Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/10/17/spb_metric/

Pints all round as Register Special Projects hacks hack off feet

Going the extra 1,609.34 metres for our readers

By Lester Haines

Posted in Science, 17th October 2012 12:38 GMT

Poll Result It's official: El Reg's Special Projects Bureau will henceforth be operating almost exclusively in SI units.

Yup, it's pints all round today as our imperial versus metric poll found readers overwhelmingly in favour of permanently chopping off feet and consigning quarts and ounces to the dustbin of history.

No less than 1,773 of you voted for "Metric only, with the exception of pints of beer and aircraft altitude in feet". In second spot, with 946 thumbs-up, was "SI Units only, under punishment of a lick of the cat o' nine tails (imperial), or ten tails (metric)".

"Imperial and metric side-by-side" limped in third, with 647 votes.

The first exception to the SI unit-only rule – ale in pints – is granted on cultural and political grounds. Sure, half a litre is almost the same, but we're not prepared under any circumstances to be relieved of our extra 68ml of vital liquid nourishment.

German drinking half a litre versus Brit drinking a pint

Indeed, any foreign power which attempts to squash the pint under the jackboot of metrication will find itself on the wrong end of a gunboat, and no messing.

Aircraft altitudes, meanwhile, are commonly given in feet, as any pilot will tell you. Sure, there's a slow slide towards metres, but we're continuing the imperial tradition until ordered to desist by the relevant aviation authority.

So, there you have it. Privately, of course, we'll still be driving the five miles to the wood yard to demand "an eight by four sheet of 20mm MDF" and "three metres of four-by-two", but for reporting purposes that'll be an 8km jaunt for a 2,440mm by 1,220mm slab of 20mm MDF, and three metres of 101.6 by 50.8. ®