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From: Martin Bonner (Martin.Bonner_at_[hidden])
Date: 2007-03-27 04:37:49

Phil Endecott wrote:
> - Am I the only person who uses capital letters for units named after
> people? Hmm, maybe I am.
Probably not, but anybody who does for SI units is wrong :-). Units
named after people are spelt with a lower case letter (eg newton, watt),
but their symbol is an upper case letter (eg N, W).

> - Please don't call the units used in the U.S. "English" units. Here
> in England, we use the S.I. system for everything except pints of beer
> and miles on roadsigns.
a) You are on a loser here. The system is called "English" in the US
(and there are more of them than there are of us). (For another
example, the "English Muffin" is nothing like any item of food you can
find in the UK.)
b) The situation is /much/ more complex than that. I buy my petrol in
litres, but still think in consumption in mpg. I measure carpentry in
inches and mm depending on which gives the roundest number. I am just
starting to weigh out 250g flour to make pastry rather than 8oz. I have
posted to a newsgroup "How much rock for a rockery on a slope two feet
high, 12.5 metres long?".

> The units that we did use here until about 50
> years ago
The change is much more recent than that. We were taught SI in science
30 years ago, but almost everything was done in Imperial. My son on the
other hand, can barely visualize an inch.
> were not the same as the ones that the Americans use.
It's only the volume that is different (afaik).

Martin Bonner
Project Leader
Telephone: +44 1223 441434 / 203894 (direct)
Fax: +44 1223 203999
Email: martin.bonner_at_[hidden]

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