Proposal for modifying gnucash to use exact quantities

Christopher Browne
Tue, 25 Jul 2000 19:41:40 -0500

On 25 Jul 2000 09:29:49 EST, the world broke into rejoicing as
Bill Gribble <>  said:
> Clark Jones <> writes:
> > I hate to quibble with Gribble :-), but in actuallity the bill establishing
> > the Dollar as the U.S. currency (written by Thomas Jefferson) defines the
> > "mill" -- which is 1/1000 of a U.S. Dollar -- though the only places where
> > you're likely to run into it is at the gas pump and calculating real estate
> > taxes.  
> I'm a little confused about this.  Where is a "mill" actually a valid
> amount for a financial transaction?  You certainly can't take one out
> of a bank account. 
> Is this just an anachronism?  Are there *any* places where correct
> record keeping requires one to keep track of dollar values down to the
> 1/1000 of a dollar?

It represents a valid value for the purposes of representing a _price_;
gas prices and property taxes being places where you'd use amounts like
$0.023 Per Assessed Dollar Value, or $1.294 Per Gallon.

The amount of _tax_ that gets assessed will be dollars/cents, and the
resulting bill at the gas pump will be in dollars/cents, but the _price_
has to be assessed in different terms.

In effect, there are two fundamentally different kinds of "amounts:"

a) Those associated with commodities, and
b) Those associated with the _pricing_ of commodities, that is, in
   translating from one commodity to another.
-- - <>
"You can measure a programmer's perspective by noting his attitude on
the continuing vitality of FORTRAN." -- Alan Perlis