a quick profound thought in an excel workshop.

So I’m currently sitting in an Excel workshop in Sweden, which means that Excel and the keyboard are slightly different than what I’ve used for so much of my life, and a formula error just popped up caused by my having used a period to denote a decimal, rather than a comma.

And I was thinking about my grandfather, because the brain is funny, and also because being good at business-related stuff makes me think of him. And I knew that he would probably mutter something about how why can’t we all use one system of mathematical punctuation.

While it is frankly quite true that having only one system which everyone follows would streamline things immensely, the likelihood that it will happen is low and not likely to increase. And it occurred to me that the world belongs to those who are willing to learn as many systems as they encounter. In a very mercenary sense, I will be more valuable in the job market if I can use Excel regardless of whether it is expressed 1,5 or 1.5. In a much more profound sense, I will be a more understanding person if I can interact with people in all their myriad ways.

So basically the entire political argument about how small things like measurement and written expressions and language and anything else should be done is irrelevant.

This is a very under-fleshed-out thought, but I kind of like it.


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