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miles versus kilometers

English translation: miles

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13:58 May 22, 2003
English to English translations [Non-PRO]
Tech/Engineering
English term or phrase: miles versus kilometers
Hi,
I have a (German) text describing a toy car, which I need to translate for a US audience. Should I convert metric to imperial measurements (as I would for a UK audience)? What is the standard usage for the US?

examples:
... is 54 cm long, weighing 1500 grammes ...

... top speed of 105 km/h ...

Yes, it's quite a car!

Thanks for your help.
Nicole Tata
Local time: 22:49
English translation:miles
Explanation:
My experience is that the US uses imperial measures even more than the British, who are slowly getting used to the metric system.
Selected response from:

Hazel Whiteley
Local time: 22:49
Grading comment
Thanks!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +15miles
Hazel Whiteley
5 +7In general, yes, convert,Fuad Yahya
4 +721 1/4" long, weighs 3 lbs.5 oz., top speed is 65 mph.David Moore


  

Answers


3 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +15
miles


Explanation:
My experience is that the US uses imperial measures even more than the British, who are slowly getting used to the metric system.

Hazel Whiteley
Local time: 22:49
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in SpanishSpanish
PRO pts in pair: 20
Grading comment
Thanks!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Christopher Crockett: Yes, most (but not even all) americans have at least *heard* of "kill-o-meters", but not more than a tiny percentage of the population actually has any idea what speed "105 km/h" might be --just that it sounds like A LOT!! More so for cm.s & grams.
5 mins

agree  walzl
8 mins

agree  Anna Bittner
11 mins

agree  Armorel Young
11 mins

agree  xxxIno66
22 mins

agree  Kim Metzger: Only US soldiers talk about how many Ks it is to K-town.
29 mins

agree  RHELLER: you can put the metrics in parentheses
48 mins

agree  J. Leo
1 hr

agree  jccantrell: I would go with Rita, except I would put the miles, etc., in parens. THEN, if you make a mistake in conversion, the REAL number is the main one.
1 hr

agree  Bin Zhang
1 hr

agree  Empty Whiskey Glass
6 hrs

agree  DGK T-I
8 hrs

agree  Sarah Ponting
17 hrs

agree  vixen
17 hrs

agree  Erik Hansson
1 day6 hrs
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5 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +7
21 1/4" long, weighs 3 lbs.5 oz., top speed is 65 mph.


Explanation:
Wow, that is some car....
Yes, I would convert as above.
Good idea to put the metric measurement in brackets, too.

David Moore
Local time: 23:49
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 864

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Christopher Crockett: No need to include the metrics at all unless a *precise*, technical description is called for --it will just confuse & scare off most potential u.s. customers. You could well use both systems for a U.K. audience, however.
6 mins

agree  xxxIno66
21 mins

agree  Autobahn
47 mins

agree  Maria-Jose Pastor: also agree with Christopher as far as the US market.
1 hr

agree  Marie Scarano
6 hrs

agree  Empty Whiskey Glass
6 hrs

agree  DGK T-I
8 hrs
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8 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +7
In general, yes, convert,


Explanation:
. . . just be aware of certain areas where the metric system is becoming the preferred system, albeit not quite consistently. Example: the medical field, where the metric system is gaining popularity in, for example, statiing body temperature and body weight, as well as in fluid quantities (milliliter instead of ounce). Interestingly, in a typical hospital, you will notice that a patient state his/her body wiight in punds, while the nurse writes down the info in Kilos!

Also notice that for minute measurements (e.g., milligrams), the metric system is preferred in almost all fields.

Fuad Yahya
Native speaker of: Native in ArabicArabic, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 893

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Christopher Crockett: Yes, but the use of the metric system in the u.s. is still *very* limited to technical fields like, as you say, medicine. The only exception I can think of is tempratures, which are now commonly given in both the C & F scales in outdoor signage, etc.
5 mins
  -> I agree. The medical practice I described is the practice followed at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston.

agree  xxxIno66
17 mins

agree  J. Leo
1 hr

agree  Bin Zhang
1 hr

agree  Maria-Jose Pastor: Yes, the US medical field is using metric more and more, when prescribing medication, dosage is per kilos not pounds, another example.
1 hr

agree  DGK T-I
8 hrs

agree  AhmedAMS
169 days
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