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Re: coordinate standards.

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  • Re: coordinate standards.

    >Hi Edward.
    I note your reply to my - deliberately challenging - statements about the
    battle over what to call "up". The intensity of the discussions has an
    absurd element about it - matched by Swift's debate over which end to open
    an egg from, (in Gulliver's Travels).

    My point was and remains that it matters less what the axes are called but
    much much more that the data is presented with unambiguous descriptors of
    the orientation in which is was taken.
    If we were all to ASSUME that the new (or any other convention) has been
    used then errors can occur if the convention was in fact not used. It
    follows that in any data description it will still be important to state
    which (or that) the convention has been used. Thus if the presentation of
    data anyway needs that qualifying statementfor total certainty, the
    imagined benefits of a standard name for axes sets becomes less valuable.
    If it is less valuable then why let it become a major concern. By setting
    standards instead which define what information MUST be given when data
    are presented the ambiguity is reduced as are the possibilties of error.

    It has been our experience with surgeons and physiotherapists that verbal
    descriptors of direction are must more acceptable than algebraic ones. And
    I have yet to meet a patient who would prefer algebra to clear simple
    words!!! For the medical professional there have been standard
    descriptors available for many years describing body orientation - the
    anatomists were there first!1

    I agree with you that most engineers are well able to make any minor
    transpositions in their equations so long as they are given definitions of
    how the data were collected, -- so I remain unclear as to who really
    benefits from setting a standard which already has inherent conflicts with
    long established practices and which has no real purpose. - Perhaps the
    standards meetings are fun!!
    Steve Hughes
    Director of BioMedical Engineering
    University of Surrey,
    Guildford. UK. GU2 5XH