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Discussion: Only in America

in: Orienteering; News

Aug 25, 2020 12:41 PM # 
With an international system of measurements well established, leave it to the USA to reduce confusion in surveying by... fixing a problem with the foot.
Aug 25, 2020 1:52 PM # 
Well, JJ, as you know the United States is inherently different from all the other nations...I guess we need to do more to teach American Exceptionalism
Aug 25, 2020 3:13 PM # 
Who knew a foot wasn't twelve inches? Bad enough that your pints are 20% short.
Will you ever switch to the metric or are you insisting on the meteric system. And who was this Eric anyway?
Aug 25, 2020 3:30 PM # 
Hey, c'mon, we have two pints, and one of them is only 3% short!
Aug 25, 2020 3:44 PM # 
I'm not sure I've met Eric.
Aug 25, 2020 6:18 PM # 
Their gallons are about 20% undersized. too. But the good news is that the ones filled with gasoline/ petrol are about 50% the price of ours.
Aug 26, 2020 4:58 AM # 
" American Exceptionalism" . Other words come to mind.
Aug 26, 2020 6:41 AM # 
So, feet, pints and gallons all undersized. What happened to MAGA?
Aug 26, 2020 7:28 AM # 
If the Yanks were to go metric, you can bet they would have their own metre, called a meter and 37.5 inches long.
Aug 26, 2020 7:37 AM # 
I think a slightly longer survey meter would be needed too for LiDAR needs.
Aug 26, 2020 8:38 AM # 
Way back in time when I worked as a geologist in England the the National Coal Board used decimal feet in the 1950's so never got to 11 inches, but they still called the decimals inches just to add to the confusion!

Also seems like Australia had a similar idea before they worked out the metric was a better idea!!
Aug 26, 2020 10:07 AM # 
"Surveyors and engineers, being virtually strangers to money...." :)
Aug 26, 2020 2:11 PM # 
I remember when I met Eric. It was in 1987, at the end of the US Champs in Rhode Island. He came up to me and said that he liked my Grateful Dead bumper sticker.
Aug 26, 2020 7:10 PM # 
OK, I'm willing to concede that between Mr Weyman and Mr Bone the metEric system hasn't been too bad for US orienteering.
Aug 26, 2020 7:15 PM # 
Don't forget Mr Smith!
Aug 26, 2020 11:01 PM # 
The word is MetRic. But at the moment you can't as the borders are closed.
Aug 27, 2020 12:07 AM # 
Actually, I face this issue every time, working with LIDAR files from different states.
each having their own zones for coordinates and measurements units.
For instance, NYS data is metric, quadrants are based on Imperial system, mostly 0.5 mile each side. Pennsylvania and New Jersey varies from county to county, sometimes surveyor's feet, sometimes a foot is 12". While for orienteering map it is not critical, the difference between two feet, but it is critical for georeferencing. Have to read metadata in each case.
Aug 27, 2020 3:30 AM # 
The unit of measurement used in orienteering race is equal to пять пядей
Sep 20, 2020 11:41 PM # 
From the article:
"Occasionally, surveyors must use one foot for horizontal measurements and the other for elevations."

So, slope is not equal to tangent.
Sep 21, 2020 12:01 AM # 
Historically, when the USGS made a change so that their maps were in meters, we are talking the 80's, my brother was dealing with the changes in the Adirondacks. There was a headline for an article he wrote in the Lake Placid News that "No Longer Will There Be Hiking by Foot". Well, that whole meter thing sort of has disappeared in the Adirondacks and the heights of mountains are still referred to in feet. Oh, well.
Sep 21, 2020 1:00 AM # 
When dealing with school children on excursions to the Museum where I worked, I could tell that the coastal schools would give answers in feet. Because they still talk about wave height and swell in feet/inches so that was the standard for reference. And Australia went metric in 1966. These kids were born in the '90s
Sep 21, 2020 1:21 AM # 
When I introduced orienteering to several classes of 7th graders (age~12) a couple weeks ago, I was greatly distressed that only about 1 in 20 had any significant familiarity with meters. Only a couple (out of 62) were able to successfully convert centimeters to meters on the first try. Very disappointing. The teacher told me that they are now introducing metric earlier in elementary school, but apparently they never use it again, so by 7th grade, its completely forgotten. I wanted to scream "you're a bl---y" science teacher, why the ---- aren't your students using metric in middle school science".
Sep 21, 2020 2:00 AM # 
Don't you use bunsen burners in middle school science?

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