# Question #659f6

Jan 22, 2018

There are many reasons, but the two that strike me most strongly are given below:

#### Explanation:

They allow us to make consistent measurements over time (I can measure $x$ today and next week and get the ‘same’ result.)

They allow us to set international standards (safety, EN standards/ISO standards) because they are consistent across space.

I’ll be interested to see other reasons pop-up from different contributors so I’ll request a double-check and hope others do too. More heads = better learning!

Jan 22, 2018

Standardized units of measurement can help avoid errors from mis-understanding.

#### Explanation:

Such a mis-understanding doomed a shot to Mars as was reported in this article:
http://articles.latimes.com/1999/oct/01/news/mn-17288

Apparently data was exchanged without including the units used (or without noticing that it was not in the expected units). (It involved data calculated in pound-seconds being interpreted as being in Newton-seconds. The LA-Times article called the data force data, but looks like impulse data to me.)

Perhaps the use of the English system should be banned from science.

I hope this helps,
Steve