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Posted by Michael Pardee on April 21, 2006, 11:23 pm
 

I have a full set of metric sockets... with 1/4, 3/8 and 1/2 inch drive. A
friend showed me his new 23mm wrench, and it measured exactly 11 inches
long. I can get to anywhere "metric" measurements are standard by flying at
flight levels measured in thousands of feet and at speeds measured in knots.
Dunno about recent semiconductors, but historically IC lead spacing has been
specified in thousandths of an inch. How much of the imperial unit system
are you using? Are construction materials there measured entirely in metric,
and your ceilings 2.44m high?

This is one of my pet peeves: the French created several weird "base 10"
systems in the aftermath of the revolution, including a calendar with ten
months (today is the first day of Floreal CCXIV) and a day with ten hours,
but it seems only the metric system caught on. (Although renaming holidays
after vegetables and such instead of saints has an odd appeal...) It really
is a terrible idea, compounding the Romans' mistake of using a base 10
number system. Base 12 is far more useful, since a dozen can be divided by
2, 3, 4, or 6. 10 can only be divided by 2 and 5. That problem carries over
into mechanical engineering, where measurements are divided by 3 or 4 more
often than they are divided by 5.

It could have been worse, I guess - it could have been base 11. Anyway, the
world would be a better place if the French republic had worked to replace
the base 10 number system with base 12, then to correct the oddities (like
the mile) to match.

Mike



Posted by Michelle Steiner on April 22, 2006, 5:27 am
 


Why is it that odometers are marked in tenths of a mile (at least the
trip odometers are; total-distance ones seem to have dropped the
fractions), but highway signs are in quarters and halves of a mile?

--
Stop Mad Cowboy Disease:  Impeach the son of a Bush.

Posted by Bill on April 22, 2006, 5:34 am
 

Because we have yet to find intelligent life in the universe.  Thank
goodness I have an English/metric crescent wrench.



Posted by Mike Rosenberg on April 18, 2006, 10:31 pm
 

I occasionally drive between Jacksonville, FL, and the DC suburbs in
Maryland, and these are the only times when I generally drive in the
75-80 mph range (not counting when I'm stationary on the Capitol
Beltway).  On these trips, I average only 41-43 MPG, as compared to my
usual 46-48.  I usually fill up when the digital gauge gets down to one
tick, taking on 9-10 gallons.  So... that's 360-425 miles per tank.

--
Mike Rosenberg
<http://www.macconsult.com>  Macintosh consulting services for NE Florida
<http://www.cafepress.com/macconsult,macconsult4>  Mac-themed T-shirts
<http://bogart-tribute.net>  Tribute to Humphrey Bogart

Posted by Bob Wilson on April 18, 2006, 11:59 pm
 

My answer for an 03 Prius, NHW11 model:

http://hiwaay.net/~bzwilson/prius/

On a recent 14 hour trip to Kansas City and the return, I made it a
point to pull off and take a break every 2-3 hours. Because of the fuel
efficiency, I stopped shopping for gas beyond driving past the first
cluster of gas stations at the exits.

The current 06 Prius gets better performance:

http://www.greenhybrid.com/compare/mileage/

Come join us when you pickup the car and we'll share the FAQ.

Bob Wilson

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