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Wrong measurement

Friday, January 26, 2018 - 12:08

From Sam Turner, Sandown:
A LETTER roused me in last week’s CP (19-01-18). It actually got me out of the house walking the streets. 
In fact, the letter so inspired me I decided to travel further afield and was soon back home and out in the car. And, yes, my initial thoughts were confirmed: Britain still uses imperial measurements of yards and miles for all road signs, lanes and bridleways.
How is it then that Tony Cooper in his letter quoted all his road measurements in metres and kilometres, talking of 400 metres here and 600 metres there — measurements of which are not in use for roads and distances in Britain?
Back home it had me reaching for my calculator, where knowing the conversion factor, metres divided by 0.9144 = yards, gave me: 600 metres = 656 yards. Quite a difference in physical numbers you will agree and thus quite confusing too.
And, further, this confusion of mixing Imperial measurements with metric measurements has actually been blamed over the years for the failure of some NASA space missions — mixing components made to English imperial measurements in the USA with components manufactured to the metric system in Europe.
So, to set the record straight, assuming Mr Cooper’s metric measurement is correct for the distance from the Kite Hill/Fishbourne Lane junction to the ferry terminal, we would want to see it properly written, in Britain at least, as 656 yards.
On an historical note, Nikola Tesla said: if you understand the numbers three, six and nine, you understand the universe. How true. And, has anyone ever used a metric ten-hour clock or wristwatch. Of course not. Even further still, metric division can become quite difficult — what is a third of one yard? 1ft (or 12ins). What is a third of one metre? 33.333333333333333 centimetres, which is absurd and finitely, therefore, irresolvable.
Perhaps there is a reason why we have stayed with yards and miles in Britain, as history does tell us that imperial measures have evolved naturally and mathematically since the dawn of time. Conversely, the metric system, dreamed-up in recent times, is entirely artificial.
I have seen mix and match in use in our shops, but on our roads, I don’t think so.

 


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