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Units on the forum

Discussion in 'Website Support & Feedback' started by MiKa, Apr 4, 2013.

  1. MiKa

    MiKa Active Member Supporting Member

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    I perhaps stick my head out now. But I want to ask the forum members and the board about the units being used.

    I consider this to be a international forum for orchid enthusiasts world wide (and I think that Brent has the vision of it being a international forum to).
    But when it comes to measuring units it is an American forum. Most units are given in inches, feet, Farenheit etc.
    This leads to very much confusion and I think the information given is lost in many cases due to the fact that many international readers, that does not use these units, don't have the time and energy to go to a unit conversion table, online or in a book. To convert it to the metrical system or Celcius.

    Is it to much to ask for, that forum policy is that units should be given in both Celcius and Farenheit when cultural advices is given for instance? I have always tried to write both units when I post on a international forum such as this.
     
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  2. Tom-DE

    Tom-DE Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Some members may be willing to take the time to convert the measurements for those who use metric system and Celsius for temperature scale, but the question is: for those who use metric system, why can they take their time and energy to convert the measurements by themselves? The metric system is not too bad but I don't have a clue how to convert F to C right off my head.
    That is my opinion...Well, maybe I am just lazy too.
     
  3. Ricardo

    Ricardo Slave of demanding bird

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  4. KellyW

    KellyW Orchid wonk Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Mika, I agree that it is confusing for readers/members on all continents. I will ask Brent if there is a way to put a conversion chart on the right, perhaps above or below the "Latest Threads" column.
    The U.S. will eventually go metric. My son, 23, thinks and speaks in metric so once his age group are in political positions I think you will see us go metric.
    Personally, I have a conversion chart taped to the inside cover of all of my orchid books.
     
  5. Marni

    Marni Well-Known Member Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I think that people use whatever system they think in is normal. If I am asking a question of general members I try to include both systems so no one has to do extra thinking before they understand what I am asking. If I am answering a question I use what comes to mind. Sometimes that is metric, but usually it is not. I don't expect people who think in metric to convert or use dual systems. Just use what you know.

    Here is a really easy way to do conversions: if you open a new tab in your browser and type in "2cm inches" you get the image below. No need to locate your conversion chart. "f to c" or "cm to in" gets you to the same place. You don't even need click a "convert" button there, just change the number you are working with. I love Google. Screen Shot 2013-04-04 at 9.55.28 AM.png
     
  6. Boytjie

    Boytjie Out hiking Supporting Member

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    Agreed with the above, that the U.S. will *eventually* go metric. Who knows when. Meantime, what was suggested above - i.e., a conversion app built right into the site - might be an easy addition if Brent is willing and able? -Stephen
     
  7. goods

    goods Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    I think the conversion chart is a great idea, if possible. I also agree with Kelly. We're beong taught both systems currently, so it's only a matter of time until metric is more widely accepted.

    In the meantime, an easy way to convert from F to C and vice versa...

    F to C: divide the number in half and subtract 32 (the actual conversion is 5/9 but 5/10 is usually close enough)

    C to F: multiply by two and add 32
     
  8. MiKa

    MiKa Active Member Supporting Member

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    I know that there are hundreds of ways to find conversion sites and I know how to use them. That is not the problem and not what I was aiming at.
    When you read a text in a language that is not your own it can be hard enough to follow and understand all you read. To be distracted by going to another page to convert takes away much of the focus (thats how it is for me anyway).
    It has nothing to do with lazyness.
     
  9. Tom-DE

    Tom-DE Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Well, that is a different story, Mikael. I would love to read or participate at the French, Spanish, Swedish or German forums if I know their languages or the forum has English translation on site or those forums would like to see me post in English. I don't see that would happen but I blame it on myself for not knowing another language.

    Back to your original request, I agree a built-in conversion feature might be one of the more feasible solutions IMO.
     
  10. Tom-DE

    Tom-DE Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Can you give us an example? I did try your method but the result didn't turn out right.
     
  11. goods

    goods Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    I mistyped the F to C conversion... you subtract first then multiply by 5/9 (or divide by 2)

    So, take 100 F for example: 100-32= 68/2= 34C
    In reality, 68x (5/9)= 37.8C

    For the other way around, 20C: 20x 2= 40+32= 72F
    In reality, 20x (9/5)=36+32= 68F

    It's not a perfect conversion, but I've found it very useful to give a rough estimate with little effort.

    If someone would like to edit my above post to the correct formula for future reference, feel free.
     
  12. Tom-DE

    Tom-DE Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Goods, it is not perfect but handy indeed(if you are not in front of a computer). Thank you for clarifying the method.
     
  13. goods

    goods Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    Happy to hear it's helpful Tom!
     
  14. Marni

    Marni Well-Known Member Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I live part of my life speaking a language that isn't my own. It can be very tiresome to have to think about language. So I can appreciate and sympathize with the extra effort of those for whom English is a 2nd language. And a lot of us do use colloquialisms, slang and abbreviations that make it even harder to comprehend.

    I really enjoy the variety of nationalities that participate here and hope more international members come on board. I do hope we can get an easy conversion set up that goes both ways since that would make it easier for all of us no matter what system we think in. Thanks for bringing up the topic, Mikael.
     
  15. ezil

    ezil Member

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    Canada has been (officially at least) metric since the mid '70. In reality, most items are in inches and metric, temperatures in Celsius, and it's better to know both. I was brought up with the metric system, and find it so much easier. I follow discussions on foreign websites as well, and never have to use a chart (or bug my husband!). A chart on the side of this page is a great idea!
    On a side note: I really hope that if anyone has a question about a word or abbreviation used, he/she will feel comfortable enough to ask for clarification.
     
  16. KellyW

    KellyW Orchid wonk Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The international variety adds a lot of life to this forum and we certainly don't want to loose that. Brent is working on something.
     
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  17. MiKa

    MiKa Active Member Supporting Member

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    This is a great idea! :)
    Perhaps there even is some small app you can add to the site that converts chosed unit. For me it would be enough with C° to F° and vice versa.
     
  18. Marni

    Marni Well-Known Member Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Mikael, Kelly has mentioned this to Brent and he thinks he can get just what you are talking about. He said he would work on it.
     
  19. KellyW

    KellyW Orchid wonk Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Mikael, Brent has started the conversion tool and it can be found on each post as the last item in the right column. Brent said he will be adding the other conversions for temperature and fine-tuning the tool. Thanks, Brent.
     
  20. Uluwehi

    Uluwehi angraecoids, dendrobiums and more Supporting Member

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    Just logged in and saw this thread. Thank you for speaking out on this issue, MiKa; I agree.