French Revolution: The Metric System

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The metric system was a system of measurement created during the French revolution in the 1790’s. It was created to be a universal. A system that scientists and engineers could use along as the general public. The motto was “For all the people, all the time.” It was a way to create much needed uniformity and accuracy to inefficient and confusing ways of measurement that were currently being used in Europe. The metric system was and adopted as the official standard of measurement in 1799. Because of it the world was changed forever. Before the metric system was introduced, there was no unified measuring system. Units of measure were often based on and named from things like body parts. For example, the digit, the hand, the pace and noise…show more content…
This discrepancy caused error and fraud in business transactions and interfered with scientific developments. Along with the expansion of industry and trade, was need growing need for a universal system of measurement. Merchants, scientists, and educated people throughout Europe realized that a uniform system was needed, but it was only in the climate of a complete political upheaval that such a radical change could actually be considered. The French revolution proved to be such a time. It was time to start fresh, instead of just standardizing size of the some of the units that were currently being used, the French government decided that a completely new system should be…show more content…
The guidelines of creating the metric system included the following: it was to be universal and neutral, any laboratory with proper instruments should be able to replicate units based on their definition, decimal multiples, all multiples and submultiples of the base models should be in powers of ten, all units would use common prefixes for each multiple, and the base units had to be close to the size of customary units then in use. The metric system is based on decimals. Though decimal numbers have been used on and off since ancient times in many parts of the world, they never became well established for any long period of time….until the metric system. Conversion to a different size of the same unit now simply consisted moving the decimal point. Since the metric system ranges from 10-24 to 1024, scientific notation is used. Scientific notation is a way of expressing numbers that are too big or too small to be conveniently written in decimal form. It is used a lot by scientists, mathematicians and
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