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Jim Manley
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 5:27 am

Jim JKla wrote:I think this went off topic about the third post and it's been meandering around ever since. ;)
Huh? The third post was right on topic. I know we're two people separated by a common language (ummm C? Pascal?? APL??? ;) ) but I need an explanation of what the heck you're talking about.
johnbeetem wrote:... So even when you (as in Americans, I assume you are from the US?), for once, use the metric system as the rest of the world, you have to mess it up by inventing your own standards ;)
If you Brits are so smart, why is the system we sometimes use in the U.S. (other than for scientific endeavo(u)rs) called the "English" system (based upon the anatomy of your celebrities from Days of Yore)? Hmmmm? :lol:

I have no idea how you conflated nybbles with whatever kibblebytes are supposed to be (how dogs count their ages in RAM? ;) ), but a nybble is well-accepted to be half a byte (four bits, not to be confused with the Wild West notion of 50 cents) and each nybble is usually expressed in hex. BTW, nybble was not used to be "cute", it was used to make searches easier in large amounts of text, particularly beyond research papers as computing expanded into the hobbyist arena, and the volume of digitally-published content and documentation exploded.

As for arguing over semantics, those who are of the seriously misguided notion that everything can be encoded in syntax (XML, anyone?) have apparently learned none of the lessons of history (the Cyc AI debacle comes to mind), and are therefore doomed to repeat the mistakes. German language is infamous for its ever-expanding formal syntax to the point where Donaudampfschiffahrtselektrizitätenhauptbetriebswerkbauunterbeamtengesellschaft ("association of subordinate officials of the head office management of the Danube steamboat electrical services") is an actual single word! Then there is the story about how, when IBM created the first computer-based translator between English and Chinese and submitted Shakespeare's famous line, "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak", what came back was something to the effect of, "The wine was fine, but the steak could stand a lot of improvement."

For all of our goof-ups, you have to give us mongrels in the States credit for simplifying things more often than not (via contraction and slang) wherever possible (my posts here notwithstanding :lol:). We draw upon some really nifty wording from all over the planet (the only country in the world that has to put up barriers to keep people out). A Nazi general was asked why they lost the World Wars and he admitted, "War is chaos, and if there's one thing Americans excel at, it's chaos."

Now you know the rest of the story, as Midwestern radio personality Paul Harvey would say - "Good ... day!"
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:31 am

Americans are like teenagers. They think they invented everything.

Well, some of them certainly do, anyway.

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azeam
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 8:47 am

Jim Manley wrote:If you Brits are so smart, why is the system we sometimes use in the U.S. (other than for scientific endeavo(u)rs) called the "English" system (based upon the anatomy of your celebrities from Days of Yore)? Hmmmm? :lol:
I'm actually Swedish and when it comes to international standards the Brits have enough quirks on their own to not deserve any defending from my part ;)
Jim Manley wrote:As for arguing over semantics, those who are of the seriously misguided notion that everything can be encoded in syntax (XML, anyone?) have apparently learned none of the lessons of history (the Cyc AI debacle comes to mind), and are therefore doomed to repeat the mistakes. German language is infamous for its ever-expanding formal syntax to the point where Donaudampfschiffahrtselektrizitätenhauptbetriebswerkbauunterbeamtengesellschaft ("association of subordinate officials of the head office management of the Danube steamboat electrical services") is an actual single word!
Swedish being a Germanic language follows the same structure, and while I do agree that it can seem a bit exhaustive when used in extreme examples like this one, it normally makes perfect sense.

The problem nowadays though is that, because of 1. the English language being read and written everywhere and 2. automatic spell-checks on computers and phones that are unable to handle these kind of words, kids (and many adults for that matter) are starting to separate the words that should be written as one word in to several (like in English). This can cause some pretty serious misunderstandings, one of many examples is "brun hårig sjuk sköterska" (= brown hairy sick nurse) instead of "brunhårig sjuksköterska" (= brown-haired nurse).

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 10:51 am

The problem at the root of the Ki/K debate is the default standard human hand with five digits rather than four.
A solution to this is to amputate everyone's thumb, preferably at birth.

I think I'll start a Kickstarter for this

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:00 am

How about 3 fingers and a thumb ?. Much favoured by cartoons like 'The Simpsons'.....

I always had the use of decimal Kilo/Mega/Giga/etc bytes down to the hard drive manufacturers who use the smaller unit to make their products look better. They aren't constrained by the binary need for everything to be a power of 2, like the memory manufacturers.
Don't judge Linux by the Pi.......
I must not tread on too many sacred cows......

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 5:32 pm

Burngate wrote:The problem at the root of the Ki/K debate is the default standard human hand with five digits rather than four.
A solution to this is to amputate everyone's thumb, preferably at birth.

I think I'll start a Kickstarter for this
And you could sell the surplus digits to supermarkets for use in their ready meals. And then there's the line of four digit gloves to market...

I've always found myself using lowercase "k" for "kilo" (all versions) and uppercase "M" for "mega" (so as not to confuse it with "milli"). It's probably an electronics thing - and being too lazy to reach for the "shift" key unless I absolutely have to.

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Jim JKla
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 5:41 pm

gritz wrote:being too lazy to reach for the "shift" key unless I absolutely have to.
Remove a digit and you may have problem with that shift key. :D
Noob is not derogatory the noob is just the lower end of the noob--geek spectrum being a noob is just your first step towards being an uber-geek ;)

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:20 pm

azeam wrote:
johnbeetem wrote:And I always write kilo with a capital K. That's how I learned it back in 1967 when all positive powers of ten were capitalized (D = deca) and all negative powers of ten were lower case (d = deci). Nice convention.
So even when you (as in Americans, I assume you are from the US?), for once, use the metric system as the rest of the world, you have to mess it up by inventing your own standards ;)
Très amusant.

Oui, je suis américain (from "The Coast") but I first learned le système métrique in French public school, which was great because I learned it by experience instead of having to relate it to haphazard British units which bring to mind Milt Gross' father's expression: "Is dis a system?" So I probably first learned the lower-case abbreviations for deca, hecto, and kilo. However, I re-learned the metric system in USA middle and high school, and at that time we learned the USA convention described above. Clearly the USA version made a whole lot more sense, and it's the one that stuck and I can't even recall reliably which version I learned at the école de garçons [waiter school].

Anyway, the USA convention goes way back -- it's used in my grandfather's Electrical Engineer's Pocketbook from 1908, as well as in Donald Knuth's "Potrzebie System of Weights and Measures" published in MAD Magazine #33 (June 1957: link). These both precede the official standardization of le système international in 1960. Since one purpose of the metric system is to reduce complexity by eliminating strange multipliers, it seems wrong IMO to add arbitrary complexity by having some positive powers of ten in lower case. But then, "People who like sausage or international standards should not watch either being made".

JMO/YMMV

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 6:34 pm

johnbeetem wrote:Oui, je suis américain (from "The Coast")
Yes, but which coast? Unless you mean Hawaii which seems to be all coast and nothing else? Is this an Americanism that the rest of us aren't au fait with?

I've often wondered why we split numbers into triples of digits, and why SI abreviations also go in powers of 10^3 instead of 2 or 5 (apart from D & H)

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 10:30 pm

Burngate wrote:
johnbeetem wrote:Oui, je suis américain (from "The Coast")
Yes, but which coast? Unless you mean Hawaii which seems to be all coast and nothing else? Is this an Americanism that the rest of us aren't au fait with?

I've often wondered why we split numbers into triples of digits, and why SI abreviations also go in powers of 10^3 instead of 2 or 5 (apart from D & H)
"The Coast" is a reference to the movie The Mirror Crack'd (1980), a mystery about Americans making a movie in England. At one point producer Tony Curtis wants to call Hollywood, so he picks up the phone and says:
Get me the coast... what do you mean, what coast?
A USA phone operator would know he meant the West coast.

The pre-1960 metric system only went from milli to myriad and did have a name for every power of ten. In 1960 it was clear that nobody could possibly remember all the weird names for things like 10^13 and you pretty quickly run out of letters.

The triples of digits is probably Biblical:
Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. [Armaments 2:18-20]

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 10:46 pm

gritz wrote:
Burngate wrote:The problem at the root of the Ki/K debate is the default standard human hand with five digits rather than four.
A solution to this is to amputate everyone's thumb, preferably at birth.
I think I'll start a Kickstarter for this
And you could sell the surplus digits to supermarkets for use in their ready meals. And then there's the line of four digit gloves to market...
Don't you guys have enough trouble keeping equine protein (and other parts?) out of the human food supply chain? Will digits from some individuals be certified to be Kosher? Who's going to upgrade (or is it downgrade in this case?) all of those five-finger chording keyboards in such common use today?

You folks still haven't gotten beyond the Dark Ages - I mean, amputation at birth? Come on, get with it, this will be a simple matter of genetic engineering Real Soon Now, right after someone figures out how to make everyone look like the Celebrity of the Week :roll:
gritz wrote:Americans are like teenagers. They think they invented everything. Well, some of them certainly do, anyway.
Hey, if you don't like the electric lights, telephones, affordable mass-produced vehicles, spacecraft, nuclear reactors, lasers, transistors, integrated circuits, microprocessors, GPUs, Internet Protocol, routers/switches, GUIs, browsers, etc., we brought you (sometimes by immigrants chased away because they just weren't "the right kind" where they were born), please feel free to go invent your own ... oh, wait, wasn't there something called X.25 long, long ago, on a continent far away? I interviewed at AOL in The Early Days, and they were quite proud to show off an X.25-IP gateway they were going to have working sometime in the indefinite future - I couldn't run out of the building fast enough. I suppose I could have enjoyed a million people's lifetime supply of CD-ROMs to use as coasters, though ... ;)

Poor Tim Berners-Lee had to run away and join the Swiss circus in order to not be disturbed long enough to come up with wonderful HTML ... a stateless protocol derived from guess-who's SGML? I wonder if it will ever get fixed so that an analysis tool isn't needed to ferret out the HTTP timestamp on data elements for ready display in browsers. I just can't stand all of the "news" sites with no enforced display of at least the date of the info on a page element, but at least these BBSes provide it. Oh well, maybe in HTML 10 ... :cry:

While we did come up with CISC and RISC, we will give you credit for ARM - it works so well in our smart phones and tablets, and their batteries greatly appreciate it! ;) That Watt guy did a great job improving (not inventing) the steam engine ... that we promptly put to work generating electricity where rivers didn't happen to already be. We didn't invent gravity, or electromotive force, or magnetism, or photons, but neither did anyone else (at least that doesn't have an almond-shaped head, grayish skin, nose slits, etc. :shock: ).

What is it they say about mad dogs, Englishmen, and the noon-day sun? Just look at my surname and you'll get a hint as to my genealogy - my ancestors also had to run away to join a circus, but different from the one Tim did ... :lol:
The best things in life aren't things ... but, a Pi comes pretty darned close! :D
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Wed Apr 10, 2013 11:15 pm

Jim Manley wrote: If you Brits are so smart, why is the system we sometimes use in the U.S. (other than for scientific endeavo(u)rs) called the "English" system (based upon the anatomy of your celebrities from Days of Yore)? Hmmmm? :lol:
Its you lot that call it "the "English" system", we would call it British, I guess its a misnomer similar you lot calling your language english.
>)))'><'(((<

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:01 am

aTao wrote:
Jim Manley wrote: If you Brits are so smart, why is the system we sometimes use in the U.S. (other than for scientific endeavo(u)rs) called the "English" system (based upon the anatomy of your celebrities from Days of Yore)? Hmmmm? :lol:
Its you lot that call it "the "English" system", we would call it British, I guess its a misnomer similar you lot calling your language english.
Personally, I call it the Imperial System. Since measures differ by various amounts, the correct term is "United States Customary Units" but I've never heard anybody call them that.

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:08 am

Jim Manley wrote:Hey, if you don't like the electric lights, telephones, affordable mass-produced vehicles, spacecraft, nuclear reactors, lasers, transistors, integrated circuits, microprocessors, GPUs, Internet Protocol, routers/switches, GUIs, browsers, etc., we brought you (sometimes by immigrants chased away because they just weren't "the right kind" where they were born), please feel free to go invent your own...
Reminds me of Patrick McGoohan's line in Ice Station Zebra (1968 -- Howard Hughes' favorite film according to legend) when he explains the reason for the mission:
The Russians put our camera made by our German scientists and your film made by your German scientists into their satellite made by their German scientists.

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 12:18 am

johnbeetem wrote:
The Russians put our camera made by our German scientists and your film made by your German scientists into their satellite made by their German scientists.
Indeed. If my lot had won the war there would be none of this bickering - and the buses would run on time. ;)

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 7:04 am

I suppose we should not forget about The Babylonians, The Minoans, The Egyptians, The Greeks, The Romans, The Mayans, and countless other ancient societies and cultures that all added some element to our shared historical past.

Any society makes a pinch point in the continuum of human existence where forgotten engineering solutions get either re-discovered or re-engineered to enable us jointly to move on.

Humanities mixed genealogy means that no one group can truly claim a greater or lesser proportion of invention and what’s going on here is a progression without borders or nationality.

The growth of the RaspberryPi experience is as close to international academic and non national as we can get, the only limits on the distribution appear to be ones imposed by the national governments stopping or imposing tariffs (import duties) to make some gain from their own people.

The software is free and available via download yes there are some manufacturing profits but these appear to be minimal. The knowledge is freely given and progress has been incredible.

Long may this movement continue without borders or national recriminations. ;)
Noob is not derogatory the noob is just the lower end of the noob--geek spectrum being a noob is just your first step towards being an uber-geek ;)

If you find a solution please post it in the wiki the forum dies too quick

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:52 am

johnbeetem wrote: Anyway, the USA convention goes way back -- it's used in my grandfather's Electrical Engineer's Pocketbook from 1908, as well as in Donald Knuth's "Potrzebie System of Weights and Measures" published in MAD Magazine #33 (June 1957: link). These both precede the official standardization of le système international in 1960. Since one purpose of the metric system is to reduce complexity by eliminating strange multipliers, it seems wrong IMO to add arbitrary complexity by having some positive powers of ten in lower case. But then, "People who like sausage or international standards should not watch either being made".

JMO/YMMV
You almost make it sound like the Americans were first with a capital K version and then the French changed it in 1960, but as far as I know the kilo with a lower case "k" started already 1799 with the metric system (probably even before that) and many countries adapted that well before 1908. Either way, it's been more than 50 years since the introduction of the SI units and the USA is the only (?) country being stubborn enough to still use capital K, occasionally at least. But then again, who am I to speak as we here in Sweden still use the myriametre ("mil") on a daily basis...

Really interesting to read what you are writing anyway and I have to agree that the capital K makes more sense, but that's not the issue here ;)

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 3:39 pm

azeam wrote:... but that's not the issue here ;)
Remind me again: what is the issue here? What are we talking about?

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 3:53 pm

Jim JKla wrote:I suppose we should not forget about The Babylonians, The Minoans, The Egyptians, The Greeks, The Romans, The Mayans, and countless other ancient societies and cultures that all added some element to our shared historical past.
Any society makes a pinch point in the continuum of human existence where forgotten engineering solutions get either re-discovered or re-engineered to enable us jointly to move on.
Humanities mixed genealogy means that no one group can truly claim a greater or lesser proportion of invention and what’s going on here is a progression without borders or nationality.
The common genetic heritage we all share was found in our mitochondrial DNA - there is a single matrilineal most recent common ancestor (MRCA), the Mother of All Mothers, if you will. For those who haven't decrypted my humo(u)r yet, I have nothing but love and admiration for my brothers and sisters in ARMs across all of the ponds - I just like to tease. When you wander around here in SillyCon Valley, it doesn't take long to realize you're a minority ... just as everyone else is (the UN really ought to move its HQ here and let the geeks run things - it would save on the number of diplomatic license plates and limos, if nothing else). Being able to have lunch or dinner in pretty much any cuisine from around the globe with some of the brightest bulbs on the planet and toss around ideas is just a blast-and-a-half. Occasionally, even we dimmer bulbs come up with fun things to make.
Jim JKla wrote:The growth of the RaspberryPi experience is as close to international academic and non national as we can get, the only limits on the distribution appear to be ones imposed by the national governments stopping or imposing tariffs (import duties) to make some gain from their own people.
The software is free and available via download yes there are some manufacturing profits but these appear to be minimal. The knowledge is freely given and progress has been incredible.
Long may this movement continue without borders or national recriminations. ;)
Amen to that!

And Happy 1,000th post to me - this is a fitting post to celebrate our shared suffering at each others' hands/keyboards. Drinks are on me ... if you show up today! :D
The best things in life aren't things ... but, a Pi comes pretty darned close! :D
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 4:15 pm

Jim Manley wrote:And Happy 1,000th post to me
Congrats
Jim Manley wrote:. Drinks are on me ... if you show up today! :D
Can you put it in the post?

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Thu Apr 11, 2013 4:46 pm

azeam wrote:You almost make it sound like the Americans were first with a capital K version and then the French changed it in 1960, but as far as I know the kilo with a lower case "k" started already 1799 with the metric system (probably even before that) and many countries adapted that well before 1908. Either way, it's been more than 50 years since the introduction of the SI units and the USA is the only (?) country being stubborn enough to still use capital K, occasionally at least. But then again, who am I to speak as we here in Sweden still use the myriametre ("mil") on a daily basis...

Really interesting to read what you are writing anyway and I have to agree that the capital K makes more sense, but that's not the issue here ;)
I was told long time ago that the problem with the capital K as abbreviation for kilo, was that it conflicted with the (apparently already established) abbr for the temperature unit Kelvin.
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Fri Apr 12, 2013 12:20 am

johnbeetem wrote:
aTao wrote:Its you lot that call it "the "English" system", we would call it British, I guess its a misnomer similar you lot calling your language english.
Personally, I call it the Imperial System. Since measures differ by various amounts, the correct term is "United States Customary Units" but I've never heard anybody call them that.
Funny, I've never met a Britishman, but plenty of Englishmen ... great for spreading marmalade on ... oh, sorry, those are English Muffins! Are there British Muffins? Do they keep you regular like Bran Muffins? Isn't the Imperial system used by Darth Vader and his storm troopers? Imperial system sounds pretty politically incorrect, especially in former colonies that have thrown off the yoke of Tyranny ... only to replace it with the dreaded Infernal Revenue Service - talk about Darth Vader and storm troopers! And "Service"? Their slogan is "We're not happy until you're not happy." :(

And I was doing soooo well in Post 1,000 ... oh, well, old spots die hard ... or was it you can't teach an old dog new ... treats? :lol:

Sure, Burngate, I'll send ya yer pint in the mail ... uh-ohhhhh ... I accidentally put it in my router via e-mail, and it's started a brawl with my ISP's WAN switch. I may be off-line for (quite?) a while ... :(
The best things in life aren't things ... but, a Pi comes pretty darned close! :D
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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Fri Apr 12, 2013 6:16 pm

Jim Manley wrote:Are there British Muffins?
Why yes, Trader Joe's has them: http://www.traderjoes.com/fearless-flye ... cle_id=196

Just be sure you put real butter on them, not Imperial margarine :)

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Fri Apr 12, 2013 6:39 pm

The yanks don't use imperial. The imperial pint has 20 fluid ounces, it screws up their quart and gallon too. Their quart is smaller than a litre, a proper quart is larger than a litre.......
Don't judge Linux by the Pi.......
I must not tread on too many sacred cows......

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Re: Windows 3.1/95

Fri Apr 12, 2013 6:45 pm

azeam wrote:
johnbeetem wrote: Anyway, the USA convention goes way back -- it's used in my grandfather's Electrical Engineer's Pocketbook from 1908, as well as in Donald Knuth's "Potrzebie System of Weights and Measures" published in MAD Magazine #33 (June 1957: link). These both precede the official standardization of le système international in 1960. Since one purpose of the metric system is to reduce complexity by eliminating strange multipliers, it seems wrong IMO to add arbitrary complexity by having some positive powers of ten in lower case. But then, "People who like sausage or international standards should not watch either being made".

JMO/YMMV
You almost make it sound like the Americans were first with a capital K version and then the French changed it in 1960, but as far as I know the kilo with a lower case "k" started already 1799 with the metric system (probably even before that) and many countries adapted that well before 1908. Either way, it's been more than 50 years since the introduction of the SI units and the USA is the only (?) country being stubborn enough to still use capital K, occasionally at least. But then again, who am I to speak as we here in Sweden still use the myriametre ("mil") on a daily basis...

Really interesting to read what you are writing anyway and I have to agree that the capital K makes more sense, but that's not the issue here ;)
I didn't mean to suggest that USA invented the capital DHK convention. I was only saying that it was "the convention used in USA" from [at least] 1908 to 1957, the two examples I had handy. For all I know, the British are even bigger proponents of capital DHK: aren't they always saying "capital"? :)

I believe you are right that the lower-case forms are from the original système métrique in which all prefixes are lower-case. I'm not sure how the French decide whether an abbreviation is upper or lower case -- I've seen both. My favorite French acronym is gdb which is short for the slang expression gueule de bois [wooden throat], which means "hangover". That's an amazingly appropriate name for a debugger :)

We use "mil" in the USA -- for 1/1000 of an inch. Well, what's 8.5 orders of magnitude between friends?

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