Tall, Dark, and Mysterious


‘It’s somewhere in the destination city…probably’

File under: Sound And Fury, Meta-Meta. Posted by Moebius Stripper at 4:59 pm.

My computer is fixed! And it was shipped by ground, on August 23, by a service that guarantees delivery within four business days.


Purolator, at my request, has placed a trace on the damned thing, and they assure me that they’re doing their best to resolve this as efficiently as possible. This being the company that puts people on hold for half an hour at a stretch, you can imagine that I am positively FILLED WITH HOPE AND OPTIMISM.


  1. Well, really no one works much in August, so the “four business days” should get you early September. Then they’re still early.

    - wolfangel — 8/30/2005 @ 7:06 am

  2. Well, are they four metric or imperial days?

    - Long-time Lurker — 8/30/2005 @ 7:31 am

  3. Did they say to *whom* it was guaranteed delivery in four days? Because it may very well have been delivered within four business days– to a guy who knows a friend of a friend of the guy who shipped it.

    - Wacky Hermit — 8/30/2005 @ 8:38 am

  4. O, ye of little faith: I’ll have you know that I am typing this on my computer right now! And listening to my long-lost, randomized music collection on my new surround-sound speakers! (Which I just set up, and which are not being put to optimum use at the moment, but will be once I figure out how to manage the tangle of wires.) Glory be.

    Lurker (welcome!) - are metric days 1/10 of a month? Because that would explain a lot of things…

    - Moebius Stripper — 8/30/2005 @ 9:07 am

  5. Metric days are indeed a tenth of a month, but the real question is what is a metric month?

    I mean, if there are ten metric months to a year, then each metric day would be approximately 3.6524 (or 3.6525 or 3.6526, depending on the source — see, four significant digits) imperial days. For convenience (!), we will assume 100 metric hours per metric day (each metric hour would then be 0.87658 imperial hours), 100 metric minutes per metric hour (each metric minute would then be 0.52595 imperial minutes), and 100 metric seconds per metric minute (1 ms = 0.31557 s).

    This will, of course, require that we change all of our physical constants that include a time value (Joules, Newtons, etc.), but in the end it will be much easier to understand.

    In the short run, there may be a bit of dislocation, of course, but I, for one, would be happy to sacrifice convenience on the altar of the mystical number 10.

    All bow down before the number 10!


    - Doug Sundseth — 8/30/2005 @ 4:14 pm

  6. so if an imperial day is 24 imperial hours, does that mean an american day is only 20 imperial hours?

    - Sam — 8/30/2005 @ 11:53 pm

  7. This is already out of date! By now, with the computer era, everything has to be in base 2. But we have to keep the astronomical references the same: a year is one revolution of the earth around the sun and a day is one rotation of the earth on its axis. There are 8 months in a year, 4 weeks per month and 8 days a week.

    However, this sums only to 256 days (rotations) in a year (revolution). This is why the system is not official yet. But President Bush has announced that the new goal of the NASA (since going into space doesn’t seem too great these days) is now to build a giant retro-rocket to slow down the rotation of the earth, so that it will end up turning 256 times on itself during a year. And this WILL be accomplished before the end of this decade.

    Notice the side benefit: each day is going to last longer, so everyone will get more free time and stress levels will decrease in the general population. And the world will be a better place.

    - Digital, digital, I want to get digital! — 8/31/2005 @ 12:47 am

  8. Good lord, how did I get so many nerds reading my math blog?


    - Moebius Stripper — 8/31/2005 @ 7:40 am

  9. Did you ever see the ‘Talking to Americans’ sketch about Canada had only 20 hours a day, so if you were doing something at 5 it was 3.30 Canadian and blah blah should Canada switch to a 24 hour day like the US?

    - wolfangel — 8/31/2005 @ 8:06 am

  10. As a long-suffering Comp Sci professor once told me: “There are 11 kinds of people on this planet: those who understand binary, and those who do not.”

    - Independent George — 8/31/2005 @ 2:51 pm

  11. Of course, seeing as how that should read “10″ instead of “11″, I clearly belong to the latter category.

    - Independent George — 8/31/2005 @ 3:40 pm

  12. It’s too bad your computer science prof didn’t understand binary; that seems as if it would be a problem.

    In any case, there are 10 kinds of people: Those who understand binary, those who don’t understand binary, and those who understand trinary.

    All bow down before the number 10, but make sure you pick the right 10.

    - Doug Sundseth — 8/31/2005 @ 3:40 pm

  13. Dang, between 1 and 59 seconds late (base 10).


    - Doug Sundseth — 8/31/2005 @ 3:42 pm

  14. Now you just have to figure out which “base 10″ I meant.

    For the record, I intended the number commonly referred to as “T” in duodecimal or “A” in hexadecimal. So that would be “between 1 and 4E seconds” in duodecimal, or “between 1 and 3B seconds” in hexadecimal.


    - Doug Sundseth — 8/31/2005 @ 3:51 pm

  15. “Good lord, how did I get so many nerds reading my math blog?”

    We can’t spend ALL our time posting on Slashdot. ;o)

    - Old Grouch — 8/31/2005 @ 6:50 pm

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