Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Did You Know That The U.S. Has Actually Been Metric For Over 100 Years?

When it comes to distance, the U.S. is known for imperial measurements, like feet, yards, and miles. Not meters and kilometers.

But the truth is that, since 1893, we have been metric based.

In that year, the U.S. government officially defined a foot as 1,200 meters divided by 3,937. That means that the official U.S. foot is .3048006 meters.

The reason that this is news now is that, by 2022, the U.S. foot will be completely phased out.

Back in 1933, the international foot was invented.  It drops the last three digits, so it defines a foot as .3048 meters.

The difference between the U.S. and international foot became a big deal in land surveying, where you are measuring large distances.  So, beginning in 1959, the U.S. government started switching over to the international foot.

© 2020 Praveen Puri