1672: "Women on 20s"

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Fri Apr 29, 2016 10:31 pm UTC

ucim wrote:I'm not "breaking the window". I'm allowing that particular window to be less worn. I'm allowing the ones to last longer.

The windows are well worn down less on average because they're being used less on average. You're still measuring windows existing and not windows being used.

Look: let's say it cost 5.7 cents to print each of the bills and each one has exactly a hundred uses or ten years before the Treasury believes the bill needs to be replaced.

The average one last 22 months, so they basically all get about a hundred uses before being destroyed. The Treasury facilitates $100 of transactions for $.0057.

The average two gets used, let's say, four times a year (this argument started when Quay said twos were less used). That gives it a lifetime of 40 uses and the Treasury facilitates $80 of transactions for $.0057.

Alice likes two and always request them from the bank. The bank orders more twos from the treasury to accommodate Alice. Alice's actions do cause few two transactions per bill she withdraws but for the most part banks already have more twos than are demanded so nonALice use stays the same. Alice's twos get used, on average, 42 times. But! there are a lot more twos in Alice's town than in general and only slightly more twos transactions, so it turns out the average two in Alice's town only gets used 39 times. If we look at the Treasury's expenditures between ALice's pro-two policy an if she just took ones, we find out the treasury ended up spending an extra $.05472 (= $.057 * .96 (cost of thwe two minus the 4 uses of ones avoided) per two Alice withdrew.
ucim wrote:
Quizatzhaderac wrote:...the individual consumer should not be held responsible for ensuring the various payment systems are equitable.
No, I'd say that's the responsibility of the payment system.
Crap I forgot a "not". I'm not trying to criticize people who use twos, just the bills themselves.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri Apr 29, 2016 11:22 pm UTC

Back on the topic of who or what should go on bills, I have a ridiculous idea drawing partial inspiration from the Brits putting their sitting monarch on all their money.

The current sitting president goes on on the $1 and 1¢ (if that remains a thing) denominations (bills and coins). The president of the previous term (not the previous president, we're going by terms; we need enough of them for this to work, and there aren't enough presidents yet... though there will be 24-48 years from now) goes on the $2 (if that remains a thing) and 2¢ (if that were still a thing) denominations. The president of four terms ago would on the $5 and 5¢ denominations, the president of nine terms ago on the $10 and 10¢, etc... and then we cycle back around to the current president at $100/100¢ and so on from there.

So for currently minted denominations of money, we would have at present:
- The Obama penny
- The Clinton nickel
- The Carter dime
- The Wilson quarter
- The Monroe half-dollar
- The Obama dollar
- The Obama two
- The Clinton five
- The Carter ten
- The FDR twenty
- The Monroe fifty
- The Obama hundred

For the next four years, we would have:
- The [Sandrump/Cruton] penny (new)
- The W nickel (new)
- The Reagan dime (new)
- The Wilson quarter (unchanged)
- The Monroe half-dollar (unchanged)
- The [Sandrump/Cruton] dollar (new)
- The Obama two (unchanged)
- The W five (new)
- The Reagan ten (new)
- The FDR twenty (unchanged)
- The Monroe fifty (unchanged)
- The [Sandrump/Cruton] hundred (new)

Every four years, some of the money would be updated (depending on how many terms who served), and the current sitting president would be on more things than anyone else, with newer presidents more likely to be on things, and some old presidents occasionally getting comebacks a generation or two later. It would make money a lot more interesting for collectors and historians, like the state quarters project, and the question of why there aren't any (or many) women on our money would then be the question of why we don't (or haven't recently, or ever) have a female president. As we get more (some, any) female presidents over time, the number of women on money will go up, faster at first and then slower over time.

Also, we should switch to a regular 1-2-5-10-20-50 pattern for both dollars and cents, in which case we'd presently have:
- The Obama 1¢ and $1
- The Obama 2¢ and $2
- The Clinton 5¢ and $5
- The Carter 10¢ and $10
- The FDR 20¢ and $20
- The Monroe 50¢ and $50

And the next four years would feature:
- The [Sandrump/Cruton] 1¢ and $1 (new)
- The Obama 2¢ and $2 (unchanged)
- The W 5¢ and $5 (new)
- The Reagan 10¢ and $10 (new)
- The FDR 20¢ and $20 (unchanged)
- The Monroe 50¢ and $50
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Apr 30, 2016 12:05 am UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:Look: let's say it cost 5.7 cents to print each of the bills and each one has exactly a hundred uses or ten years before the Treasury believes the bill needs to be replaced.
Why do you assume they destroy bills after 10 years (or any other fixed amount of time) even if they're in good condition?

The rest of your argument seems to depend on this assumption, but you haven't justified it at all.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby da Doctah » Sat Apr 30, 2016 2:12 am UTC

I know I once saw the results of an exercise (maybe in Scientific American?) in which the most efficient set of coins was determined, where "most efficient" had to do with the "odd cents" in a total purchase amount, the amount given in change, and the smallest number of individual coins over the range of most likely amounts in each case. There were also solutions for different numbers of available denominations. There was always a 1¢ coin, of course, but the others in the optimal solution were not the "round" amounts like 10¢ and 25¢, but rather things like 4¢ and 17¢. The greatest objection to adopting any of these demonstrably better sets of coins was that people would consider them "weird".

Does this ring a bell for anyone?

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Apr 30, 2016 2:40 am UTC

I don't know if I've read about such research, but a stronger objection than "weirdness" is the more complicated math that you'd have to do in your head when coin values aren't divisible by each other.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby ucim » Sat Apr 30, 2016 2:52 am UTC

Bills are retired when they are worn out, not when they are old... perhaps with the exception of $100 bills missing the latest security updates. Every two dollar bill saves TWO one dollar bills from getting worn out quickly.

And, they are fun. When you go to a foreign country, don't you make a point of using their cash? I certainly do, even if it's easier to pay with a credit card. I also learn the language of the country I visit. I didn't travel 6000 miles to speak English. Doing things differently is part of the whole point of life.

The two dollar bill is something neat, different, and of all the bills, pretty. Take one out and look at the back. Look at the one for comparison. Money (or at least, artistically designed money) is a pleasure to use. Ditto stamps - I make a point to seek out pretty stamps, imagining that it can bring a little joy to the recipient to see the artistry in them. That's why there's such a thing as numismatics and philately, but with circulating cash you can experience it every day.

Slow down. And while you're at it, slow down and enjoy the ice cream cone you just bought instead of wolfing it down on the way to work.

da Doctah wrote:...the most efficient set of coins was determined, where "most efficient" had to do with the "odd cents"...
Feh. As noted, you end up with odd cent pieces. "Most efficient" to me means "easiest to make change with", which leads to less time counting by sevens and thirteens.
Spoiler:
When I was a kid I wanted them to mint a six cent piece, since candy bars had just gone up to that from a nickel. I eventually realized it would introduce other problems, and besides, candy would just go to seven cents (it did). Now of course it's practically a buck.
Copper Bezel wrote:Every denomination should ideally be divisible into the one below it.
Prefer feet/inches or meters/cemtimeters? The problem is we had ten fingers back when it mattered, and now we're stuck.

Pfhorrest wrote: I have a ridiculous idea drawing partial inspiration from the Brits putting their sitting monarch on all their money.

The current sitting president goes on on the $1 and 1¢ (if that remains a thing) denominations (bills and coins). The president of the previous term
Now there's a way to increase the cost of money!

How about this - and it can potentially reduce the cost of money to the extent that the government gets paid to print it, and increase commerce and the economy to boot.

Put ads on the back.

We could sell sponsorships to corporations; given the number of impressions and the amount of use money gets, this could be an incredibly lucrative way to eliminate the national debt in four years, and have the government turn a profit. We could even eliminate taxes! The Obama penny could have the McDonalds logo on the back, the Clinton nickel would have an ad for Trojans, Toyota would buy the $1 bill, (the $2 bill could only be Tesla!)...all the way up to the $100 dollar bill, whose reverse would just say TRUMP. Whether he wins or not.

Swoosh! Just do it!

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby ps.02 » Sat Apr 30, 2016 4:07 am UTC

ucim wrote:When I was a kid I wanted them to mint a six cent piece
Pfhorrest wrote:I have a ridiculous idea drawing partial inspiration from the Brits

I see what you did there - unintentionally perhaps.

The Obama penny could have the McDonalds logo on the back, the Clinton nickel would have an ad for Trojans, Toyota would buy the $1 bill, (the $2 bill could only be Tesla!)...all the way up to the $100 dollar bill, whose reverse would just say TRUMP. Whether he wins or not.

I laughed pretty hard at that last bit. Make our money great again!

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Sat Apr 30, 2016 7:21 am UTC

ucim wrote:Slow down. And while you're at it, slow down and enjoy the ice cream cone you just bought instead of wolfing it down on the way to work.
There are a lot of things in life well worth slowing down and enjoying. That's not in question. What's in question is whether money (or postage stamps, for that matter) is one.

You could go whole hog and make beautiful, fun, pleasant money like Canada or Australia, and have a bit more an argument here. If it's just watery monochrome portraits of old white men on grungy cotton paper, we're safely in the realm of 915.

Bills are retired when they are worn out, not when they are old... perhaps with the exception of $100 bills missing the latest security updates. Every two dollar bill saves TWO one dollar bills from getting worn out quickly.
If there's a sane argument for maximizing large denominations, I haven't heard it. The point is normally not the cost of making the bills but the time and inconvenience consumed handling them. There's a reason businesses are willing to eat the cost of card transaction fees and effectively overcharge cash purchases. The manufacturing cost of bills is a concern, but second to their actually doing the job.

Prefer feet/inches or meters/cemtimeters? The problem is we had ten fingers back when it mattered, and now we're stuck.
Literally nothing to do with it, because you could create the exact same problem with 3 and 4 as the two factors. Five is a useless factor and we are in fact stuck with it. Having denominations always go up by five first, then two, then five again is not difficult., and it avoids irritating knapsack problems.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby AndrewGPaul » Sat Apr 30, 2016 6:23 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
Quizatzhaderac wrote:But what I have seen people react to twos as if I was trying to give change in fish heads. The cashier customer relationship is asymmetrical: the cashier is expected to tolerate small inconveniences from the customer. The customer is quick to correct the cashier when they fail to provide change in "real" money.


Yeah, dollar coins are also one of those things. Some people are perfectly happy to take them, others will act very put out, so you have to ask if it's okay or what not.


On holiday in Florida a few years ago, I was buying snacks in the airport, to get rid of as much change as possible before flying back to the UK. I tried to spend a dollar coin, but I couldn't because "there's no space in my till for it". That's even more ridiculous than "I'm not taking that; it's a Scottish note". I still have that dollar coin somewhere, along with a few cents and nickels, and some yen.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby AndrewGPaul » Sat Apr 30, 2016 6:29 pm UTC

ijuin wrote:
AndrewGPaul wrote:Bank of Ireland sterling notes have Hibernia on the front and a distillery on the back (4 notes).


Hibernia is the personification of Ireland, right? Like Britannia for Great Britain/England, and Columbia for America?


I presume so, yes (and like Marianne for France; thank you, Wikipedia!).

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Sat Apr 30, 2016 8:11 pm UTC

AndrewGPaul wrote:On holiday in Florida a few years ago, I was buying snacks in the airport, to get rid of as much change as possible before flying back to the UK. I tried to spend a dollar coin, but I couldn't because "there's no space in my till for it". That's even more ridiculous than "I'm not taking that; it's a Scottish note". I still have that dollar coin somewhere, along with a few cents and nickels, and some yen.
I understand it much less with coins than with bills.The bills you'd need to keep separate from other denominations or it could make a mess. The $1 could presumably hang out in the quarter tray without causing any fuss.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby ijuin » Sat Apr 30, 2016 8:24 pm UTC

And if the $1 coin were in the quarter tray, then some inattentive cashier would mistakenly give it out in change thinking that it was a quarter--especially if it is a Susan B. Anthony dollar, which is very close in size and weight to a quarter (besides being cupronickel as opposed to the brass-jacketed Sacagawea dollar or Presidential dollars). Just about nobody circulates the large-sized Eisenhower dollars any more, and the pre-1960s silver dollars are worth more in silver (and collector's value) than their face value.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby PinkShinyRose » Sat Apr 30, 2016 8:49 pm UTC

Why can't you just put the dollar coin on top of your pile of dollar bills? If you pick out a bill from under it, the coin should just slide back into the tray...

Aside from that: why the redundancy? What kind of first world country has such cheap bills anyway?

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Apr 30, 2016 9:27 pm UTC

PinkShinyRose wrote:Aside from that: why the redundancy? What kind of first world country has such cheap bills anyway?
How much do you think it costs to print pounds and euro?
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Soupspoon » Sat Apr 30, 2016 10:47 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
PinkShinyRose wrote:Aside from that: why the redundancy? What kind of first world country has such cheap bills anyway?
How much do you think it costs to print pounds and euro?

According to this site 'a few pence' for the fiver (lowest denomination 'common' note in circulation, UK-wide) and back out to the search engine page to access the promised details about the £1 coin (because the site seems to need a login just to view, if following internal links) has an estmate for the materials cost of just below £0.04, but then needs to add to that an unknown manufacturing/etc overhead.

(Official information seems to be being deliberately withheld, so amateur/third-party estmates are the best I could find.)

Currently GB£1 = US$1.46andabit, but of course it's relative cost that counts, unless you're interested in it being maybe 6¢, give or take, for the £1 coin and want to somehow be precise over imprecise details also with comparative costs of 'paper' money between different currency bases.

Obviously pennies (UK and US) cost far more proportion of their face value to produce (even >1x!), but that's an older argument.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby xtifr » Sun May 01, 2016 12:02 am UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:Americans have got used to thinking in duodecimal thanks to the prevalence of twenties


Either I'm missing your point completely, or you chose the wrong word. Aside from knowing that a dozen dozen is called a "gross", I don't think I'm used to thinking in duodecimal at all.

(If you meant Vigesimal, I can understand why the word didn't leap to mind, and why you might have been reluctant to use it in any case.)
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby hjordis » Sun May 01, 2016 1:36 am UTC

AndrewGPaul wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:
Quizatzhaderac wrote:But what I have seen people react to twos as if I was trying to give change in fish heads. The cashier customer relationship is asymmetrical: the cashier is expected to tolerate small inconveniences from the customer. The customer is quick to correct the cashier when they fail to provide change in "real" money.


Yeah, dollar coins are also one of those things. Some people are perfectly happy to take them, others will act very put out, so you have to ask if it's okay or what not.


On holiday in Florida a few years ago, I was buying snacks in the airport, to get rid of as much change as possible before flying back to the UK. I tried to spend a dollar coin, but I couldn't because "there's no space in my till for it". That's even more ridiculous than "I'm not taking that; it's a Scottish note". I still have that dollar coin somewhere, along with a few cents and nickels, and some yen.

I usually just put the odd stuff in the extra spot where we also kept the spare change rolls, though I suppose you could also put them under the tray or in the money bag. Not having a designated spot is really no excuse. I had a coworker ask if we took 2 dollar bills. She didn't seem to think it was fake, so maybe this is what she was hung up on. I didn't even look to see what she was asking about. "Hey do we take these?" "What is it, a 2 dollar bill?" "Yeah." "Sure it's fine." I just instinctively knew...

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Sun May 01, 2016 2:27 am UTC

xtifr wrote:
Copper Bezel wrote:Americans have got used to thinking in duodecimal thanks to the prevalence of twenties


Either I'm missing your point completely, or you chose the wrong word. Aside from knowing that a dozen dozen is called a "gross", I don't think I'm used to thinking in duodecimal at all.

(If you meant Vigesimal, I can understand why the word didn't leap to mind, and why you might have been reluctant to use it in any case.)
Yeah, brainfart. I don't know what word I thought I meant, but I don't think I've ever actually seen that one written out. What I should have said is " counting by twenties ".
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby orthogon » Sun May 01, 2016 2:29 am UTC

Just what is going on with these $2 bills? The whole thing seems bizarre. I mean, sure we have occasional commemorative coins etc, which are deliberately rare, and those might confuse some people; and there are high value notes like £50 that people don't like dealing with in case they're fake. But the whole thing with the $2 is just presented in a circular manner: the mint doesn't make many because people don't like using them, because some merchants don't take them, because they don't have a slot in the register, because they're not used very often, because the mint doesn't make many.

Or maybe because people don't think they exist (seriously? Manufacturers of cash registers?) Why the prevarication? Why not just decide whether they're a thing or not, and either print plenty or take them out of circulation?

Or is the argument that people find them hard to use, in terms of mental arithmetic? That might be because you have quarters instead of 20 cent coins, which is perhaps a genuine reason for keeping the same pattern (1,2,5 or 1, 2.5, 5) all the way up.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Sun May 01, 2016 2:38 am UTC

According to Wikipedia demand dropped off first, from businesses, then production followed, then custom. It's had 150 years to shift around. But denominations are really hard to kill in the US, so it's obsoleted in circulation instead.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Eternal Density » Mon May 02, 2016 2:52 am UTC

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Eternal Density wrote:Why did you quote me when you're replying to nharding?


Because I leave for a month or two and then this site goes all kerflewy and there's new buttons but the old replies are missing.

Okay, just wanted to make sure we were communicating properly. All good.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Tyndmyr » Mon May 02, 2016 2:47 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:Back on the topic of who or what should go on bills, I have a ridiculous idea drawing partial inspiration from the Brits putting their sitting monarch on all their money.

The current sitting president goes on on the $1 and 1¢ (if that remains a thing) denominations (bills and coins). The president of the previous term (not the previous president, we're going by terms; we need enough of them for this to work, and there aren't enough presidents yet... though there will be 24-48 years from now) goes on the $2 (if that remains a thing) and 2¢ (if that were still a thing) denominations. The president of four terms ago would on the $5 and 5¢ denominations, the president of nine terms ago on the $10 and 10¢, etc... and then we cycle back around to the current president at $100/100¢ and so on from there.


This seems unworkable. Every time you make a change, you introduce obvious sources of visual confusion between denominations. Having an entire range of legal tenders with the same face on them is just awful.

And that's leaving aside the notable issue of cost from the endless changes. We should not generally strive for lots of required changes.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Quizatzhaderac » Mon May 02, 2016 3:18 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Why do you assume they destroy bills after 10 years (or any other fixed amount of time) even if they're in good condition?
ucim wrote:Every two dollar bill saves TWO one dollar bills from getting worn out quickly.
Quay indicated that they typically get fresher twos than other bills. I declared that to be a bad thing. This is what we're arguing about.

If you want to make a claim of fact that the average two is just as worn as the average one, you can, but then you're just having a different conversation.

If you wish to posit a different mechanism, we can also do that, but I don't see how any realistic mechanisms come down to anything other than having a lower usage/printing ratio.
gmalivuk wrote:
PinkShinyRose wrote:Aside from that: why the redundancy? What kind of first world country has such cheap bills anyway?
How much do you think it costs to print pounds and euro?
I would guess that PSR meant "bills of such small denomination".
ucim wrote:.... of all the bills, pretty.
I have no problem with the way the two looks, or with beautifying our existing currency; that's entirely aside from any point I want to make.
ucim wrote:Slow down. And while you're at it, slow down and enjoy the ice cream cone you just bought instead of wolfing it down on the way to work.
I would like to spend less time working and more time on my ice cream cone, but I've spend too much time handling arcane currency instruments.

The more efficient the system is, the less room in our lives the mandatory parts take up, and the more room we have to slow down and enjoy the parts we like.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby ps.02 » Mon May 02, 2016 7:21 pm UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:Quay indicated that they typically get fresher twos than other bills. I declared that to be a bad thing. This is what we're arguing about.

If you want to make a claim of fact that the average two is just as worn as the average one, you can, but than you're just having a different conversation.

It does seem weird that twos would be less worn on average than ones, if indeed they get taken back out of circulation at the same level of wear. Even if twos don't circulate very much, they've certainly been around long enough to reach the same equilibrium. So where are all the nearly-worn-out twos?

My theory: it's not so much that twos (and for that matter, $50 and $100 notes, which also seem to usually be in good condition) get replaced too soon, but that they're more likely to get replaced on schedule. Perhaps $1 bills are simply not deposited in banks as often (which is how worn bills get replaced), as businesses need to keep them around to make change with.

Whatever is going on, I don't think the cost to the Treasury is a major argument for or against the $2 bill. If there's an economic argument at all, surely it is the cost/benefit at the cash register. (This is also why, while I'm mildly anti-penny, I don't think its cost to the US Mint is a serious argument.)

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Mon May 02, 2016 9:14 pm UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:The more efficient the system is, the less room in our lives the mandatory parts take up, and the more room we have to slow down and enjoy the parts we like.

Very well put.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby *Kat* » Tue May 03, 2016 4:55 am UTC

ps.02 wrote:It does seem weird that twos would be less worn on average than ones, if indeed they get taken back out of circulation at the same level of wear. Even if twos don't circulate very much, they've certainly been around long enough to reach the same equilibrium. So where are all the nearly-worn-out twos?

My theory: it's not so much that twos (and for that matter, $50 and $100 notes, which also seem to usually be in good condition) get replaced too soon, but that they're more likely to get replaced on schedule. Perhaps $1 bills are simply not deposited in banks as often (which is how worn bills get replaced), as businesses need to keep them around to make change with.

Whatever is going on, I don't think the cost to the Treasury is a major argument for or against the $2 bill. If there's an economic argument at all, surely it is the cost/benefit at the cash register. (This is also why, while I'm mildly anti-penny, I don't think its cost to the US Mint is a serious argument.)


I worked as a cashier at a semi-high end retail store for over three years in the early 00s. This was when debit cards were just starting to catch on but cash transactions were still very common. I can't recall ever being paid with a $2 bill. Occasionally I would get Susan B. Anthony and Sacagawea dollars and even more rarely a JFK fifty cent piece but I don't think I ever saw a $2 bill in my drawer.

$1 bills get sent to the bank *all the time*. Any store that accepts cash makes a weekly (and probably *nightly*) drop [deposit] at the bank because nobody wants to have too much cash on hand. Since $1 make the bulk of the currency received they are always featured prominently.

Then there are vending machines which take ones all the time. Those $1 bills are also deposited into the bank shortly after collection. Why? Because they are bulky and nobody wants to carry that kind of cash around.

$2 bills are seldom worn out because they are practically never *used*. $1 bills are used constantly and event though they are deposited regularly it still isn't enough to keep the bulk of them as crisp as most of the $2s you have seen.

Although I can understand the arguments against the penny, for retailers and accountants eliminating the penny would be a headache. I doubt it would cost anybody a lot of money but it would create discrepancies which is the sort of thing bean counters like to avoid.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Quey » Tue May 03, 2016 5:35 am UTC

Quizatzhaderac wrote:By "hipsterism" I meant any attempt to frame it's disuse as a virtue.

You want to argue for plastic or antiseptic bills? Fine.

You want to use obscure, fiat, existent instruments to avoid germs? That's your prerogative.

The dirtiness of cash is a direct consequence of it's use as cash, and the cleanliness of twos is a direct consequence of their dis-utility. One cannot argue the disuse/ rarity /novelty of a currency as a good quality of a currency.

And no, you are not "circulating these under-circulated bills", you are distributing them. You're not describing these bills coming to you in a circle, but as a line straight from the treasury.

While it's not a huge deal, what you're doing is decidedly selfish. You're encouraging the treasury to print bills using ineffectiveness as the selection basis. You're then imposing these bills on vendors who are not set up to receive them and who are too polite to argue with you.

Whoa, whoa, let's slow down and back up here.

I like twos. I like the art on them. That's why I started using them in the first place, to circulate them. The uncirculated cleanliness factor was something I discovered after I started requesting the bills from the banks, which is also great. If I can get more people circulating them by saying they can be virtually guaranteed clean bills, cool. If I can get enough people using the bills that the benefit goes away, well even better! Getting the bills circulated was always the end goal.

Yes, some of the bills do get circulated. I know there are at least two other people who go to my bank doing the same thing. While I haven't kept track of serial numbers or anything, I suspect that some of the bills I get (when they're not obviously fresh, like when I get a sequential stack) have made a circle from local businesses back to the local bank branch. Still relatively clean. I'm sorry if my casual pitch was taken as gospel.

I was referring to Quey specifically when I said "ineffectiveness as the selection basis". You would seem to be perfectly happy to receive well worn twos. Your reasons are much more consistent with generally good monitory policy.
...
It's "selfish" in that Quey's goals are at odds with good monetary policy.

I don't know how I led you so far astray. I guess you took what I said as the be-all, end-all of my position on twos, which is dangerous when you're making these extrapolations. Again, I'm sorry if I misled you; it was by no means intentional. But the fact remains. Your description of my position is not correct. I am happy to receive well worn twos, but I don't usually get them.

Now regarding this bill lifespan issues, yes, most of the twos I see are fairly new. But your calculations assume that one spending of a two wears it more than the same with a different denomination, or only assumes that the number of years in circulation determines the lifespan. I think that's what other people are getting at.

As for your objections to fiat currency, I get it, but I think a fiat in itself is useful, or even better for most of the properties to be money. That said, there are many strong links from the US dollar to bins of commodities, like oil. But maybe that's a discussion for a different place, a different time.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Heimhenge » Tue May 03, 2016 7:52 am UTC

orthogon wrote:Just what is going on with these $2 bills? The whole thing seems bizarre. I mean, sure we have occasional commemorative coins etc, which are deliberately rare, and those might confuse some people; and there are high value notes like £50 that people don't like dealing with in case they're fake. But the whole thing with the $2 is just presented in a circular manner: the mint doesn't make many because people don't like using them, because some merchants don't take them, because they don't have a slot in the register, because they're not used very often, because the mint doesn't make many.

Or maybe because people don't think they exist (seriously? Manufacturers of cash registers?) Why the prevarication? Why not just decide whether they're a thing or not, and either print plenty or take them out of circulation?

Or is the argument that people find them hard to use, in terms of mental arithmetic? That might be because you have quarters instead of 20 cent coins, which is perhaps a genuine reason for keeping the same pattern (1,2,5 or 1, 2.5, 5) all the way up.


Try this ... go to a bank and get maybe 20 fresh 2$ bills. Glue them along an edge, like with "post-it" notes. Go to any retailer, and when it comes time to pay, pull out the stack and peel off the required number of $2 bills for your purchase. Watch what happens.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Tue May 03, 2016 9:27 am UTC

He'll have extra trouble trying that being in the UK and things.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby *Kat* » Tue May 03, 2016 9:40 am UTC

Heimhenge wrote:
Try this ... go to a bank and get maybe 20 fresh 2$ bills. Glue them along an edge, like with "post-it" notes. Go to any retailer, and when it comes time to pay, pull out the stack and peel off the required number of $2 bills for your purchase. Watch what happens.


Do that with a fresh stack of $5s and the bills will get the same level of scrutiny. Only difference is people aren't familiar enough with twos to be able to come to the educated conclusion that they are real and therefore will likely reject them.

Heck I'm very familiar with $2s but I would probably reject them if they were presented like that just to be safe.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Tue May 03, 2016 9:50 am UTC

But what if you paid with $2 bills while wearing a rat costume? I definitely think the $2 bills would have a bearing on the outcome of that scenario.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby ps.02 » Tue May 03, 2016 3:06 pm UTC

*Kat* wrote:
ps.02 wrote:It does seem weird that twos would be less worn on average than ones, if indeed they get taken back out of circulation at the same level of wear. Even if twos don't circulate very much, they've certainly been around long enough to reach the same equilibrium. So where are all the nearly-worn-out twos?

$2 bills are seldom worn out because they are practically never *used*. $1 bills are used constantly and event though they are deposited regularly it still isn't enough to keep the bulk of them as crisp as most of the $2s you have seen.

Doesn't answer my question. The $2 denomination is not exactly a new thing. There should be some out there that are getting old and worn. Where are they?

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby orthogon » Tue May 03, 2016 3:49 pm UTC

I'm wondering now whether there's a fundamental difference between what makes a useful coin and what makes a useful note.

The £2 coins were a long time coming but in a way they were the exception as we've had 2p and 20p coins for a long time. I very often find myself with all of these denominations in my pocket, which implies that retail workers are very comfortable at using them to make change and retail businesses like to have them in the till. And yet it seems that $2 bills are not very popular with businesses or customers.

Now, I suggested before that this could be related to the lack of a 2 cent coin and the existence of the quarter making the gear-change a bit too tricky, but I wonder now whether it's because they're notes (=bills) as opposed to coins. What I'm thinking is that you can hold a lot of coins in the palm of your hand and look at them together and see how to make the amount you need. Paper notes just don't lend themselves to that, so with notes it's better to have a bunch of notes all of the same value. That's a customer-side consideration, though. The person behind the till has all the notes laid out separately, so from their viewpoint they're more like coins in this sense.

Then again, the retailer would probably prefer a smaller number of denominations, e.g. a 1,5 series, because they can always use two ones instead of a two, but don't want to get stuck with twos; there's plenty of space in the till so efficient storage of monetary value is less of a consideration. For the customer, it's slightly inconvenient to get a load of ones, but it hardly matters with paper money, so both sides are probably happy in the twoless world. It's different with coins, as the customer is going to have a limited tolerance for receiving a stack of heavy, low-value coins.

So, yeah, with coins it's good to have more granularity and denominations, whereas for notes the optimum step-size is bigger.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Copper Bezel » Wed May 04, 2016 7:38 am UTC

$2 just seems like a really arbitrary amount to me either way, as would 20p. 25p is, too, but that's probably why we refer to them only as quarters or quarter dollars - and half dollars at the same size and weight would make endlessly more sense. I do think you're right that the limits on coins and on bills are slightly different. To bring the two together, a two dollar bill doesn't save me any wallet space and adds time sorting bills, but a 50¢ coin that wasn't any heavier than a quarter would be awesome, even if it was mixed in with regular quarters, so long as I could tell them apart by feel.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby CharlieP » Wed May 04, 2016 8:34 am UTC

orthogon wrote:The £2 coins were a long time coming but in a way they were the exception as we've had 2p and 20p coins for a long time.


A Brief History for Otherlanders (corrections welcome):

1p coin - introduced in 1971 upon decimalisation.
2p coin - introduced in 1971 upon decimalisation.
5p coin - introduced In 1968 as equal value to and same size as old shilling coin (12d), and used in parallel until 1990.
10p coin - introduced in 1968 as equal value to and same size as old two shilling coin or "florin" (24d) and used in parallel until 1993.
20p coin - introduced in 1982.
50p coin - introduced in 1969 as equal value to ten shilling note (120d), which was withdrawn in 1970.
£1 coin - introduced in 1983 as equal value to £1 note, which was withdrawn in 1988. A new coin to be introduced next year, as ~3% estimated to be counterfeit.
£2 coin - introduced in 1998.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby orthogon » Wed May 04, 2016 8:45 am UTC

CharlieP wrote:5p coin - introduced In 1968 as equal value to and same size as old shilling coin (12d), and used in parallel until 1990.
10p coin - introduced in 1968 as equal value to and same size as old two shilling coin or "florin" (24d) and used in parallel until 1993.
...
50p coin - introduced in 1969 as equal value to ten shilling note (120d), which was withdrawn in 1970.

Were they actually labelled in New Pence from 1968? That's interesting. I remember the shillings and florins co-existing with 5ps and 10ps, but I assumed they changed the labelling at decimalisation.
CharlieP wrote:20p coin - introduced in 1982.

I remember that - I was 9, so we probably had a lesson on heptagons. (There was no National Curriculum in those days).
CharlieP wrote:£2 coin - introduced in 1998.

You're kidding. Those brand new shiny futuristic funky bimetallic coins? 18 years? Damn you, Timeghost!
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby CharlieP » Wed May 04, 2016 9:11 am UTC

orthogon wrote:
CharlieP wrote:5p coin - introduced In 1968 as equal value to and same size as old shilling coin (12d), and used in parallel until 1990.
10p coin - introduced in 1968 as equal value to and same size as old two shilling coin or "florin" (24d) and used in parallel until 1993.
...
50p coin - introduced in 1969 as equal value to ten shilling note (120d), which was withdrawn in 1970.

Were they actually labelled in New Pence from 1968? That's interesting. I remember the shillings and florins co-existing with 5ps and 10ps, but I assumed they changed the labelling at decimalisation.


I was only minted in 1973, so had to look this up - I assumed the new coins only came in after the switch, but it seems they pre-dated it. I guess it helped people get used to the 5p/12d and 10p/24d equivalency by having them as legal tender. I started handling cash around 1980, and I don't remember it ever seeming weird that some 5p (or 10p) coins looked different to others.

CharlieP wrote:20p coin - introduced in 1982.

I remember that - I was 9, so we probably had a lesson on heptagons. (There was no National Curriculum in those days).
CharlieP wrote:£2 coin - introduced in 1998.

You're kidding. Those brand new shiny futuristic funky bimetallic coins? 18 years? Damn you, Timeghost!


I've just realised I've missed a lot out, namely the downsizing that started c. 1990 with the 5p coin.

1p: unchanged
2p: unchanged
5p: reduced in size in 1990 (good guess!)
10p: reduced in size in 1992
20p: unchanged
50p: reduced in size in 1997
£1: unchanged (but about to!)
£2: unchanged

I also failed to mention the various commemorative coins which aren't in circulation because they're worth more as collectables than their nominal value...
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby Soupspoon » Wed May 04, 2016 10:23 am UTC

CharlieP wrote:5p coin - introduced In 1968 as equal value to and same size as old shilling coin (12d), and used in parallel until 1990.
10p coin - introduced in 1968 as equal value to and same size as old two shilling coin or "florin" (24d) and used in parallel until 1993.

You actually correct the point I was going to make, that the 1s and 2s coins were just restruck as 5p and 10p (ahead of time), and were only resized much, much later.

I probably still have an older, larger 5p and 10p coins stuck in the lid of my first-aid kit I made in Scouts (for semi-emergency payphone use), and they're probably not the only things in there that are well beyond their practical use-by date. (Used to be 1p, 2p, but already hit by price rises!)

And I've already noted that 'copper' coins have been changed to magnetic (and plated) materials, in recent years, to allay the inverting relationship of cost-to-value, but the 0.5p coin had been retired sometime in the mid '80s, already. (When anniseed balls were still two-a-penny, literally, IIRC).

BTW - Three coins from my own pocket, and one from a household surface where it was sitting idle and merely looking 'pretty'. Left to right: 1p, 10p, 20p; 1965 florin/pre-10p "10p" above, as comparison. Both sides.
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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby SuicideJunkie » Wed May 04, 2016 6:18 pm UTC

During initial deployment when these details were being paid extra attention, there was (still is) an ATM in the states that was suffering from a larger than normal number of jams involving $1 USD bills at odd hours.
This ATM, it turned out, happened to be located adjacent to a strip club, which explains the quality and condition of the notes.

The point being; certain denominations are treated significantly differently from other denominations, and the quality of the average note varies to match.
I would not be surprised for $2 bills to be treated with more respect due to their uniqueness, and get less wear that way.

$1s, you really don't want to know where that's been; wear gloves.
$10s and $5s, just crumple it in your pocket, whatever.
$20s get passed around a lot but are worth putting in your wallet.
$50s and $100s are worth enough to take care of and don't move too fast.
$2s are rare and attention grabbing which translates to some care.

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Re: 1672: "Women on 20s"

Postby speising » Wed May 04, 2016 6:32 pm UTC

What has the adjacency of an ATM to a strip club to do wih the state of the bills dispensed by it? I would assume that the machine isn't filled by the dancers?


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