Reply 160 of 197, by VileR
Squabbling over the superiority of measuring systems is one of the most embarrassingly parochial thing to observe. Especially when it's so often a transparent substitute for other forms of jingoism, simply because they're deemed less acceptable these days. 😉
I've always been used to metric: that's the standard here, and yeah, it's easy to use. But I don't really find it productive to consider it a necessary hallmark of progress or something, or superior to everything else. Ease of use is an advantage, but are we necessarily improving ourselves when we can consistently do things the easy way without much mental effort? Playing devil's advocate here, but I wouldn't be so sure.
There's nothing inherently "better" about systems based on the powers of ten. Is this number mathematically useful? Was it adopted due to some kind of scientific advantage? Nah - it's how many fingers we have. Decimal, metric and SI all ultimately derive from the arrangement of appendages on our mammalian limbs. From that to being the pinnacle of progress there's a way to go.
I've also heard the argument that the number 12 would have more of an inherent advantage, what with its divisors and other useful mathematical properties. Amusingly this was recognized thousands of years ago, and the common system of measuring time still kind of reflects that.
digger wrote on 2020-11-23, 23:03:
However, maybe we can compromise on at least one thing: let's meet each other half way when it comes to the date format. Let's all agree on year-month-day. Most significant first, least significant last, just like with numbers. Easier to sort in a computer table as well. And hey, the day will still come after the month, just as you folks are used too. 😉
This I can agree with - it's been my habit to do that for a long time now. 😁