Physics news

Rounding error in timing devices

American mathematicians analyzed the time measured by stopwatches, during which athletes swam the distance in the pool, and concluded that the clock algorithms allow an error of even 0.09 seconds. This is a problem of error of numbers with a moving comma, which in 647 swims led to a significant error due to rounding. Concerns about estimating time during sports and in physical experiments were shared by scientists in the American Journal of Physics.

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