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Should the US Adopt the Metric System?

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  • #46
    Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
    I did try to answer earlier - but both times it was eaten. Stupid phone wifi...


    1) No system is perfect.

    2) No, you misunderstand. We did this once already. The US spent a ton of money putting up metric road signs - only to have to pull them down again because it was such a dismal failure. Metric is NOT easier for someone who grew up using the US system. the terminology is new and sometimes confusing. If memory serves - I am not certain - there were even fatalities linked to the new system as drivers became confused about which numbers were which.

    We tried, we really did. It did not work. I see no good reason to try again.

    3) That was part of why it failed - it's a really bad idea to mix the systems. People get confused about which measure to use and extremely frustrated when inevitably, errors are caused by the change. One little oopsie and you just ordered a 2.5 inch part that is one and a half times too big. Modern computers might be able to bridge this gap - but I suspect you'd just end up with a bunch of hopping mad housewives who's dinners were still thawing in the 50F degree oven - or were turned to charcoal when they thought 450C was what it said...
    I might buy that argument if the rest of the world hadn't managed to convert to the metric system with no major hiccups.
    "If you can ever make any major religion look absolutely ludicrous, chances are you haven't understood it"
    -Ravi Zacharias, The New Age: A foreign bird with a local walk

    Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
    1 Corinthians 16:13

    "...he [Doherty] is no historian and he is not even conversant with the historical discussions of the very matters he wants to pontificate on."
    -Ben Witherington III

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    • #47
      Everyone should use the old base-2 system to make things easier for us computer scientists:

      tun = 2 pipes
      pipe = 2 hogsheads
      hoghshead = 2 barrels
      barrel = 2 casks
      cask = 2 coombs
      coomb = 2 strikes
      strike = 2 bushels
      bushel = 2 pails
      pail = 2 pecks
      peck = 2 gallons
      gallon = 2 pottles
      pottle = 2 quarts
      quart = 2 pints
      pint = 2 cups
      cup = 2 gills
      gill = 2 jacks
      jack= 2 jiggers
      jigger = 2 mouthfuls

      Comment


      • #48
        Originally posted by Raphael View Post
        I might buy that argument if the rest of the world hadn't managed to convert to the metric system with no major hiccups.
        Most of the rest of the world did so before they had invented cars - or thermostats on ovens.

        And they didn't, actually. France had to abandon metric in currency. There were hiccups - but in a day and age when they were least likely to kill someone and when it really didn't matter if every individual used metric or not - Granny didn't own a measuring cup, recipes rarely used any measures beyond counts, it didn't matter to the horse if the next feed bag was 2 miles or 2 kilometers away, etc...
        "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

        "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

        My Personal Blog

        My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

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        • #49
          Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
          And they didn't, actually. France had to abandon metric in currency.
          Incidentally, everyone using the same money would be a far greater advantage than everyone using the same unit of length. So perhaps we should push for that before the metric system?

          (Though it would be bad if it were created/controlled by any government(s). I'd want it to be something decentralized, like gold or bitcoin.)

          Comment


          • #50
            I use a measuring tape all day every day at work. One edge has inches, the other is metric. Most things we sell come in a version measured in inches and one in metric. Having both is more confusing than having either one or the other, and when it comes down to it, metric makes more sense and is easier to use.

            I say we just switch and get it over with. If someone is stupid enough to think that a sign that says 100kph means they can drive 100mph, then that's just natural selection at work.
            Curiosity never hurt anyone. It was stupidity that killed the cat.

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            • #51
              Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
              Most of the rest of the world did so before they had invented cars - or thermostats on ovens.

              And they didn't, actually. France had to abandon metric in currency. There were hiccups - but in a day and age when they were least likely to kill someone and when it really didn't matter if every individual used metric or not - Granny didn't own a measuring cup, recipes rarely used any measures beyond counts, it didn't matter to the horse if the next feed bag was 2 miles or 2 kilometers away, etc...
              What's that mean???

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              • #52
                Originally posted by klaus54 View Post
                What's that mean???
                Exactly what it says. The French took it all the way, even into metric currency system.

                The US actually has a metric currency.

                Okay, seriously, many coin values derive from the old practice of subdividing coins themselves. As a result, they are based on 2 or 4 rather than 10. France tried to fix it but had to abandon the effort.
                "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

                My Personal Blog

                My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

                Quill Sword

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                • #53
                  Nobody knows the real reason why there's the metric system hasn't been adopted yet?
                  "The man from the yacht thought he was the first to find England; I thought I was the first to find Europe. I did try to found a heresy of my own; and when I had put the last touches to it, I discovered that it was orthodoxy."
                  GK Chesterton; Orthodoxy

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                  • #54
                    I think the question can be flipped. Why should the U.S. adopt the metric system? We have been using our customary unit for what, 120 years or so? Unless there is a real fault with what we have been using, I don't see a reason to change it.
                    "Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience." ― C.S. Lewis, God in the Dock: Essays on Theology (Making of Modern Theology)

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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
                      Most of the rest of the world did so before they had invented cars - or thermostats on ovens.
                      To pick the three countries I've spent the most time in:
                      New Zealand changed over from the Imperial system in 1969
                      Australia changed over from the Imperial system in 1970
                      South Africa changed over from the Imperial system in 1971

                      No real hiccups happened.

                      Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
                      And they didn't, actually. France had to abandon metric in currency.
                      I can't find any backing for this could you give your source?
                      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_franc
                      Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
                      There were hiccups - but in a day and age when they were least likely to kill someone and when it really didn't matter if every individual used metric or not - Granny didn't own a measuring cup, recipes rarely used any measures beyond counts, it didn't matter to the horse if the next feed bag was 2 miles or 2 kilometers away, etc...
                      I'm fairly sure you yanks are smart enough to figure out out. so "it's difficult and some people might get confused" is not a good argument against switching to it.
                      "If you can ever make any major religion look absolutely ludicrous, chances are you haven't understood it"
                      -Ravi Zacharias, The New Age: A foreign bird with a local walk

                      Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
                      1 Corinthians 16:13

                      "...he [Doherty] is no historian and he is not even conversant with the historical discussions of the very matters he wants to pontificate on."
                      -Ben Witherington III

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        Originally posted by Raphael View Post
                        To pick the three countries I've spent the most time in:
                        New Zealand changed over from the Imperial system in 1969
                        Australia changed over from the Imperial system in 1970
                        South Africa changed over from the Imperial system in 1971

                        No real hiccups happened.

                        I can't find any backing for this could you give your source?
                        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_franc
                        I'm fairly sure you yanks are smart enough to figure out out. so "it's difficult and some people might get confused" is not a good argument against switching to it.
                        1) I did say most. Of those three I don't think any are comparable in population . SA least of all given the problems of Apartheid . Regardless. our experience was different.

                        2) Wiki. I am on my phone right now
                        so I will get the link to you later.

                        3) We tried once already and it did not go well. More than sufficient to counter the argument that we should merely because others did. Our system works for us. The best argument is that it complicates trade but the calculator in a cell phone can handle the conversation so that seems moot.
                        "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                        "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

                        My Personal Blog

                        My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

                        Quill Sword

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
                          1) I did say most. Of those three I don't think any are comparable in population . SA least of all given the problems of Apartheid . Regardless. our experience was different.
                          I was just picking the three countries I am most familiar with (having grown up in SA, now a Kiwi citizen and regularly in Australia for work). They all shifted relatively recently.
                          And apartheid has no real influence on how the adoption process went.

                          The biggest hiccup I've ever had was having to have two set of tools for working on cars because my old Mini (Leyland) used imperial sizes and my VW Jetta used metric. It wasn't a major problem.

                          Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
                          2) Wiki. I am on my phone right now so I will get the link to you later.
                          Fair enough. I was looking for evidence of it and couldn't find it.

                          Originally posted by Teallaura View Post
                          3) We tried once already and it did not go well. More than sufficient to counter the argument that we should merely because others did. Our system works for us. The best argument is that it complicates trade but the calculator in a cell phone can handle the conversation so that seems moot.
                          Yeah I tried that line on my folks with regards to vegetables, I still had to eat them because they're good for me.
                          "If you can ever make any major religion look absolutely ludicrous, chances are you haven't understood it"
                          -Ravi Zacharias, The New Age: A foreign bird with a local walk

                          Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
                          1 Corinthians 16:13

                          "...he [Doherty] is no historian and he is not even conversant with the historical discussions of the very matters he wants to pontificate on."
                          -Ben Witherington III

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            Vegetables actually have benefit. Metric doesn't. We got along just fine without it this long and have no real need of it now.
                            "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                            "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

                            My Personal Blog

                            My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

                            Quill Sword

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              So how come we don't have a metric time measurement system?

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Originally posted by Sparko View Post
                                So how come we don't have a metric time measurement system?
                                It was also a washout.
                                "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose." - Jim Elliot

                                "Forgiveness is the way of love." Gary Chapman

                                My Personal Blog

                                My Novella blog (Current Novella Begins on 7/25/14)

                                Quill Sword

                                Comment

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