# Is midnight today or tomorrow?

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by dsdsds, Mar 11, 2009.

1. ### sideshowbobSorry, wrong number.Valued Senior Member

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In Canada, you can't buy building materials in metric at all. Plywood is four feet by eight feet. Two-by-fours are 3.5 inches x 1.5 inches. You can buy a metric tape measure but I don't know what you'd use it for.

3. ### DaveC426913Valued Senior Member

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Except socket sets. If you need to drive some bolts, they are guaranteed to be Imperial if the only sockets you have are metric. And they are guaranteed to be metric if the only sockets you have are Imperial.

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5. ### sideshowbobSorry, wrong number.Valued Senior Member

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Yes. The second inch is 1.1, 1.2, etc. The third inch is 2.1, 2.2, etc. The ordinal is always one step ahead of the cardinal.

I didn't say 0 is an inch. I said it's the name of the first inch.

The 0 serves the same function in 0.1 as the 1 does in 1.1 and the 5280 does in 5280.1 - it's the big end of how far you are from zero.

Yes. 11.1, 11.2, etc.

Well, the middle of the 1st 16th is 0.5 16ths and the middle of the 15th 16th is 15.5 16ths.

7. ### StrangerInAStrangeLandSubQuantum MechanicValued Senior Member

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0 is not the name of the 1st inch. 11 is not the name of the 12th inch. The 15 shows how many full 16ths & does not name the next 16th. 16 16ths must start with 1 & end with 16. They are called 16ths because there are 16 of them. 24 inches or hours or anything starts with 1 & ends with 24. Order a 35 inch wide plank when you actually need 36 inches & see what happens. Tell a carpenter you need something 23 inches long & 0 inch wide.

Leave the 0 off 0.1 & it is the same number. Leave the 1 off 1.1 & it is not the same number. They do not serve the same function. The 0 is not even needed.

You cannot see or measure 0 apple or 0 table or 0 inch. Again, 0 is nothing. Naming something is saying what it is. Naming an inch 0 is saying there is a 0 inch.

.5 is 1 half of a whole something. .5 inch is half of 1 inch. .5 is certainly not half of 0 anything. 8 16ths is half of something. 2 of those make 16 16ths which adds up to 1. It does not add up to 0.

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Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
8. ### sideshowbobSorry, wrong number.Valued Senior Member

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3,137
They do serve the same function. The zero can be left off because the quantity is negligible but in both cases they signify the number of whole units. The whole units are an approximate measurement and the fractional units make it more precise.

Sure you can. I can see 0 apples on my table. I can see 0 tables in my bathroom. I can see 0 inches between the apple and the table.

9. ### StrangerInAStrangeLandSubQuantum MechanicValued Senior Member

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^^^
0 does not signify the number of whole units. 0 is no thing & cannot signify a thing. 0 is not a quantity. 0 is the lack of quantity.
You cannot see that which does not exist. 0 apples does not exist. It is nothing to see. o is no thing. There is no such thing as 0 inches. You cannot measure that which does not exist.
I should not have said the 0 can be left off. I should have said the 0 can be not added to it. The 0 in 0.1 is superfluous.

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Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
10. ### river

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As in zero in the fridge , or bank account .

Superfluous , to your last statement , but for some , necessary .

11. ### StrangerInAStrangeLandSubQuantum MechanicValued Senior Member

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^^^
I said only that 0 is superfluous in 0.1. I certainly did not imply there is never any use for 0. It is not practical for your bank statement to say nothing rather than 0. If we did not use 0 in temperature, it would be more difficult to measure, record & say. In the number 5000, the 0s stand for nothing yet they serve an important function as placeholders. They tell us there are no 1s, no, 10s & no 100s & without them we would have only the number 5. With inventory, it is practical to write 93 Xwidgets, 24 Ywidgets & 0 Zwidgets rather than write 93 Xwidgets, 24 Ywidgets & we are completely out of Zwidgets.

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Last edited: Jul 13, 2017

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Noted .

13. ### StrangerInAStrangeLandSubQuantum MechanicValued Senior Member

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^^^
There is no such thing as between 1 & -1.
You think what is strange?

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14. ### Michael 345Next mythical choc bunnies for mystic who diedValued Senior Member

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In maths 0 lies between 1 and -1 and as mentioned is considered a even number

That to me is strange but I can live with that

15. ### DaveC426913Valued Senior Member

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0 is an arbitrary marking on the scale of real numbers.
You can do math with 0 and negative numbers and fractions just like any other real number.

0-2 = -2
is the same as 2-4 = -2
is the same as 1/2 - 21/2 = -2.

Last edited: Jul 13, 2017
16. ### sideshowbobSorry, wrong number.Valued Senior Member

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3,137
All I can say is that you are bizarrely wrong. 0 is definitely a quantity. Quantities can be positive, negative or neither (i.e. 0).

If you have 0 apples, you can see that they don't exist - i.e. it's a quantity.

I think this is the root of your problem: you're confusing 0 with nothing.

Of course there is. I have 0 inches of 2x4s.

Of course I can. My 2x4s are precisely 0 inches long.

It's redundant, like the "r" in "niner". It adds clarity.

17. ### StrangerInAStrangeLandSubQuantum MechanicValued Senior Member

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^^^
I do not have a problem & I am not confusing anything.

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18. ### DaveC426913Valued Senior Member

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In the absence of clarification of your assertion, we are left to speculate how it went wrong.
I listed several arithmetical operations above (post 152), involving numbers between 1 and -1, including zero, showing that your assertion does not stand up.

19. ### sideshowbobSorry, wrong number.Valued Senior Member

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You said that 0 is "no thing".

No it isn't. It's a number. It's as significant as any other number.

20. ### TiassaLet us not launch the boat ...Staff Member

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Similarly, we might note how unusual it would be to say "one and a half inch" as a measurement; we might use the phrase an adjective, like a crane fly with a one and a half inch abdomen, but we would also say a two-inch abdomen, or, if it's T. paludosa, seven-centimeter abdomen, because you see those things and it's like, "How the fuck do you even fly?" They should be called T. mafiosa, Latin for "crane fly carrying some poor bastard's severed finger".

Oh, right. At any rate, we generally say, "An inch and a half", or, "One and a half inches". Or, you know, "two and a quarter inches", but that's beside the point. Or not. One and a half inches just like we say two and a quarter ... er ... right, I'll stop now.

21. ### StrangerInAStrangeLandSubQuantum MechanicValued Senior Member

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^^^
I was very clear. There is no more to say about it.

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22. ### StrangerInAStrangeLandSubQuantum MechanicValued Senior Member

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^^^
You said that before & I corrected you. Do you need to have the last word.
I tried my best to explain it to you. I will not go on&on&on&on&on with you.

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23. ### DaveC426913Valued Senior Member

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OK, well we were trying to give you the benefit of the doubt. But since you're standing behind your assertion:

is demonstrably false.