Author Archives: Ramsden

1819 – a massacre and a missed opportunity

This article looks at the first report of the Commissioners appointed early in the nineteenth century to consider weights and measures. It gives examples of the reasons why the Commission was appointed, comments on some of its recommendations, and then speculates on an alternative … Continue reading

Posted in General, History, Science | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Not a blunder

We take a look at the changeover to decimal currency which occurred almost 50 years ago, and ask if there are any lessons to be learned that will help resolve the UK’s current measurement muddle. Likes(7)Dislikes(0)

Posted in Consumer affairs, General, History | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

M-days in Australia

UKMA has recently acquired two pamphlets from the 1970s Australian metric conversion programme. One about the switchover to metric units for weather reports, and one about the switchover for motoring. Likes(19)Dislikes(2)

Posted in Education, General, Media, Road signs, Transport, Views from abroad | Tagged , , , , , | 17 Comments

Leading us to the 18th century

Martin Vlietstra, one of our regular contributors, offers his thoughts on an early pronouncement by the newly-appointed Leader of the House of Commons. Likes(24)Dislikes(4)

Posted in General, History, Science, Technical | Tagged , | 16 Comments

300 million gallons and other dam(n) measurement units

In 2019, readers could be forgiven for having no idea what 300 million gallons of water looks like. Continue reading

Posted in Education, General, Media | Tagged , , , , | 36 Comments

Measuring tapes – choice for some

In the unlikely event of Donald Trump deciding to buy a measuring tape while he is in Britain, he will find a wide choice of a type that is popular in the US. Indeed, he may have difficulty finding any other. … Continue reading

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The kilogram weight

The redefinition of the kilogram takes effect in two weeks time. To mark the event, Martin Vlietstra, one of our frequent contributors, looks at the “old” and “new” versions of this international standard. Likes(20)Dislikes(2)

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Hybrids, old and new

We have come across two examples of hybrid measures, and speculate if these might help in those countries struggling with the transition from old to new measures. Likes(30)Dislikes(4)

Posted in Consumer affairs, General, Recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

How British metallurgists helped to make the first international kilogram

We reported a few weeks ago on the redefinition of the kilogram. In this article, Martin Vlietstra, one of our regular contributors, outlines Britain’s contribution to the creation of the prototype kilogram upon which the definition had relied since 1889. … Continue reading

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The kilogram rejuvenated

For readers who may have missed the news from Versailles amidst the current Brexit hullabaloo, we pass on a link to an article published by the BBC. This  explains in laymen’s terms the long-awaited redefinition of the SI base unit of … Continue reading

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