- Paperback: 456 pages
- Publisher: Springer; Corrected edition (November 1, 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 3540760229
- ISBN-13: 978-3540760221
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,972,183 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Scientific Unit Conversion: A Practical Guide to Metrication Corrected Edition
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"[I] would recommend it with just one reservation.
Unfortunately, the authors were somewhat arbitrary in deciding which units any particular one would be converted to. If I had written this book, I would have included at least the following for each unit: (1) All other units in the SAME system (i. e., if we are talking about a pre-revolutionary French unit of length, all other pre-revolutionary French units of length) and (2) the nearest-sized SI unit. Unfortunately they frequently leave out conversions between units of the same system that would be useful, and often units of the same approximate size are converted to different SI units, making comparisons difficult. (For example, one foot-size unit may be expressed as so many centimeters, while another as such a fraction of a meter.)
Both of these omissions can be circumvented by using a calculator and working with what these authors have chosen to include, but the book would be easier to use if they had done what I would have."
This book gets its fifth star primarily because it has the feature that I said _should_ have been in Glover's book. It is more comprehensive as well. With these factors, if Glover's book got four stars, this book _has_ to get 5. It has everything I loved in Glover's book, without the shortcomings.
The book is not quite perfect; it has three "atomic mass units" listed (based on C-12, O-16, and H-1) but fails to include the old chemical atomic mass unit I grew up with (based on the abundance-weighted average of the oxygen isotopes), but it is so much more comprehensive than any other book that I still have to recommend it as the best.
Units are an ever evolving subject, indeed the SI is proposing to change the fundemental definitions of the SI base units again - once specific conditions for adoption can be achieved (especially significant for the kilogram). This volume gives a fascinating and highly usable insight into the history to date as well as current practice.
Highly recommended (if a little pricey).