## km or miles??

When drugs don't work: training and health tips!
T.M.H.N.E.T
Posts: 2337
Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2011 15:20 pm

### Re: km or miles??

I've never used Fahrenheit.

So is it, "we" or "you"?

Trev The Rev
Posts: 1005
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 09:10 am

### Re: km or miles??

big p wrote:it's a peculiar British trait, when it feels cold we refer to the temperature in degrees Celsius, but when it's warm we use Fahrenheit.

we use the metric system for money and measurement of physical items like tools and nut's and bolts but use the imperial system to weigh stuff and find out how far we are from home.

dumb to say the least.

Torque is in lbs/feet, power in horse power, measurement in inches, feet, yards, miles, the stupid thing was joining in with this French weights & measures system.

dodgy
Posts: 2689
Joined: Sun May 27, 2007 15:09 pm

### Re: km or miles??

In Britain, only triantelopes or runners measure in KM, it's because it sounds more impressive to their equally rubbish friends.

springtide9
Posts: 1636
Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 23:30 pm

### Re: km or miles??

Trev The Rev wrote:
big p wrote:it's a peculiar British trait, when it feels cold we refer to the temperature in degrees Celsius, but when it's warm we use Fahrenheit.

we use the metric system for money and measurement of physical items like tools and nut's and bolts but use the imperial system to weigh stuff and find out how far we are from home.

dumb to say the least.

Torque is in lbs/feet, power in horse power, measurement in inches, feet, yards, miles, the stupid thing was joining in with this French weights & measures system.

Good point..... apart from pretty much every scientist and technologist across the world nowadays uses metric for any calculations

It makes more sense to switch to metric, especially when you work in technology as the units are much easier to deal with when using Base10 for units.

The problem is, like many like me, in their early 40s, they were initially taught on school with imperial measurements, but switched half way though school. If you are a little older, you'll be more biased with imperial measurements. If younger, then the chances are you'll be more metric biased.

I know people dislike change, but really we as a nation should have stopped following the USA and switched like the rest of the world to metric. As it currently is, as the poster stated above, we have this ridiculous hybrid concept where dependant on application, we will randomly switch units.
Simon

springtide9
Posts: 1636
Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 23:30 pm

### Re: km or miles??

dodgy wrote:In Britain, only triantelopes or runners measure in KM, it's because it sounds more impressive to their equally rubbish friends.

Not true... when was the last time you heard a runner mention they were running a 3 minute kilometre ? The distances of the various events are based on where the event was created... so if it's an 'international standard' event, the international standard for measurement is metric! As above, it's just pretty much the UK and the USA who use imperial.... and we won't change because the USA wouldn't like it!
Simon

Tom Dean
Posts: 1650
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2011 08:08 am

### Re: km or miles??

Trev The Rev wrote:power in horse power
Irrelevant if you don't believe in measuring it surely
Also torque is lbs ft, not lbs/ft.

Trev The Rev
Posts: 1005
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 09:10 am

### Re: km or miles??

Tom Dean wrote:
Trev The Rev wrote:power in horse power
Irrelevant if you don't believe in measuring it surely
Also torque is lbs ft, not lbs/ft.

Torque is often expressed as lbs/ft such as here,

http://www.mr2ownersclub.com/converter.htm

but you are technically correct.

I don't have a problem measuring, only the obsessive analysis of data.

springtide9
Posts: 1636
Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 23:30 pm

### Re: km or miles??

jimlennon wrote:Miles/h, you should make sure it from your habit in your country.

So we keep all units in imperial ..... So what's your FTP in Horse Power?
Should we request a firmware update for our Garmin/Powertap to display HP?

I think most people have finally migrated away from Fahrenheit... you never see it quoted on TV for the weather.

Being serious, we have finally migrated pretty much all measurements to metric, apart from distance/speed. Imperial hasn't been taught in school for probably a decade or even two.
I would guess the average 20 year old only knows about 'Miles' from when they start learning to drive. Why we can't make the final switch is beyond logic. I guess we are still ultimately ruled by the USA, with our 'special friendship'.
Simon

Trev The Rev
Posts: 1005
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 09:10 am

### Re: km or miles??

springtide9 wrote:
jimlennon wrote:Miles/h, you should make sure it from your habit in your country.

So we keep all units in imperial ..... So what's your FTP in Horse Power?
Should we request a firmware update for our Garmin/Powertap to display HP?

I think most people have finally migrated away from Fahrenheit... you never see it quoted on TV for the weather.

Being serious, we have finally migrated pretty much all measurements to metric, apart from distance/speed. Imperial hasn't been taught in school for probably a decade or even two.
I would guess the average 20 year old only knows about 'Miles' from when they start learning to drive. Why we can't make the final switch is beyond logic. I guess we are still ultimately ruled by the USA, with our 'special friendship'.

300 watts is approx 0.4 Horse Power. If you grew up using horse power it is difficult to 'feel' in watts. They still use horse power in the motor industry. I think shipping still use nautical miles and aircraft nautical miles and feet for altitude.

We still have Greenwich Mean Time or 'ZULU' as the Americans like to call it.

GiantMike
Posts: 3162
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 09:41 am

### Re: km or miles??

Trev The Rev wrote:We still have Greenwich Mean Time or 'ZULU' as the Americans like to call it.

'ZULU' as the military call it, equating to local time on the Greenwich Meridian. When the clocks change over the summer 'ALPHA' becomes the LOCAL time, and 'ZULU' remains as the GMT datum. So, sometimes ALPHA is LOCAL and sometimes ZULU is LOCAL. In other countries DELTA or SIERRA might be LOCAL. Most military operations and operations run on ZULU time as a common datum. For example, if you're a soldier on the ground in Afghanistan and you want to call in an airstrike, you'd use ZULU as the reference. It can get confusing because there is a 3.5 or 4.5 hour difference between LOCAL and ZULU in Afghanistan.

Anyway, back to measurements. I say use what you like as long as you know the conversion factors. If somebody says they rode 78kms I know what they mean in miles (and furlongs). If somebody says they climbed 230m I know what that is in feet. If somebody tells me I'm using the wrong units I'd tell them to f*ck off.
my power improvement experiment blog

Rule number 100: It's your bike and your money and your time; do what you like with it and ignore other peoples' rules. Except this one.

springtide9
Posts: 1636
Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 23:30 pm

### Re: km or miles??

Trev The Rev wrote:
springtide9 wrote:
jimlennon wrote:Miles/h, you should make sure it from your habit in your country.

So we keep all units in imperial ..... So what's your FTP in Horse Power?
Should we request a firmware update for our Garmin/Powertap to display HP?

I think most people have finally migrated away from Fahrenheit... you never see it quoted on TV for the weather.

Being serious, we have finally migrated pretty much all measurements to metric, apart from distance/speed. Imperial hasn't been taught in school for probably a decade or even two.
I would guess the average 20 year old only knows about 'Miles' from when they start learning to drive. Why we can't make the final switch is beyond logic. I guess we are still ultimately ruled by the USA, with our 'special friendship'.

300 watts is approx 0.4 Horse Power. If you grew up using horse power it is difficult to 'feel' in watts. They still use horse power in the motor industry. I think shipping still use nautical miles and aircraft nautical miles and feet for altitude.

We still have Greenwich Mean Time or 'ZULU' as the Americans like to call it.

But I guess that is the point... you grew up with Imperial, so that is what you are used too. But as a nation (GB) we decided to switch to metric. I'm 43, and my initial schooling was all imperial measurements, but ended with metric.
Talk to a (even intelligent) 16 year old about feet and inches and you'll generally get a blank expression.

Now this is what really shows how ridiculous things are with distance measurements, that I (and many other people that I talk too), know that there are roughly 1600 Metres in a Mile, but have no interest how many Feet or Yards are in a Mile. It just shows that even if we use the "Imperial Mile" for the larger distance measurements, most people are using metric distance measurements for pretty much all other calculations... and it obviously keeps your brain in gear converting the measurements between the two, constantly.

The bottom line is that imperial is a dead measurement system, but for some reason we can't let distance measurements go. I think it was stated that it would confuse us on the roads, but it's probably more likely that no government wants to (a) spend the money or (b) upset the older generation voters
Working with Base10 units is so much easier than with the "old" imperial. Any calculations that matter are done using metric units, but converted back to imperial so that the older generations can understand.

But it's OK, the only people who care about Imperial measurements are people over 40.... but are obviously the decision makers in various industries. In 20 years time, these people will be retired and Imperial measurements will retire with them. Until then, we'll keep this hybrid alive for us old timers.
Last edited by springtide9 on Thu Oct 25, 2012 09:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
Simon

Alex_Simmons/RST
Posts: 3725
Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2007 08:19 am

### Re: km or miles??

springtide9 wrote:Being serious, we have finally migrated pretty much all measurements to metric, apart from distance/speed. Imperial hasn't been taught in school for probably a decade or even two.
I would guess the average 20 year old only knows about 'Miles' from when they start learning to drive. Why we can't make the final switch is beyond logic. I guess we are still ultimately ruled by the USA, with our 'special friendship'.

Australia went completely metric in the 1970s, and to decimal currency in the 1960s.

springtide9
Posts: 1636
Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 23:30 pm

### Re: km or miles??

Alex_Simmons/RST wrote:
springtide9 wrote:Being serious, we have finally migrated pretty much all measurements to metric, apart from distance/speed. Imperial hasn't been taught in school for probably a decade or even two.
I would guess the average 20 year old only knows about 'Miles' from when they start learning to drive. Why we can't make the final switch is beyond logic. I guess we are still ultimately ruled by the USA, with our 'special friendship'.

Australia went completely metric in the 1970s, and to decimal currency in the 1960s.

You could write a thesis on the Metrifiaction of the UK:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metricatio ... ed_Kingdom

Initiation of a national education programme in the schools
In England and Wales, unlike Scotland, education was controlled at county council level rather than at national level. In 1967 the Department for Education alerted all local education authorities to the need to adapt to the metric system. In 1968 all bodies that had an interest in the examination system were invited to contribute to the discussion of both metrication and decimalisation in education. In science subjects, this meant a conversion from the cgs system to SI, in geography from the imperial system to SI while in mathematics it meant discarding the teaching of mixed unit arithmetic, a topic that took up a significant part of the time allocated in primary schools to arithmetic/mathematics and 7% of total time allocated to all subjects.

Old-fashioned schoolroom at The Ragged School Museum, with pre-decimal-currency conversions on the blackboard
In Scotland, virtually all examinations set in 1973 onwards used SI, especially those connected with science and engineering.[50] In England, each examination board had its own timetable – the Oxford Delegacy of Local Examinations for example announced a change to SI in 1968 with examinations in science and mathematics using SI by the 1972, Geography in 1973 and Home Economics and various craft subjects being converted by the end of 1976. . The changes were hampered by a revolution in teaching methods that was taking place at the same time and a lack of coordination at the national level. A report in 1982 noted that children were taught the relationship between decimal counting, decimal money and metric measurements, with time being the only quantity whose units were manipulated in a mixed-unit manner.
The biggest change in education in England since the 1970s was the introduction in 1988 of the National Curriculum, in which SI is the principal system of measurement and calculation. However, pupils are expected to know how to convert between metric and imperial units that are still in everyday use, specifically "pounds, feet, miles, pints and gallons", and conversion between the two systems is given as an example of numerical problems students should be able to solve. The National Curriculum makes no mention of the manipulation of imperial units, and activity that Workman, when writing his book "The Tutorial Arithmetic" in 1902, bemoaned as "...half a year of school life ... entirely wasted for every English boy in learning the arithmetical devices necessary for managing the "weights and measures" previously explained."

In 1995, educationalist Jenny Houssart wrote "For years there was a feeling that the metric system was something teachers pretended existed, although inhabitants of the real world knew better." Lord Howe of Aberavon, speaking in the House of Lords, asserted that the United Kingdom's policy came close to recreating "Disraeli's two nations-divided between, on the one hand, a metrically literate elite and, on the other, a rudderless and bewildered majority."

The italic quotes pretty much sum up SI for the UK.
Simon

Alex_Simmons/RST
Posts: 3725
Joined: Fri Sep 14, 2007 08:19 am

### Re: km or miles??

Trev The Rev wrote:300 watts is approx 0.4 Horse Power. If you grew up using horse power it is difficult to 'feel' in watts. They still use horse power in the motor industry.

Depends where you are. Here a car's power is always advertised in kilowatts.

springtide9
Posts: 1636
Joined: Sat May 08, 2010 23:30 pm

### Re: km or miles??

Alex_Simmons/RST wrote:
Trev The Rev wrote:300 watts is approx 0.4 Horse Power. If you grew up using horse power it is difficult to 'feel' in watts. They still use horse power in the motor industry.

Depends where you are. Here a car's power is always advertised in kilowatts.

UK Cars are usually quoted in PS rather than BHP (which is what I believe the USA use), although KW are usually in [brackets]. So our (UK) quoted power measurements are different to the USA.

FYI
BHP is "Brake Horse Power" - the standard used in the US under the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). It is measured by applying resistance (a "brake") on a dynamometer and measuring the heat produced while maintaining rpms as the load is gradually increased.

PS is the European equivalent, sometimes called DIN (Deutesche Institut fur Normung, for 'German Institute for Standardization'). DIN horsepower numbers are approximately 1.38% higher than SAE numbers.

But we usually talk "Miles Per Gallon" for fuel efficiency even though we purchase fuel in litres. Emissions are always quoted in g/km.
Just to be clear, that's Miles per UK Gallon, since to add just a little bit more confusion, UK Gallon is 4.5L litres where as a USA Gallon is 3.7L

So to be clear, although the UK and US appear to use the same units for 'Power' and 'Volume' in the car industry, the don't... but they are similar(ish).
Simon

kathrynwhite
Posts: 15
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2012 18:57 pm

### Re: km or miles??

I measure in miles and mph but I tell my friends in km as it sounds further. XD

dodgy
Posts: 2689
Joined: Sun May 27, 2007 15:09 pm

### Re: km or miles??

kathrynwhite wrote:I measure in miles and mph but I tell my friends in km as it sounds further. XD

Are you a triathlete?

kathrynwhite
Posts: 15
Joined: Sun Oct 07, 2012 18:57 pm

### Re: km or miles??

dodgy wrote:
kathrynwhite wrote:I measure in miles and mph but I tell my friends in km as it sounds further. XD

Are you a triathlete?

No. I do the three events but not well enough to do as a triathlon. I focus mostly on cycling.