From: David Nebenzahl on
On 11/19/2009 9:31 PM Bill Graham spake thus:

> "Peter Irwin" <pirwin(a)ktb.net> wrote in message
> news:he029n$bh$1(a)dns.ktb.net...
>
>> In rec.photo.digital J?rgen Exner <jurgenex(a)hotmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>> Not to mention that there is also a liquid ounce which apparently has
>>> nothing do to with the weight ounce. Question: when you melt gold, do
>>> you have to use the liquid ounce now instead of the troy ounce?
>>
>> An Imperial fluid ounce of water weighs an ounce avoirdupois.
>> The US fluid ounce is slightly larger.
>>
>> Gold is bought and sold by troy weight. How you choose to measure it
>> during an experiment is your own business.
>>
>>> And now please tell me again that all this is less confusing and easier
>>> than milligram, gram, kilogram, and tons.
>>
>> The main obvious advantage is that it trains you to do mixed-base
>> mental arithmetic.
>>
> Not today it doesn't. All the young people carry cell phones that go to the
> internet and get any conversion they want, and do any arithmetic they need
> with the press of a few keys. You can tell that they are doing this, because
> when they make a mistake, they are off by huge factors that defy any and all
> reason. When I make a mistake in my mental calculations, I know it
> immediately, because I have some idea of the answer even before I begin. But
> when you are accustomed to trusting your answers to a machine, you have
> little choice but to crash and burn when the machine makes a mistake, or you
> make one when you input the data.

Time to go back to slide rules, I say. (At least as pedagogical tools,
if not for actual engineering use. Although they're still useful in that
function as well.)

I wonder: how many kids today would have the faintest idea of what
they're doing with one (I mean apart from the obvious nerds and geeks)?


--
I am a Canadian who was born and raised in The Netherlands. I live on
Planet Earth on a spot of land called Canada. We have noisy neighbours.

- harvested from Usenet
From: Bill Graham on

"David Nebenzahl" <nobody(a)but.us.chickens> wrote in message
news:4b063b3a$0$4048$822641b3(a)news.adtechcomputers.com...
> On 11/19/2009 9:31 PM Bill Graham spake thus:
>
>> "Peter Irwin" <pirwin(a)ktb.net> wrote in message
>> news:he029n$bh$1(a)dns.ktb.net...
> >
>>> In rec.photo.digital J?rgen Exner <jurgenex(a)hotmail.com> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> Not to mention that there is also a liquid ounce which apparently has
>>>> nothing do to with the weight ounce. Question: when you melt gold, do
>>>> you have to use the liquid ounce now instead of the troy ounce?
>>>
>>> An Imperial fluid ounce of water weighs an ounce avoirdupois.
>>> The US fluid ounce is slightly larger.
>>>
>>> Gold is bought and sold by troy weight. How you choose to measure it
>>> during an experiment is your own business.
>>>
>>>> And now please tell me again that all this is less confusing and easier
>>>> than milligram, gram, kilogram, and tons.
>>>
>>> The main obvious advantage is that it trains you to do mixed-base
>>> mental arithmetic.
>>>
>> Not today it doesn't. All the young people carry cell phones that go to
>> the internet and get any conversion they want, and do any arithmetic they
>> need with the press of a few keys. You can tell that they are doing this,
>> because when they make a mistake, they are off by huge factors that defy
>> any and all reason. When I make a mistake in my mental calculations, I
>> know it immediately, because I have some idea of the answer even before I
>> begin. But when you are accustomed to trusting your answers to a machine,
>> you have little choice but to crash and burn when the machine makes a
>> mistake, or you make one when you input the data.
>
> Time to go back to slide rules, I say. (At least as pedagogical tools, if
> not for actual engineering use. Although they're still useful in that
> function as well.)
>
> I wonder: how many kids today would have the faintest idea of what they're
> doing with one (I mean apart from the obvious nerds and geeks)?
>
Yes. With slide rules, you had to approximate your answer in advance,
because the rule couldn't keep track of the decimal point.....If you
couldn't guess your answer to the closest factor of ten, the rule was
useless to you. So in a sense, it forced you to think about what you were
doing.

From: Eric Stevens on
On Thu, 19 Nov 2009 23:58:53 -0800, "Bill Graham" <weg9(a)comcast.net>
wrote:

>
>"David Nebenzahl" <nobody(a)but.us.chickens> wrote in message
>news:4b063b3a$0$4048$822641b3(a)news.adtechcomputers.com...
>> On 11/19/2009 9:31 PM Bill Graham spake thus:
>>
>>> "Peter Irwin" <pirwin(a)ktb.net> wrote in message
>>> news:he029n$bh$1(a)dns.ktb.net...
>> >
>>>> In rec.photo.digital J?rgen Exner <jurgenex(a)hotmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>> Not to mention that there is also a liquid ounce which apparently has
>>>>> nothing do to with the weight ounce. Question: when you melt gold, do
>>>>> you have to use the liquid ounce now instead of the troy ounce?
>>>>
>>>> An Imperial fluid ounce of water weighs an ounce avoirdupois.
>>>> The US fluid ounce is slightly larger.
>>>>
>>>> Gold is bought and sold by troy weight. How you choose to measure it
>>>> during an experiment is your own business.
>>>>
>>>>> And now please tell me again that all this is less confusing and easier
>>>>> than milligram, gram, kilogram, and tons.
>>>>
>>>> The main obvious advantage is that it trains you to do mixed-base
>>>> mental arithmetic.
>>>>
>>> Not today it doesn't. All the young people carry cell phones that go to
>>> the internet and get any conversion they want, and do any arithmetic they
>>> need with the press of a few keys. You can tell that they are doing this,
>>> because when they make a mistake, they are off by huge factors that defy
>>> any and all reason. When I make a mistake in my mental calculations, I
>>> know it immediately, because I have some idea of the answer even before I
>>> begin. But when you are accustomed to trusting your answers to a machine,
>>> you have little choice but to crash and burn when the machine makes a
>>> mistake, or you make one when you input the data.
>>
>> Time to go back to slide rules, I say. (At least as pedagogical tools, if
>> not for actual engineering use. Although they're still useful in that
>> function as well.)
>>
>> I wonder: how many kids today would have the faintest idea of what they're
>> doing with one (I mean apart from the obvious nerds and geeks)?
>>
>Yes. With slide rules, you had to approximate your answer in advance,
>because the rule couldn't keep track of the decimal point.....

I'm afraid that's not correct. There are rules for keeping track of
the decimal point according to whether you are moving the slide to the
right or the left. I've got a 10" Faber Castell down on my boat
complete with instruction manual. I should go down and read it up. But
then you will find it in http://www.hpmuseum.org/srinst.htm

>If you
>couldn't guess your answer to the closest factor of ten, the rule was
>useless to you. So in a sense, it forced you to think about what you were
>doing.



Eric Stevens
From: Noons on
David Nebenzahl wrote,on my timestamp of 20/11/2009 5:47 PM:

>> Not today it doesn't. All the young people carry cell phones that go
>> to the internet and get any conversion they want, and do any
>> arithmetic they need with the press of a few keys. You can tell that
>> they are doing this, because when they make a mistake, they are off by
>> huge factors that defy any and all reason. When I make a mistake in my
>> mental calculations, I know it immediately, because I have some idea
>> of the answer even before I begin. But when you are accustomed to
>> trusting your answers to a machine, you have little choice but to
>> crash and burn when the machine makes a mistake, or you make one when
>> you input the data.
>
> Time to go back to slide rules, I say. (At least as pedagogical tools,
> if not for actual engineering use. Although they're still useful in that
> function as well.)

Hmmm: the SR-71A and the Apollo project were initially designed and researched
using slide rules. I still have to see a kid with a cell phone produce anything
other than breeze or facebook pages...


> I wonder: how many kids today would have the faintest idea of what
> they're doing with one (I mean apart from the obvious nerds and geeks)?

None. And what's worse: none would even understand their principle of
operation, which was well known since the middle ages.
From: Bill Graham on

"Noons" <wizofoz2k(a)yahoo.com.au> wrote in message
news:he5quo$nq$1(a)news.eternal-september.org...
> David Nebenzahl wrote,on my timestamp of 20/11/2009 5:47 PM:
>
>>> Not today it doesn't. All the young people carry cell phones that go to
>>> the internet and get any conversion they want, and do any arithmetic
>>> they need with the press of a few keys. You can tell that they are doing
>>> this, because when they make a mistake, they are off by huge factors
>>> that defy any and all reason. When I make a mistake in my mental
>>> calculations, I know it immediately, because I have some idea of the
>>> answer even before I begin. But when you are accustomed to trusting your
>>> answers to a machine, you have little choice but to crash and burn when
>>> the machine makes a mistake, or you make one when you input the data.
>>
>> Time to go back to slide rules, I say. (At least as pedagogical tools, if
>> not for actual engineering use. Although they're still useful in that
>> function as well.)
>
> Hmmm: the SR-71A and the Apollo project were initially designed and
> researched using slide rules. I still have to see a kid with a cell phone
> produce anything other than breeze or facebook pages...
>
>
>> I wonder: how many kids today would have the faintest idea of what
>> they're doing with one (I mean apart from the obvious nerds and geeks)?
>
> None. And what's worse: none would even understand their principle of
> operation, which was well known since the middle ages.

Yes. When slide rules disappeared, knowledge of their principal of operation
disappeared with them.