in reply to Perl Humor

That tomorrows date function reminds me of being a newly graduated Mech. Eng. (a long-distant, former me).

I was so smug because unlike several of my equally new collegues I didn't fall for the usual Mech.Eng. hazings of "Go to the stores and ask them for a long weight!" or "Quick! Get me a left-handed screw-driver!".

Of course, when I went all through the palava of traipsing to the stores, filling out the appropriate requisitions in triplicate, being sent upstairs to get signatures from my bosses boss, and then upstairs again for the same from his boss.

Returning to the stores and having to wait while they arranged for a security guard to escort me back from the central stores to my workshop with this "highly specialised and valuable" piece of equipement.

Getting back to my workshop and being told to remove the 'metric' vernier protractor from its polished wooden box and being asked to explain to the (now assembled) mass of collegues the exact differences between this and the common imperial vernier protractor, I was somewhat red-faced.

In fact, I still feel myself flush slightly whenever I think about it.

Cor! Like yer ring! ... HALO dammit! ... 'Ave it yer way! Hal-lo, Mister la-de-da. ... Like yer ring!

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Re: Re: Perl Humor
by davorg (Chancellor) on Sep 20, 2002 at 10:59 UTC

    Surely a metric protractor would measure angles in radians. Sounds like someone fobbed you off with an imperial one because they didn't have the right one in stock :)


    "The first rule of Perl club is you do not talk about Perl club."
    -- Chip Salzenberg

      Actually, years later I did encounter what might be term as a non-imperial (though not metric) protractor. It was marked up in grads (400 grads = 360 degrees).

      I've never found a good explaination of when or where grads are useful as opposed to degrees or radians. They do show up on all three of my scientific calculators and even in the calculator on Windows in scientific mode.

      I just found this which appears blames the grad on the (former) British Imperial Army, so maybe they are imperial and degrees should rightly be called metric.

      Cor! Like yer ring! ... HALO dammit! ... 'Ave it yer way! Hal-lo, Mister la-de-da. ... Like yer ring!

        I don't remember the details, but IIRC grads are used in range finding. Something along the lines of:

        • you know the tank (boom boom) is 20 feet long.
        • in my binoculars (with a grad scale on the inside) the tank spans 10 grads.
        • the tank is (20/10)x100 feet away.

        I either read this in some Army field manual or maybe my father tried to explain it to me.

        Well, gradians would be the "metric" version of degrees since in those units a right angle has 100 gradians, which fits better in the metric system. For whatever reason they are not. Gradians are used in geodesics, though.

Re: Re: Perl Humor
by John M. Dlugosz (Monsignor) on Sep 20, 2002 at 20:20 UTC
    GRAD's rather than DEG's? 400 to a circle, if memory serves. At least it wasn't RAD's.