by Max Barry

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"Metric System" of the Allied States.

The units of measure in the Allied States derive from the times before the first Ascended were "born," about 2,000 BC in human terms. They were developed by the Karigai, as a truly non-arbitrary system of units based on fundamental physical constants.

They would have been adopted by human society if the Karigai didn't use a base twelve number system.

The unit of mass is typically translated as the ancient Indian word "Daseri," as that is the closest analog in human history to its value - 12⁸ Planck Masses, or about 9.3583 kg.

The unit of length is typically translated "Cubit," for similar reasons. It's value is 12 Planck Lengths, or about 55.247 cm.

The unit of time is translated "Tock," because there is no human counterpart, so the Karig in charge of the translation project just chose (in her own words) "a clocky sound." The closest human counterpart is the second, and "traditional" Karigan units included a very similar unit to the human second, due to the Karigan love of twelves and the similarity of Durget's rotational period to that of Earth. The value of the tock is 12⁴⁰ Planck Times, or about 0.79239 seconds.

The unit of temperature is just called the degree. If a human unit of temperature is being used, then you'll be sure to hear "Fahrenheit" or "Celsius" to specify which kind of degree is being referenced. The value of the degree is one 12⁰th of the Planck Temperature, or about 0.59685 Kelvin.

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