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Old October 25th, 2013, 07:24 PM   #22661
g.spinoza
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So? Why does it matter to you all? Why does it matter, period?
It's just... cute. Like all those BlackBerry fans, using an OS nobody else does.

Speaking for real, it IS a problem when it causes billion dollars worth of damage (yesm, like the famous space probe). Just because 1/20th of mankind is still clinging to a different system...
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Old October 25th, 2013, 08:09 PM   #22662
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Have you ever seen motorbike's hearse?

huge crop
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Old October 25th, 2013, 08:48 PM   #22663
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Originally Posted by g.spinoza View Post
It's just... cute. Like all those BlackBerry fans, using an OS nobody else does.

Speaking for real, it IS a problem when it causes billion dollars worth of damage (yesm, like the famous space probe). Just because 1/20th of mankind is still clinging to a different system...
And the cost of conversion would be...?

And we all cling to multiple languages too. (Which, it should be clear by now to those of you who've paid attention to my posts, is absolutely fine to me. In fact, I like it. But I'm always a bit bemused by people who are bothered by a second measurement system, or Britain's insistence on driving on the "wrong" side of the road or "clinging" to its own currency but who've had no problem taking on English as their own language. I'd think that mastering a second measurement system, or enough of it to get by, would be much easier than mastering a second language.)
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Old October 25th, 2013, 09:35 PM   #22664
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The only rational reason I could think is: since in sciences the SI is the only standard, and since all scientific research today is produced in an international context, having kids grow up without SI and then having them to learn it as teenagers, or adults, during specialized education, can be a problem for US scientific research.

It's like having to speak a language you were not raised with: you may even become fluent, but you'll never use it naturally smooth as yours. But while even a mediocre speaker can be understood by others, being not 100% smooth with numbers can be a serious hindrance to process informations in your own head.

Then, some people may have no problems at all and feel very natural with SI, but not having all kids grow up with it feels like a potential handicap, IMHO.


On a different topic: today was pretty hot here but with high humidity, and I was in Venice with fog (so, incredibly wet). But I had satisfaction with my work, then I enjoyed a great fish lunch with a friend, and overall I have to say that this city has a very nice urban atmosphere to live in, something which has nothing to do with the "artistic" fascination that attacts tourists.

Many people think this is a sort of open air museum, and for sure it's a city not easy to live in, but it is a very lively and truthful place. Venice has a great urban soul!
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Old October 25th, 2013, 09:50 PM   #22665
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Old October 25th, 2013, 10:15 PM   #22666
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You all* are going onto Winter Time this weekend!

*Note assumption that everyone except me is in Europe....
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Old October 25th, 2013, 10:32 PM   #22667
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You all* are going onto Winter Time this weekend!

*Note assumption that everyone except me is in Europe....
and will have 25 hrs day
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Old October 25th, 2013, 10:34 PM   #22668
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ONE 25-hour day, then the sun setting while you're still at work. (I hate November. Rather have cold than gloom....)
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Old October 26th, 2013, 01:36 AM   #22669
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Old October 26th, 2013, 12:59 PM   #22670
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And the cost of conversion would be...?
A one-timer. Instead of converting every time American goods go abroad, or vice versa, which is costlier in the long run.
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Old October 26th, 2013, 01:44 PM   #22671
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A one-timer. Instead of converting every time American goods go abroad, or vice versa, which is costlier in the long run.
Most of current appliances has both systems included. I have recently experieced a small heart attack due to this. A handyman came to my apartment to do a regular check of my gas boiler. There is a display on it indicating the current temperature of heating water. The boiler is quite intelligent device so if I set the inner temperature to 23°C, it calculates the heating water according the curves representing the complex mathematical functions based on inner and outer air temperature. The range is usually from 25°C to 75°C.

Handymen did the check and everything was all right. Next morning I just got up and somehow it stroke me to check the boiler. I opened the doors and see the display showing the temperature of heating water at 150°C (it shows only number, not units). I almost pissed my pants since I thought the device got broken and might be damaged. I called the handyman who promised me to come back to repair it, but meanwhile I figure out he probably accidentally changed the temperature units from Celsius to Fahrenheit. I set it back and the display showing water temperature was back at 65°C what is completely normal. Then I called off the handyman, who was laughing a lot.
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Old October 26th, 2013, 03:19 PM   #22672
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Americans will mostly convert to the metric system anyway over time, it's not a matter of IF, it's a matter of WHEN. It won't be a sudden conversion but rather a smooth transition.

I don't really have a problem with Americans using the imperial measurements but a huge pet peeve of mine is when people mess with the units or misuse them. One of the most blatant examples is the calorie. The unit which the Americans use to describe nutrition is actually a kilocalorie i.e. a thousand times bigger than a calorie.

But this isn't just about the Americans, even people who are used to the metric system often mess up. Just a few examples:

1) Using the word 'kilo' to refer to a 'kilogram'.
2) Using (kilo/mega/giga)watts to describe the amount of energy.
3) Using kph instead of km/h.
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Old October 26th, 2013, 04:08 PM   #22673
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4) long scale and short scale names of numbers.

Eg.
Million - million
Milliard - billion
Billion - trillion
Billiard - quadrillion
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Old October 26th, 2013, 04:43 PM   #22674
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A one-timer. Instead of converting every time American goods go abroad, or vice versa, which is costlier in the long run.
All those road signs...? (There was an article in the [British] Daily Telegraph a few months before the London Olympics where some idiot in the House of Lords thought that Britain ought to - as a gesture of welcome to all those visitors - completely convert to metric in time for the games. I had a vision of him tramping around the country personally with a ladder and a bucket of paint.)

Converting what every time American goods go abroad? Are you talking about consumer goods? Most are labeled in both systems. The only issue would be that some people would be bothered by seeing the second system, but that's their problem. And they'd need to be adjusted to different languages, different countries' labeling requirements*, anyway. As probably happens even within Europe, the uniformity-fetishists in Brussels notwithstanding.

*I'm thinking of the nutrition labels on food here.
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Old October 26th, 2013, 04:44 PM   #22675
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4) long scale and short scale names of numbers.

Eg.
Million - million
Milliard - billion
Billion - trillion
Billiard - quadrillion
Now what?
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Old October 26th, 2013, 05:41 PM   #22676
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Penn's, why all this hatred? I personally don't give squat about the units you Americans use. You can use the length of Yogi Bear's pinky, for what I care.

It's just curious how some people are attached to something with no affective value. It's just a system. Everybody else using another system, so why make things complicated for no reason? I'm not talking about killing every first born, just switching to another system of measure. Why? Are you afraid someone will rule over you after you go metric? Do you fear you will be invaded, when signs in USA will show the distance to DC in a way your invaders can understand? Please, tell me, I'm really curious.
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Old October 26th, 2013, 06:15 PM   #22677
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I do not know how it works in USA, but I know about Britain. Indigenous people of Britain get all imperial measurements/scales (or whatever it's called) during breast feeding and it happens simultaneously to a first word learnt. And believe me or not, they are not harmed by that. For them it's a a very natural process just as to Continental Europeans learning metrics.

I spend plenty of time in the UK and even though I can't imagine what 34 feet in distance is (I must convert) I respect my British interlocutor and always use stones, yards and pounds not caring which system is better or worse. Moreover, I thank god (does he/she really exist?) for letting them remain different, even if it might have been less efficient.
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Old October 26th, 2013, 06:21 PM   #22678
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Penn's, why all this hatred? I personally don't give squat about the units you Americans use. You can use the length of Yogi Bear's pinky, for what I care.

It's just curious how some people are attached to something with no affective value. It's just a system. Everybody else using another system, so why make things complicated for no reason? I'm not talking about killing every first born, just switching to another system of measure. Why? Are you afraid someone will rule over you after you go metric? Do you fear you will be invaded, when signs in USA will show the distance to DC in a way your invaders can understand? Please, tell me, I'm really curious.
"Hatred"? Where do you see hatred? All I did was disagree with you. Get a grip.

And yes, it's just a system. But from my point of view (I do have a right to a point of view, right?), the question becomes why does it matter to you which one we use?
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Old October 26th, 2013, 06:27 PM   #22679
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I do not know how it works in USA, but I know about Britain. Indigenous people of Britain get all imperial measurements/scales (or whatever it's called) during breast feeding and it happens simultaneously to a first word learnt. And believe me or not, they are not harmed by that. For them it's a a very natural process just as to Continental Europeans learning metrics.

I spend plenty of time in the UK and even though I can't imagine what 34 feet in distance is (I must convert) I respect my British interlocutor and always use stones, yards and pounds not caring which system is better or worse. Moreover, I thank god (does he/she really exist?) for letting them remain different, even if it might have been less efficient.
And that's part of it. It's built into the language. Expressions like "give them an inch, they'll take a mile" will need to be explained to future generations of Canadians and Australians (or would be, except that apparently they're still learning the old measures unofficially). I don't believe in change for its own sake, or uniformity for its own sake. If using traditional measures, or "old" currencies, or driving on the left, inconveniences continentals (and, in the last case, Americans), so what? I have no trouble switching to metric (which we do learn) when I cross the border. If differences like this bother you that much, don't travel.

And I sure as hell wouldn't want to be a politician who votes to go to the expense of changing every speed limit sign in the U.S. in the current economic climate or the foreseeable future, so I wouldn't hold my breath on that one.

And this comes up once a month or so around here, but it's "hatred" to find it irritating....
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Old October 26th, 2013, 06:30 PM   #22680
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And this comes up once a month or so around here, but it's "hatred" to find it irritating....
And I'm not even a part of it this time. I must be getting old.
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