US Endorses New French-Free Measurement System

Fake News written by James Baughn on Friday, November 21, 2003

from the dubya-dubya-dubya-dot-strategery dept.

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Buoyed by the continued American distrust of all things French, President George Dubya Bush today unveiled the "Liberty Measurement System", an alternative to the Metric system that is just as American as apple pie, baseball games, and frivolous lawsuits.

"For years we have successfully prevented the widespread adoption of the Metric system in American -- a system developed by the left-wing ungrateful French," Bush said during a televised speech. "It's time to replace our bytes with Libraries of Congress, our gallons with super-sized cups, and our light-years with extra-extra-extra-large feet."

To develop the system, the White House gathered some of the country's greatest minds for a marathon brainstorming session that lasted all of two hours. The result was a measurement system founded on the idea of "economy", "small", "medium", "large", "extra-large", and "super-sized" prefixes.

"Your average American is already familiar with 'extra-large' and 'super-size' measurements, which are de facto standards used by T-shirt manufacturers, fast food restaurants, and others," explained Dr. Megan Watts. "Meanwhile, Metric prefixes like 'centi-' and 'peta-' mean nothing to most people. And who can keep track of the differences between pints and quarts? We need something better, and this is it."

The White House released a preliminary conversion table demonstrating some of the new units:

OLDNEWSHORT FORMABBREV.
InchValue footveefootvft.
FootMedium footfootft.
YardLarge footlarfootlft.
MileSuper-size footmcfootmft.
Light-yearXXXL footbigfootxxxft.
 
OunceValue poundvalpoundvlb.
TonExtra-large poundx-poundxlb.
 
PintEconomy cupeconcupecp.
QuartMedium cupcupcp.
GallonSuper-size cupmccupmcp.

Far more interesting, however, is the proposed overhaul of the way electronic documents are measured. Is a kilobyte supposed to be 1024 bytes or 1000 bytes? Under the new regime, it won't matter.

"The 'megabyte scam' by hard drive companies is over," boasted Dr. Watts. "We're going to drop that whole power-of-two nonsense and go straight to a far more stable and popular standard: the Library of Congress."

"The LOC is an already established standard," explained scientist Dr. Slugsnot Grammes. "I personally wanted to create a unit called 'Enough For Anybody' (EFA) which would be equal to 640 kilobytes. But, hey, why create a brand new unit when everybody already knows about the Library of Congress?"

For download speeds, the new system includes a unit called a BOAT, or the "Bandwidth Of A Truck". Under this scheme, the unit is based on a model pick-up truck carrying 10,000 DVDs while traveling at a speed of 55 supersized-feet per hour. An extra-large BOAT, of course, will include a faster download rate, while the download speed of a typical dial-up modem will be expressed in units of super-super-economy BOATs.

"This new system will take some getting used to," a White House spokesman admitted. "But we kill two birds with one stone: we shed the ugly, old British system while keeping the French away. You're either for us, or for the French."

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