lovecraft was one of the first horror/fantasy/sci-fi authors I ever read.

wedgebert, it's ok if you don't like Beowulf, not everyone has good taste! :D :wink: Seriously though, I agree that schools do no teach the good stuff, but I think, in a way, that makes it better. Instead of frocing people to erad it and making them hate, they let people come to those books on their own terms.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-09, 03:23 AM
I think the best solution would be to compile a huge list of books (thousands) from varying time periods, genres, and whatnot. Then instead of forcing students to suffer though Withering Heights or Canterbury Tales, let them choose what they want to read and study.

I remember in my senior year of HS, we had to read both Withering Heights and the Canterbury Tales. I think I read about 20 pages of WH (so boring) and most of the CT. A few of the CTs weren't bad, but not something I would have read on my own (and still won't). We even had to write our own Tale. We had to choose a person and they had to be going somewhere, just like Chaucer's.

Well, in protest I took the assignment literally. While most people chose historical or famous people/stereotypes and had them going to pretty obvious places, I chose a modern day high school senior who was "on her way" to a nervious breakdown because her teacher was making her write her own Canterbury Tale. Despite it being totally comedic in nature, I got an A. The teacher even chose two peoples' tales to read aloud. He didn't give out the names of the authors but did hand them back right after reading them, pretty obvious who's was whom's.

Anyways, my point, was...uh...oh yeah. If you're going to force students to read books/poems and then do reports on them (something I don't much see the point in), at least let them choose their subject matter so that they're more interested.

Musashi
2003-Jul-09, 03:34 AM
Sounds like a good system to me.

My junior or senior year of high school English was a little heavy on the Emily Dickenson. Nothing wrong with her, but it was obvious that they had sacrificed other, better poetry in an attempt to make up for the years of oppresion. There were probably 20 Dickensen poems compared to 1 or 2 each of Whitman, Frost, and other 'classics.' There was nothing from Poe.

Ugh, the Bronte sisters... I feel your pain there. There are many "classic" literature pieces that I leave on the shelves, and that kind of book falls in the 'no thanks' catergory for me too.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-09, 03:37 AM
Now if only someone would listen to my rants :( It's too late for me, but think of the children. Won't somebody please think of the children?!?

Too bad the "poor astronomy in schools" thread is dying. I had just managed to slip some computer gaming remarks in my rants :)

Musashi
2003-Jul-09, 03:45 AM
Well, I'll go check it out.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-09, 03:56 AM
Speaking of rants, you're not the same Musashi as the one at Musashi's Cheesy Website (http://mu.ranter.net) are you?

Musashi
2003-Jul-09, 04:01 AM
Nope, not me. Interesting site though.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-09, 04:05 AM
Yeah, the Ultima Online and Asheron's Call Chronicles are quite amusing, especially if you've played the games. The general rants on how people are stupid are great also.

And it has the best general "design document" for MMORPGs I've seen. I only wish some developers would pay it more attention.

Musashi
2003-Jul-09, 04:08 AM
I'll check it out in more detail later. Especially the MMORPG part, I am currently designing a game and wonder if I should make it single player and small online (like NWN) or just go fullscale MMORPG.

I played UO when it was first commercially released, but I had a crappy connection at the time so I quit before the game actually got to annoying to me. I've watched people play AC and EQ, and while it looks fun, I don't have that kind of time to goof off anymore.

wedgebert
2003-Jul-09, 04:14 AM
There's always time to goof off. For example, I pretty much do my major posting (more than 2 posts an hour) while I'm at work.

And if you're developing a game, then playing other games is considered "research". I plan on being a game developer once I get outta college (darn 8 year plan) and get some experience.

Consequently, I'm currently doing LOTs of research.

Humphrey
2003-Jul-09, 04:28 AM
I have beta tested several MMORPG (Earth and Beyond, AC, Planetside, The Sims Online, and waiting for City of Heores). Planetside was the only one i actually liked and wanted to play. The rest gort very old, very, very fast.

PM me or ask in the game thread if you wan't to know my opinions on each.

Musashi
2003-Jul-09, 04:44 AM
Yeah, that's how I justify all my spending on hardware and anime, "I'm doing research!" Sadly, it is mostly a side project for me right now, so the going is slow.

captain swoop
2003-Jul-09, 03:15 PM
I didn't care much for Beowulf either. And I still disagree about Shakespeare. Even in when well-acted (like Mel Gibson's version of Hamlet), I still find it lacking.


I think the word I am looking for is


Bwaaaahahahahahahahah!

Mel Gibsons Hamlet?

Purleeeze!

Movie versions of Shakespeare are all poor, even Branaghs attempts.

As for metrication, what about UK 'Old Money'

4 farthings = 1 penny
12 pennies = shilling
20 shillings = pound

but also

2 shillings = florin
2 shillings and sixpence = half a crown
5 shillings = a crown (only issued to commemorate special events like coronations)

Hours would be spent in maths learning money tables

eg

12d
= 1/-

18d
= 1/6

24d
= 2/-

30d
= 2/6

36d
= 3/-

42d
= 3/6

48d
= 4/-

60d
= 5/-

72d
= 6/-

84d
= 7/-

96d
= 8/-

108d
= 9/-

120d
= 10/-

240d
= £1

20s
= £1

100d
= 8/4

Third of £1
= 6/8

Two thirds of £1
= 13/4

"If an egg cost thruppence ha'penny, then what does a dozen eggs cost?"

then there were the coins themselves.

farthing
half-penny (ha'penny)
penny
three penny (thruppence)
sixpence (tanner)
shilling (bob)
two shilling (florin)
half crown
10 shilling note
£1 note £5 note £10 note

Then there was, up until 1817 a coin called a Guinnea, worth £1 and 1s, (£1/1/-) Posh and 'superior' people always quoted prices in Guinneas rather than pounds up until recently and it meant that things were more expensive. Some horse races still have names like 'Thousand Guinneas.

In addition from 1817 to 1917, there was a gold pound coin called a sovereign and up until 1855 there was a Groat, worth 4 pennies.

With decimalisation a shilling became 5p so the old shilling and two shilling coins were left in circulation with the new coins of the same value being the same size. No more shillings, florins or half crowns. just pounds and pennies (called derisively 'new pee') All the old folk pretended they couldn't work out that they hadn't realy lost 140 pennies for every pound. Shopkeeprs tried to say that things that used to cost £1 should now be £2.50 because that was the same number of pennies (more or less).

CthulhuBob
2003-Jul-09, 06:21 PM
I really have to check the threads more diligently :oops: . In reply to teaching the classics in school by letting the students choose...welll. The problem there is simple human nature. Any high school student worth his salt would pick the thinnest books to read. I can see a lot of kids picking Marx's Communist Manifesto because its only around 100 pages long. And in the States I don't think that would fly very well with most school boards of local govs :) . And as a sidenote I read all those books I listed in university not high school. Catcher in the Rye, Julius Caesar, and 1984 were the only classics I read in HS that I can remember. And being in Canada we dont ban books (unless you live in Surrey) for being non-PC because our school boards realize there is such a thing as "historical context". And back to metric for a moment, I was in elementary when they changed over here in Canada and since I've grown up with both I guess I'm lucky because conversion is second nature. I guess what I'm saying is the US school system should teach both to small children when they still have malleable minds and neural pathways are still being burnt in. That way when they eventually change over the reaction would be more like:
"Oh? We arent already metric?" rather than the panic that seems to ensue now;
"It's the 7th sign of the Apocalypse! RUN! FLEE AHHHH!" :lol:

sarongsong
2003-Jul-09, 06:22 PM
captain swoop wrote:

...Movie versions of Shakespeare are all poor, even Branaghs attempts...
Including "Much Ado About Nothing"? Really enjoyed the sharp word-play in that one.

As for metrication, what about UK 'Old Money' ...
What a nightmare---will England ever go to the euro, and is it "metrified", too?

wedgebert
2003-Jul-09, 06:52 PM
I really have to check the threads more diligently :oops: . In reply to teaching the classics in school by letting the students choose...welll. The problem there is simple human nature. Any high school student worth his salt would pick the thinnest books to read. I can see a lot of kids picking Marx's Communist Manifesto because its only around 100 pages long. And in the States I don't think that would fly very well with most school boards of local govs :) . And as a sidenote I read all those books I listed in university not high school. Catcher in the Rye, Julius Caesar, and 1984 were the only classics I read in HS that I can remember. And being in Canada we dont ban books (unless you live in Surrey) for being non-PC because our school boards realize there is such a thing as "historical context". And back to metric for a moment, I was in elementary when they changed over here in Canada and since I've grown up with both I guess I'm lucky because conversion is second nature. I guess what I'm saying is the US school system should teach both to small children when they still have malleable minds and neural pathways are still being burnt in. That way when they eventually change over the reaction would be more like:
"Oh? We arent already metric?" rather than the panic that seems to ensue now;
"It's the 7th sign of the Apocalypse! RUN! FLEE AHHHH!" :lol:

Well, that's why you have a list they can choose from. If you don't want them reading a 100 page book, don't put it on there.

However, from personal experience, choosing short books can backfire. In my senior english class we had to choose a major british author, read 3 or so books by that author and do a a long comphrensive paper about the books (characters, plot, writing style, etc).

Well, I was thrilled to notice that Douglas Adams was on the list, and I got the second pick for authors (can't do the same one as someone else). So I got to read the Hitchhiker's series (which I'd read before) and claim it was homework.

Well, those books are pretty short, and it turns out that comedy, especially ones that are illogical as Hitchhiker's aren't the best books to pick. It's hard to ** your way though a paper when your subject matter is ** also :)

Musashi
2003-Jul-09, 06:56 PM
You could give each of the books a difficulty rating, like they do in diving (and other olympic events). That way, those that choose more difficult books get rewarded, while those that choose the simplist of books have their grade capped at a C or something.

CthulhuBob
2003-Jul-09, 07:01 PM
You could give each of the books a difficulty rating, like they do in diving (and other olympic events). That way, those that choose more difficult books get rewarded, while those that choose the simplist of books have their grade capped at a C or something.

Good call! And anyone who picks The Brothers Karamazov gets an F and and an A. The F for being insane and the A for picking such a damn boring difficult book :) . BTW, that was the only book ever assigned to me in HS or university that I never finished, ended up watching the Yul Brynner movie and trying to write a report based on that and a 1/3 of the book :( .

informant
2003-Jul-09, 07:32 PM
captain swoop wrote:

...Movie versions of Shakespeare are all poor, even Branaghs attempts...
Including "Much Ado About Nothing"? Really enjoyed the sharp word-play in that one.

I have to say that I enjoyed that one too.

Glom
2003-Jul-09, 07:43 PM
What a nightmare---will England ever go to the euro, and is it "metrified", too?

According to Gordon Brown, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, we've failed the five economic tests, hence we have decided not to join at this time.

captain swoop
2003-Jul-10, 08:14 AM
What a nightmare---will England ever go to the euro, and is it "metrified", too?

According to Gordon Brown, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, we've failed the five economic tests, hence we have decided not to join at this time.

The tests being

1. Will we win a referendum


2. erm... that's it.