25 Humorous And Unconventional Units Of Measurement

From donkeypower to the beard-second these are 25 humorous and unconventional units of measurement.

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25

The beard-second

humorous units of measurement

Often used to measure really small distances such as those in integrated circuits, the beard-second is not surprisingly described as the length that an average beard grows in one second (about 10 nanometers).

24

Mickey

humorous units of measurement

Used to describe the speed and direction that a computer mouse is moved. Mouse sensitivity can be measured in mickeys per inch

23

Sheppey

humorous units of measurement

A measure of distance equal to about 7⁄8 of a mile (1.4 km), defined as the closest distance at which sheep remain picturesque.

22

Smoot

humorous units of measurement

A unit of length, defined as the height of Oliver R. Smoot, the president of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). It was created exclusively to measure the length of the Harvard Bridge.

21

Barn, Outhouse, and Shed

humorous units of measurement

Used by nuclear physicists to measure extremely small distances, the “barn” derives its name from the expression “couldn’t hit the broadside of a barn” which is often used by these physicists to describe the difficulty of causing particle collisions. The outhouse and shed are even smaller.

20

Donkeypower

humorous units of measurement

One third of horsepower.

19

Friedman

humorous units of measurement

Refers to a span of time measuring 6 months into the future and was coined by columnist Thomas Friedman in reference to Iraq’s future.

18

Kardashian

humorous units of measurement

A unit of time representing 72 days of marriage. It was coined in response to Kim Kardashian’s marriage to Kris Humpries

17

Microcentury

humorous units of measurement

Supposedly mathematician John von Neumann used the term to denote the maximum length of a lecture. One microcentury is 52 minutes and 35.69 seconds.

16

Rictus scale

humorous units of measurement

A proposed system based on the Richter scale that measures the amount of media coverage of an event.

15

Dirac

humorous units of measurement

A unit for measuring information flow, physicist Paul Dirac was known among his colleagues for his precise yet taciturn nature. They defined a Dirac as one word per hour.

14

Helen

humorous units of measurement

Helen of Troy was known as “the face that launched a thousand ships”, therefore one millihelen is the amount of beauty required to launch 1 ship.

13

Lenat

humorous units of measurement

Used to measure how bogus a person is, especially in the field of Quantum Bogodynamics. According to its proponents, however, it is seldom used as it is far too large for normal conversation. The microlenat is more useful.

12

MegaFonzie

humorous units of measurement

A measure of an object’s coolness invented by Professor Farnsworth in the TV show Futurama. One “fonzie” is the amount of coolness inherent in the Happy Days character Fonzie.

11

Puppy

humorous units of measurement

The proposed SI unit of happiness, 1 puppy is the quantity of happiness that a one kilogram beagle puppy whose body temperature is 310 kelvins produces when held in skin contact for one second.

10

Pouter

humorous units of measurement

A measurement of obstruction, it is named after Commander Pouter, a British Naval Officer from WWII who had a very difficult disposition.

9

Warhol

humorous units of measurement

Derived from Andy Warhol’s famous statement “everyone will be world-famous for fifteen minutes” it represents fifteen minutes of fame.

8

Canard

humorous units of measurement

The proposed SI unit to measure quackery. It ranks from 0-10 and measures the number of times quack words such as “energy” and “holistic” are used to promote dubious health claims.

7

Wheaton

humorous units of measurement

Used to measure a number of Twitter followers relative to celebrity Wil Wheaton, it was coined when Wil reached half a million followers. Typically the milliwheaton is more useful (500 followers).

6

Bloit

humorous units of measurement

In the Zork series of games 1 bloit is the distance that the king’s favorite pet could run in 1 hour.

5

Gillette

humorous units of measurement

When American physicist Ted Maiman invented the laser he measured its strength by the number of Gillette razors it could burn through

4

Nybble

humorous units of measurement

When it comes to computers you know what a byte is. One nybble is half of that.

3

Microsoft minute

humorous units of measurement

A unit of time defined by how long Windows tells you it will take to copy some files. This has nothing to do with how long it actually takes to copy the files.

2

MilliEinstein

humorous units of measurement

One millieinstein is a thousandth of the brain power of Einstein. It was inspired by the millihelen.

1

Monkey minute

humorous units of measurement

It is famously said that a very large number of monkeys typing randomly at a keyboard for eternity, will produce the complete works of Shakespeare (or some other literary canon). It follows then, that for works of lesser magnitude a smaller number of monkeys (or shorter duration) will suffice. Thus 1 monkey minute is a measure of literary quality.



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