back to article EU abolishes the acre

The European Union has provided further evidence of its sinister plan to convert this once-proud nation into nothing more than a stuffed songbird-eating satellite of the Continent by "abolishing" the British acre, the Telegraph reports. Centuries of proud history and culture were undone on 15 July when the government signalled …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hands and groats

    I'l take my wages in groats please and I'll measure height in hands unless its a really big thing and then the standard of "its ferkin huge" will do absolutely fine. On a more seroius note lets all switch to the Egyptian measurements of Cubits, Debens and Jars. Anyone who can build the pyramids knows a thing or two about accuracy

  2. andreyvul

    @Steve Evans

    C = ( F - 32 ) / 2


    C = ( F - 30 ) / 2

  3. Claire Rand

    chains etc & railways

    railways still use chains etc since all the old plans and drawings are done in them, and someone sensibly did a cost/benefit analysis on changing them all to either miles or Km, and worked out there was no benefit at all

    odd bit of common sense, convert when you have to, not to some grand goal of 'standardisation' as long as the units are all defined it doesn;t matter

  4. Mark Aggleton


    20C = 68F. That makes your calculation even less accurate than Steve Steve Evans'

    C =(F-32) x 5 / 9

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Measurements

    Quote:"Lets have a measuring contest....ft-lbs, newton-bobs, joules, erg, watt, calorie, Calorie, inch..... What is the prime standard for a meter--Wavelength of orange light. That is orange without calories, or just not-so dark beer?"

    OK, what is the prime standard for a inch then? The length of King Edward the First's cock?

  6. A J Stiles

    @ Aeromorph

    Paper sizes aren't as odd as they sound.

    In any range of paper sizes, the ratio long side : short side must be constant throughout the range; otherwise you wouldn't be able to enlarge or reduce from one side to the next without leaving gaps or overshooting. So if you make your standard sheet of paper, say, 30cm. high by 20 wide, then your ratio is fixed at 1.5:1. If you were to have a sheet of paper 30cm. wide, it would have to be exactly 45cm. high -- otherwise, when you enlarged a 30x20 to fill the width, it would be the wrong height.

    Now, the trouble is, when you cut down a 45x30 sheet to make two 30x20s, you end up with a waste piece 5cm. wide by 30cm. long every time.

    If you want to be able to cut one size in half and have exactly the next size down with no wastage, then the ratio long side : short side needs to be the square root of two to one, about 1.414:1. Then, whatever you make the long side, it will be twice the short side of the next size down (whose long side is equal to the short side of this size). Plus, it has the advantage of looking pleasing to the eye (although, to be honest, that *might* just be because we're all used to it).

    A piece of paper measuring 1.189m. x 0.841m. has an area of exactly 1m² and its sides in the magic ratio 1.414:1. Cut that in half four times and you get 279mm. by 210mm, the A4 sheet we all know and love.

    But there's more! Standard office paper in the UK is rated 80g/m². So a sheet of A4 -- which is 1/16 of a square metre, remember -- weighs 5g. If you fold it diagonally so as to make a square 210mm. on a side and cut away the excess, what you are left with weighs 3.5g. Which is close enough to an eighth of an ounce that if you sold someone that amount of new lethal Skunk weed, they would be quite happy.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Oh stop moaning..

    ...just chill out and go down you local for a nice quiet 0.568261485 litres.

  8. Richard Porter

    Good riddance...

    to the acre. Nobody knows what it is anyway. A hectare is the area of a square with a side of 100m. Easy. But ask anyone to define an acre and unless he or she is a farmer or a surveyor you're likely to get a blank look.

  9. Ronny Cook


    "I use both sets for work (work in the aviation industry) and though I was tought in SI units I have a better understanding of what I am dealing with when I think in Imperial. Odd but it works for me..."

    I was taught in metric and have a better understanding of units when the units are metric. Go figure.

    I know how big a hectare is. It's the distance I had to run for a 100m sprint in school, squared. A meter is roughly hip-height, or the distance from my outstretched finger to the opposite side of my neck, or a longish stride. A Kilo is a weight heavy enough that I start to notice it - or about the weight of a litre of milk.

    A 1m cube of water weighs a ton. A hundred litres of water weighs 100kg.

    Zero degrees centrigrade is freezing. 100C is boiling. About 30C is moderately warm, 40C uncomfortably so.

    I can convert between most of these units very easily. I am *so* glad I never had to deal with imperial units save at their most basic level - I know roughly what an inch is, what a foot is, what a yard is, but dealing with these for actual measurements and calculations is thankfully never necessary. You tell me a distance in square meters, I'll drop four zeroes and give you hectares in a fraction of a second. How many metres in 1.4 kilometres? 1400. How many feet in that many miles? Let me get out my calculator. Heck, how many feet in *one* mile? I usually have to look that one up.

    You could argue that the actual base units chosen for metric might have been better chosen, but the convenience of calculating in metric makes up for any of the system's other sins. In any case, familiarity breeds ease of use.


  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    people who don't use acres (and as such don't work the land) will go "man acres are so retarded - why are we still using them - those shinny simple ones from across the channel are so much better" of course they'll never use a hecter either (does he have a funny hat?) My folks have 3 acres of land, but they're in no way a uniform shape (Isle of Skye). Converting that to fancy new numbers if they ever sell the place all be fun... and I'm sure very expensive for some city based lawyer and sales types.

    But it's nice that dumb city folk again force their narrow minded "logic" on the people that actually have too work on the damn land.

  11. Anonymous Coward

    Re: heh

    Quote: "My folks have 3 acres of land, but they're in no way a uniform shape (Isle of Skye). Converting that to fancy new numbers if they ever sell the place all be fun... and I'm sure very expensive for some city based lawyer and sales types."

    FFS, more imperial FUD!

    3 acres = 1.215 Hectares, and it doesn't matter what bleedin shape they are.

    Here's a link that should save your folks a fortune:

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    @ John Woods

    Keep the ounce - By John H Woods... damned right mate - it's such a hassle to find someone prepared to let you purchase hash by the tonne.

    My 2d ? obvious really.... we spend all this time removing excuses for kids to learn tricks with numbers and then scratch our heads in wonder when they grab a calculator to multiply 12 by 2. Roll on the new and improved EU definitions for periods of time... the demi day (2.4 hours), the centiday (5.76 minutes) and the kilosecond (34 and a half of which make one day, so approximately 42 minutes each).

  13. uncredited
    Thumb Up

    Re: Anonymous Coward

    No need for a lawyer, just ask Google:

    3 acres to hectare

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: @ John Woods

    "Roll on the new and improved EU definitions for periods of time... the demi day (2.4 hours), the centiday (5.76 minutes) and the kilosecond (34 and a half of which make one day, so approximately 42 minutes each)."

    Hohoho! This old 'decimalised time' chestnut is the mark of a true 0.25 wit.

    Well done.

  15. A J Stiles

    You're forgetting

    What you're forgetting is that if you go to register, say, 2.5 acres of land, all that will happen is that the land registration agent will look up 2.5 in their log tables, add _1.6071, look up the result in their antilog table, and whatever that comes to is what they will write down as the number of hectares.

    Same as when you ask the butcher for a pound of mince, he will weigh out 454 grams of mince without missing a beat.

    Except, since butchers are not lawyers, they will not charge you extra for the conversion.

    By the way, I heard a rumour that some shop scales used to be rigged so that they would overcharge by a few pence anytime the reading was not a nice whole number of ounces. Since the mass, unit price and total price were only ever displayed briefly and not recorded on a receipt, it was next to impossible for anyone to spot the deliberate error (and besides which, the scales were -electronic-, so there's -no way- they could be wrong). Now they have to weigh everything in kilos, the price can be checked instantaneously with an idiot-calculator; thus putting an end to this once-lucrative little scam.

  16. Snak

    Poor Winnie the pooh

    whats happening to his 100 acre woods!!!

    wont someone think of the children

  17. Anonymous Coward

    the smallest hectare I know

    @ The Prevaricator - your definition is in need of a little tweeking friend... I can't cover that kind of distance in ten minutes, far less ten seconds.

    ... and as for 0.25 wit... awe pleeze... I'm worth twice that (exactly).

  18. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    Selling weed by weight of paper

    A previous poster suggested you could weigh skunk by the weight of a given area of paper, there is a much better way than this, use the loose change in your pocket!

    A half penny (if you can rember them) weighs 1/16th of an ounce, a penny weighs 1/8, and 2p weighs 1/4 of an ounce, or at least they did, I haven't weighed the new copper plated ferrous penny's, but you can pick them out with a magnet :)

    Do the euro coins serve as well for impromptu weighing of ilicit substances?

  19. Tim

    Use it to our advantage..

    .. now that we have a new scale, anyone reading old history and novels will need to do a bit of math everytime they see acres, inches, or farthings or anything of that ilk. Shouldn't all that brainwork develop our British craniums and give us an edge over the euro-trash?

  20. James


    If the unit of length is 1m, then the unit of area should be 1m², and the unit of volume 1m³.

    The weight of water in 1m³ should be 1g, so the density of water should be 1g/m³.

    1000 square metres should be 1km² as algebra suggests.

    At least imperial doesn't pretend it wasn't cobbled together.

    Why measure round the world to come up with basically a yard? If they wanted a yard we could have given them one, & if a yard equalled a metre from day one, we'd probably be completely metric now.

  21. Mark

    @Ronnie Cook

    "I know how big a hectare is. It's the distance I had to run for a 100m sprint in school, squared."

    And a furlong is the length your horse ran in a race. The 22-yd wide track for the 10 horses made it an acre.


  22. Mark

    Re: nothing wrong with hectares

    How about how fast a man can run in ten seconds by how fast a man can dawdle in 10? That's about an acre.

    Oh, and for Sam Tana, if something is 100F it's body temperature (roughly). The originator of the scale took the body temperature of a cow as something a little easier to measure. IIRC. It's pretty close. Close enough for "how hot is it".

    And, since the metric like powers of ten so much, body temps being "about 100" should be a LOT more acceptable, unlike this "37 degrees" shit in Celsius. I mean, if it's hot enough to boil water out there, we're not going to be concerned about going outside, are we?

  23. Mark

    A4 page sizes

    See, though, the ratio isn't "easy". And that, really is the argument people trot out time and time again when pushing metric."how many yards in a mile, then? Huh, silly number, it's 1000 m to the km, so that's why it's better".

    Which is a fucking stupid reason for metric being better.

    "Because we have to sell abroad and so we need to use the same units and since almost all of the world uses metric, we should too" is a much better one.

    Irregularity of ratios is ridiculous. And with the side ratios of paper being not only irregular but IRRATIONAL, yet having a REALLY FRIGGING GOOD REASON for it shows how silly the argument for metric is.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Couldnt Give Two Tugs of Dead Dogs Cock!

    I mean its not as if it going to stop people using the word now is it!

    Personally i'd go further, get that there New World Order to i duno make everyone use universal base 10 measurements: Metres, KM. KPH, Millimetres, Litres etc. This whole US Gallon, UK Gallon, US Pint UK Pint, vs proper units of measurement is rubbish. They call it imperial apparently, well i say we get all imperial again, just with less stupid measurements, might get the other 2/3 of the world we missed last time around which imho was at least partially caused by confusion over where things were and how big the world was. Such oversights due to measuring issues should not be repeated.

    Make it easier and theoretically cheaper for movement of goods too. Whilst were at it the world should change to drive on our side of the road and use our quite robust plug too, well more robust than that johnny foreigner one. Like to see SONY try and screw me as easily then, the bastards! Also electricity standardisation would be nice as well. Shoes! They are the worst, we have all sorts of messed up measurements, dress sizes too, that whole size 0 thing had me confused and cross dressing mate in a right tizz.

    I'd chip in for the kerosene to fill up the Spitfires to enforce this if called, heck i'd even fly one.

    My only concession would be the Fifdy Cal .50 as 12.7mm don't sound so scary, hurt just as much though, just see the end of Rambo for visuals, but the tech specs would still say 12.7mm though even if the marketing was all "1/2 inch lump of metal ruining your day"

    This whole measurements thing already crashed one spaceship ....... probably, its worth fighting a war over, well better than recent excuses anyway.

    Black Helicopters cos of New World Order and they don't do other flava ones.

    Base 10 measurements FTW, end the whole argument, move on, argue about something else like what is actually beer and whats not. Those yanks have some funny ideas.

  25. Anonymous Coward


    I had to bring it up, if nobody else did (I didn't bother to read the whole shebang).

    The only unit, that really makes sense, regarding area, is the SOCCER PITCH.

    Most people have a rough idea of how large a soccer pitch is, especially because of the popularity of the aforementioned game.

    It nearly makes no sense to say that "a gazillion square kilometers were hazed", so the media says, "The area equivalent to 2000 soccer pitches was hazed for lumber and cattle raising" and it makes perfect sense.

    BTW, a soccer pitch approximates to 50m x 100m, which is 5000 m^2 or 5 km^2.

    How many inches do you need to get a mile? Don´t you know? Well I don´t, I need a calculator for that!

    How many centimeters do you need to get a kilometer? 100 * 1000 = 100.000 (a hundred thousand). No calculator required.


    Another thing, I wrote "soccer" so the US readers could understand it, but everybody ELSE ON THE FREAKING PLANET CALLS IT FOOTBALL!

    AMERICAN FOOTBALL???? DO YOU PLAY IT WITH YOUR FEET??? You only kick it once every 30 minutes or less, plus it isn´t even SPHERICAL, to be properly called A BALL.

    Call it handball then!


    Mine is the black one with the referee whistle in the upper pocket.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ Soccer Pitch AC

    Since 1km = 1000m; 1km^2 = 1000m x 1000m = 1,000,000m^2

    5000m^2 is therefore equal to 0.005 km^2

  27. Mark
    Paris Hilton

    re: @ Soccer Pitch AC

    However, it IS 5 sq km.

  28. Geoff Mitchell
    Paris Hilton

    In America, we're stil in the middle ages

    We use

    inches, feet and yards

    miles, not kilometres

    farenheit, not centigrade

    pounds, not kilograms. No one knows what a stone is here

    And also:



    fluid ounce

    pints (the cheap US = 16 fl oz, not the more generous Imperial measurement of 20)

    gallons (8 pints, but the smaller US pints, not Imperial pints)


    With no exposure to the metric system, Americans are lost in the rest of the world. There are exceptions - scientists (not including the NASA scientists who missed Mars a few years ago), engineers, etc, but the regular person on the street is confused. There are only 3 countries that do not use the metric system as the norm - USA, Liberia and Burma. I believe this was Reagan's fault in the 1980's.

    Paris, because she still measures certain things in inches.

  29. Mark

    Re: In America

    You still have SI units used in science.

    Heck, even SI units in Europe have weird numbers:







    so come on, people, tell me what they are... If Metric is SOOOO simple, you should be able to tell me how to convert between them, yes?


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