"Making Change" - What's your definition?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by MarkHastings, Mar 2, 2004.

  1. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    If you're familiar with the "Useless Trivia" thread, you may have read the conversation about what is considered "Making Change".

    The topic of discussion is, if you ask someone for change for a dollar bill and they give you a dollar coin, is that considered "making change"?

    I say it is because the definition of change is: To exchange for or replace with another, usually of the same kind or category.

    I would argue that "making change" doesn't mean you have to give the person a bunch of smaller coins that equal the dollar. I think you can give the person a dollar coin because you are 'changing' their paper dollar into a metal dollar.

    Discuss...[​IMG]
     
  2. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    It would not be "making change", since what matters is not the material of the currency, but the denomination. It can only be considered change if one type of coin or bill is replaced with at least two of a lower denomination.
     
  3. Dave_Brown

    Dave_Brown Supporting Actor

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    I'll follow the thread here as I wouldn't mind learning what others think.

    As I stated in the other thread, I don't view trading a dollar for a dollar "making change" but instead exchanging.

    I follow the logic in your clothing return example, but you are not changing, you are exchanging. So just like the dollar, if I ask for change and you give me a dollar coin, I did not get change, we just exchanged one type of dollar for another one.
     
  4. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Yes, but what's the difference between change and exchange. They seem very similar, especially since the definition of change says "to exchange".

    Since you can't look up "make change", it's hard to find an exact definition, so I guess it's all up to interpretation. I understand what you're saying about changing the dollar bill into smaller currency because that's the main reason why people "make change", but I just gotta play Devils advocate and wonder if that's the only definition since that's the way it's mainly used.

    How about this...what if you needed 25 cents for a parking meeter and only had 25 pennies. Would that be considered "making change" if you gave someone the 25 pennies for a quarter?

    Or what if (for some odd reason) a machine only took dollar coins. What would you call it if you gave someone a dollar bill and asked for a dollar coin? It obviously wouldn't be considered 'making change' in the terms we all think of it, but does that mean it's not correct usage of the term?

    ...again, just playing Devils Advocate for fun.
     
  5. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Well, techically you could argue that a dollar for a dollar was 'changing'. Hell, a dollar for a banana would be changing.

    But 'making change' is not just two words, it's a combination with a particular meaning. If I ask someone if they have change for a $10, everyone knows I'm asking for smaller denominations, not some other kind of exchange like a $10 cashier's check.
     
  6. Dave_Brown

    Dave_Brown Supporting Actor

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    Nope, I don't think that would be making change. In a case like that I would look at as trading. Much the same way if you have one of those old, worn out wrinkly dollar bills the machine refuses to take. What is it everyone asks when they are faced with that dilema? "Can I trade you this dollar for one that works in the machine?" I would say the same would hold true in your hypothetical situation: you would ask if you could trade a paper dollar for a coin in order to use the machine.

    exchange: To turn in for replacement; To give up for a substitute
    change: To give or receive the equivalent of (money) in lower denominations or in foreign currency
    (from dictionary.com)


    Boy, who knew trying to get change for a dollar could be so entertaining! [​IMG]
     
  7. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Dave, I looked it up on Dictionary.com but didn't catch that part of the definition. [​IMG]
     
  8. Dave_Brown

    Dave_Brown Supporting Actor

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    So dare I say you concede and I can claim the victory from the other thread in how many ways to make change? :wink:

    I think the lower denomination would have to be the factor then in how many ways to make change.

    Ok, bring on the next totally irrelevant topic! [​IMG]
     
  9. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    The victory is all yours Dave. [​IMG]
     
  10. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    if i gave someone a dollar bill and asked for change ... and they gave me a silver dollar, i'd have to bitch-slap them. [​IMG]

    to me, making change (in monetary terms) is breaking down some single unit into smaller, more "flexible" units -- whether that be a 5 dollar bill into 5 singles, or 75 cents into two quarters, two dimes and a nickel.
     
  11. MikeSerrano

    MikeSerrano Second Unit

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    Let's look at the phrase "make change".

    First, we have the transitive verb "make" which has the following definition at dictionary.com:

    -make
    --v. tr.
    ---4. To change from one form or function to another: make clay into bricks.

    Secondly, we have the noun "change" which has the following definition, once again from dictionary.com:

    -change
    --n
    ---6.
    ----c. Coins: had change jingling in his pocket.

    Put them together and what do you get?
    To change to coins.

    Granted this is just one interpretation of the phrase, but a valid one as it is a common usage.

    If I have 4 silver dollars, 3 quarters, 2 dimes, and one nickel in my pocket, it would be said I have 5 dollars in change. If I have 5 one-dollar bills in my pocket it could be argued that I have 5 dollars in change, but most people will just say I have 5 dollars.

    -Mike
     
  12. Trey Fletcher

    Trey Fletcher Second Unit

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    I'll attempt to top that scenario with a true story.

    A friend and I went to a restaurant for lunch about a year ago. Upon receiving the tab I realized that I only had a $20 bill and asked the server for change so that I could pay my half. A few minutes later, said server returned with my change: One $10 bill, eight $1 bills, six quarters, three dimes, three nickels, and five pennies.

    I sat there dumbfounded for several seconds, thinking, "Okay, where's the camera crew?" Finally, I blurted out, "What the hell is this?" His response was something like, "I thought you might need some coins." After he left, my friend and I laughed uncontrollably for several minutes. The coins were of course returned as part of his tip.
     
  13. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Mike, yeah it makes sense in that respect. I was actually looking at it differently.No prob. [​IMG] If change means coins, then what does "Loose Change" mean? Can "change" mean only one coin? i.e. Can a quarter be considered 'change'? [​IMG] It seems that change is reffered to when there are more than 1 coin. So isn't all change "loose"?

    It would seem that any coins not bound in a coin sleeve are all considered "loose change".
     
  14. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    trey - at least that beats the damn waiters who don't give you any singles. i just *know* they're hoping you'll drop the large bill as part of the tip...

    mark - it's official. you're B-O-R-E-D!!!

    loose change means coins. period. end of story.

    if anyone argues with me i'm gonna bitch-slap them. and yes, i'm in a bitch-slappin' kind of mood today.

    thwap!
     
  15. Tony Whalen

    Tony Whalen Producer

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    No kidding.

    Next thing you know, he's gonna start talking about the uses of silica.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Nah, it was official YEARS ago [​IMG]

    Look at these sites that claim a 1 dollar coin is considered change for a dollar:
    http://www.expage.com/293
    http://www.teachnet.com/lesson/math/...ngedollar.html
    http://mathforum.org/library/drmath/view/56796.html
    http://www.nikora.com/puzzles/HowMan...ForADollar.htm

    p.s. Yes I know that the internet is not an offical spokesperson [​IMG]

    p.s.s. This guy actually refers to a dollar coin AS change:
    http://www.maa.org/features/mathchat...t_4_19_01.html

    p.s.s.s.s.s.s. Ted, look behind you! (as Mark runs in the other direction so as not to be slapped)
     
  17. Bryan X

    Bryan X Producer

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    I would argue a one dollar coin for a dollar bill would be change.

    I don't think you can say it's not change just because what they give you in exchange may not be useful to you.

    For example, say I have three kids and want to give them each a quarter. If I ask for change for a dollar and get back 2 quarters and a 50 cent piece that's not very helpful. But, they DID give me change for a dollar.

    So part of the definition of what 'giving change' is shouldn't depend on whether or not the 'change given' is useful to you in your circumstance.
     
  18. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    WHAT!?!?

    THWAP!!!!
     
  19. Casey Trowbridg

    Casey Trowbridg Lead Actor

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    While I generally agree that this would be useless to me, the fact is that if I had a paper dollar and traded it for a dollar coin, I have now experienced a change. Whereas before I had a paper denomination now I have a coin denomination. If I trade a 5 dollar bill for 5 ones, I change from 1 piece of paper to 5. If I trade a single dollar for 4 quarters I still have what amounts to a dollar but instead of my paper money I have 4 coins, so I have experienced change.

    Now having said all this, I'd rather talk about silica.
     
  20. Dave_Brown

    Dave_Brown Supporting Actor

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    No no no no no no no...... I thought this had been settled and I was the victor. [​IMG]
    The key in making change is that you are given currency lesser in denomination not just exchanging one dollar for another. A dollar is a dollar is a dollar, wether it is made out of paper, metal, fudge or turkey gizzards. The only way to make change is to give lower denomination of currency equalling the originally amount.

    10 dollar bill= making change is a 5 and five 1's, or use of coins if you prefer.
    You can exchange a dollar for a coin, but you haven't then made change.
     

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