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lynx-dev Prefixes (was: Re: Question about WHEREIS)

From: gilmap
Subject: lynx-dev Prefixes (was: Re: Question about WHEREIS)
Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2004 15:31:35 -0700 (MST)

In a recent note, David Woolley said:

> Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2004 08:39:17 +0000 (GMT)
> > I thought "KB" was standard.
> I think there was a lost cause to try to standardise on something like
> Ki for 1024, but it is never going to work given that no marketing
> person seems to know the difference between K and k, M and M, or B and
> b, and, nowadays, a lot of programmers don't seem to either.
> KB as 1024 * 8 bits has been industry standard for more than 30 years.
And "K" as 10^3 has been scientific and engineering standard
for far longer than that.

> I would vote against Ki as it will simply cause confusion.
The ambiguous (more properly, simply careless) use of K, M, and G
is already causing confusion, and lately, even lawsuits.
It was a convenient shortcut to so overload "K" when it
involved only a 2.4% discrepancy.  Similarly overloading "G"
results in a 7.5% discrepancy; far less acceptable, particularly
when planning disk capacity.

Pop quiz question:  How long should it take to transfer 1GB
(including overhead) of data over a 100 Mbit/sec channel?
Justify your answer, particularly if it's other than 80.0 sec.

I vote against the ambiguous convention.

-- gil

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