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  1. #1
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    New question here. Please explain why England/US use a PERIOD between $ and cents & why Euros use COMMAS

    OK, this has intrigued/annoyed me for some time now and finally decided enough is enough, I can't explain it. A full stop/period to me signifies a stop, something different is after, that they do not mix/are swapable, hence the full stop/period used by the US, Britain and other "British" territories makes sense, using a coma does not, a comma to me means a pause or separator to help make it easier to read big values/numbers, i.e. 325,209,675. Anybody have any insight to this at all?
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  2. #2
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    My guess is Securities - the Numbers read the same regardless.
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  3. #3
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    I think you meant comma not coma

  4. #4
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    Ahh comma is the proper decimal separator - so it is used when you get into stuff that is smaller than one. 1,20 euro, 3,5 cm, 5,4 kg.

    To separate bigger numbers, a [space] works fine.

    1 000 000 000 = 1 Billion if you live in USA (elsewhere it isn't).
    edit: make it: "in lots of places it isn't"
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  5. #5
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    It's probably related to the reason why they report dates as DD/MM/YYYY and we use MM/DD/YYYY

    I agree it's odd, in math you use a decimal point, why do they not do the same for currency? It's the same thing ...
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    So then Europeans are not in a coma after all?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wv_bob View Post
    I agree it's odd, in math you use a decimal point,
    Nope. Decimal comma.

    edit: reference to the source of all wordly knowledge:
    Decimal mark - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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  8. #8
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    OK so they're consistently different. Or we are, since they came first.
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  9. #9
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    I don't care as long as one of you sends me one point five million dollars. I accept PayPal.

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    I've got connections across the pond but they only have the equivalent of 1,1 million. Sorry.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by wv_bob View Post
    OK so they're consistently different. Or we are, since they came first.
    Agreed, and why we, the USA, are in a anti-metric stronghold is baffling.
    Round and round we go

  12. #12
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    Because if we left the current system, the saying "a pint's a pound the world around" would become obsolete
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by theMeat View Post
    Agreed, and why we, the USA, are in a anti-metric stronghold is baffling.
    Decisions made by our government are a constant source of bafflement for me.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirty $anchez View Post
    I don't care as long as one of you sends me one point five million dollars. I accept PayPal.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by heyyall View Post
    Because if we left the current system, the saying "a pint's a pound the world around" would become obsolete
    Does that refer to
    1) Imperial pint
    2) US liquid pint
    3) US dry pint
    or
    4) some other pint?

    Oh. If the saying means that a pint of some substance always weighs a pound, what substance is it? Water doesn't seem to fit.

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  16. #16
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    In Quebec, dates are in the DD/MM/YY format. The decimal point is a comma.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    Does that refer to
    1) Imperial pint
    2) US liquid pint
    3) US dry pint
    or
    4) some other pint?

    Oh. If the saying means that a pint of some substance always weighs a pound, what substance is it? Water doesn't seem to fit.
    Exactly.
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  18. #18
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    Still don't get the comma thing, you have your $$ or Pounds and you want that clearly known, hence the full stop/period, then you have your cents/pence, 2 completely difference units of measurement If I trace this back I'm sure the comma thing comes from the "Frogs"

    The date thing in the US I think stems from writing it to match how you would say it, so March 25th 2013 becomes 03/25/2013, however it then gets confusing when it's March 3rd 03/03/2013. I Always right it out Month/Day/Year, but if just using numbers I go smallest to biggest DD/MM/YYYY.

    As to the Metric vs Imperial, I mix and match and just plain understand certain measurements in Imperial and not Metric and some in Metric and not Imperial....
    - Stem Length, Bar Width, Post length, Sus Travel, A2C=Metric in MM
    - ETT, Wheelbase, Standover, Wheel size=Imperial in Inches
    - Speed=Imperial in MPH, just can't register KMH

    All this even though we are full on Metric, but when I was growing up we used Imperial or at least a lot of stuff did
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    Do emoticons have the same meaning the world over?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Still don't get the comma thing, you have your $$ or Pounds and you want that clearly known, hence the full stop/period, then you have your cents/pence, 2 completely difference units of measurement
    Nope.
    There's a clear connection between Pounds and Pence, Euro and Cent or Dollar and Cent.

    One Cent is just 1/100 of a Dollar or Euro. The word "cent" derives from the Latin word "centum" meaning hundred

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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by wv_bob View Post
    Decisions made by our government are a constant source of bafflement for me.
    Actually back in the late 70's the government was trying to get the US to convert but it was the public's resistance to the change the killed the conversion. Although I imagine that the policy makers could have done something different, in the end it was the public that dictated that we stay away from metric. I don't understand why though, the metric system is so much easier to use and comprehend. Old habits die hard I suppose.

  22. #22
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    For some unknown reason beyond insanity, I remember this report coming out:
    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/GAOREPO...CED-95-156.pdf

    In 1996, the "guesstimate" for the cost of replacing the signs was $420,000,000. That would be roughly over $620,000,000 now just for the speed limit signs (if I recall correctly...didn't care to read the whole report). Throw in the mile markers on interstates, distances to cities signs, and exit numbers (which are almost universally the mile markers), the scope of recalibrating the US would be way beyond what anybody would consider reasonable at this point in time.
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  23. #23
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    That's a good reference. Cost is certainly a solid pragmatic reason for no conversion. Maybe some sort of grandfathering of signs could be a viable answer. As signs are replaced they could be replaced with updated versions that include metric units in addition to the standard English system units. Of course having some signs with one standard and others with both would inevitably be too complicated for most Americans, so never mind.

  24. #24
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    Except how much does it cost us not to get with the rest of the planet, and how much more expensive does it get the longer it takes us to.
    Right now it's Burma, Liberia, Somalia, and the U.S. that're unwilling. Does anyone else see a problem with this list?
    Round and round we go

  25. #25
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    Ya I've seen that list of holdouts and it's pretty dumb of us. However I don't know if it actually costs us anything, I'm sure it does somehow but I have never seen any figures. Unfortunately in these times of budget cuts and revenue shortfalls it's going to be a hard sell to add what many people view as frivolous or unnecessary costs to already burdened budgets.

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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by theMeat View Post
    Except how much does it cost us not to get with the rest of the planet, and how much more expensive does it get the longer it takes us to.
    Right now it's Burma, Liberia, Somalia, and the U.S. that're unwilling. Does anyone else see a problem with this list?
    Yep. The other 99% of the world is wrong


    Seriously, I think we should be on the metric system. We should have done it a generation ago. I suppose what you are saying is akin to the two best times to plant a shade tree: 20 years ago and today.



    I think there is a natural transition at work for most consumer goods. The quantity in a box or bottle is arbitrary and ever changing. We may be more on the metric system than we know already.
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  27. #27
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    MM/DD/YYYY just doesn't make any sense. DD/MM/YYYY - smallest unit (days) first. Then next smallest unit (months) then years makes perfect sense.

    I agree with the commas, should be a period.

    Also always reading temps in F is odd. 0C is the temp water freezes at, what is that in F? Although for high temps we often use F, 90F in the summer sounds better than 32C

  28. #28
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    Let's go metric. I'm tired of fractions. They are ****!

  29. #29
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    Date should be ANSI / ISO standard.

    yyyy.mm.dd

    no possible way to mistake month and day, as nobody would think year, day, month....

    and being a Computer Network Dude, it is a standard format so just makes sense to moi

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  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    Does that refer to
    1) Imperial pint
    2) US liquid pint
    3) US dry pint
    or
    4) some other pint?

    Oh. If the saying means that a pint of some substance always weighs a pound, what substance is it? Water doesn't seem to fit.
    It actually is water. A pint of water is a pound of weight, eight pounds in a gallon, therefor eight pints in a gallon. It's the only way I can keep our units straight without consulting the great interwebs. If I remember correctly, a milliliter of water at room temp (20* C) is a gram of weight. Water is nice for weights like that.

    I'm studying a science degree, so most of my schoolwork is in metric units already. It's a lot easier that way, anyways.
    Sometimes, I question the value of my content.

  31. #31
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    There's some history of the comma and period separators in this Wikipeedia page: Decimal mark - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    When it comes to metric and imperial systems, I really wouldn't be happy living in a house measured in metric units. It would be like living inside a scientific experiment. I also can't imagine cooking in a scientifc units like mL, it has to be teaspoons, cups, and ounces or it's just going to taste like sh!t.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bro View Post
    A pint of water is a pound of weight
    Is it?

    As far as I can find out:

    1 pound = 0,45359237 kg
    Imperial pint = 568,26125 millilitres (of water) = 0,56826125 kg
    US liquid pint = 473,176473 millilitres = 0,473176473 kg
    US dry pint = 550,6104713575 millilitres = 0,5506104713575 kg

    One milliliter of water at 20* C does weigh one gram.
    Water really is nice for weights like that (and pretty down to earth as a basis for temparature scales too).

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  33. #33
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    Well, honestly I guess it depends on which part of the world you are from, if you're from a lesser developed place there might be a lot of metals in the water and hence it'd be heavier
    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    Water really is nice for weights like that (and pretty down to earth as a basis for temparature scales too).
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reign2Rider View Post
    MM/DD/YYYY just doesn't make any sense. DD/MM/YYYY - smallest unit (days) first. Then next smallest unit (months) then years makes perfect sense.
    When someone asks you in a conversation what the date is, do you reply
    -May 14th, 2013
    or
    -The 14th of May, 2013

    Going by your standards digital clocks should read seconds, minutes, hours.

    Sounds weird, but who knows....

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    Please explain why England/US use a PERIOD between $ and cents & why Euros use

    In research with international sites, we try to use the format dd -mon - yyyy where dd is a two digit representation of day, mon is three letters of the month's name and a four digit year. Having the three places in the middle slows people for a second and they actually read the requested format.
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  36. #36
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    Please explain why England/US use a PERIOD between $ and cents & why Euros use

    I'm indifferent on the metric vs. imperial system, though I have to use the metric system in my chosen field of nursing.


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  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    Ahh comma is the proper decimal separator - so it is used when you get into stuff that is smaller than one. 1,20 euro, 3,5 cm, 5,4 kg.
    Majority of the world population uses ".", not comma. Blue on this map.

    Please explain why England/US use a PERIOD between $ and cents & why Euros use COMMAS-800px-20130228decimalseparator.svg.png

    Growing up in Russia I remember using ".", even as "," is officially correct. If I remember, even many calculators had "." instead of ",". Maybe they cloned TI too faithfully.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by perttime View Post
    Is it?

    As far as I can find out:

    1 pound = 0,45359237 kg
    Imperial pint = 568,26125 millilitres (of water) = 0,56826125 kg
    US liquid pint = 473,176473 millilitres = 0,473176473 kg
    US dry pint = 550,6104713575 millilitres = 0,5506104713575 kg

    One milliliter of water at 20* C does weigh one gram.
    Water really is nice for weights like that (and pretty down to earth as a basis for temparature scales too).

    A US liquid pint is near as dammit 1.04 LB weight in water at 63F. So not far off. An Imperial Pint (English) is somewhat more that a US pint, and even then there is dispute as to the correct measure, usually when you're in a pub and they serve you beer with froth on the head. Purists (alcoholics) will declare that the beer needs to be all the way to the rim, with no head, for it to be a 'proper' pint. Pub landlords will declare otherwise because if they fill all their glasses like this they will not make such a profit on each pint. Since they are mostly all getting gouged by the beer suppliers anyway, they have a good case.
    A successful landlord of a pub will get slightly smaller glasses and fill 'em all the way... at the end of the day no one gives a sh*t 'cos they're all drunk by then anyway. Tourists are usually happy with the frothy beers...
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  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    A US liquid pint is near as dammit 1.04 LB weight in water at 63F. So not far off.
    Sounds like almost close enough for measuring beer.
    I can imagine "pretty close" wouldn't cut it in some precise engineering task involving weights and volumes.

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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    A US liquid pint is near as dammit 1.04 LB weight in water at 63F. So not far off.
    Who puts water in a pint? It is about 1.1lb in beer - good beer that is.
    Last edited by Axe; 05-15-2013 at 03:07 PM.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Axe View Post
    Who puts water in a pint? It is about 1.1lb in beer - good beer that is.
    This thread is all about precision. We need to know what temperature the beer is at that weight. 63F as mentioned above?
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  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by heyyall View Post
    This thread is all about precision. We need to know what temperature the beer is at that weight. 63F as mentioned above?
    First of all you need to know if it is beer or piss. Then just follow the formulas:
    1. Specific Gravity & Plato Scale
    A solution's specific gravity (SG) is its density (g/ml) relative to water, and is easily measured with a hydrometer or other suitable instrument. Wort (unfermented beer) has a specific gravity greater than water due to the presence of sugars. Beer has a specific gravity less than wort because some of the sugars have been fermented into alcohol. Professional brewers often use the Plato (P) scale, instead of specific gravity, as a metric for the sugar levels in wort and beer. The Plato of a solution is equivalent to its percent by weight of sucrose and has dimension of (g equiv. sucrose)/(100 g solution). Thus, a 1% sucrose solution is a 1 P solution. For the same weight of other sugars, the Plato of a solution is slightly different. The relationship between Plato and specific gravity is nonlinear.

    Jan DeClerck [A Textbook of Brewing, 1957, reprinted by the Siebel Institute External in 1994] gives a least squares fit for conversion from specific gravity to Plato at 20 C. DeClerk's equation is used for all subsequent calculations below since it deviates from the values given by the ASBC ["Table 1" in: American Society of Brewing Chemists, 1992, Methods of Analysis of the ASBC. American Society of Brewing Chemists.] by less than 0.04% P from SG 1.010 to 1.083:
    (1) P = (-463.37) + (668.72 SG) - (205.35 SG2)

    Example: The specific gravity of a wort is 1.070 and that of the resulting beer is 1.015 at 20 C. What are the densities on the Plato scale?
    According to eq. 1
    P[initial] = Pi = (-463.37) + (668.72 1.070) - (205.35 1.0702) = 17.06
    P[final] = Pf = (-463.37) + (668.72 1.015) - (205.35 1.0152) = 3.82

    2. Real Extract
    Ethanol has a density of 0.79 g/ml at 20 C, so its presence in beer, along with the loss of sugars due to fermentation, also reduces the specific gravity of beer relative to wort. The "Real Extract" (RE, in P) is a measure of the sugars which are fermented and accounts for the density lowering effects of alcohol. The Real Extract is calculated from the initial and final densities (in P) and an old empirically derived formula from Karl Balling [see Homebrew Digest 880-9]:
    (2) RE = (0.1808 Pi) + (0.8192 Pf)

    Example: The specific gravity of a wort is 1.070 and that of the resulting beer is 1.015 (measured at 20 C). What is the Real Extract?
    According to eq. 2
    RE = (0.1808 17.06) + (0.8192 3.82) = 6.21 P

    3. Attenuation
    Attenuation is a measure of the degree to which sugar in wort has been fermented into alcohol in beer. Ceteris paribus, a sweet beer has more residual sugar and lower attenuation. Hydrometer measurements of the specific gravity before fermentation and after fermentation are used to determine attenuation. However, the residual sugars are not in a solution of pure water; rather they are in solution with water and ethanol, which has a density of 0.79 g/ml. Thus, many brewers give a number which must be called the "Apparent Attenuation" (AA):
    (3a) AA = 1 - [Pf / Pi]

    The "Real Attenuation" (RA) can be calculated from the RE (see eq. 2) and the initial density, Pi:
    (3b) RA = 1 - [RE / Pi]

    4. Alcohol Level
    Given the OG and FG, several empirically derived formulas estimate the alcohol content (alcohol-by-volume, ABV in (ml alcohol)/(ml beer)) of beer. Dave Miller (The Complete Handbook of Homebrewing, 1988, Storey Communications) gives a simple formula, where the easy-to-remember constant (0.75) has dimension of (g beer)/(ml ethanol):
    (4a) ABV = (OG - FG) / 0.75

    A convenient number (to be used in eq. 5 below) is the percent alcohol by weight (ABW) of beer, which has dimension of (g ethanol)/(100 g beer). This is easily calculated from the ABV, the density of ethanol (0.79 g/ml), and the FG:
    (4b) ABW = (0.79 ABV) / FG

    If the FG of the beer is unknown, but it has "normal" levels of alcohol and attenuation, then the ABW may be estimated as:
    (4c) ABW = (0.78 ABV)

    George Fix [see Homebrew Digest 880-9] gives another formula, proposed by Karl Balling many years ago:
    (4d) ABW = [Pi - RE] / [2.0665 - (0.010665 Pi)]

    Jan DeClerk [A Textbook of Brewing, 1957, reprinted by the Siebel Institute External in 1994] also gives a method for estimating the percent alcohol by weight (ABW) of beer based on measurements of the specific gravity (FG) and refractive index (RI) of beer. Unfortunately, DeClerk expresses refractive index in "Zeiss Units", an out-dated metric. Louis Bonham [see Homebrew Digest 2923-13 & Homebrew Digest 2925-3] converted DeClerk's Zeiss Units to the more commonly used Refractive Index (RI):
    (4e) ABW = 1018. - (277.4 FG) + RI [(937.8 RI) - 1805.]
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    Wow - this is why teh interwebs suck royal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haint View Post
    Wow - this is why teh interwebs suck royal.
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  45. #45
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    This clip wouldn't be the same without a decimal point.

    <iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/mjCRUvX2D0E" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
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    And those English wankers drive on the wrong side of the road too!
    Axle Standards Explained

    Founder at North Atlantic Dirt, riding & writing about trails in the northeast.

  47. #47
    ~Disc~Golf~
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    Quote Originally Posted by Reign2Rider View Post
    MM/DD/YYYY just doesn't make any sense. DD/MM/YYYY - smallest unit (days) first. Then next smallest unit (months) then years makes perfect sense.

    I agree with the commas, should be a period.

    Also always reading temps in F is odd. 0C is the temp water freezes at, what is that in F? Although for high temps we often use F, 90F in the summer sounds better than 32C
    it's about how it's spoken...
    September 23rd, 1973
    vs
    23rd day of September in the year of Nineteenhundred....................

    And not to mention, localizing a time-frame makes more sense - does any one of 1-31 days stand out? not really
    Do names of the month stand out? - yes.

    done.
    dd/mm/yy is whack
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  48. #48
    Axe
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    Quote Originally Posted by highdelll View Post
    dd/mm/yy is whack
    I disagree. YYYY-MM-DD is nicer, but at least do not flip the order.

  49. #49
    MTB B'dos
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    If you right it down in words May 16th 2013, but if you right it down in number 16/05/2013 and I think this is where the problem, at least with this aspect falls. Americans like to translate exactly from words to numbers, but it's easier to understand if you works from the smaller unit to the big when writing numbers, or I guess vice versa, but that's how the world generally works when writing numbers down, so makes sense.


    Quote Originally Posted by highdelll View Post
    it's about how it's spoken...
    September 23rd, 1973
    vs
    23rd day of September in the year of Nineteenhundred....................

    And not to mention, localizing a time-frame makes more sense - does any one of 1-31 days stand out? not really
    Do names of the month stand out? - yes.

    done.
    dd/mm/yy is whack
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
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  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by heyyall View Post
    For some unknown reason beyond insanity, I remember this report coming out:
    http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/GAOREPO...CED-95-156.pdf

    In 1996, the "guesstimate" for the cost of replacing the signs was $420,000,000. That would be roughly over $620,000,000 now just for the speed limit signs (if I recall correctly...didn't care to read the whole report). Throw in the mile markers on interstates, distances to cities signs, and exit numbers (which are almost universally the mile markers), the scope of recalibrating the US would be way beyond what anybody would consider reasonable at this point in time.
    That's why we (the British) still use MPH and pints despite going decimal, it was too costly to swap to KPH and litres.

    Pragmatism - It's underrated.

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