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The metric system
Posted: 26 August 2012 06:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 46 ]
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Occam. - 26 August 2012 04:22 PM

Damn, I screwed that up.  I hit the 7 as a typo and meant to go back to get rid of it and enter the correct amount, but I forgot.  red face

Occam

Lol! I wondered…..

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Posted: 26 August 2012 06:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 47 ]
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Mriana - 26 August 2012 05:37 PM


I’m not sure how 1 C is not an exact measurement when a recipe calls for 1 C.  It turns out fine for me, when I cook, but then again, unless I’m baking, I rarely measure anything.

No, 1 cup is not an exact measurement. It is exact enough for what we use it for, which is why in medicine, we would use 240mls instead of one cup, where you might end up with 250mls or 235mls, which could make a big difference in effect. In cooking, it you have more leeway and can approximate. Any profession needing precision will use metric.

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Posted: 26 August 2012 07:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 48 ]
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Mriana - 26 August 2012 03:57 PM
dougsmith - 26 August 2012 03:55 PM
Mriana - 26 August 2012 03:50 PM

Yes, you are quite right, but I’m still not sure what 1500 millilitres looks like either.

A liter is basically a quart. So 1.5 liters would be about a quart and a pint. (In fact, that would be 1.42 liters, but it’s close enough for eyeballing).

No, it’s not.  It’s a little more or a little less than a quart, but it is not basically a quart.  I know this, because when I was trying to figure it out as a kid, I tried to put a litre into an empty milk container that was a quart.  All I remember is that the comparison does not work.  The experiment was a failure, whatever the case and I learn that a litre is not approximently a quart.

A liter is 1.06 quarts, which is ... basically or approximately a quart.

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Posted: 26 August 2012 07:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 49 ]
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Thevillageatheist - 26 August 2012 05:48 PM

That is does.  I gather you have a form of dyslexia too?

Yes and I’ve fought it from year one. I invert number sequences. 323 looks like 232. It took a lot of practice to do basic math let alone what you guys are posting. I’m still fighting it. That’s why my wife keeps the checkbook! More than anything I want to learn sines, cosines and tangents, the key to nautical navigation.

 

Cap’t Jack

Yeah.  I know what you mean about the check book.  I’ve had to have my bank do that for me more than once.  sigh.  However, I am glad someone here knows what I’m talking about.

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Posted: 26 August 2012 08:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 50 ]
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Ok, I offer as proof the errors made by two highly intelligent people trying to work with a measuring system other than metric.
In the metric (decimal) system such confusion is impossible. No conversions are required among and between any measurements of length, volume, weight, or percentage.

wiki

From its beginning, the main feature of the metric system was the standard set of inter-related base units and a standard set of prefixes in powers of ten. These base units are used to derive larger and smaller units and replaced a huge number of unstandardised units of measure that existed previously. While the system was first developed for commercial use, its coherent set of units made it particularly suitable for scientific and engineering purposes.

water: 1 cc (1/100 of a meter, cubed) = 1 mililiter (1/1000 liter) = 1 gram (1/1000 kilogram), neat and perfectly relational.

[ Edited: 26 August 2012 08:18 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 26 August 2012 11:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 51 ]
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Mrianna,

The standards in the older systems relate to each other by varying numbers that you must remember: 3ft = yrd, 1mi = 1760 yds, .... which requires a lot of memorizing for all the different measures of things. I have no doubt that even with dyslexia, you would appreciate the metric system. You’re ability to do fractions tells me that you are sufficiently more qualified than most people even in countries who use the metric system.

What the metric system did was to take each kind of measure and give it only one standard. It doesn’t matter what that first standard size is. It would be like saying let us not use feet, yards, miles, and all the other different measure standards except for one. It doesn’t matter which one you choose as the standard first one. So, imagine that you decide to pick to only measure all lengths using the inch, an arbitrary choice for a standard. So from now on you don’t use or have to remember feet, yards, miles, rods, chains, links, furlongs, or leagues as length measures—just inches. Then what you do is you set up prefixes that you can connect to the word to mean certain multiples or divisions of ten.

    Tera-    = 10¹²  = 1,000,000,000,000
    Giga-    = 10⁹    = 1,000,000,000
    Mega-    = 10⁶    = 1,000,000
    Kilo-      = 10³    = 1,000
    Hecto-    = 10²    = 100
    Deca-    = 10¹    = 10
    (no prefix)= 10⁰    = 1
    Deci-    = 10⁻¹  = 1/10       = 0.1
    Centi-    = 10⁻²  = 1/100       = 0.01
    Milli-      = 10⁻³  = 1/1,000     = 0.001
    Micro-    = 10⁻⁶  = 1/1,000,000   = 0.000 001
    Nano-    = 10⁻⁹    = 1/1,000,000,000   = 0.000 000 001
    Pico-    = 10⁻¹²  = 1/1,000,000,000,000 = 0.000 000 000 001

So, ten inches would be named, a decainch. Instead of using a foot as a measure for height, you might describe yourself by how many decainches you are. 5’4” would be 5x12 inches plus 4 = 64in, right? To translate inches to decainches is easy: just move the decimal point in 64.0 inches to become 6.4 decainches.

Now, you might want to do the same thing with volumes. This time, however, you want to relate inches to the new volumes by something like [volume standard] = 10ˣ inches so that they can relate to each other by some powers of ten. So, you make up a new word, say, call it a “smil”, for example for 1inch cubed :

    1 smil = (1in³) of volume

You can picture a smil, right? So if you make a larger cube of smils, you can imagine having a cube, say, of 10 smils wide x 10 smils deep x 10 smils high, right? That would be 1,000 smils or a kilosmil!

When you relate all the measures to the same standards, then the digits of the number to translate always stays the same…only the decimal point changes.

Does this help?

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Posted: 26 August 2012 11:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 52 ]
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The metric system was met with skepticism in the States, as it was here originally, because they suspected the marketplace would adjust their product ‘down’ to the closest metric unit, screwing the consumer, which did happen to any country that has done so. Since a liter is slightly less than a quart, the producers gladly reduced from the quantity of a 2 quart milk container to 2 liters but kept the price the same!

But now we are getting a reversal here also due to free-trade. Originally, some things like weight of products, should have increased. For instance, a 2lb brick of freeze-dried coffee was increased a little because the next closest full measure in metric was 1kg (2lb = 907.18 g = 0.90718 kg) and 1lb bricks of butter or tubs of margarine went up to 500 g (1/2 kg). Now, they’ve screwed us again and decided to reuse the American quantities because they are smaller and the companies can gain more profit. But our metric system is still labelled. So now we have butter and margarine quantities that say, 454 g (1lb) and coffee which sells as 907 g (2 lbs). (We lost nearly a 100 g in quantity but pay the same over night!)

These are the real reasons why America has not changed over! It’s about economic distrust, not because of any real difficulty with the system or due to tradition.

[ Edited: 27 August 2012 12:44 AM by Scott Mayers ]
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Posted: 27 August 2012 12:22 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 53 ]
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No, you’re not understanding. I can see the pie in my head and slice it any old way, but I cannot see the numbers and their equivalent sizes.  I see 1/4 of a pie, but I have no clue what 1/4 of a Tara looks like.  I don’t even know what a tara looks like for that matter.  You might as well tell a life long blind person that a cloud is pillowy.  How can 1 kg = 907.18 lbs when people are weighed in kilograms?  That would make a 100 lb person way more than 50 kg.  No, I think I have that wrong.  They’d weigh far far less than 50 kg.  I’m confused.  :(

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Posted: 27 August 2012 12:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 54 ]
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Mriana - 27 August 2012 12:22 AM

No, you’re not understanding. I can see the pie in my head and slice it any old way, but I cannot see the numbers and their equivalent sizes.  I see 1/4 of a pie, but I have no clue what 1/4 of a Tara looks like.  I don’t even know what a tara looks like for that matter.  You might as well tell a life long blind person that a cloud is pillowy.  How can 1 kg = 907.18 lbs when people are weighed in kilograms?  That would make a 100 lb person way more than 50 kg.  No, I think I have that wrong.  They’d weigh far far less than 50 kg.  I’m confused.  :(

Sorry, that was an error. I meant, 2lb = 907.18 g = 0.90718 kg. I’m going to fix it with an edit. Hang on.

See, you caught on to that error! So, you could likely do metric if you had to. Oh, and 1kg = 2.204lbs

[ Edited: 27 August 2012 12:43 AM by Scott Mayers ]
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Posted: 27 August 2012 07:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 55 ]
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Scott Mayers - 27 August 2012 12:34 AM
Mriana - 27 August 2012 12:22 AM

No, you’re not understanding. I can see the pie in my head and slice it any old way, but I cannot see the numbers and their equivalent sizes.  I see 1/4 of a pie, but I have no clue what 1/4 of a Tara looks like.  I don’t even know what a tara looks like for that matter.  You might as well tell a life long blind person that a cloud is pillowy.  How can 1 kg = 907.18 lbs when people are weighed in kilograms?  That would make a 100 lb person way more than 50 kg.  No, I think I have that wrong.  They’d weigh far far less than 50 kg.  I’m confused.  :(

Sorry, that was an error. I meant, 2lb = 907.18 g = 0.90718 kg. I’m going to fix it with an edit. Hang on.

See, you caught on to that error! So, you could likely do metric if you had to. Oh, and 1kg = 2.204lbs

I caught it only because I know kg is weight and I learned a long time ago, that I weight 1/2 as much in metrics.  That’s one of the first things I noticed years ago.  I weight half as much in the metrics system and that could make a very nice system to fool the mind and you don’t have to go to the moon to weigh less, except I can’t picture it as well as the U. S. system.  However, I can see it losing that effect after it’s meaning sunk in and/or I started to weigh 55 kg and then 60 kg.  Now stones are even better, except when you go to the metrics system, then you weigh more (or it sounds like you do, that is), which could be depressing.  Great way to fool the brain though if you want feel thinner.  I’m a mere 7.14 stones (used a conversion table).  So that is cool, as long as you don’t think about actually weighing the same, despite the numbers.  So it’s hard not to remember that you weigh half as much in metrics, much less forget that number.  It’s a nice mind trick though, esp if you want to see yourself as weigh less when you actually do not.

Please laugh, because I’m laughing too.  Consciously I know it’s the same weight, but on another level (psychological or whatever), I’m elated to weigh less.

[ Edited: 27 August 2012 07:09 AM by Mriana ]
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Posted: 27 August 2012 01:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 56 ]
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Scott Mayers - 26 August 2012 11:50 PM

The metric system was met with skepticism in the States, as it was here originally, because they suspected the marketplace would adjust their product ‘down’ to the closest metric unit, screwing the consumer, which did happen to any country that has done so. Since a liter is slightly less than a quart, the producers gladly reduced from the quantity of a 2 quart milk container to 2 liters but kept the price the same!

But now we are getting a reversal here also due to free-trade. Originally, some things like weight of products, should have increased. For instance, a 2lb brick of freeze-dried coffee was increased a little because the next closest full measure in metric was 1kg (2lb = 907.18 g = 0.90718 kg) and 1lb bricks of butter or tubs of margarine went up to 500 g (1/2 kg). Now, they’ve screwed us again and decided to reuse the American quantities because they are smaller and the companies can gain more profit. But our metric system is still labelled. So now we have butter and margarine quantities that say, 454 g (1lb) and coffee which sells as 907 g (2 lbs). (We lost nearly a 100 g in quantity but pay the same over night!)

These are the real reasons why America has not changed over! It’s about economic distrust, not because of any real difficulty with the system or due to tradition.

Except that 2 liters is 2.11338 quarts.  That’s more milk.

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Posted: 27 August 2012 02:18 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 57 ]
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3point14rat - 22 August 2012 04:00 PM
Mriana - 22 August 2012 03:43 PM

As a U. S. citizen, I am glad we never converted.  I never did understand it even when they tried to push it on us in elementary school.

As a more logical, common sense, simple system of measuring things, I can’t see why.  Science and most of the rest of the world use the metric system for a reason.

There’s something to be said for tradition, but not when it means you let the world pass you by with a better way of doing things.  Carpentry will be influenced by imperial for generations, and conversational English will carry imperial terms for longer, so you won’t lose it instantly.

I wish we would have. Sure, it would cause some discomfort to a generation or two, but it would have been worth it. (Although there’s also the cost of switching roadsigns and various other things.)

Regardless, why couldn’t we go the extra mile and adopt the metric system?  cheese

As far as ‘a cup of x is a cup’, it makes a big difference in baking (which of any type of cooking is the most ‘sciencey’). Ingredients have different densities, so measuring strictly by volume isn’t as accurate. For example: I made some biscuits this weekend and the recipe called for 1 cup (5 ounces) of all purpose flour and 1 cup (4 ounces) of cake flour. I used a one cup measuring spoon on the scale (tared of course) to contain the flour. 5 ounces of AP flour was a bit more than a cup and 4 ounces of cake flour was a bit under a cup. All those episodes of watching Good Eats haven’t been a total waste! wink

Take care,

Derek

[ Edited: 27 August 2012 02:36 PM by harry canyon ]
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Posted: 27 August 2012 03:33 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 58 ]
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harry canyon - 27 August 2012 02:18 PM
3point14rat - 22 August 2012 04:00 PM
Mriana - 22 August 2012 03:43 PM

As a U. S. citizen, I am glad we never converted.  I never did understand it even when they tried to push it on us in elementary school.

As a more logical, common sense, simple system of measuring things, I can’t see why.  Science and most of the rest of the world use the metric system for a reason.

There’s something to be said for tradition, but not when it means you let the world pass you by with a better way of doing things.  Carpentry will be influenced by imperial for generations, and conversational English will carry imperial terms for longer, so you won’t lose it instantly.

I wish we would have. Sure, it would cause some discomfort to a generation or two, but it would have been worth it. (Although there’s also the cost of switching roadsigns and various other things.)

Regardless, why couldn’t we go the extra mile and adopt the metric system?  cheese

As far as ‘a cup of x is a cup’, it makes a big difference in baking (which of any type of cooking is the most ‘sciencey’). Ingredients have different densities, so measuring strictly by volume isn’t as accurate. For example: I made some biscuits this weekend and the recipe called for 1 cup (5 ounces) of all purpose flour and 1 cup (4 ounces) of cake flour. I used a one cup measuring spoon on the scale (tared of course) to contain the flour. 5 ounces of AP flour was a bit more than a cup and 4 ounces of cake flour was a bit under a cup. All those episodes of watching Good Eats haven’t been a total waste! wink

Take care,

Derek

I don’t know what system you’re using, but a cup, as I know it, is 8 oz and always has been.

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Posted: 27 August 2012 03:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 59 ]
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I think Derek was saying that 1 cup (8 fluid ounces) of all purpose flour weighs 5 ounces and 1 cup (8 fluid ounces) of cake flour weighs 4 ounces.  For reference, 1 cup of water weighs 8 ounces.  It’s just confusing that ounce has more than one meaning.

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Posted: 27 August 2012 03:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 60 ]
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By the way, engineers in the United States (at least in aeronautics, my field) use the English system, much to my chagrin.  It makes us have to use crazy units all the time.  Did you know that the density of air at sea level is .002683 slugs/ft³?

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