Who keeps the metric system down? In the United States, pirates do.
The saeculum was a measurement of time used by the Etruscans and Romans to represent a single lifetime: no-one who witnessed the beginning of a saeculum would see its end, by definition.
In nuclear physics terminology, first you need to hit the barn, and next you need to wait for 50 to 100 shakes. And then the bomb blows up.
Worshippers of many different religious use beads on a string to count prayers: Catholic Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Sikhs, Hindus, and Baháʼís.
How do you measure ocean flow? One sverdrup equals a million cubic metres of water per second. All of the world’s rivers emptying into the ocean is 1.2 sverdrups; the largest current in the world is more than a hundred times larger.
1000 metres in a kilometre, 1000 grams in a kilogram, and 1000 minutes in a day?
Almost all of China uses only one time zone. In the extreme west of China, the Xinjiang region uses two time zones at the same time. This is very confusing.
If you’re using an Australian recipe book, watch out for the tablespoon, or your baking will turn out all wrong.
The Mars Climate Orbiter space probe cost 327 million US dollars – and it crashed because of a mix-up between the metric and imperial systems.
Justin O. Schmidt, an entomologist from the United States, has ranked the relative pain caused by bee, wasp, and ant stings. How do you find that out, though? Easy enough, you just sting yourself.
Interstate 19 is a highway running from the Tucson, Arizona to the Mexican border. It is unique among American highways: the signs are in metric.
What weighs more, an ounce of feathers or an ounce of gold? Haha, trick question. It’s the ounce of gold.
It’s my 100th post! Read on for a grab-bag of 100-related topics, including the death of the last apostle, the 100th asteroid, 100-handed gods, and the Germanic “long” hundred.
How do you effectively communicate risk when something is risky over the medium or long term? Measure the risk in micromorts (the one-in-a-million chance of dying) and microlives (half an hour of extra life).
Prior to standardization, the measurement of length designated “the foot” was a different size depending on which country or region you were in. Notable variants included the Prussian foot, the Rijnland foot (which became the Cape foot used in South Africa), and the Chinese mathematician’s foot.