Metric System

What Does Metric System Mean?

The metric system is a measurement system which was pioneered by the French and was later adopted as the International System of Units. Each type of measurable phenomenon has an associated unit in the metric system.


The metric system was initially developed for commercial use, but since has been found suitable for nearly all purposes, particularly science and engineering. The General Conference on Weights and Measures is currently responsible for coordinating the development efforts of the metric system.

Techopedia Explains Metric System

One of the salient features of the metric system is its coherency, as the units used in measurement are directly related to one another, and a standard set of prefixes based on powers of ten. It also has a standard set of inter-related base units which can be used for deriving smaller of larger units of measure. The metric system is based on the decimal system and avoids fractional notation for its conversions as well as measurements.

There are many benefits associated with the metric system of measurement. It is a universally recognized system and thus promotes measurement of different commodities as well as standards across countries. Since the system is based on multiples of ten, it is easy to use and the related calculations are easy as well. Due to the prevalent decimal system, it is less error prone. Calibration and reading of different measurements are easy and more accurate with the metric system. It also helps in eliminating double measuring standards, thereby saving cost as well as confusion among users.

The only countries in the world that have not adopted the metric system are the United States, Burma and Liberia.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…