Google helps maintain imperial measures

Radio 4’s Today programme is such an excellent start to the day, often setting the news agenda for the rest of the day across the media. Senior Politicians are a daily feature of the show, with occasional appearances by the Chancellor and the Prime Minister. Famously, Margaret Thatcher was reported to listen into the show each day to hear how her cabinet colleagues and ministers performed, and would call in to “correct” reports that she considered wrong/misleading.

The programme is always keen to report on Britishness issues. Yesterday it ran a story that was subsequently followed up by the rest of the media regarding the EU Commission extending the ability of the UK to display imperial measures alongside metric ones. The argument for phasing out imperial was that their presence may mislead people in comparing prices. As was pointed out, it is so long since imperial measurement was taught in schools, there is a generation that don’t fully understand imperial measures. And I confess, I probably fall into that age bracket.

Nonetheless it doesn’t mean that I don’t use imperial in every day life eg my weight is considered in stone and pounds; I get excited when West Brom get into the 6 yard box (yes, it does happen); I drive in miles per hour and in distances of miles. Moreover, I have little understanding of the metric version of those things.

But, as ever, Google comes to the rescue to allow my laziness to persist – Google has an embedded calculator in their search box.

In the search box, try “X pounds to kilograms” where X is a number

The in and to operator is used to specify what units you want used to express the answer. Put the word in followed by the name of a unit at the end of your expression. This works well for unit conversions such as: 5 kilometers in miles. Or 100 miles in kilometers

You can get information on the calculator function here.


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