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Angular measure

Angular measure - Physics Forum

Angular measure - Physics Forum. Discuss and ask physics questions, kinematics and other physics problems.


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  #1  
Old 04-13-2004, 11:25 PM
Donald G. Shead
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Default Angular measure



Most of you are probably familiar with attempts to decimalize time,
and circles: I think that so many problems were involved that the
whole idea has finally been abandoned.

Besides; time and circles have their _own_ ‘decimal systems': The
duodecimal; base twelve system for non-digital, analogue clock faces,
and the sexagesimal; base 60 system by which circles, and Earth's
equator are divided into 360 degrees, and _decimals_ thereof.

If they knew the world was somewhere near round, they might have done
better with an angular measure, instead of choosing the meter as the
standard for linear length, for all men for all time.

Not that there is anything really wrong with using meters for length;
but a meter stick's just not as convenient to manipulate as a foot
ruler, and a cubic meter is even much less convenient to handle than a
cubic foot. A cubic foot of water weighs about 62.4#, and that's
pretty hefty: Imagine trying to jockey a cubic meter of water around.
That's more than 27 cubic feet isn't it?

Anyway angular measure has its uses; especially for time. Linear
measure can be represented as _linear_ length on circles, and/or as
_angular_ circular measure:

This can be accomplished with plane trigonometry too: With which we
can plot various distance and angular aspects of plane circles on
mutually perpendicular x and y coordinates; to get the length of
curves and tangents, as well as their angular changes in direction.

Maybe a millionth of one degree as measured on Earth's surface would
have been a good standard for length? How long would that be?

Anyways, a meter's inconveniently long for measuring short distances,
and the decimeter or centimeter's too short: Square and cubic meters
are just too inconvenietly much for almost _all_ practical purposes.
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  #2  
Old 04-14-2004, 09:45 PM
Brian Quincy Hutchings
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Default Angular measure

I thought taht that was the original definition,
by the French, of the meter;
someone recently wrote a book about that problem!

[Only registered users see links. ] (Donald G. Shead) wrote in message news:<48402bae.0404131525.7de54bcd@posting.google. com>...


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--Give Earth a Trickier Dick Cheeny -- out of office, after GIGA
years.
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