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Myanmar units of measurement (wikipedia.org)
17 points by curtis on Oct 26, 2017 | hide | past | favorite | 13 comments



I'm from Myanmar and not sure why this is posted here.

It's true that the traditional units are still in use. Mostly in rural areas and, local markets and small stores in cities.

Although not all the unites from smallest to largest are all in use. Mostly middle parts of those unit are in common use. e.g., only Htwa (length from tip of your thumb to pinky finger), Taung (length from your fist to elbow), Lan (length of stretch of both hands) are in common use of length. Same goes to weight and volume as well. Even local people don't know the correct measurement of smaller and higher ones.

I have created a converter app for that (Burmese language): https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.eimaung.th...

Imperial units are also in used, such as mile in highway roads, inches to measure clothes, feet to measure building, pound to weight foods, etc... Government is trying to migrate metric system (I think there was an official statement), but without proper plan, no progress so far.

So, you will see all three of systems are in use in mixture of here and there. It's so mess-up. We have serious standardize problems. Measurements is not the only one. There is a similar story with character sets and encoding that seriously messing up Myanmar language on computer.


Likely to provide evidence against the claim that the USA is the only country not using the metric system. But we (USA) sell soda and car engines in liters, just like everyone.


Are there such claims?

For as long as I've been on the internet, the common claim is that there's three countries not using metric - USA, Burma, and Liberia. I believe this is still the case, despite some hand-waving by the Burmese administration as described in TFA.

USA doesn't sell soda, of course. Within USA, though it's been a while since I've been there, I thought most soda was sold in fluid ounces (a particularly weird-sounding unit to people outside the country, I'm sure).

Car engines I thought were still mostly measured in cubic inches, horsepower, miles per gallon, etc.

One area that the USA does embrace metric is photography - but then most cameras are designed and constructed in metric-adopting countries. I think it would be delightful if USitizens were obliged to talk about focal length in terms of fractions & multiples of inches.


Soda cans are in fl-oz. Generally 12, though energy drinks are different.

Soda bottles are in fl-oz or l. 20 oz, 1 l, or 2 l are the common values.

Alcohol is similar: beer is in pint bottles or cans, hard liquor in 750ml bottles.

Car engine displacement tends to be in l. Power is hp and gas mileage is mpg.


Thank you for the insider knowledge & clarifications.

For a long time here in AU we had metric on many items with imperial measurements in parenthesis, but it's rare to see that now (except on retail-packaged foodstuffs imported from the UK, and perhaps the US).

Car engine displacement -- I can't find a good explanation of when that preference may have changed for the USA.

I'm aware that 1959 marked the alignment of the British vs USA inch, but I believe the difference was tiny (enough to annoy you if you'd just purchased some very fine feeler gauges, but not enough to noticeably change the engine displacement measurement).

It sounds like it may simply be a reaction to car manufacturers describing displacement in litres - and so may be a consequence of the shift in ownership from domestic to foreign (metric marketed) cars.

A friend of mine renovates very old cars - he's doing up a Riley at the moment, and was describing the variations on Whitworth (and others) to me.

Of particular delight was his describing the subtle change to the bolt heads during the 1940's.

The Wikipedia page for Whitworth Standard [1] summarises it well (though I can't but help feel that no one involved in these specifications genuinely understood the meaning of the word Standard). Quoting from same:

"However, in World War II the size of the Whitworth hexagon was reduced to the same size as the equivalent BSF hexagon purely to save metal during the war and they never went back to the old sizes afterwards."

A lovely segue to another HN article earlier today about skeuomorphic designs that linger like a bad smell.

I'm danged happy to have grown up in a society that embraces metric.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/British_Standard_Whitworth


I am from Myanmar too. I've read your book Ubuntu: Linux for you.


How visible is the genocide against the Rohingya?


I'd mock, but my own country's people are doggedly refusing to give up our own traditional units too.


Not sure why the Myanmar units of measurement are posted here, but might as well add the Thai units of measurement: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thai_units_of_measurement


Probably they make news because they're still the main units used in the country

> Most of the nation uses Burmese units only, although Burmese government web pages in English use imperial and metric units inconsistently


This struck me as remarkable:

ငါးမူးသား(nga mutha): Literally "five mutha", but in fact it is only four.


It's no worse than the French use of "huit jours" (lit. eight days) to mean a week, or the terminology for musical intervals where a one-note interval is called a "second". I'd guess that the origin might the same in each case: if you start at 1 and count up N times, you get to N+1.


Yuzana give me a full pour here, kawtha I got a designated driver.




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