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carstenb 10-11-2015 13:01

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ribbit (Post 1958963)
I wasn't bothered either way (metric vs imperial, other than considering that metric was far from a panacea, and am aware that it can be positively dangerous to rely on it in many applications - and not just in heavy engineering either) until I went I went back to College again a few years back. There were two others of my generation on the IT Course I was doing, and we all came to the conclusion that metric has been nothing but an absolute disaster, for the maths capabilities of what are otherwise, extremely bright youngsters. It would appear that metric is far too easy, and doesn't help young minds to develop properly with maths, because it doesn't stretch them. I can't imagine people taught in metric, being able to do long division, like I was at the age of 5 for example (in my rural village school, all my fellow 5 year olds were also doing long division)

For background, each of us three had been outside of Education, for 30 years plus. So very, very rusty, and frankly, none of us should have been able to compete with the youngsters that hadn't left Education, as a result. None of us three were maths 'geniuses' when at school or at College/Uni from school.

Now the best insight into the differences between us, was the maths testing that comprised 10 x 2 hours exams, prior to even starting the Java programming Course.

These 10 exams ranged from simple, starter maths, to Scientific. Like the other two of my generation, I had finished the first test 'twice' within 3 minutes. Finished and checked once.

Almost all of the youngsters were still scribbling away, at the end of the two hour period. The lecturer told us if we were finished and happy with what we had done, with future tests we could hand our papers in and leave the exam room at any time.

Most of the rest of the tests, the three of us were finished in under 5 minutes and exiting the room, and most of the youngsters were leaving the exam room at the end of the two hours.

The last exam took under 12 minutes for the three of us. The final results, out of a maximum of 1,000 (10 tests at 100 marks per test), we each got 999/1,000. We dropped a point because we forgot that even if requested NOT to put down your method in the question, you always put down your method (we each gave correct answers otherwise). None of the youngsters came remotely close to us, the best had just under 900/1,000.

Now I cannot emphasise strongly enough, how bright these youngsters were, and what an absolute privilege it was to be on a Course with them.

But the three of us were absolutely disgusted at how badly Education is letting them down (and this is now true across the whole of the EU, and pretty much the rest of the World, because the same techniques and format are being used, from school entry, with the exact same Higher Education Courses, pretty much World wide).

The youngsters deserve far, far better, and to me we need to go back to pre-WW1 Education principles and standards (Education was already proving to be on the wrong Course by the late 1920's, because Buckminster Fuller was already noticing a substantial drop in standards by then, and he was railing about it in one of his books - and things have become much, much worse, since then).

So for the benefit of the kids, I think we should have the two systems side by side, but especially during the school years, and in Society at large, priority should be given to Imperial.

12d to the shilling, 20 shillings to the £; 16ozs to the pound, 112lb to the cwt, 20 cwt to the ton; 3ft to the yd, 1,760 yds to the mile; pints, gallons, etc., are a maths education all on their own, and NOBODY used to struggle to work out change at a cash register, and NOBODY was in the position of not knowing the answer on a pocket calculator wasn't 'ballpark', until we went metric.

The lie sold to us was that computers needed metric, when the reality is, they don't.

We need to undo this inexcusable mess we have created, otherwise I tell you this, we are now getting in the position of being unable to do anything at all, with the loss of expertise, we are presently experiencing (Worldwide). There are no free lunches with this, and the final bill could well turn out to be one we find that is unpayable.

This isn't the fault of the metric system, this is the fault of pocket calcualtors and excel spreadsheets.

No does arithmetic in their heads anymore because they don't need to. Even cash registers at stores tell the clerks what to give as change.

alctel 10-11-2015 13:07

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
I am finding incredibly difficult to find metric drill bits of any kind, let alone the colbalt and hole saws I need in Canada. It's driving me up the wall.

I'm trying to build a wind vane and all the measurements are in metric.

hellosailor 10-11-2015 13:34

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
"and the US itself has two definitions of what a "feet" is "
Uh-huh, sure we do. And somehow, after all these years, I've only found one definition and our National Bureau of Standards seems to have missed the same memo.
By all means, please, tell us all what "feet" is.


As to an engineering firm "commonly" making one or two decimal point mistakes in their renderings...that would be a tremendous liability issue and reason to terminate the contract unless some quality control group was brought in to assume the liability.


Or perhaps, some optometrists and a drug testing lab.

AnglaisInHull 10-11-2015 13:49

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by carstenb (Post 1959103)
This isn't the fault of the metric system, this is the fault of pocket calcualtors and excel spreadsheets.

No does arithmetic in their heads anymore because they don't need to. Even cash registers at stores tell the clerks what to give as change.

Even though I told myself I wouldn't, I'm going to have to weigh in again with my own observations:

When I started in engineering, we did our calculations with slide rules (remember those?) which, for those who don't know, give you the numbers but no decimal place. This forces you to do an estimate before calculation so that you know if you're looking for an answer that is, for example, "about 200" or about "2 million". You then do the calculation and place the point accordingly.

A few years later when I was marking engineering assignments, I saw students giving answers that were off by orders of magnitude, because they were no longer required to take that first step of understanding what answer is expected. The would just write down what the calculator gave them without thinking about it.

So, I don't believe one system is inherently more intuitive than the other, just that it's important regardless of which you're using to understand the problem and expected result before diving in.

hellosailor 10-11-2015 13:59

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
I also remembered my slide rule, but suspect that kind of decimal error to be rare these days. Oh wait, perhaps North Korean Hackers are distributing a "randomly move the decimal point" in bootleg spreadsheet software?(VBG)


My physics professor used to yell at me for providing four decimal places on answers, insisting the slide rule was only good for three with interpolation. I said no, if you used the inverted scales and just kept going, you only had to interpolate once, at the very end, and that made the extra digit very simple to carry. He left me alone after that.


But then again, we didn't have any North Koreans in the class. Or Chinese communists, Iraqi's, or ISIS.


Debugging a slide rule usually just required a screwdriver.

Neeltje 10-11-2015 14:15

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
[QUOTE=Ribbit;1958963]I wasn't bothered either way (metric vs imperial, other than considering that metric was far from a panacea, and am aware that it can be positively dangerous to rely on it in many applications - and not just in heavy engineering either) until I went I went back to College again a few years back. There were two others of my generation on the IT Course I was doing, and we all came to the conclusion that metric has been nothing but an absolute disaster, for the maths capabilities of what are otherwise, extremely bright youngsters. It would appear that metric is far too easy, and doesn't help young minds to develop properly with maths, because it doesn't stretch them. I can't imagine people taught in metric, being able to do long division, like I was at the age of 5 for example (in my rural village school, all my fellow 5 year olds were also doing long division)

Neeltje 10-11-2015 14:20

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ribbit (Post 1958963)
I wasn't bothered either way (metric vs imperial, other than considering that metric was far from a panacea, and am aware that it can be positively dangerous to rely on it in many applications - and not just in heavy engineering either) until I went I went back to College again a few years back. There were two others of my generation on the IT Course I was doing, and we all came to the conclusion that metric has been nothing but an absolute disaster, for the maths capabilities of what are otherwise, extremely bright youngsters. It would appear that metric is far too easy, and doesn't help young minds to develop properly with maths, because it doesn't stretch them. I can't imagine people taught in metric, being able to do long division, like I was at the age of 5 for example (in my rural village school, all my fellow 5 year olds were also doing long division)

For background, each of us three had been outside of Education, for 30 years plus. So very, very rusty, and frankly, none of us should have been able to compete with the youngsters that hadn't left Education, as a result. None of us three were maths 'geniuses' when at school or at College/Uni from school.

Now the best insight into the differences between us, was the maths testing that comprised 10 x 2 hours exams, prior to even starting the Java programming Course.

These 10 exams ranged from simple, starter maths, to Scientific. Like the other two of my generation, I had finished the first test 'twice' within 3 minutes. Finished and checked once.

Almost all of the youngsters were still scribbling away, at the end of the two hour period. The lecturer told us if we were finished and happy with what we had done, with future tests we could hand our papers in and leave the exam room at any time.

Most of the rest of the tests, the three of us were finished in under 5 minutes and exiting the room, and most of the youngsters were leaving the exam room at the end of the two hours.

The last exam took under 12 minutes for the three of us. The final results, out of a maximum of 1,000 (10 tests at 100 marks per test), we each got 999/1,000. We dropped a point because we forgot that even if requested NOT to put down your method in the question, you always put down your method (we each gave correct answers otherwise). None of the youngsters came remotely close to us, the best had just under 900/1,000.

Now I cannot emphasise strongly enough, how bright these youngsters were, and what an absolute privilege it was to be on a Course with them.

But the three of us were absolutely disgusted at how badly Education is letting them down (and this is now true across the whole of the EU, and pretty much the rest of the World, because the same techniques and format are being used, from school entry, with the exact same Higher Education Courses, pretty much World wide).

The youngsters deserve far, far better, and to me we need to go back to pre-WW1 Education principles and standards (Education was already proving to be on the wrong Course by the late 1920's, because Buckminster Fuller was already noticing a substantial drop in standards by then, and he was railing about it in one of his books - and things have become much, much worse, since then).

So for the benefit of the kids, I think we should have the two systems side by side, but especially during the school years, and in Society at large, priority should be given to Imperial.

12d to the shilling, 20 shillings to the £; 16ozs to the pound, 112lb to the cwt, 20 cwt to the ton; 3ft to the yd, 1,760 yds to the mile; pints, gallons, etc., are a maths education all on their own, and NOBODY used to struggle to work out change at a cash register, and NOBODY was in the position of not knowing the answer on a pocket calculator wasn't 'ballpark', until we went metric.

The lie sold to us was that computers needed metric, when the reality is, they don't.

We need to undo this inexcusable mess we have created, otherwise I tell you this, we are now getting in the position of being unable to do anything at all, with the loss of expertise, we are presently experiencing (Worldwide). There are no free lunches with this, and the final bill could well turn out to be one we find that is unpayable.


Sorry Ribbit, but that's the biggest crock of **** I've seen to date.

Jacques

StuM 10-11-2015 14:47

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1958799)
No a meter is not the length of your stride (unless you are like 7' tall). I'm also a civil engineer and pace off distances. When pacing, I use an exagerated stride and it's only 3' and I'm 6'2".

The mile is defined as thousand paces (left foot, right foot). That was the original definition (again based on the human body). The Romans found that stride is around 2.64'. Not even close to the meter which is 3.28'. That's a 25% error.

Back when I was in the military (many years ago), the standard "pace" was 30 inches (0.762 m).

Sailor Doug 10-11-2015 16:33

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
What about the nautical mile, gold standard for navigation.
US auto makers have designed in metric for a long time.
One meter = 39 3/8 inches exactly.


Sent from my iPad using Cruisers Sailing Forum

StuM 10-11-2015 17:08

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sailor Doug (Post 1959325)
What about the nautical mile, gold standard for navigation.
US auto makers have designed in metric for a long time.
One meter = 39 3/8 inches exactly.


Sent from my iPad using Cruisers Sailing Forum

Incorrect.

One meter = 39.3701 inches
39 3/8 = 39.375 inches.
So one meter = 39 3/8 inches to the nearest ten thou. (Or to four significant figures)

Sailor Doug 10-11-2015 17:27

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
You are right too many years of over engineering. My boats is 0.0541376 inches longer than I thought, that is almost a sixteenth of a inch.


Sent from my iPad using Cruisers Sailing Forum

StuM 10-11-2015 18:19

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
On average, Mars is 225 million KM from the Earth. That little discrepancy between 39.3701 and 39.375 will mean that NASA's next landing craft will be 28,000 km out when it thinks it is touching down if they take you at your word :biggrin:

But then, they would never make mistakes with mixing up units would they
CNN - Metric mishap caused loss of NASA orbiter - September 30, 1999

:biggrin:

Sailor Doug 10-11-2015 18:28

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Or a Hubble mirror.



Sent from my iPad using Cruisers Sailing Forum

carstenb 11-11-2015 00:13

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by hellosailor (Post 1959171)
I also remembered my slide rule, but suspect that kind of decimal error to be rare these days. Oh wait, perhaps North Korean Hackers are distributing a "randomly move the decimal point" in bootleg spreadsheet software?(VBG)


My physics professor used to yell at me for providing four decimal places on answers, insisting the slide rule was only good for three with interpolation. I said no, if you used the inverted scales and just kept going, you only had to interpolate once, at the very end, and that made the extra digit very simple to carry. He left me alone after that.


But then again, we didn't have any North Koreans in the class. Or Chinese communists, Iraqi's, or ISIS.


Debugging a slide rule usually just required a screwdriver.


The issue for most is that they simply have stopped doing math in their heads and therefore don't recognize an order of magnitude difference.

Some years ago, when I was still active in the work environment, new employees in my finance department (including those with MBA in accounting) were amazed when I would look an income statement or balance sheet for one of our businesses and say:

"Something is wrong in there - those numbers aren't right. You've either got an order of mangitude error or you've got a minus instead of a plus somewhere".

A few of them actually argued that I didn't know what I was talking about (not in those words - I was the boss:biggrin:). Usually the problem was that they were so used to using their calculator or Excel that they simply trusted the results. A keypunching error didn't register. And because they never did math in their heads - they didn't "see" that the answer simply couldn't be right.

Try this experiment next time you go to the supermarket. When you pay with cash, wait until the clerk has keyed in that you are paying, say, a total of $38.45 with a $50 dollar bill. Then say, "Oh wait, I happen to have the 45 cents here"

This will perplex a lot of clerks who are unable to simply add the 45 cents to the "total change - $11.55" showed on the cash register and give you back $12.

They just can't do simple math in their heads.


Another rant from an ancient dinosaur (as my daughters tell me):peace:

valhalla360 11-11-2015 01:43

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by hellosailor (Post 1959144)
"and the US itself has two definitions of what a "feet" is "
Uh-huh, sure we do. And somehow, after all these years, I've only found one definition and our National Bureau of Standards seems to have missed the same memo.
By all means, please, tell us all what "feet" is.


As to an engineering firm "commonly" making one or two decimal point mistakes in their renderings...that would be a tremendous liability issue and reason to terminate the contract unless some quality control group was brought in to assume the liability.


Or perhaps, some optometrists and a drug testing lab.

I'm not sure what other "feet" he is refering to.

As far as the engineering firm. If it was our decision, they would be gone but our role in the project is to review thier work and advise the client. We've made it very clear to the client and so far the client has not choosen to follow our advice (we are keeping a paper trail in case something does slip by us).

The frequent part is an issue that shouldn't happen but an occasional slip of the decimal point is very easy to have happen.

valhalla360 11-11-2015 01:46

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by StuM (Post 1959223)
Back when I was in the military (many years ago), the standard "pace" was 30 inches (0.762 m).

2.5' or pretty close to what the Romans found 2000+ yrs ago when their military developed the "mile" 2.64'.

Oddly, I would have thought the pace would have grown by an inch or two since we are always told people were shorter back then.

Regardless, it's no where close to 3.28'

valhalla360 11-11-2015 01:51

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sailor Doug (Post 1959325)
What about the nautical mile, gold standard for navigation.



Sent from my iPad using Cruisers Sailing Forum

The nautical mile was an attempt to correlate miles to degrees of latitude. I believe the original definition was 1 min of latitude.

Since most people can't walk on water, the length of a pace didn't have much intuitive use for navigation but since charts usually show latitude and longitude, a distance that correlates to one of those is very intuitive for a navigator.

valhalla360 11-11-2015 02:06

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
There is one metric unit that wins out on the intuitive side.

Temperature.

I don't see anything intuitive to F:
- Room temp = 72
- Body temp = 98.6 (come on you could adjust it to 100 even?)
- Water freezes at 32.
- 100F is hot but so is 95 or a 105.
- Water boils at 212 (again, couldn't round it 200 when setting up the scale?)

If I remember correctly, 0F was the coldest temperature he could produce reliably but obviously it's not the coldest.

Of course that leaves the debate between C and K. In a purist sense, K makes more sense as absolute zero is not dependent on a particular material as a frame of reference but in an intuitive sense C makes more sense for normal use as it's largely based on the properties of water and we live in a water intensive world.

StuM 11-11-2015 03:26

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1959595)
2.5' or pretty close to what the Romans found 2000+ yrs ago when their military developed the "mile" 2.64'.

Oddly, I would have thought the pace would have grown by an inch or two since we are always told people were shorter back then.

Regardless, it's no where close to 3.28'

:danger: Nerdish obsessive fact finding follows: :smile:

The military is slow to change traditions. The pace and marching formations etc are still the same as they were in the Crimea and possible quite a bit before that. A couple of hundred years ago, I'd guess the average sojer was still pretty small and scrawny :)

And it really still needs to be set to the normal stride of the shorter ones; it's easier and less tiring to "step short" than to "step long" :)

....

Just used a bit of Google ** and it seems my assumptions above were correct.
Romans: "Imperial regulations, though not entirely unambiguous, suggest that the minimum height for new recruits was five Roman feet, seven inches (165 cm., 5'5") ... for the army as a whole a reasonable estimate of a soldier's average height is around 170 cm (5'7")"
and

18th Century: "According to a study by economist John Komlos and Francesco Cinnirella, in the first half of the 18th century, the average height of an English male was 165 cm (5 ft 5 in), ...The estimated mean height of English, German, and Scottish soldiers was 163.6 cm – 165.9 cm (5 ft 4.4 in – 5 ft 5.3 in) for the period as a whole,""

So the average Roman soldier was actually a couple of inches taller than the 18th Century soldier - which may be why the pace went from the Roman 2.64' down to the current 2.5'


(I did warn you! :wink: )

sestina 11-11-2015 03:45

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
For someone like me that suffers from dyslexia and a dreadful set of maths teachers and 'progressive education techniques'. The advantages of operating in base 10 are tremendous.

I blame the Babylonians. 360 degrees in a circle, 24 hours in a day FFS!

K_V_B 11-11-2015 05:05

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1959593)
I'm not sure what other "feet" he is refering to.

The other foot is the "Survey foot". Before the adoption of the International Foot the exect definitions of Foot varied a bit. When the US adopted the International Foot they couldn't just go and redo the entire country's triangulation...

That the Foot has only been internationally normed for about half a century or so already tell as lot...

K_V_B 11-11-2015 05:09

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1958799)
No a meter is not the length of your stride (unless you are like 7' tall). I'm also a civil engineer and pace off distances. When pacing, I use an exagerated stride and it's only 3' and I'm 6'2".

The mile is defined as thousand paces (left foot, right foot). That was the original definition (again based on the human body). The Romans found that stride is around 2.64'. Not even close to the meter which is 3.28'. That's a 25% error.


And the distance from the tip of my thumb to the first joint is 37 mm. Yet you keep claiming that the Imperial system is based on the human body...

GordMay 11-11-2015 06:21

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1958799)
... The mile is defined as thousand paces (left foot, right foot). That was the original definition (again based on the human body). The Romans found that stride is around 2.64'. Not even close to the meter which is 3.28'. That's a 25% error ...

Interesting.

The basic concept of the mile originated in Roman times. The Romans used a unit of distance called the mille passum, which literally translated into "a thousand paces." Since each pace was considered to be five Roman feet—which were a bit shorter than our modern feet—the mile ended up being 5,000 Roman feet, or roughly 4,850 of our modern feet.

If the mile originated with 5,000 Roman feet, how did we end up with a mile that is 5,280 feet? Blame the furlong. The furlong wasn't always just an arcane unit of measure that horseracing fans gabbed about; it once had significance as the length of the furrow a team of oxen could plow in a day. In 1592, Parliament set about determining the length of the mile and decided that each one should be made up of eight furlongs. Since a furlong was 660 feet, we ended up with a 5,280-foot mile.

More ➥ Why Are There 5,280 Feet in a Mile? Making Sense of Measurements | Mental Floss

Ziggy 11-11-2015 07:05

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by carstenb (Post 1959552)
[...]Try this experiment next time you go to the supermarket. When you pay with cash, wait until the clerk has keyed in that you are paying, say, a total of $38.45 with a $50 dollar bill. Then say, "Oh wait, I happen to have the 45 cents here"

This will perplex a lot of clerks who are unable to simply add the 45 cents to the "total change - $11.55" showed on the cash register and give you back $12.

They just can't do simple math in their heads.

Actually, I perform this experiment frequently (I don't like to accumulate a lot of change.) I'm guessing that 90% of clerks can deal with it just fine. Only very few get flummoxed--not enough to stop me from doing it again.

skipmac 11-11-2015 07:24

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ziggy (Post 1959714)
Actually, I perform this experiment frequently (I don't like to accumulate a lot of change.) I'm guessing that 90% of clerks can deal with it just fine. Only very few get flummoxed--not enough to stop me from doing it again.

A couple of years ago I tried something similar at my doctor's office. Have to make a $25 copay on every visit. Usually I just hand them a credit card and done with it but this day I had just been to the bank and had cash so handed the clerk two twenties for a $25 fee.

She could not figure out how much change to give me (no cash register at the doctor's office) and started frantically searching for a calculator. I tried to explain but she was too flustered to listen. Finally another clerk saw there was a problem and came to offer help. The first clerk explained the situation so the second set about helping search for the calculator because she couldn't do the math either.

Now these weren't nurses or some other professional in the office but still to work behind the desk they had to have at the very least a high school diploma but neither could subtract 25 from 40 to get 15.

valhalla360 11-11-2015 07:43

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by K_V_B (Post 1959656)
And the distance from the tip of my thumb to the first joint is 37 mm. Yet you keep claiming that the Imperial system is based on the human body...

Then you have one freakishly long first joint on your thumb.

I just measured mine and it's around 26mm.

valhalla360 11-11-2015 07:48

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by GordMay (Post 1959686)
Interesting.

If the mile originated with 5,000 Roman feet, how did we end up with a mile that is 5,280 feet? Blame the furlong. The furlong wasn't always just an arcane unit of measure that horseracing fans gabbed about; it once had significance as the length of the furrow a team of oxen could plow in a day. In 1592, Parliament set about determining the length of the mile and decided that each one should be made up of eight furlongs. Since a furlong was 660 feet, we ended up with a 5,280-foot mile.

More ➥ Why Are There 5,280 Feet in a Mile? Making Sense of Measurements | Mental Floss

I wouldn't be suprised is there is a relationship to a furlong but this explaination is highly suspect:

I guarantee a healthy set of oxen can plow a furrow more than 660' long in a day.

Dennis.G 11-11-2015 08:24

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1959742)
I wouldn't be suprised is there is a relationship to a furlong but this explaination is highly suspect:

I guarantee a healthy set of oxen can plow a furrow more than 660' long in a day.

Actually furlong came from the length a team of oxen could plow without resting.



Farm-derived units of measurement:
The rod is a historical unit of length equal to 5½ yards. It may have originated from the typical length of a mediaeval ox-goad. There are 4 rods in one chain.
The furlong (meaning furrow length) was the distance a team of oxen could plough without resting. This was standardised to be exactly 40 rods or 10 chains.
An acre was the amount of land tillable by one man behind one ox in one day. Traditional acres were long and narrow due to the difficulty in turning the plough and the value of river front access.
An oxgang was the amount of land tillable by one ox in a ploughing season. This could vary from village to village, but was typically around 15 acres.
A virgate was the amount of land tillable by two oxen in a ploughing season.
A carucate was the amount of land tillable by a team of eight oxen in a ploughing season. This was equal to 8 oxgangs or 4 virgates.

TeddyDiver 11-11-2015 10:57

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1959738)
Then you have one freakishly long first joint on your thumb.

I just measured mine and it's around 26mm.

It's not freakish, mine is 36mm :smile:

TeddyDiver 11-11-2015 11:01

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dennis.G (Post 1959769)
Actually furlong came from the length a team of oxen could plow without resting.



Farm-derived units of measurement:
The rod is a historical unit of length equal to 5½ yards. It may have originated from the typical length of a mediaeval ox-goad. There are 4 rods in one chain.
The furlong (meaning furrow length) was the distance a team of oxen could plough without resting. This was standardised to be exactly 40 rods or 10 chains.
An acre was the amount of land tillable by one man behind one ox in one day. Traditional acres were long and narrow due to the difficulty in turning the plough and the value of river front access.
An oxgang was the amount of land tillable by one ox in a ploughing season. This could vary from village to village, but was typically around 15 acres.
A virgate was the amount of land tillable by two oxen in a ploughing season.
A carucate was the amount of land tillable by a team of eight oxen in a ploughing season. This was equal to 8 oxgangs or 4 virgates.

So in the origin there's nothing royal in imperial units, only dirt and dung :whistling:

woodenboats 11-11-2015 14:32

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
If you believe that imperial measurement helps with math capabilities you should consider using roman numbers... How many meters is MCMXV yards?

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StuM 11-11-2015 14:49

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by valhalla360 (Post 1959742)
I wouldn't be suprised is there is a relationship to a furlong but this explaination is highly suspect:

I guarantee a healthy set of oxen can plow a furrow more than 660' long in a day.

Yep.

Furlong:
" originally the length of a furrow in the common field of 10 acres... The "acre" of the common field being variously measured, the furlong was fixed 9c. on the classical stadium, one-eighth of a Roman mile. "


And:
"Dating back at least to early Anglo-Saxon times, it originally referred to the length of the furrow in one acre of a ploughed open field (a medieval communal field which was divided into strips). The system of long furrows arose because turning a team of oxen pulling a heavy plough was difficult. This offset the drainage advantages of short furrows and meant furrows were made as long as possible. An acre is an area that is one furlong long and one chain (66 feet or 22 yards) wide. For this reason, the furlong was once also called an acre's length"

Bill Seal 11-11-2015 19:00

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by woodenboats (Post 1960092)
If you believe that imperial measurement helps with math capabilities you should consider using roman numbers... How many meters is MCMXV yards?

Like the Metric system, the Imperial system was derived using the Hindu-Arabic math concept, only a lot earlier. the shortcoming of the Roman system was that it couldn't handle multiplication or division.
Like Common Core.:whistling:

K_V_B 12-11-2015 00:42

Re: Convenience of the metric system
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TeddyDiver (Post 1959912)
It's not freakish, mine is 36mm :smile:

This is why the "inch" was never based on the length of someones thunb. The original definition of the inch was "three barleycorn".


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