Look at the pretty pictures…

e=mc2andallthat

Uniformity of practice seldom continues long without good reason.

So opined the estimable Dr Johnson in 1775. In other words, if a thing is done in a certain way, and continues to be done in that same way for a number of years by many different people, then it is a pretty safe bet that there is a good reason for doing the thing that way. And this is true even when that reason is not immediately apparent.

For the choice of this situation there must have been some general reason, which the change of manners has left in obscurity.

— Samuel Johnson, A Journey To The Western Islands of Scotland (1775).

Consider the following examples of “uniformity of practice”:

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wp-1487109018433.pngexam1

They are fairly bog-standard GCSE examination questions from the last two years from three different exam boards. But compare and contrast with an O-level Physics paper from 1966:

exam2.jpgexam3.jpg

The “uniformity…

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