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# British Standard Slew

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In this pre-Brexit turmoil, it seems (according to a reporter on the BBC) that there are a slew of people plotting against our PM (Theresa May, at the time of ending this sentence).

This is very loose terminology, and not what one would expect of the BBC. A little research shows that a slew is defined only in the vaguest of terms, with little consensus. We need to sort this out ahead of Brexit, before the French leave and take their decimal system with them.

Proposed, therefore, is the setting and formal benchmarking of a British Standard Slew, equal to precisely twelve. Use of the duodecimal will mean that most larger and smaller conspiracies can be conveniently expressed (for instance "a slew and a half", or "a quarter of a slew").

 — MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 11 2018

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slew_rate [Ian Tindale, Dec 12 2018]

British Standard Stew https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maconochie
"... cold, it was a mankiller." [8th of 7, Dec 14 2018]

 Precisely twelve volts. Slew rate is normally given in units of volts per microsecond, so it stands to reason that slew is measured in volts.

This does make using the term a little more cumbersome -- "a slew-per-volt of people are plotting..." but that's a small price to pay for dimensional accuracy.
 — mitxela, Dec 12 2018

So, if slew/V = 12, then what is slain?
 — pertinax, Dec 12 2018

 Are you not keeping the dozen?

 // volts per microsecond //

 Or, equivalently but much scarier-soundingly, megavolts per second.

On the other hand, wouldn't the slew rate of a crane or excavator be given in degrees per second or similar units?
 — notexactly, Dec 12 2018

 Slew as a measurement is a rate of change of voltage over a period of time, typically affected by the reactance of the circuit under test.

On an analogue synthesiser, the portamento control on the keyboard CV is sometimes referred to as a slew control.
 — Ian Tindale, Dec 12 2018

I know that, but the rotation of a crane or excavator's top part in relation to its base is also called "slewing".
 — notexactly, Dec 12 2018

So effectively you're both correct, which is a deeply unsatisfactory state of affairs.
 — 8th of 7, Dec 12 2018

I take it there are 1000 Slews to one Slough.
 — bigsleep, Dec 12 2018

 //A little research shows that a slew is defined only in the vaguest of terms, with little consensus.//

Aha, very apropos, considering these features are precisely the characteristics embodying the entire Brexit "adventure" itself.
 — zen_tom, Dec 12 2018

 I have taken to watching BBC news while I eat my breakfast. The news coverage is about 90% brexit. I call it my brexfast.

 The use of the word "turmoil" is pretty consistent, but I've yet to complete my internal brexit bingo card with the phrase "slow-motion trainwreck".

Incidentally, apparently a vote of no confidence has been submitted today, which required four slew.
 — Loris, Dec 12 2018

I believe the plural of "slew" is "slewen".
 — MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 12 2018

Everyone's gotta believe in *something*, I suppose.
 — pertinax, Dec 12 2018

 No, not necessarily.

The majority of words in English that have a plural which employs an -en suffix, e.g. Oxen, originate from Anglo-Saxon.
 — 8th of 7, Dec 12 2018

Exactly. Like "woven" - made by taking one thread (or "wov", from which we get "weft") and combining it with many others.
 — MaxwellBuchanan, Dec 12 2018

 //The news coverage is about 90% brexit.//

Now its starting to make sense. Slew is an integral of BrExit like speed is to acceleration. Thus the british public will endure a phase known as 'Max BrExit' shortly after leaving the EU.
 — bigsleep, Dec 12 2018

Is that like Max Headroom ?
 — 8th of 7, Dec 12 2018

 //Is that like Max Headroom//

More like an EU digit lifting and the hand rotating.
 — bigsleep, Dec 12 2018

I read that as "stew" and my stomach turned over a few times. Nevertheless I'm bunning this.
 — Voice, Dec 14 2018

 Interestingly, there is indeed a British Standard Stew , developed in the late 19th century (probably what finished it off, actually) but brought to its peak of perfection during WW1, most likely as a direct response to the first use of chemical weapons by the Germans.

 By 1918, even though the German front-line troops were starving, they kept fighting ferociously - because they were told by their officers that if they were captured they would be forced to eat food cooked by the British.

No wonder they held out for so long ...
 — 8th of 7, Dec 14 2018

Did Cain not slew Abel?
 — xenzag, Dec 14 2018

 //Did Cain not slew Abel?//

I'd completely overlooked that sense of 'slew', but its consistent with the definition of 'change'. In electronics its a change of (usually) voltage from Va to Vb. In biblical terms its the process of moving a rock or sword from point A to point B and in political terms, as a noun, its the group of people between point A and point B that are in the process of changing sides (hence my earlier reference to sloughing).
 — bigsleep, Dec 14 2018

 Verb infinitive "to slay", past imperfect "he slew Abel", past perfect "they have slain the hosts of Midian", pluperfect "she had slain the Nazgul".

The declension of the participles indicate that the root is Anglo-Saxon, giving it an archaic nature and accounting for its popularity with the sword-and-sorcery genre.
 — 8th of 7, Dec 14 2018

Using the word ‘slew’ to describe a quantity or group of (in this case) people, seems to me to be quite invalid, and therefore shouldn’t happen. I think it’d be acceptable if the spelling were changed, for example, to “sloo” or an Inspector Clouseau like “sleau”, purely for the ridiculefulity.
 — Ian Tindale, Dec 14 2018

Would it not be equally valid to keep the spelling, but modify the pronunciation ?
 — 8th of 7, Dec 14 2018

sp. "slew", pron. "number"
 — pocmloc, Dec 14 2018

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