We are inept at measuring open space.
We measure water in order to know how much there is, who uses it, and how much remains for others to potentially use. We count fish and birds in order to know whether their populations are increasing or decreasing. If you can’t measure it, then you can’t manage it. — Peter DruckerParticularly with fish, we measure the number and size of the fish that are caught, as essential information needed for preserving populations for the future. We measure chemicals in water and air in order to preserve the quality of our environment. The list of things that we measure in order to have good future conditions is nearly endless. For all of these things, there are standards for measurement that are widely accepted and considered to fairly measure a condition or commodity.
We do not routinely measure space or its loss. Why not?
Area is not space
A measurement has been in use, pretending to measure space, that actually does not measure space at all. That measurement is area. Quite simply, area is a necessary part of space, just as flour is a necessary part of cake. Flour is, however, not cake; nor is area space. That is a surprising assertion, isn’t it? It is, and it deserves explanation.