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Tuesday, February 27, 2007 


This one is really messing with my noggin.

Apparently here a "billion" is a million million, while in the States a "billion" is a thousand million (#55). How could a definition like this not be standardized? Spelling is one thing, but huge numerical discrepancies is surely another!

So it's the difference between:

1,000,000,000 and

That is so odd I can't comprehend it. Must generate a great deal of confusion at international business meetings. Also, does this mean Richard Branson is a helluva lot richer than I thought?!?

Will the wackiness ne'er cease?

The Brits have used American short scale numerics in business since 1974. However, long scale (million million) is used commonly in normal discourse. Europe uses long scale statistically. English speaking countries except the USA and Canada use long scale in common discourse. We are having to include short scale in our language simply to do business with the North Americans, who for some reason chose not to use what everyone else was using.

Wikipedia, being Wikipedia, has a humungous article on this. Well, you learn something new every day...

I just liked 'messing with my noggin'.

Now, that was one that I never ran across whilst living over there!

I just spoke with my Scottish wife, and she's like, "Well, yeah, I know."

Man. I feel like a dufus. Thanks for the info though. Nice to learn new things. Even if the Europeans are nuts.


-- Tuckmac

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