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To think it's time the UK went truly metric.

(92 Posts)
complexnumber Thu 28-Mar-13 15:21:16

Partially inspired by another thread about the size of tv's being quoted in inches.

I know that is a trivial example, but isn't it time we finally dropped the imperial measurements completely?

Just about every other country in the world has managed it. Why can't we?

We (the UK that is) have been dithering since 1965, that's pathetic.

(However, I do confess to wanting my beer served by the pint.)

GeoffVader Thu 28-Mar-13 15:22:42

I have to confess I have no idea which is which blush

complexnumber Thu 28-Mar-13 15:32:17

Thanks for that 'confession' GeoffVader.

Can I be cheeky and ask your age?

GeoffVader Thu 28-Mar-13 15:35:33

I am 23

justpaddling Thu 28-Mar-13 15:37:51

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MechanicalTheatre Thu 28-Mar-13 15:38:38

I much prefer imperial. It's crazy, complicated and no-one understands it. That is FUN. Also, you can use it to teach children the idea of base-12/base-16 etc.

I don't think it makes any sense that we only teach kids about metres in school. I can honestly say I've never used metres in my life.

Binkyridesagain Thu 28-Mar-13 15:40:02

I don't think we should go completely metric, men have enough trouble knowing how big 8", imagine the chaos if they had to convert to cm. grin

CandyCrushed Thu 28-Mar-13 15:40:25

Metric is ten times better wink

TeWiSavesTheDay Thu 28-Mar-13 15:41:26

I am 26, use both, and use both with my kids. So they'll be another generation of confused people!

TeWiSavesTheDay Thu 28-Mar-13 15:42:10

Sorry, I meant to say we probably should but I cba.

Is that a terrible Answer?

Maat Thu 28-Mar-13 15:42:17

Can you wait until after I'm gone?

complexnumber Thu 28-Mar-13 15:48:48

I am 26, use both, and use both with my kids. So they'll be another generation of confused people! TeWiSavesTheDay

Exactly, how many more generations of confused people.

Many other countries used a much more brutal transformation, over two years (rather than nearly 50 for the UK!) and it has worked.

complexnumber Thu 28-Mar-13 15:51:19

Though I doubt if it will prove to be a vote winner should any party suggest it at a general election.

Omnishambolic Thu 28-Mar-13 15:51:27

You're absolutely right OP. As long as we can have exceptions:

1. For beer
2. For milk
3. For the weight of people
4. For the height of people
5. For distances between places
6. For the size of televisions (this is doubly anachronistic since we got used to using inches based on old style tellyboxes not flatscreens)
7. Any others I've forgotten at present

And the US have to join us, or at least to start using stones instead of just lb for people's weights. Them and their "measuring cups" indeed.

somebloke123 Thu 28-Mar-13 15:52:24

I'm in favour of metric for scientific purposes but against its imposition for everyday life.

If I want to buy a pound of bananas or a pint of beer (the latter I can still do of course) I don't see why I shouldn't.

To ditch imperial measures cuts us off in a way from our culture and history. Many imperial measures are linked to everyday things (e.g. a foot to the length of a forearm, an inch to the width of a thumb, a league to the distance walked by an average person in an hour etc) and have a certain poetry I think which is destroyed by metric.

"Full metres ten my father lies
Of his bones are coral made"


"The woods are lovely dark and deep
But I have promises to keep
And kilometres to go before I sleep
And kilometres to go before I sleep"

"2.4 km, 2.4 km
2.4 km onwards
Into the valley of death rode the six hundred"

MoutardeDeDijon Thu 28-Mar-13 15:52:33

What exactly is the benefit of using metric?

complexnumber Thu 28-Mar-13 16:02:03

What exactly is the benefit of using metric?

We join the rest of the world (apart from the US, Burma and Libreria)

Why would we wish our children to have to think in two different systems?

There is no logic in the imperial system, that's not to say I do not have a huge amount of affection for the system and its history.

MousyMouse Thu 28-Mar-13 16:04:55

I like stones as weight measurement.
11 stones sounds much slimmer than 70 shock kilos.

other than that I think metric measurements are just more practical. easier to compare in the supermarket for example.

Binkyridesagain Thu 28-Mar-13 16:09:18

I've thought about this a bit more and I still say no to metric,

what would a piece of 2x2 become? it rolls off the tongue 5.08X5.08 doesn't sound right.

My DH wouldn't be able to measure 6ft and 5ft lengths using just his hands and arms, he would need to use a tape measure, which is never where you left it.

In my house things would go into melt down.

DCs please go to the shop and buy me 500ml of milk would result in a 5 min discussion of what is 500ml of milk and whether that is more or less than a pint.

MoutardeDeDijon Thu 28-Mar-13 16:10:52

There is plenty of logic in the imperial system, it is just that much of it is a little opaque these days smile.

I don't really see why having the same system as much of the rest of the world is of a great benefit, and there would be no need for our children to learn two systems is we just used imperial.

MoutardeDeDijon Thu 28-Mar-13 16:12:30

Anyway, it is easy to swap between the two systems so long as you remember that 1 inch = 2.54 cm, 1 pint = 568 ml, and 1 pound = 454 g. What could be simpler?

tak1ngchances Thu 28-Mar-13 16:13:54

Another one here who doesn't know what is imperial and what is metric.

I would like the following:
Body weight in stones & pounds
Height in feet & inches
Distances in miles
Liquid in pints

Does that make me old-fashioned or new-fangled?

TheBigJessie Thu 28-Mar-13 16:14:54


You're entirely an unreconstructed imperialist!

Maat Thu 28-Mar-13 16:15:27

Binky you are so right.

2 b 2

4 b 4

It just wouldn't be the same in metric.

People wouldn't be confused if they hadn't tried to change it. I don't care what other countries do.

PetiteRaleuse Thu 28-Mar-13 16:17:21

YANBU metric is so much more precise and logical.

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