Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

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horizon
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Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby horizon » 2 Nov 2015, 1:44pm

This has probably been discussed before but I think it deserves another outing.

For better or worse we do still have a dual system of weights and measures in the UK. I'm fairly relaxed about this, find the metric system easier to use but don't mind the odd pound or pint popping up either.

However weight is obviously a key issue for cyclists and dominates discussion on tents, frame materials, what to take touring, obesity and more - it's a key indicator. I do keep records of various things like tent weights and these I now do in kg for consistency and comparison.

On the forum though, people use pounds and kilogrammes in roughly equal proportion (especially as US weights are still in pounds) and historically bike weights even in the UK were quoted in pounds. So I fully respect other people's sense of what makes sense in pounds or kg. Stones seem to be disappearing though (I wish they were! Ed.)

So my suggestion is that when weights are quoted in the forum that we use both (it's a two second job to get the equivalent on Google) and put the alternative in brackets or whatever. That way the reading is easier, even if the posting takes a little bit longer.

Any views on this?
When the pestilence strikes from the East, go far and breathe the cold air deeply. Ignore the sage, stay not indoors. Ho Ri Zon 12th Century Chinese philosopher

Psamathe
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Re: Pounds or kilograms on the forum?

Postby Psamathe » 2 Nov 2015, 1:58pm

For weights I find Kg far easier.
For volumes Litres
For distances miles
For lengths feet or meters equally ok

Interestingly, it depends on what is being measured. For example how much a person weights and I know my own weight in Kg and have no clue about it is terms of stone/lbs. But talking about e.g. the obesity crisis and stones makes more sense to me than Kg.

When I do carpentry I always use metric, and yards only make sense as I just call them meters. But 100ft and I have to convert to meters.

°F I have no clue about; has to be °C

I suspect it might be from what units your measuring device uses. My bathroom and kitchen scales are set to metric so in general weights in Kg. When I lived in France the speedometer/odometer in my car was in Km and I used Km in my head. But now having been back in the UK for sometime with a car and bike which use miles and I've lost the Km. Carpentry/land, my tapes are metric so its cm/m. etc.

Ian

oldmanonabike
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby oldmanonabike » 2 Nov 2015, 2:06pm

I prefer Lbs and Miles and i'm to old and grumpy to change
I'm not getting older,just gaining more experience

Psamathe
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby Psamathe » 2 Nov 2015, 2:13pm

Just discussed/mentioned on a different thread was how the forum software scans posts and modifies them to remove certain words it does not like. Words like <i>[derogatory word removed]</i> or <i>[derogatory word removed]</i> (ooops). On some forums you even have to write "k i t c h e n". So can is also scan for <number>lbs or <number>Km, etc. and do a modification to "<number>lbs (<different number>Kg)". Can't be difficult from a software perspective.

Ian

profpointy
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby profpointy » 2 Nov 2015, 11:19pm

pedant alert: small "k" for kg and km please.
Avoids confusion with the less well know Kelvin- metre and kelvin-gram.

Admittedly I'd have to think pretty hard for a use for these....

Psamathe
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby Psamathe » 2 Nov 2015, 11:22pm

profpointy wrote:pedant alert: small "k" for kg and km please.
Avoids confusion with the less well know Kelvin- metre and kelvin-gram.

Admittedly I'd have to think pretty hard for a use for these....

Ooops. Sorry.

It does seem a bit inconsistent with the M and G prefixes being upper case but not the k (or maybe I've just demonstrated my ignorance even more)

Ian

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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby profpointy » 2 Nov 2015, 11:45pm

Psamathe wrote:
profpointy wrote:pedant alert: small "k" for kg and km please.
Avoids confusion with the less well know Kelvin- metre and kelvin-gram.

Admittedly I'd have to think pretty hard for a use for these....

Ooops. Sorry.

It does seem a bit inconsistent with the M and G prefixes being upper case but not the k (or maybe I've just demonstrated my ignorance even more)

Ian


Quite - which is irritating and kind-of wrong of SI is it breaks the small letter for smaller prefix, big for bigger. I guess once they'd used K for Kelvin they were stuck. Wouldn't it be nicer the other way round with small k for kelvin etc

Maybe we should adopt the triple-f system instead fortnight furlong furking. Presumably with Farenheight temparature for the 4th F. Can then safely use big K for kilo-furlongs per milli-fortnight. That'd work

Psamathe
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby Psamathe » 2 Nov 2015, 11:58pm

profpointy wrote:
Psamathe wrote:
profpointy wrote:pedant alert: small "k" for kg and km please.
Avoids confusion with the less well know Kelvin- metre and kelvin-gram.

Admittedly I'd have to think pretty hard for a use for these....

Ooops. Sorry.

It does seem a bit inconsistent with the M and G prefixes being upper case but not the k (or maybe I've just demonstrated my ignorance even more)

Ian


Quite - which is irritating and kind-of wrong of SI is it breaks the small letter for smaller prefix, big for bigger. I guess once they'd used K for Kelvin they were stuck. Wouldn't it be nicer the other way round with small k for kelvin etc

Maybe we should adopt the triple-f system instead fortnight furlong furking. Presumably with Farenheight temparature for the 4th F. Can then safely use big K for kilo-furlongs per milli-fortnight. That'd work

I always loved the speed of light in furlongs per fortnight (illustrated what a useless measurement it was) but can never remember what the value actually is (maybe because I never use it). 1.8 terafurlongs per fortnight (just looked it up).

Ian

axel_knutt
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby axel_knutt » 3 Nov 2015, 12:31am

Psamathe wrote:I always loved the speed of light in furlongs per fortnight (illustrated what a useless measurement it was) but can never remember what the value actually is (maybe because I never use it). 1.8 terafurlongs per fortnight (just looked it up).

Ian


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gaz
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby gaz » 3 Nov 2015, 7:16pm

Neither, weights should be posted in Newtons :wink: .
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irc
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby irc » 3 Nov 2015, 7:46pm

I'm of the age that I learned arithmetic when we used pounds, shillings and pence. I use a mix of metric and imperial measures. I'm fairly flexible though for some reason Km is just wrong for distances. If i want to assess how much of effort it is or how good a day it was whether hillwalking or cycling miles is where it's at.

Though I'm not fussy about what others use. Easy enough for a rough mental conversion. Km - Miles x 5/8ths
L - pints x 1.8
kg - pounds x 2.2 etc.

Though being of the generations who had mental arithmetic drilled into us helps. I worked with a graduate who couldn't subtract the car's starting mileage from the end mileage for the daily total without writing it out as a sum. Though the classic was when buying a £119.99 tumble drier. When asked for a deposit of at least 10% I said "make it £19.99." The assistant then used a calculator to tell me there would be £100 left to pay.

Psamathe
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby Psamathe » 3 Nov 2015, 7:58pm

irc wrote:I'm of the age that I learned arithmetic when we used pounds, shillings and pence. I use a mix of metric and imperial measures.

Likewise.

One thing that I'm often surprised about is mapping software. In their preferences/settings you get to chose Imperial or Metric settings. So you have miles & feet or Km & meters. But in the UK we seem to use Miles & meters (at least I do)!

Ian

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Mick F
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby Mick F » 4 Nov 2015, 9:40am

I use miles and yards!
Feet is for distances less than a yard.
Luckily, my Garmin Montana can be set for miles and yards (despite being a US bit of kit.

It can also mix the measurements.
I can have DegF or DegC, elevation in metres or feet, distances in Kms or Miles ........... and miles and feet, or miles and yards.
Mick F. Cornwall

Mark1978
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby Mark1978 » 4 Nov 2015, 11:17am

You get used to different measures for different purposes.

For distance on the road exclusively miles and miles per hour. Because that's what our roads and road signage is designed with, and everyone you talk to understands miles and miles per hour. I think those who use km and km/h for cycling in the UK are just trying to be contrary for the sake of it ;). Similarly climbing in feet.

Temperature, degC - don't understand F at all.

Smaller distances, then mm and metres are more useful.

For weight, I understand kg, I know what my weight is in kg (81) and where I want to get to (70). But the problem is most people you talk to do not understand that, they only know stones, but most online systems and apps don't understand stones, just kg or lbs, so you effectively have to deal with three systems!

The biggest issue always is that you may understand one system perfectly well, but that does you no good at all unless others can understand it too.

Psamathe
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Re: Pounds or kilogrammes on the forum?

Postby Psamathe » 4 Nov 2015, 12:32pm

One unusual thing is that petrol consumption is thought of as miles per gallon yet for quite some time we've purchased petrol in litres. Or maybe I'm just rather out of date.

Ian