Good Design: System International Units


I have been working to accept nature as it is. I found myself looking at the System International Measure Units:

1. Prediction – Radiation – Mission – Art – Visual – Eye – Video – Candela
2. Harmonization – Vibration – Strategy – Science – Tempal – Ear – Audio – Celcius
3. Synchronation – Duration – Tactics – Design – Signal – Nose – Events – Second
4. Information – Distance – Operation – Engineering – Gradual – Throat – Graphics – Metre
5. Validation – Mass – Product – Skill – Technical – Jaw – Text – Kilogram
6. Transaction – Current – Service – Training – Clerical – Body – Equations – Ampere
7. Satisfaction – Molarity – Price – Education – Medial – Thumb – Numbers – Mole

I am of the opinion, if we stick to the basics we will develop better systems.



The Brain: ZenUniverse: Seven Senses


  1. GREEN: EYE: OCCIPITAL LOBE: visual center of the brain
  2. YELLOW: EAR: TEMPORAL LOBE: sensory center of hearing in the brain.
  3. SKY: NOSE: BRAINSTEM: control of reflexes and such essential internal mechanisms as respiration and heartbeat.
  4. BLUE: TONGUE: PARIETAL LOBE: Complex sensory information from the body is processed in the parietal lobe, which also controls the ability to understand language.
  5. RED:  JAW: FRONTAL LOBE: control of skilled motor activity, including speech, mood and the ability to think.
  6. ORANGE: BODY:  CEREBELLUM: regulation and coordination of complex voluntary muscular movement as well as the maintenance of posture and balance.
  7. GREY: SELF: CORPUS CALLOSUM: The arched bridge of nervous tissue that connects the two cerebral hemispheres, allowing communication between the right and left sides of the brain.


If you look at my first ZenUniverse post, you will see a six column model.  However, the System International Units require seven columns.

Here is a table of two hemisphere intersections.  I am using Latin roots, but you will recognize many of the terms:


Here is a blank table you can print out and experiment with correlations and intersections of your own:





Icons: Associations, Measures, Media


I have just developed a set of icons to represent the seven SI Units graphically as relationships. I would welcome insights, opinions, links that might help me refine this design.

The Units:

The System International Units correlation is the following:

1. radiance: candela

2. heat: kelvin

3. time: second

4. distance: metre

5. mass: kilogram

6. current: ampere

7. molarity: moles

First, I have been thinking about color. It would be possible to have only two types of triangles: black and white with black outline. The additional two shades are not essential, but are added to emphasize subordinancy.

As for the directionality of the triangles, we are actually looking at the planar faces of geometric figures, geometry not directionality. I agree, this would have to be learned.

Each icon represents a step in a progression from one state to another. In working on this I see a pattern:

1. energy: radiance

2. energy-time: heat

3. time: time

4. time-distance: speed (but not included)

5. space: distance

6. space-current: mass

7. current: soft current

8. phase: molarity: current-energy

I think the System International people have missed the brass ring. I know I am just as educated and experienced as those French bureaucrats. Probably more so.

There is also a missing anthropological element to the Units:

8. phase: molarity: current-digit (redefined)

9. numbers: numeracy: digit

10. speech: literacy: digit-calit

11. money: hard currency: calit

12. people: populacy: calit-energy

Obviously, I have to extend my model to account for five more association types. I don’t believe that will be difficult as for example there are at least two more many:many associations I did not account for or properly assign to my model.

As this is a new representation, there will be serendipitous moments. This is one of them.

A story around an icon:

2. heat can have it’s own continuum: energy-time, kelvin, sudio (sound engergy), frequency (sound time), music or audiograph (sound map), audition (sound blog), audience (sound people), auditorium (sound space). Actually, voice could be used too, because of the directionality vocio (people sound), etc.

I will work on this and post here after making the modifications.

3-D thinking is not difficult once the structure is assembled. But I am finding assembling the structure requires many visits and revisits to the basics, and the experts are not as expert as they make out.