Book Reviews of The Measure of All Things : The Seven-Year Odyssey and Hidden Error That Transformed the World

The Measure of All Things : The Seven-Year Odyssey and Hidden Error That Transformed the World
The Measure of All Things The Seven-Year Odyssey and Hidden Error That Transformed the World
Author: Ken Alder
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ISBN-13: 9780743216760
ISBN-10: 0743216768
Publication Date: 10/1/2003
Pages: 448
Rating:
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 2

4 stars, based on 2 ratings
Publisher: Free Press
Book Type: Paperback
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2 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Measure of All Things : The Seven-Year Odyssey and Hidden Error That Transformed the World on + 10 more book reviews
Overall a very interesting account of the birth of the Metric system, though at times it was a bit dull, and the title's claim of transforming the world is a little over-rated.
reviewed The Measure of All Things : The Seven-Year Odyssey and Hidden Error That Transformed the World on + 242 more book reviews
This is a detailed look at the exacting task undertaken by 2 men to obtain the correct measurement of the meter - one ten-millionth of the distance between the pole and the equator. It's not so much about an error that was made, as about the nature of the work and the efforts required: innumerable readings taken at precise locations along a baseline, without deviation "commandeering...church steeples, fortress towers, observation platorms" along hills, valleys and rocky terrain. The painstaking precision was not for the faint of heart. I am amazed by the assembling of data and computation that took place for this job - without computers or even calculators and at the time of the French Revolution!