## View Poll Results: thread title pls

Voters
75. You may not vote on this poll
• No

24 32.00%
• Yes

45 60.00%
• Yes, but let's not change from Fahrenheit to Celsius, heh

6 8.00%

# Thread: Should the USA switch to metric?

1. We cannot switch to metric.

Not because it wouldn't be better or because our system is so good (ha).

But because we've already integrated the Imperial System into our society.

Let's say you need to replace a pipe in your house. The pipe is cut into sections that are, say, two feet long a piece. You go to the hardware store and try to buy a replacement. There are standard pipes for one foot, two feet, etc. You get your replacement, and everything is fixed.

Now switch it to metric. To get that pipe part, companies would have to start producing pipes at a REALLY awkward length of .6096 meters. This doesn't put us on par with the rest of the world. We would have to start constructing things using standard meter length measurements to make this any more useful than having just stayed with the Imperial System. As such, we will have to start mass producing twice the number of materials. We need .5 meter, 1 meter, 1.5 meter pipes to accomplish the goal of uniting with the world under a universal system. We also need to be producing .6069 meter pipes, etc, to be used in the already constructed houses.

EDIT: Essentially, it is brilliant in theory. If we could just suddenly start measuring things in metric and have everything work, that'd be great. But these units ave practical uses, and in those uses, problems present themselves.

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3. My parent's taught me the metric conversions and everything when I was a kid. All because of the fact my mum was a Aussie, and she told me one day America will collapse and we are going to have to know it. So I might as well know it now.

4. Originally Posted by Fresh Cookies
Yes, and here's why.

The rest of the world does it. The conversions are too complicated, and if somebody does the specs in inches, and others think it's metric, boom, there goes the idea.

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6. Originally Posted by Silverrida
We cannot switch to metric.

Not because it wouldn't be better or because our system is so good (ha).

But because we've already integrated the Imperial System into our society.

Let's say you need to replace a pipe in your house. The pipe is cut into sections that are, say, two feet long a piece. You go to the hardware store and try to buy a replacement. There are standard pipes for one foot, two feet, etc. You get your replacement, and everything is fixed.

Now switch it to metric. To get that pipe part, companies would have to start producing pipes at a REALLY awkward length of .6096 meters. This doesn't put us on par with the rest of the world. We would have to start constructing things using standard meter length measurements to make this any more useful than having just stayed with the Imperial System. As such, we will have to start mass producing twice the number of materials. We need .5 meter, 1 meter, 1.5 meter pipes to accomplish the goal of uniting with the world under a universal system. We also need to be producing .6069 meter pipes, etc, to be used in the already constructed houses.
Goodness I wonder how pretty much every other country in the world, which all used their own measuring systems before hand, managed to standardise to metric.

[due to the wonderful nature of outsourcing not all measured commodities are produced in countries which exclusively have factories of one measurement either; a component bought in the USA may have been manufactured in Taiwan for instance]

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8. Originally Posted by Rammjet
Goodness I wonder how pretty much every other country in the world, which all used their own measuring systems before hand, managed to standardise to metric.

due to the wonderful nature of outsourcing not all measured commodities are produced in countries which exclusively have factories of one measurement either; a component bought in the USA may have been manufactured in Taiwan for instance
Did they? How did they change without a bunch of impracticality?

EDIT: Hmm, it seems many did early on, but this website is failing to explain how that worked.

EDIT 2: Ahh, outsourcing. Gotta love making the impractical practical.

9. Originally Posted by Rammjet
Goodness I wonder how pretty much every other country in the world, which all used their own measuring systems before hand, managed to standardise to metric.

[due to the wonderful nature of outsourcing not all measured commodities are produced in countries which exclusively have factories of one measurement either; a component bought in the USA may have been manufactured in Taiwan for instance]
Thank Napoleon.

10. Originally Posted by Ridley
I think, if Metric is so much simpler than imperial like everyone is saying here, it will/would eventually sink into the minds of Americans and its use will/would phase out imperial. But, I think having the government decree that "Everything now going to be in Metric" would cause great confusion, something like this needs to slowly penetrate the minds of individuals.
Perhaps they should focus on teaching the future generations rather then trying to pull a switch and change everything right away.

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12. Rumor has had it that we will be switching to metric since my grandfather was in school. Our system gives us an identity now and I believe we are still going to use it for a very long time despite the annoying conversions which are not by powers of 10.

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14. Originally Posted by Silverrida
Did they? How did they change without a bunch of impracticality?
I suppose they just produced components the same length as ever; there's no requirement to produce things in whole numbers of the measurement system you're using and no detriment in not doing so.

[at the time in history metric was successful because large military powers adopted the measurement but also because every country and even sometimes different regions and towns in the same country used different measurements, which lead to all sorts of inefficiencies]

If you're performing a calculation and the value of your measurement is very specific you just treat it like Pi by respresenting it as a symbol in calculations and then substituting the value in when you're done.

15. I dont think we should, at least not cold turkey.

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17. The USA has already re-defined their own imperial units, which were a variation of english units, so that they are more easily used alongside of SI units. So it appears there's a drift towards metric anyway.

18. Originally Posted by Rammjet
I suppose they just produced components the same length as ever; there's no requirement to produce things in whole numbers of the measurement system you're using and no detriment in not doing so.

[at the time in history metric was successful because large military powers adopted the measurement but also because every country and even sometimes different regions and towns in the same country used different measurements, which lead to all sorts of inefficiencies]

If you're performing a calculation and the value of your measurement is very specific you just treat it like Pi by respresenting it as a symbol in calculations and then substituting the value in when you're done.
I suppose that would work, but I feel that there would be no point in changing it at all then.

19. HELL No. I hear enough of it when Drexxo sits here and corrects me on every Standard measurement I end up using, he doesn't leave until I start saying it in metric. I HATE IT. So, no. Keep it standard, even if it is a pain in the arse.

20. Originally Posted by Silverrida
I suppose that would work, but I feel that there would be no point in changing it at all then.
It makes calculations easier, because you can count the units in base 10, no matter what the values are, and people find base 10 easier to count it. Therefore mental maths becomes faster, easier and less prone to human error.

You'd also get to ditch bothering to convert between metric and imperial units, which is another source of human error, and perhaps the occaisional space probe wouldn't crash because someone programmed it with non SI units, or an internal flight wouldn't try to fill up in pounds whilst the loading staff are putting in kilos.

It's very much about simplifying units, rather than changing values.

21. Originally Posted by Rammjet
It makes calculations easier, because you can count the units in base 10, no matter what the values are, and people find base 10 easier to count it. Therefore mental maths becomes faster, easier and less prone to human error.

You'd also get to ditch bothering to convert between metric and imperial units, which is another source of human error, and perhaps the occaisional space probe wouldn't crash because someone programmed it with non SI units, or an internal flight wouldn't try to fill up in pounds whilst the loading staff are putting in kilos.
I feel it's more the latter bit that would be affected. Base 10 is easy, but conversions aren't particularly difficult. Fortunately, all mathematics here seem to be taught in metric. My Chemistry and Physics courses have always been in metric.

22. the metric system confuses the crap out of me, mainly celsius.

also this isn't such a big deal, it would cause problems if we switched.

23. Originally Posted by Clifford
the metric system confuses the crap out of me, mainly celsius.

also this isn't such a big deal, it would cause problems if we switched.
This isn't about causing problems if you switch, it's about gaping holes in people's educations.
It's a system that is used nearly everywhere in the world, you're supposed to know it.

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25. Originally Posted by Chimpy
This isn't about causing problems if you switch, it's about gaping holes in people's (Mainly American's) educations.
It's a system that is used nearly everywhere in the world, you're supposed to know it.
I learned it briefly a while ago. I really see how it's that important, if I live in the US.
I mean, am I really going to have to use it?

26. Originally Posted by Clifford
the metric system confuses the crap out of me, mainly celsius.

also this isn't such a big deal, it would cause problems if we switched.
Anything is confusing if you know nothing or very little about it, silly.

27. Originally Posted by Clifford
I learned it briefly a while ago. I really see how it's that important, if I live in the US.
I mean, am I really going to have to use it?
Yes if you want a career in the sciences or if you want to live abroad, it's vitally important you understand the SI units and don't find them confusing.

If students grow up and don't get SI units their education is failing them.

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