Explore the fascinating—and often surprising—psychological and sociological implications of emerging technologies. Tune in each month for a new set of insights.
- You (laughs) You been working out? Yeah, how many miles did you run? Well, what were your split times? Did you get a max heart rate out of it? - [Instructor] You might remember dimensional analysis from chemistry or physics. Basically, it's unit conversion, which is super helpful when you're converting from metric to U.S. units because that's something we do all the time, right? Like this kind of measurement? Anyway, (laughs) it used to be that people, and when I say people I mean the general public, were really interested in measurements when it came to very specific things. For example, the horsepower or torque of specific vehicles or how fast that one Olympian can run the 100 meters or the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow. If you take it even further back, there is probably not even any math involved. People would just measure things with body parts, and somethings don't ever change. I'm fairly certain that we still measure a horse's height with a hand measurement, and I don't think it's like the size of a full hand, but Google PhD tells me that a hand is worth four inches. Anyway, you get it. Measurements are helpful. We all know this. How else would scientists conduct experiments or publish reports? We all get that they're useful in professions, but they're also useful to us in everyday life as well. Right? They help us cook food properly or understand the concept of temperature so that we know what kind of clothes to wear or take the proper amount of medication. All things that we take for granted on a day-to-day basis are done via proper measurement. It's no longer just those cute markings on the wall that my dad made to measure my height every year on my birthday when I was growing up. Okay, so what am I talking about? What do I mean by all this? Let's address that next.