Thursday, March 8, 2007

Why it's important to show your work.

Transcript: Verizon Doesn't Know How To Count - Consumerist

This would be funny if it wasn't so sad.

I see the problem as one of dimensional analysis, something I didn't really get until I started taking science classes.

0.002 cent/kb is vastly different from $0.002/kb. It may have been better to have them do the conversion to dollars first as then they might have understood that 0.002 cents is $0.00002 and that is a big difference that they can see.

But trying to think of something like this on the phone while talking to someone who is not getting it is hard to pull off. This would have been easy to solve in person as they would have been both looking at the same piece of paper and the same work.

This actually shows why it is important to show your work. I was taught to do the dimensions first and then the arithmetic to make sure the conversions wouldn't get factored in invisibly, which is what was happening here.

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