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Re: AMSAT-NA totally metric?



At 06:48 AM 1/21/2007, you wrote:

>Here is an excerpt on the Canadian metric conversion experience. 
>Still today we
>tend to convert to the old english system (old generation) but the new
>generation are fully imbedded in the SI system.

Conversion was pretty painless in Australia.  I recall the latter 
years of dual measurements, just before we went metric 
only.  Nowadays, everyone uses metric for weather related parameters, 
temperature, wind speed, pressure.  For everyday use, most people use 
metric or a mix of metric and the older units in everyday 
conversation.  I am well versed in both systems, because of the time 
I grew up with and a natural aptitude for dealing with different 
measurements, and these days, I can do a lot of common conversions in 
real time in my head (as reasonably close approximations).


>The harder part is the temperature system and the volume measures. A big plus
>it is a decimal based system no more 1/64 1/32 and so on odd fraction. As in
>Asterix a small village still resist the conversion...

Temperature seemed to be easier here, one rarely hears anyone use 
Farenheit here.  Volume has some lingering artefacts (e.g. people 
still speak of "44 gallon drums", not "205 litre drums").


>I remember the advertisement campaign at that time "don't convert 
>think metric"
>easier to say than doing.

I can still think in terms of either system directly, without having 
to convert. :)

In any case, when it comes to mathematical purposes, SI units are 
much easier to deal with - less oddball constants that have to be 
thrown into equations.  I'm glad my university days were long after 
conversion to SI here. :-)  And the speed of light happens to be a 
much nicer constant to work with (for calculating propagation delays 
and wavelengths).  300,000,000 m/s is much easier than 186,000 
miles/sec for quick mental calculations! ;)

73 de VK3JED
http://vkradio.com

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