Never, never, understood this.
I know what Nominal and Real GDP is, I know how the base year calculations work, my question still remains.
The idea behind real GDP that makes most sense to me is the one Smith came up with, which was the first conception of a GDP anyway. The point of the GDP seems to be that the amount of stuff people consume is a decent indicator of how well the country is doing. It's hard to give a small figure that can be grasped quickly of the amount of stuff people consume in units of xyz goods so we just give them weights equal to a price and add them together. So the weights clearly seem to indicate how much more "consumptiony" one good is compared to the other, I guess the prices are a decent indicator of how "important" one good is relatively (debatable).
So we take these weights (prices) in one year and say "we'll use these" from then on. So an increase in the GDP can only ever indicate people consuming more stuff.
But if we keep changing base year prices, the Real GDP get's a boost despite people not consuming more stuff, it's even possible people consume less stuff and the Real GDP still increases, only because people are throwing more money at goods, probably because the central bank threw more money into the economy.
So what exactly is this change in base year supposed to capture?