# Temperatures in F / C

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I've learned to live with all distances and heights being counted in feet. An odd system of measurement, but it comes up so often that you soon get used to it.

However, it's a different thing with temperature. I can understand that american writers like to write their books with measurements they are familiar with, but except for people living in the United States or Belize, none of us has any clue what the temperatures given for certain effects in the Pathfinder books and the PRD mean. Either we have to go online to look up the conversion calculation and get out a calculator to get these numbers into C, or, what I think most commonly happens, we just don't care enough and ignore the whole rule completely.

However, this could very easily be solved if any temperatures given are written as (90F/??C) instead of just (90F). It would be really great if that could be added to future books and new printings of old ones, as well as to the PRD.

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The problem is that United States and Belize is where 80% of D&D/Pathfinder books are sold (that's actually a fact, I've seen the numbers back during my 'work in the industry' days).

And if you do Celcius, you really need to do other things metric too, and suddenly your books are dozens of pages bigger because every time the book says "in radius of 30 feet" it needs to say "in radius of 30 feet/10 metres" instead. At which point you say "screw that, we're not going to do that to make 10 customers happy".

Tough life, but you can't really help the fact that D&D is popular where it is.

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Also, I think the assumption is that localized versions handle things in local measurements (Polish D&D translations use metric for everything) and there is a German translation of Pathfinder.

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You know that Google does unit conversions, right?

Just type it in the box.

Gorbacz wrote:
Also, I think the assumption is that localized versions handle things in local measurements (Polish D&D translations use metric for everything) and there is a German translation of Pathfinder.

The German translation team indeed converts all the measurements.

However, Rudolf, while it is quite easy to do the conversions for distance and weights in your head, that is pretty much impossible for temperature, because the two scales don't match up well. And not everyone uses online devices during play.

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Gorbacz's name is Rudolf?

Agred.

While translations likely convert, it really sucks for Canada and the UK, and gaming is pretty popular in Canada. We have a good presence.
While I understand they want to use inches/ feet/ miles a conversion note would be nice in some places, like overland travel "you can travel x miles (or y km)".
Distance is less needed as those are fairly common sense. We're exposed to them a lot still. I can hand wave (yards are pretty much a meter and inches are a few cm). Unless I'm dealing with feet/yards per mile: I have NO idea how many feet are in a year or yards per mile.

But there's nothing common sense about Farenheight (and Googling is a pain because then you need to figure how to spell "Farenheight").
I'd LOVE for the temperates to include a reference to Celsius. "... roughly 98 degrees F (32 C)".

It's not hard to Google all that, but it slows down the game. People have to stop playing while I muddle around on my iPad.

 Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

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Fabius Maximus wrote:
However, Rudolf, while it is quite easy to do the conversions for distance and weights in your head, that is pretty much impossible for temperature, because the two scales don't match up well. And not everyone uses online devices during play.

Rough conversion for F to C? Subtract 30, then divide by 2.

Rough conversion for C to F? Double it, then add 30.

So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.

(It's officially 1.8 and 32, but multiplying or dividing by 2 instead of 1.8 is offset a little bit by adding or subtracting only 30 instead of 32.)

Also, ex- meteorologist-in-training Odraude has appeared to help out with the information.

Cold

Below 40 F = Below 4.4 C
Below 0 F = Below -17.7 C
Below -20 F = Below -28.8

Hot
Above 90 F = Above 32.2 C
Above 110 F = Above 43.3 C
Above 140 F = Above 60 C

Print that and post it on your GM screen. Viola! You are all welcome :)

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Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
However, Rudolf, while it is quite easy to do the conversions for distance and weights in your head, that is pretty much impossible for temperature, because the two scales don't match up well. And not everyone uses online devices during play.

Rough conversion for F to C? Subtract 30, then divide by 2.

Rough conversion for C to F? Double it, then add 30.

So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.

(It's officially 1.8 and 32, but multiplying or dividing by 2 instead of 1.8 is offset a little bit by adding or subtracting only 30 instead of 32.)

So what you are saying is, switching to metric gives me more beers? Got it! :)

I don't know if putting it 6 miles/10 km is going to break anyone's letter budget. Then again, it isn't my call.

Jester David wrote:

Agred.

While translations likely convert, it really sucks for Canada and the UK, and gaming is pretty popular in Canada. We have a good presence.
While I understand they want to use inches/ feet/ miles a conversion note would be nice in some places, like overland travel "you can travel x miles (or y km)".
Distance is less needed as those are fairly common sense. We're exposed to them a lot still. I can hand wave (yards are pretty much a meter and inches are a few cm). Unless I'm dealing with feet/yards per mile: I have NO idea how many feet are in a year or yards per mile.

But there's nothing common sense about Farenheight (and Googling is a pain because then you need to figure how to spell "Farenheight").
I'd LOVE for the temperates to include a reference to Celsius. "... roughly 98 degrees F (32 C)".

It's not hard to Google all that, but it slows down the game. People have to stop playing while I muddle around on my iPad.

Normally, I prefer metric , but I find that when it comes to doing every day temperatures, I actually prefer Fahrenheit to Celsius because of the wider spectrum of measurement.

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
However, Rudolf, while it is quite easy to do the conversions for distance and weights in your head, that is pretty much impossible for temperature, because the two scales don't match up well. And not everyone uses online devices during play.

Rough conversion for F to C? Subtract 30, then divide by 2.

Rough conversion for C to F? Double it, then add 30.

So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.

(It's officially 1.8 and 32, but multiplying or dividing by 2 instead of 1.8 is offset a little bit by adding or subtracting only 30 instead of 32.)

Thanks, I didn't know that. The conversion from US to German pounds isn't quite the same, as well. And 5 feet are not 1,5 meters.

I feel that with beer, the conversion rate would be the other way around, though. ;)

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I thought the exact conversion was just
* (C to F) - multiply by 9/5, add 32.
* (F to C) subtract 32, multiply by 5/9.
It leads to the weird scenario where -40 degrees F is also -40 degrees C.

As a former physics student, I honestly don't get the confusion or difficulty here. Unit conversions are just a fact of life. 2.2 lb/kg, 2.54 cm/inch. 10 feet is roughly 3 m. A few simple numbers to memorize and then you just roughly approximate the math if you don't want to get OCD about the detail.

Give the measurements in Kelvins and let everybody but the physicists convert!

 RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4

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see wrote:
Give the measurements in Kelvins and let everybody but the physicists convert!

See, this is why we can't have ice things.

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Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I demand that all speeds henceforth be expressed only in furlongs per fortnight!

Also, I only speak Klingon.

Tarondor wrote:

I demand that all speeds henceforth be expressed only in furlongs per fortnight!

Also, I only speak Klingon.

Lol.

Though, I see (and sympathize) with the OP's point. Living in the US, I didn't realize other countries had this issue in their editions.

Also, sorry, but I'd ask that the Klingon edition wait until after we see a Tolkien Elvish translation. Also, Huttese... Just sayin.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

A heartfelt "+1!" for the OP's point, although I doubt that it will ever be implemented.

While I can handle every other common off-the-cuff conversion to the metric system, I have a mental block when it comes to Fahrenheit. I'm not a science student nor have I had a career in meteorology. "Handy" references to on-line conversion sources do not help me during a table-top game or other situations where I'm off-line.

Come Now, the Wookiee Edition must be in front of those pointy elf bastards!

 Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

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Kvantum wrote:

I thought the exact conversion was just

* (C to F) - multiply by 9/5, add 32.
* (F to C) subtract 32, multiply by 5/9.

Yes, multiplying by 9/5 is the same as multiplying by 1.8.

Multiplying by 5/9 is the same as dividing by 1.8.

I would agree with the OP.

I'm okay with Paizo's inability to spell 'armour' and inability to calculate the weight of characters in stones :D

But farenheit is rarely used here and I am completely unfamiliar with it. If someone tells me that it is 50 degrees farenheit... I don't even know if that is hot or cold!

And all because you Americans can't stop sucking up to Belize.

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.

Someone knows his Bob and Doug Mackenzie. :)

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Feegle wrote:
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.
Someone knows his Bob and Doug Mackenzie. :)

Take off, eh?

Feegle wrote:
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.
Someone knows his Bob and Doug Mackenzie. :)

Yup, it's a Canadian classic.

(By the way, Canada still has home thermostats and oven temperatures in Fahrenheit, so it's not completely mystifying here.)

hogarth wrote:
Feegle wrote:
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.
Someone knows his Bob and Doug Mackenzie. :)

Yup, it's a Canadian classic.

(By the way, Canada still has home thermostats and oven temperatures in Fahrenheit, so it's not completely mystifying here.)

Not completely, but even in my mid-30s, I can't hear "75 degrees today" on the weather forecast and know whether I need a jacket (before doing a quick conversion in my head.)

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I'd never have thought that Pathfinder was that popular in Belize. :)

75 degrees sounds like it is time to dump your house in the nearest ocean...

Feegle wrote:
Not completely, but even in my mid-30s, I can't hear "75 degrees today" on the weather forecast and know whether I need a jacket (before doing a quick conversion in my head.)

I'm only a few years older than you, but...

If you asked me what temperature a nice day is, I'd probably say "25 degrees".

And if you asked me what room temperature was, I'd say "70 degrees". I have only a vague idea what you should set a thermostat to in Celsuis.

(Also, I measure milk in litres and berries in pints. I'm a living enigma.)

Pathfinder Maps Subscriber
Jester David wrote:
While translations likely convert, it really sucks for Canada and the UK,

I am from the UK and TBH Farenheit is as familiar for me as Centigrade and in terms of distance miles is much better than km.

Also, translations for RPGs are not the greatest thing.
Usually, it takes months for a translation to hit the shelves if it ever does. And it's a huge pain to work with books in multiple languages, since you never know which two words mean the same. I think in the German version, Feat is translated as Talent, but then you have rogue talents.... and yeah.
So pretty much anyone I know buy all their books in English so everything is the same language.

The issue here is not "how difficult can it be to switch between temperature scales?". It is "how much inconvenient is it to do that conversion" and "how much work would it be for the publishers to help out with it".
And personally, I think it's a tiny amount of effort that would reduce a lot of inconvenience for a lot of people.

Fabius Maximus wrote:

Thanks, I didn't know that. The conversion from US to German pounds isn't quite the same, as well. And 5 feet are not 1,5 meters.

Damn close, though. Technically, 5 feet is 1,524 meters, so you're off by less than the width of two fingers.

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1.524 meters...

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I sort wish the whole RPG had just gone to metric and been done with it, American standards and backward compatability be damned. A 1-m square makes a lot more sense for a human-sized person than a 5-foot one, so it would be a win right there.

That said, I seriously wish that the U.S. would leave the 10th century to join the 21st, and embrace metrics overall. When someone tells me liters of water, I can picture soda bottles on shelves. When someone tells me "0.5 acre-feet," that really doesn't mean much, visually-speaking.

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Kirth Gersen wrote:
When someone tells me liters of water, I can picture soda bottles on shelves. When someone tells me "0.5 acre-feet," that really doesn't mean much, visually-speaking.

You realize that one of the major roadblocks is exactly this, only the other way around, for many people living in the US.

Eragar wrote:
1.524 meters...

In large parts of the world we use comma (,) rather than point (.) to show that the digits following it are decimals.

Kajehase wrote:
Eragar wrote:
1.524 meters...
In large parts of the world we use comma (,) rather than point (.) to show that the digits following it are decimals.

Comma: Pause in sentence: analogous to pause between digits.

Period: End of sentence/start of next: analogous to end of whole numbers/start of fractions.

This is one case in which the U.S. method actually makes sense.

Don't get me started on dates, though. MM/DD/YY? Who came up with that? It's not in alphabetical order, nor in temporal order, nor any other kind of order I can detect except "random order."

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Kirth Gersen wrote:

Don't get me started on dates, though. MM/DD/YY? Who came up with that? It's not in alphabetical order, nor in temporal order, nor any other kind of order I can detect except "random order."

There are useful reasons for it. It narrows your focus to the month first which, I think, can be convenient. Date first offers little context since, for example, the 10th comes up 12 times a year and in substantially different seasons. I can hardly begin to contextualize the date until I come to the second segment, the month. That may not be a long wait, but it's one I don't have if the date notation starts with the month.

I'm guessing it comes from the July 8, 2013 ordering of dates.

 RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16

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Kajehase wrote:
Eragar wrote:
1.524 meters...
In large parts of the world we use comma (,) rather than point (.) to show that the digits following it are decimals.

But in America, we fought a war so we wouldn't have to. Happy 2013th birthday, America!!!

Odraude wrote:

Cold

Below 40 F = Below 4.4 C
Below 0 F = Below -17.7 C
Below -20 F = Below -28.8

Hot
Above 90 F = Above 32.2 C
Above 110 F = Above 43.3 C
Above 140 F = Above 60 C

Thanks, Odraude. I'll nab that one and make a small reference card for the GM shared prep-folder one of these days.

Interestingly, -40 degrees F is also -40 degrees C. I learned that when I was living in North Dakota.

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Kirth Gersen wrote:

Don't get me started on dates, though. MM/DD/YY? Who came up with that?

The entire English-speaking world.

Quote:
It's not in alphabetical order, nor in temporal order, nor any other kind of order I can detect except "random order."

It's in linguistic order. Specifically, if you want to talk about tomorrow's date, the usual phrase is "June ninth, 2013" or "the ninth of June, 2013." Not just "ninth June."

Check out Google n-grams if you want numeric proof.

Kthulhu wrote:
Kirth Gersen wrote:
When someone tells me liters of water, I can picture soda bottles on shelves. When someone tells me "0.5 acre-feet," that really doesn't mean much, visually-speaking.
You realize that one of the major roadblocks is exactly this, only the other way around, for many people living in the US.

Yeup. I am 100% happy with the way things are. I've never been able to wrap my head around metric.

I also admittedly had the benefit of living in a house on a one-acre yard growing up, so I have immediate visual reference I can fall back on for acres. I got very familiar with the size of an acre, mowing that yard multiple times every spring, summer, and autumn for the nine years I lived there.

 RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

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Kirth wrote:
When someone tells me liters of water, I can picture soda bottles on shelves. When someone tells me "0.5 acre-feet," that really doesn't mean much, visually-speaking.

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

Wait, that XKCD conversion chart has length and volume for Summer Glau, but not mass?

Bill Dunn wrote:
Wait, that XKCD conversion chart has length and volume for Summer Glau, but not mass?

Ross Byers wrote:
There's an XKCD for that.

Yeah, except I need one for visualizing English units, which I grew up with and STILL make no sense to me!

Oh, and to avoid a threadjack and/or being banned due to "pee-pee talk":

Spoiler:
Assuming that's erect, the dude has a pretty small penis.

Kirth Gersen wrote:
I sort wish the whole RPG had just gone to metric and been done with it, American standards and backward compatability be damned. A 1-m square makes a lot more sense for a human-sized person than a 5-foot one, so it would be a win right there.

Champions RPG used a 2 meter hex, and that was 30 years ago.

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
So a six-pack of American beer becomes 32 metric beers.

Is there any chance Paizo can switch to the metric system just for things that are alcohol-related?

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