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ladlon
02-28-2006, 09:34 PM
Just curious... Why am I finding that war machines (subs, bombers, etc) seem to unexplainably use a mix of measurement units? For example, one piece of equipment may measure something in feet, then a map will be in metres, etc... (With subs, you'd have a mix of metres, miles, knots, etc).

Why didn't they just have it all in one unit system so you wouldn't have to convert it? It's tricky enough doing the conversions in a sim, let alone in real life when people are shooting at you.

I have been spending hours, very puzzled, trying to figure out why my seemingly correct bombsight settings still result in a badly drifting crosshair... only now to notice that the speedbar altitude is in metres and the bombsight settings display is in feet! [Slap forehead...]

WWSensei
02-28-2006, 09:37 PM
Same reason different ones are used today. Not everything was built in the same country, with the same scale of measurements.

J_Anonymous
02-28-2006, 10:31 PM
The danger of mixing two or more units may be seen in this example; a lost rocket of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

http://www.mste.uiuc.edu/dildine/tcd_files/metric/hook.htm

ImpStarDuece
02-28-2006, 10:58 PM
There was a forumite complaining a few weeks ago that all the P-51 temperature gauges were in degrees of celcius. Something along the lines of "why can't we have the real scale, like Farehieght? Surely US pilots didn't perform all the conversions to metric in their heads during the war?"

A quick check of the P-51B and D manuals reveals that all temperature gauges were in fact given in degrees of celcius. However, all other measures were metric: US gallons (as opposed to Imperial gallons) for fuel, feet for height, miles for speed.

So even internally, aircraft builders couldn't decide whether to stick to metric or imperial. Just goes to show how messed up we are as a bunch http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Viva la Metric System!

ladlon
03-01-2006, 12:09 AM
Thankfully, I discovered the 'Toggle Speedbar' feature. I had previously thought it was just to turn the speedbar on/off, but as it turns out, it toggles it between metric and imperial... So that works out nicely.

Now if only they had that for the WWII sub sims!

LameDuck.
03-01-2006, 09:35 AM
The varied units is one of the greatest features of the game! Whoever built these pits did an outstanding job. I dig the full real settings, it just wouldn't be as good if a Russian plane used Imperial units, or a German plane measured airspeed in <gasp> mph.
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

Platypus_1.JaVA
03-01-2006, 09:38 AM
Originally posted by ImpStarDuece:
There was a forumite complaining a few weeks ago that all the P-51 temperature gauges were in degrees of celcius. Something along the lines of "why can't we have the real scale, like Farehieght? Surely US pilots didn't perform all the conversions to metric in their heads during the war?"

A quick check of the P-51B and D manuals reveals that all temperature gauges were in fact given in degrees of celcius. However, all other measures were metric: US gallons (as opposed to Imperial gallons) for fuel, feet for height, miles for speed.

So even internally, aircraft builders couldn't decide whether to stick to metric or imperial. Just goes to show how messed up we are as a bunch http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Viva la Metric System!

Consider this. The P-51 was build by a German http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif Or maybe they needed to have a large quantity of temp gauges and the only company that could deliver the gauges had them only in metric units.

Anyways, we in Europe still used the old measurment system but, when Napoleon conquered large portions of Europe, he introduced a perfect logic and scientific measurment system where everything is in tens. Both the Russians and the Germans use the metric system. And Il-2 PF was originally meant for the eastfront. So that is why the speedbar uses metric units as default.

SnapdLikeAMutha
03-01-2006, 10:20 AM
I imagine aircraft designers used degrees Celsius rather than Fahrenheit because, being a rather intelligent bunch, they naturally realised that one of the systems was coherent, intuitive, useful and had a firm scientific grounding, while the other simply made no sense whatsoever http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

Chuck_Older
03-01-2006, 10:32 AM
Schmeud didn't build the P-51. North American Aviation did. Edgar Schmeud was not NAA, he was an employee. He was Chief Designer on the project

The metric system is flawed. The measurement of the circumference of the Earth was made in error, and an equation had to be made up to compensate for the mistake.

Julius Caesar abolished the 10 month calendar in favor of a 12 month one. You guys use 12 months in Europe, yes? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

DaimonSyrius
03-01-2006, 10:50 AM
Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
The metric system is flawed. The measurement of the circumference of the Earth was made in error, and an equation had to be made up to compensate for the mistake.
Julius Caesar abolished the 10 month calendar in favor of a 12 month one. You guys use 12 months in Europe, yes? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif
The best thing of the metric system is not that the metre would be an exact (or flawedly exact) fraction of a meridian (the nautical mile, for instance, is a fraction of the equator's latitude, and that feature, while useful for navigation, doesn't by itself render nautical miles a better measurement for general use). The really useful aspect of the metric system is that it is devised in a systematic, coherent way: it's the way in wich its main units, subunits and multiples are all derived by the same rule, for all kinds of measurements, be it length, weight, volume, voltage, temperature, frequency, etc. That's what makes it more appropriate for science and at the same time convenient for general use.

10^n concept rules http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Cheers,
S.

WWSensei
03-01-2006, 11:30 AM
Pffft, if God had intended us to use the metric system there would have been 10 Apostles...

And currently, the metric system is based on the meter (the rest are derivatives), which is then divided by 10--true, but is now officially the distance light travels in 1/299,792,458th of a second in a vacuum. As you can see we all naturally think of distances based on 1/299,792,458 measurements and in vacuums. Yeah, sure, THAT's a natural thought process.

However, the idea that base 10 calculations are "more natural" is just not true. Any base can be natural if that is how you are taught from the beginning. People rasied on base 12 measurements are just as confused by base 10 measurement as the reverse is true.

The metric system is for those unable to count without using their fingers... ;-) Finally, 10^n doesn't rule. 2^n rules. 10^n and using your fingers you can only get to ten. Using 2^n I can get to 1024 on ten fingers.

There are only 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand binary and those who don't.

DaimonSyrius
03-01-2006, 12:13 PM
Originally posted by WWSensei:
Pffft, if God had intended us to use the metric system there would have been 10 Apostles...

And currently, the metric system is based on the meter (the rest are derivatives), which is then divided by 10--true, but is now officially the distance light travels in 1/299,792,458th of a second in a vacuum. As you can see we all naturally think of distances based on 1/299,792,458 measurements and in vacuums. Yeah, sure, THAT's a natural thought process.

However, the idea that base 10 calculations are "more natural" is just not true. Any base can be natural if that is how you are taught from the beginning. People rasied on base 12 measurements are just as confused by base 10 measurement as the reverse is true.


The point, as I see it, is not that a measurement system be 'natural'. Measurement systems (all of them) are a human invention, and as such, all are artificial.

The point is which system is more intelligently designed http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif Which is smarter, if you wish http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

While I agree that binary is very powerful, and simpler in concept, it will fill up your average paper sheet with 1's and 0's just to calculate your credit card interest rate or your car's gas consumption (in L/100Km, of course http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif).

More importantly, binary will also overfill your short-term memory (brain's) when performing such simple calculations.

As to the reference standard for length, that's just anecdotal, we could take whatever and designate that as 'metre'. The usefulness of a system lies in being systematic, precisely http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif

Just my opinion, though http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Cheers,
S.

Chuck_Older
03-01-2006, 01:13 PM
Well, intelligent is one thing, and obstinate is another. The same French government that instituted the metric system also wanted to go to that system for time

They were defeated by the natural progression of the seasons. Caesar knew that http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif So, the 12 month system ws back in effect

The 'non-metric' system is really misunderstood. Take *F for example...it's no accident that freezing and boiling are 180* apart on that scale. But to hear people talk about it, it's 'wacky' and 'makes no sense'. It makes perfect sense, especially when you consider that Zero degrees F is the standard they used to determine a repeatable 'coldest' they could make with a salt/ice solution and plenty of airflow. It was repeatable, so it was a calibration benchmark

I think there's a lot of disniformation out about the "Non-metric" system. It's not based on un-scientific principles at all

But about the instrumentation in the P-51~

Consider two things:

1) Aviation was only in it's powered childhood at the time. Where are fine, precise instruments going to come from in the '20s and '30s and '40s? Europe? Germany, perhaps? So the really precise instrumentation would tend to be in Metric notation in many cases

2) The USAAC/USAAF adopted the RAf style "basic six" instrumentation arrangement. It follows that logically, the measurement convention of Metric units would get carried over to USAAC/USAAF aircraft

WWSensei
03-01-2006, 01:31 PM
Originally posted by DaimonSyrius:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by WWSensei:
Pffft, if God had intended us to use the metric system there would have been 10 Apostles...

And currently, the metric system is based on the meter (the rest are derivatives), which is then divided by 10--true, but is now officially the distance light travels in 1/299,792,458th of a second in a vacuum. As you can see we all naturally think of distances based on 1/299,792,458 measurements and in vacuums. Yeah, sure, THAT's a natural thought process.

However, the idea that base 10 calculations are "more natural" is just not true. Any base can be natural if that is how you are taught from the beginning. People rasied on base 12 measurements are just as confused by base 10 measurement as the reverse is true.


The point, as I see it, is not that a measurement system be 'natural'. Measurement systems (all of them) are a human invention, and as such, all are artificial.

The point is which system is more intelligently designed http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif Which is smarter, if you wish http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

While I agree that binary is very powerful, and simpler in concept, it will fill up your average paper sheet with 1's and 0's just to calculate your credit card interest rate or your car's gas consumption (in L/100Km, of course http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif).

More importantly, binary will also overfill your short-term memory (brain's) when performing such simple calculations.

As to the reference standard for length, that's just anecdotal, we could take whatever and designate that as 'metre'. The usefulness of a system lies in being systematic, precisely http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif

Just my opinion, though http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Cheers,
S. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

What you are trying to say is that it being base 10 is somehow "easier" or "systematic". My point (besides the jokes) are that that's because that's the way you were taught growing up. Systemtic on base ten is as arbitrary as the length of the meter.

For those of us brought up on the Imperial system our method is just as intuitive and "systematic" and it is the metric system we find difficult to conceive.

I know many, many people who simply view the metric system as an overly complex, nearly incomprehensible system of measurement. If it were so "systematic" and "natural" then everyone would embrace it naturally. They don't. Yes, they can learn it, but most do by simply converting metric into their internal imperial counter parts. ie, a meter ends up being "just a little longer than yard". To me, 12 inches to the foot, 3 feet to the yard and 1760 yards (or 5280 feet) to the mile as as "natural" and "systematic" as centimeters, meters and kilometers are to you. I have to really think and calculate when thinking in terms of metric whereas I have an instant understanding of the imperial distances and measurements. Because that is what I grew up learning. The reverse would be true to you...

It's more like language. Whatever you learned first seems the most natural in the world and any new language you have to learn seems difficult. No particualr language is better than another though Bislama comes close due to just the coolness factor of some of their words make them close to being the top. I mean when your word for helicopter is "mix-master blong Jesus Christ" you can see the inherent boringness of the first versus the latter... ;-)

DaimonSyrius
03-01-2006, 02:05 PM
Originally posted by WWSensei:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by DaimonSyrius:
The point, as I see it,
.../...
Just my opinion, though http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif
What you are trying to say is that .../... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Although I appreciate your interest in telling me what I would be trying to say, there really isn't a need for that, Sensei http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif What I tried to say is what I said. Which is what I meant, too, by the way.

My point is that what makes a system more useful is being systematic (http://encarta.msn.com/dictionary_/systematic.html) AND coherent (http://encarta.msn.com/dictionary_/coherent.html). It was spelt clearly in the post you replied to, and it was explained too, so there is no need for further attributing additional meanings that would reveal what I was trying to say. The imperial system, in the way it relates inches to feet to yards to miles, for instance, is not systematic nor coherent, meaning that the reason (or the ratio) that there are 3 feet in a yard is not the same reason (nor ratio) that there are 12 inches in a foot, or 1760 yards in a mile, and when we are to convert surface measurements, for instance, or volumes like cubic inches in one cubic mile, the inconveniences increase. In my opinion, any system built around the powers of some base will have those characteristics. We have considered binary too, and it just happens that decimal fits better my requirements for a convenient one (for the reasons I already mentioned above), amongst the ones that might be considered systematic and coherent. I also explained why I see it that way.

Nevertheless, of course you can see all this differently, everyone's entitled to that. But there is no need to decipher what I might have possibly been trying to say, just read what I said, and then we can discuss the points, and maybe agree or disagree http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Cheers,
S.

WWSensei
03-01-2006, 02:53 PM
Metric is systemtic and coherent to YOU. It is not to me. You make the statement because it's on a base 10. My point is that being on base 10 is no more systematic or coherent than our system is. It is to you because that is what you learned first.

It's a point of reference issue. In fact, to me, based on the way I was raised and taught the metric system is less useful because of it's structure. I find no complexity at all in our system at all, whether measuring distance or volume.

You state the usefulness, systematic and coherentness as if they are universal truths. My point was that they are far from being universal truths. To me, and others raised on our system metric measurements are neither systematic or coherent. They are to you because your training in them has been geared toward that.

You stated that "The imperial system, in the way it relates inches to feet to yards to miles, for instance, is not systematic nor coherent" and I mean to disagree with that statement completely. To me they are as systematic and coherent as your system based on 10. Just different. The concept that a ratio HAS to be the same is an articifical construct and concept--it's an Emperor's Clothes of importance. The fact Napolean had to disband it at first and it took years to catch on in France is just proof of that. Similar to the US. Most US citizens do not think in terms of metrics because for us it is unnatural, incoherent and non-systematic. The reality is a reptitive ratio isn't required for measurements or understanding. It was just something that was done. Not fully embracing the metric system hasn't prevented nations using Imperial measurements from accomplishing what they needed to accomplish or caused any great additinoal effort.

I understood your point. I understood it clearly. You seem to keep missing mine.

Lodovik
03-01-2006, 03:29 PM
The reason why different branches of armed forces did and still use idiotic mixes of incoherent units is clear:
They are armies. I mean, when did anything done in the army make any sense... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/53.gif

DaimonSyrius
03-01-2006, 04:06 PM
Originally posted by DaimonSyrius:
.../...
Just my opinion, though http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Originally posted by DaimonSyrius:
.../...
I also explained why I see it that way.

Nevertheless, of course you can see all this differently, everyone's entitled to that

Originally posted by WWSensei:
Metric is systemtic and coherent to YOU. Of course, that's what I've been saying all the time, in different posts, as quoted above. Besides explaining why I have that opinion.

Originally posted by WWSensei:You state the usefulness, systematic and coherentness as if they are universal truths. No, that's not a correct way of describing how I made my statements, see above. I have made clear all the time that I was explaining my opinion. However, you seem to have a need to declare what I'm trying to say (see previous post) and now how and to what extent I'm applying my statements. I'll repeat, it's my opinion and my reasons for having it http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif That's what I was saying all the time, so I was not declaring anything universally

So please, let's not discuss hidden meanings in what I'm saying, or how I'm stating what I say, I make it clear it enough if you just read it: it's my opinions, for the reasons I see (and explain).

More to the point:

Originally posted by WWSensei:
You stated that "The imperial system, in the way it relates inches to feet to yards to miles, for instance, is not systematic nor coherent" and I mean to disagree with that statement completely. To me they are as systematic and coherent as your system based on 10. Just different. The concept that a ratio HAS to be the same is an articifical construct and concept Alright, very possibly it's true that, as Chuck_Older was pointing out, and yourself too, I may not know the imperial system well enough to do calculations easily in it. Please aid me in this example:

Let's suppose I'm in a boat having an open board surface of 14 square feet, with a flat bottom for simplicity. A rainstorm comes and goes and the boat has taken water in to a height of 5.3 inches. How would I calculate the excess weight in pounds that I've taken aboard, and how many gallons of water would that be? I'm hoping that you'll show me a systematic and coherent way of working the numbers out in imperial system.

The same example in metric: (1mm^3 water=1mg=1uL. 1cm^3 water=1g=1mL. 1m^3 water=1000kg=1000L). One millimeter height of water over a surface of 1m^2=1kg=1L; 1 centimeter height of water for the same 1m^2 surface = 10kg=10L. If we use the same numbers as in the example above, but in metric units, for instance:
14 m^2 surface, 5.3 centimeter height of water, then the weight would be 53*14=742 kg, and the volume would be 742 L. All the calculation it takes is one (1) single product. The correspondence between mass and volume for water makes additional sense, because water is a very general reference for density.

Thanks in advance, and cheers,
S.

DaimonSyrius
03-01-2006, 04:44 PM
As an additional point, one major reason for me to see (so it's only my view) imperial as less convenient, or less practical, is that, as WWSensei pointed out implicitly, and everybody knows anyway, imperial is not based on factors or powers of 10, but on traditional relationships based on different proportions for different units and for different magnitudes (so, not coherent, see 5th meaning of coherent here (http://encarta.msn.com/dictionary_/coherent.html)). However, how does the general way of doing calculations for everything (except a few oddities like sexagesimal angles or measures of time >1 sec) work? We use a decimal numerical system, even to calculate pounds or gallons. How do we call the point that marks the fractionary part of a non-integer number? That's right, it's the decimal point. So a decimal measurement system makes more -practical, operational- sense (to me) when the calculations we do are done in a decimal numerical system. It just fits with the type of numbers we use.

All IMO (except the dictionary definition, which is just that).

Cheers,
S.

Covino
03-01-2006, 06:11 PM
I wish we (the U.S.) could convert to metric but it would simply cost to much to retool everything and it would put a lot of folks out of bussiness.

I like the decimal system of division but other sytems arent much harder to learn or much less common either. Clocks/time is based on 60 minutes/seconds. Direction is based on 360 degrees. I think there was a time in the UK where each pound was divided into 240 pence or something.

Anywho, there are some conveniences with our system, no negative sign in our temperatures (well, mostly http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif) and you can pace out a distance heel to toe if you dont have a tape measure on you.

WWSensei
03-01-2006, 10:10 PM
1 cubic foot holds 7 12/25 gallons.
1 cubic foot weighs 62 2/5 lbs.

14ft *.44ft (5.3 inches of water so since you started with a decimal I continue to use it) = 6.16 cubic feet which means 384.38 lbs of water.

Different system same result and no more complex for me than your system was for you. We just grew up memorizing different values for similar topics.

Decimals are used for small amounts yes, but we also use fractions to represent concepts decimals have a hard time being accurate about....like 1/3 for instance...

Time is a prime example. 60 seconds to a minute, 60 mintues to an hour, but 24 hours to day and 30 days to a month...except for the months ending with 28 or 31....oh and leap years...years which are measured by 12 months...

And yet no one really finds time increments a hard concept to think in...despite having different ratios...because we grew up used to it.

Should we define time in a constant ratio? Redfine the minute to be 100 seconds, the hour 100 minutes, the day 10 hours (or maybe 100)? Would that make things any easier or just different?

Guess I was going with the first definition of coherent...where what is logical or aesthetically consistent is determined more by how one is initially taught than some arbitrary system.

And that's just it, both systems are arbitrary. Different. Not one better than the other. The one you learn first is the one that will always seem to be better.

FritzGryphon
03-01-2006, 11:19 PM
Surely much more complex, due to all the constants that need remembering.

In metric, everything uses the same base, and everything converts easily, even between volume and mass measures.

Like, 1 cubic meter of water is simply 1 tonne, which is 1000 liters. I cubic dm is simply 1 kg, or 1 liter. No constants.

Even the simplest conversions in imperial would require knowledge of constants, and probably a calculator. It's one of the rare things that burns me when someone suggests both unit systems are one and the same, and merely a matter of preference. Imperial is costly, time consuming and inefficient, an unecessary drain in all areas from education to industry, and a major annoyance to anyone not living in the USA.

Time is a different thing, as it needs to be based on revoultions around the sun, and the rotation of the earth. It can't be helped that these aren't base 10 quantities. At least everything 'second' and smaller is base 10.

ARM505
03-02-2006, 12:12 AM
Do engineers in the US seriously use imperial units in their work?!? I thought engineering was hard enough without having to jump through several hoops converting units backwards and forwards!

Nimits
03-02-2006, 12:41 AM
All I can say is, the day they make us start flying in kmh is the day I get out of the flying business. Nothing confuses me so much as trying to figure out what exactly the heck a kilometar is. It only makes sense If I remember its about 2/3 a mile . . .

DaimonSyrius
03-02-2006, 01:23 AM
Originally posted by WWSensei:
1 cubic foot holds 7 12/25 gallons.
1 cubic foot weighs 62 2/5 lbs.
I see.

Originally posted by WWSensei:
Guess I was going with the first definition of coherent... Suit yourself, of course.
However, since we're discussing measurement systems, if you don't mind I'll keep seeing as more relevant here the definition that is specifically applicable to measurements:
coherent-5. (http://encarta.msn.com/dictionary_/coherent.html) MEASUREMENTS forming units without introducing constants

Cheers,
S.

Matz0r
03-02-2006, 06:49 AM
http://www.metricsucks.org/

http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

DaimonSyrius
03-02-2006, 07:57 AM
Originally posted by F16_Matz_:
http://www.metricsucks.org/

http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Hehhe http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

On very much the same note, see also:

Science Made Stupid (http://www.besse.at/sms/smsintro.html)

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Cheers,
S.

ladlon
03-02-2006, 08:28 AM
Holy debate, Batman!!!

I just revisited my thread after a short break, and we now have two pages of rather riviting debate happening! WOw!

Anyway, just for the records, and my own 2 cents, my initial statement isn't a slam at the REALITY of having mixed units in warfare, nor a statement of which unit system is better (...although I prefer metric by far, though I respect some of the valid points made here...). I was just confused (and, as a gamer, annoyed) that several of my sims have this mix. It just seemed strange that (for example) charts would be in one system, and measuring units in the other... when it would SEEM to make more sense that they would be in the same, so you wouldn't have to convert while bombs are dropping beside you... The reasons provided in this thread by other members make total sense though... Still means tricky math for me, in the end.... argh....

Just sayin'....

DaimonSyrius
03-02-2006, 08:52 AM
Originally posted by ladlon:
I was just confused (and, as a gamer, annoyed) that several of my sims have this mix. It just seemed strange that (for example) charts would be in one system, and measuring units in the other... when it would SEEM to make more sense that they would be in the same, so you wouldn't have to convert while bombs are dropping beside you... The reasons provided in this thread by other members make total sense though...

It'ts all good debate, ladlon, and I share your opinion that it would make more sense to use just one standard. It's just that for historical reasons (which have been mentioned), a thermometer in Celsius ended mixing up with other instruments in other unit systems in the P51, and other aircraft possibly.

Actually, J_Anonymous posted a link to the news bit about the loss of a NASA Mars-bound spacecraft in 1999, quoting a source from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. I remember how I was shocked at the time to learn that the official reports about the investigation identified the problem in a unit-conversion step that had been skipped http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif
So this is still happening (as recently as 1999), and is still an issue that can have multi-million $/" consequences.
Here's the link again for anyone not wanting to go back to Anonymous's post in the previous page:
http://www.mste.uiuc.edu/dildine/tcd_files/metric/hook.htm

Cheers,
S.

Platypus_1.JaVA
03-02-2006, 09:34 AM
You can always have a good flame-war about imperial versus metric measurement systems http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif

However, everyone must admit that if everything is in tens, it is alot easier to count with then 12inch to a foot, 3 foot to a yard and god knows how many yards to a mile. You can be perfectly familiar with it but it doesn't seem logical. Inch used to be the measurment of a thumb and a foot used to be the length of a small step.

Nature of course isn't logical. So that is why we have 12 months in a year and 31 days in one month and 28 in the other. Other cultures like Jewish and Chinese use diffrent kind of calendars.

Platypus_1.JaVA
03-02-2006, 09:36 AM
Originally posted by Platypus_1.JaVA:

Nature of course isn't logical.

What did I just say? Looks like one of Raaid's messenges http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif

Chuck_Older
03-02-2006, 10:30 AM
Originally posted by ARM505:
Do engineers in the US seriously use imperial units in their work?!? I thought engineering was hard enough without having to jump through several hoops converting units backwards and forwards!

Absolutely they do, and not to be quaint or different. Most of them use either meters or feet, depending on the convention that's easiest for the application. It's not hard; it's just overcomplicated by folks.

Measurements get broken down, for example, into thousandths of an inch, not 12 hundredths of an inch http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif. Sometimes it seems to folks that the fractional system is always based on 12s no matter what....it's not so. I can break down parts into 10ths, 100ths, 1,000ths, etc.

So a part "25 mils" thick is 0.025" thick, or 25 thousandths...in this case "mils" is "thousandths" of an inch. Very simple

The Egyptians used Cubits and produced Marvels that we still argue over, concerning how they could be so precsiely constructed

I disagree that a foot is a "small step" though. If that were the case, a Yard would be 3 Steps, not 3 feet. A foot was a...wait for it...foot, as in what's at the end of your leg

But those measurements of inches and feet were standardised a LOOOONG time ago

One of the reasons the French wanted a better system was that every region in France had it's own system...a Parisian "yard" would be different from what they used in Nice to mean a 'yard'

DaimonSyrius
03-02-2006, 10:48 AM
Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
One of the reasons the French wanted a better system was that every region in France had it's own system...a Parisian "yard" would be different from what they used in Nice to mean a 'yard'

This reminds me somehow of US-gallons or US-pints vs (imperial) gallons and pints
...hmhm yes, it rings a bell definitely
http://www.thetipsbank.com/convert.htm

Vive la Standardisation
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Snootles
03-02-2006, 02:20 PM
For me, it's all a question of habit. Which is why I've picked up some really odd measurement habits. For instance:

I have a much better "feel" and understanding for normal outdoor and indoor temperatures in Fahrenheit, but understand high temperatures (like engine temperatures) much better in Celsius.

I have a much better "feel" for distances in feet and miles, but often use metres as an intermediate unit and never use yards.

I understand ground speeds best in miles per hour, sea speeds best in knots, and air speeds best in kilometers per hour.

Platypus_1.JaVA
03-03-2006, 04:14 PM
Originally posted by Chuck_Older:

One of the reasons the French wanted a better system was that every region in France had it's own system...a Parisian "yard" would be different from what they used in Nice to mean a 'yard'

Indeed, in ancient times (the bad old days) a parisian had a foot of a diffrent size. Later on, it was standarized with each small region. Not everyone's foot was similar. So it is simpeler and it makes more sense to take a piece of steel and call it a "meter" and divisions had to be made with tens.

Chuck_Older
03-03-2006, 04:58 PM
Originally posted by DaimonSyrius:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
One of the reasons the French wanted a better system was that every region in France had it's own system...a Parisian "yard" would be different from what they used in Nice to mean a 'yard'

This reminds me somehow of US-gallons or US-pints vs (imperial) gallons and pints
...hmhm yes, it rings a bell definitely
http://www.thetipsbank.com/convert.htm

Vive la Standardisation
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

How many Imperial Gallons make up the Circumference of the Earth, anyway? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

DaimonSyrius
03-03-2006, 06:06 PM
Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by DaimonSyrius:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Chuck_Older:
One of the reasons the French wanted a better system was that every region in France had it's own system...a Parisian "yard" would be different from what they used in Nice to mean a 'yard'

This reminds me somehow of US-gallons or US-pints vs (imperial) gallons and pints
...hmhm yes, it rings a bell definitely
http://www.thetipsbank.com/convert.htm

Vive la Standardisation
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

How many Imperial Gallons make up the Circumference of the Earth, anyway? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Let's see... One of Magellan's ships, commanded by Elcano, completed the circumnavigation of the Earth for the Spanish Empire in 1522. We could say it was one Imperial Galleon, and it did make the circumference of the Earth.
Would that be drifting too much? http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Cheers,
S.

elphifou
03-03-2006, 07:23 PM
I think some of the misunderstandings in the debate come from mixing up the sense for a certain unit, and the system used to make calculations with that unit.

Of course, anyone from birth on can acquire any kind of sense for a unit. I happen to have a better feel for measuring distances in meters because I'm European, but I know it would have been as easy if I had been taught to do the same in yards. Matter of habit, everyone agrees on this.

However, when you say "that car is <span class="ev_code_YELLOW">200</span> yards away from here", you're still counting with the help of the decimal system: 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9... period.

Obviously, we all could have used a different system for calculation from the start, and different from anyone's. Say a 12-based system.
But this must not be confounded with the "feel" that you may have for a particular unit in real life.

Heavy_Metal1982
03-03-2006, 08:26 PM
I know both systems so when I'm flying any British or American plane I just do soft conversions in my head. I know both systems, but since this game got be used to Meters (metric) as a way of measuring I got used to it.

I grew up learning the metic system, but since I'm in the field of Architecture/Building Science I had to learn Imperial measurements Since you can't say that you want lumber in Metric.. it's always Imperial here in North America. Long story short, just learn both systems... I can interchange what units of measurements all the time. I can read the temperature in F or C and I guess most people in Canada can do that since the metric system is relitively new here. Most of the older generation grew up learning the Imperial system and was forced to understanding the metric system when we converted.

elphifou
03-03-2006, 09:31 PM
Originally posted by Heavy_Metal1982:
Most of the older generation grew up learning the Imperial system and was forced to understanding the metric system when we converted.

There's nothing new to <span class="ev_code_YELLOW">understand</span> about the metric system. It's just that it's hard to get a (new) <span class="ev_code_YELLOW">feel</span> for the metric units if you're used to using imperial units, just as it is the other way round.
People who have always used imperial units have also been using the decimal system (through calculation), and therefore have never found it odd in any way. And as it happens, the decimal system is used in a coherent way to relate units within the metric system.

IMO, the problem lies in not having a feel for a certain unit, not in misunderstanding a system which is used daily throughout the world anyway.

ladlon
03-03-2006, 10:48 PM
Yikes, what have I done!?! What have I done!?!... My innocent little thread has burst into an intense Imperial vs Metric war!!

Oh, the humanity!....

elphifou
03-03-2006, 10:57 PM
Originally posted by ladlon:
Oh, the humanity!....

... so fascinating, eh ? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

EiZ0N
03-04-2006, 06:22 PM
I use both metric and imperial.

I weigh myself in imperial.

However I weigh things like food in metric.

I prefer big distances in miles, but small ones in metres

I prefer imperial for speeds (mph).

So I think I'm pretty inbiased, in that I use both interchangably.

However, there is absolutely NO denying (and I'm aiming this at WWSensei really) that the base 10 system is more natural.

People have 10 fingers. People count in base 10 for a very simple reason.

It makes SO much more sense to have things measured in base 10, people are just stubborn and don't want to shift from a system they know (even when really it's often much more convenient if they just get on with it and change).

There's just absolutely no denying that people work best with 10's. We do all of our normal counting in 10's, and we are therefore much better, rather than trying to remember a whole bunch of different number systems.

Also, I swear by Celcius. It makes more sense, because 0 degrees in Farenheit is much more meaningless than 0 degrees in Celcius.

It annoys me rather alot when people complain about Celcius. If I created my own system where 0 degrees was the temperature at which I could heat water if I stuck my finger in a cup for 5 minutes, and 100 was the temperature at which I started to sweat a bit, you'd all think I was an idiot.

My 2 pence.

LEXX_Luthor
03-04-2006, 08:11 PM
Units of measure are Religion, so that's what we get all flamed up for.

I grew up with Imperial, but early on taught myself and used Metric to escape from Imperial repression. All the mech/civil engineers at uni said Metric is generally the best, but they said all engineers must learn both so about half our homework problems were Imperial. Students in my class were mostly all USA born and raised (except me -- Mississippi) but all of us, without exception, preferred the Metric problems -- probably because of we were "raised" in Metric in our first intro Physics courses, and going thru Physics represses childhood memories of being "raised" on Imperial. But, since we drive to school and back we still used Imperialist "mph" and "miles to go" road signs so we keep in Imperial shape.

DaimonSyrius
03-05-2006, 02:38 AM
Originally posted by LEXX_Luthor:
Units of measure are Religion
I'm in complete disagreement with that view. The way I see it, it isn't a matter of Faith at all, but rather one of Thought. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Anyhow, no flames/no flaming here, only -perhaps- the warmth arising from intellectual friction, at most http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif

However, I would think that flames might (possibly, hypothetically) arise if/when taking 'units of measure' to mean something else than just that; if they would be taken as symbols to represent other -deeper, less clear- thoughts, feelings or beliefs.

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

Cheers,
S.

NonWonderDog
03-05-2006, 07:28 AM
I like my US customary units.

My foot (on my leg) is exactly one foot long. The end of my pinkie is exactly one inch long. My paces are almost exactly one yard long. If I walk for 15 minutes, I've travelled a mile.

The coldest day of the year up in northern Michigan is about 0 degrees Fahrenheit... the hottest day of the year here near Detroit is about 100 degrees.

To make hamburgers for a family of four, you need one pound of ground beef. A cup is the volume of a coffee mug. A teaspoon is the capacity of a tea spoon, and a tablespoon is the capacity of a soup spoon.

THAT'S why we've been resistant to the metric system. While none of the US units can be converted as easily in the metric system, the individual units are very easy to come to grips with in everyday life. I can use SI just fine for measurement and calculations, but it's a lot harder to relate to everyday values.

Tuba2004
03-05-2006, 03:55 PM
While we in the U.S. use the non-metric system of measurement, it is not the best system. The system used in the U.S. is a mix of measurements borrowed from many societies and time periods. Therefore, they have poor or relationship to each other i.e. 12 inch per foot but 3 feet per yard and 5280 yards per mile. That is if you are talking about the statute not nautical miles. But then I am leaving out furlongs, chains, and fathoms which we all can use. Then there are our three different ounces. Who really thinks 16 fluid ounce is a pound of liquid? And it goes on from there. Using our superior system we can count to 100 by 3€s or 12€s faster than the rest of the world can using 10€s. Converting within our system allows us to demonstrate our knowledge of the multiplication tables and our skills with division. The rest of the world will have to appear ignorant and be happy just moving a decimal point. Who wouldn€t be glad to add 3/16 and 3/5 rather than .1875 and .6000? We are glad to reject your meter, liter, and gram with their seven basic prefixes and cling to our system. We don€t care if it does require dual dimensioning to trade with the rest of the world or loose us a few billion dollars in contracts a year.