Ubuntu Desktop Unit Consistency (LP: #369525)

Derek Broughton derek at pointerstop.ca
Tue Jun 2 13:24:38 UTC 2009

Max Bowsher wrote:

> Chan Chung Hang Christopher wrote:
>> Benjamin Drung wrote:
>>> On Mon Jun 1 04:15:19 BST 2009 Remco wrote:
>>>> I have a file here of "701.2 MB", which is "735270912 bytes". Now, if
>>>> it really *were* 701.2 MB, then it would be 701200000 bytes. So that's
>>>> clearly base 2, which should be MiB.
>>> That is what the bug report is about. Using MiB for values, wich are
>>> base 2.
>>> So is there anybody who wants to keep the old confusing behaviour?
>> /me raises hand.
> Ditto.
> To my mind, the power-of-2 grouping is sufficiently intrinsic to the
> nature of bytes, whilst the "kibi mebi gibi tebi" stuff not only sounds
> and looks stupid, but loses a great deal of clarity by making all of the
> prefixes differ only in a single syllable.
How can _explicitly_ naming units be less clear than making people guess 
whether units are 10**2 or 2**10?

I've argued with Christopher about this before, and don't want to continue 
it here, but I really think it's hypocritical for a distribution based on 
_standards_ to ignore the fact that we _have_ standards for this, simply 
because real geeks count in binary.

As for "stupid", "kibi" only looks or sounds stupid to people who've never 
used the units.  To the average user, "kilobytes" is equally stupid.

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