Units (Unix)

Units is a Unix computer program for conversion of units of quantities. It has a database of measurements, including esoteric and historical measurements. This for instance allows conversion of velocities specified in furlongs per fortnight, and pressures specified in tons per acre. The plain text database "units.dat" is a good reference in itself, as it is extensively commented and cites numerous sources.

The original "units" program has been a standard part of Unix since the early Bell Laboratories versions.fact|date=April 2007

" [http://www.unidata.ucar.edu/downloads/udunits/index.jsp UDUNITS] " is a similar utility program, except that it has an additional programming library interface and date conversion abilities. UDUNITS is considered the "de facto" program and library for variable unit conversion for netCDF files. [As specified from several NetCDF conventions, e.g.:
*COARDS - cite web |title=Conventions for the standardization of NetCDF files |date=1995-02-10 |url=http://ferret.wrc.noaa.gov/noaa_coop/coop_cdf_profile.html
*CF - cite web |title=NetCDF Climate and Forecast (CF) Metadata Conventions |url=http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cms/eaton/cf-metadata/CF-1.0.html |date=2003-10-28
]

The relatively newer GNU free software version of "units" (or GNU Units) is written by Adrian Mariano.

Usage

"Units" will output the result of the conversion in two lines. Usually the first line (multiplication) is the desired result. The second line is the same conversion expressed as a division.

"Units" can also do math while converting, including several built in mathematical functions such as sin, cos, atan, log, exp, etc.

If you attempt to convert types of measurements that are incompatible "units" will print a conformability error message and display a reduced form of each measurement.

Examples

Interactive mode

2083 units, 71 prefixes, 32 nonlinear units You have: 10 furlongs You want: miles * 1.2500025 / 0.7999984 You have: 1 gallon + 3 pints You want: quarts * 5.5 / 0.18181818 You have: sqrt(miles^2) You want: Definition: 1609.344 m You have:

On the command line (non-interactive)

% units 'ten furlongs per fortnight' 'kilometers per hour' * 0.0059871548 / 167.02424

% units cup ounces conformability error 0.00023658824 m^3 0.028349523 kg

References

External links

* [http://www.gnu.org/software/units/units.html GNU Units homepage]
* [http://gnuwin32.sourceforge.net/packages/units.htm Native port for Windows of GNU Units]
* [http://www.linuxmanpages.com/man1/units.1.php GNU Units man page]
* [http://www.unitsconvert.com On-line units converter based on Units]
* [http://www.units-converter.com A simple on-line converter based on Units]


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