Re: Metric Time (was Re: Why not 13 months? (Was La Systeme Metrique))

Edward Rice (
Sat, 14 Oct 1995 14:13:32 -0500

In article <45mfnp$qe3@elaine10.Stanford.EDU>,
jchrist@leland.Stanford.EDU (Jock Robert Ian Christie) wrote:
> I will provide a simple example using the both temperature scales.
> Similar (easy) example could be made using distances or masses.
> Very few of us can distinguish between 20 C (68 F) and 21 C (70 F)
> If you can get the "hang" of the table below, you will be well
> to understand this very simple (and logical) temperature system.
> Really Cold -40 C -40 F
> Cold -20 C -4 F
> Freezing 0 C 32 F
> Chilly 10 C 50 F
> Nice 20 C 68 F
> Warm 30 C 86 F
> Body Temperature 37 C 98.6 F
> Hot 40 C 104 F
> Boiling 100 C 212 F

In this age of binary computers, we have a MUCH better system:

Really cold: -32 F
Cold: 0 F
Freezing: 32 F
Pleasant: 64 F
Arizona: 128 F

See? As you pointed out yourself, fine details of temperature measure are
wasted because we can't distinguish between them. I'll go you one better
and suggest that even broader measurements, such as those above, are
perfectly acceptable, since we can't /do/ anything about the finer details
of temperature anyway (except for moving out of central Arizona).

Here's a useful chart that will help you get your mind off all your metric

Really Cold -40 F -40 C Stay indoors
Cold 0 F -17.777 C Ski (for us with hills)
Freezing 32 F 0 C Not "nothing," just freezing!
Chilly 40 F 4.4444 C See how silly Celsius is?
Cool 50F 10 C Jacket or sweater
Nice 70 F 21.1111 C Shirt-sleeves
Warm 80 F 26.6666 C Swimming
Body Temperature 98.6 F 37 C (Both have changed, tell your
doctor! )
Hot 100 F 37.7777 C Sleep in the sun
Boiling 212 F 100 C Don't need numbers for this,

Now, it's OBVIOUS from the table above that the basic range of human
activity falls tidily into the Fahrenheit scale, whilst you English and
Europeans must use continuing fractions for such everyday decisions as
"long sleeve or short" or "#8 sunscreen, or will the #6 do as well?" Don't
make me laugh.

> If you are really desperate for a sloppy equation of thumb.
> deg_C = 0.5*(deg_F - 30); /* Not right, but close */

Nobody's THAT desperate. Do you take us for fools?