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(New Scientist)   How many people have ever been born?   (newscientist.com) divider line 157
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16391 clicks; posted to Main » on 31 Oct 2012 at 9:16 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-10-31 09:51:11 AM  

Epoch_Zero: How many people have ever been born?

Has anyone really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like?


Step away from the crack pipe...
 
2012-10-31 09:51:32 AM  

notmtwain: Interesting graphic but it's taken from How Many People Have Ever Lived on Earth by Carl Haub which includes an explanation of how the estimates were derived.


Mainly, by guessing, it appears from reading that link.
I can do that, too. Eleventy quadrillion and three. That's the real number.
 
2012-10-31 09:55:40 AM  

Mrs.Sharpier: Epoch_Zero: How many people have ever been born?

Has anyone really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like?

You've got to be kidding me. I've been further even more decided to use even go need to do look more as anyone can. Can you really be far even as decided half as much to use go wish for that? My guess is that when one really been far even as decided once to use even go want, it is then that he has really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like. It's just common sense.

OWWWWW.... stop. My cerebellum just sprained itself.

 
2012-10-31 09:58:34 AM  
My great, great ... great water dwelling ancestor takes offense at these low numbers.
 
2012-10-31 09:58:38 AM  
Well let's see. A one... a two-hoooo...

i567.photobucket.com

...A-three.
 
2012-10-31 10:06:30 AM  
A brazillion.
 
2012-10-31 10:09:18 AM  

untaken_name: notmtwain: Interesting graphic but it's taken from How Many People Have Ever Lived on Earth by Carl Haub which includes an explanation of how the estimates were derived.

Mainly, by guessing, it appears from reading that link.
I can do that, too. Eleventy quadrillion and three. That's the real number.


It is admittedly speculative but the steps in his approach sound a little more reasonable than yours.

// Plus, he was reacting to the widely quoted made up statistic that three quarters of all the people ever born were now alive. His estimate was done to examine that claim.
 
2012-10-31 10:12:22 AM  

PirateKing: That's funny, because I would have sworn that you are all figments of my imagination.

/solipsism seems like a cool philosophy. I wonder why there aren't more of us.



There are as many of us as you want there to be.
 
2012-10-31 10:13:41 AM  

Mrs.Sharpier: Epoch_Zero: How many people have ever been born?

Has anyone really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like?

You've got to be kidding me. I've been further even more decided to use even go need to do look more as anyone can. Can you really be far even as decided half as much to use go wish for that? My guess is that when one really been far even as decided once to use even go want, it is then that he has really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like. It's just common sense.


whatthef*ckamIreading.jpg
 
2012-10-31 10:13:44 AM  

cman: Hack Patooey: Year Population
50,000 B.C. 2

Um...

Human population is older than that



Anatomically yes, but before about 50KYA we were living pretty much like other hominid species. Some convergence of factors propelled us forward into the complex language-using creatures we are today around that time. I'm not totally discounting the continuity hypothesis here, but even taking into account earlier human artifacts of behavioral modernity, there was clearly some sort of critical mass reached that forever altered who we are as a species.
 
2012-10-31 10:14:23 AM  
Numbers might be slightly skewed when some people only counted as 3/5ths.
 
2012-10-31 10:18:18 AM  
I think about 6 or seven. They keep being re-born and interacting in different wasy.



/Or maybe this wasn't a documentary
 
2012-10-31 10:19:52 AM  

notmtwain: It is admittedly speculative but the steps in his approach sound a little more reasonable than yours.


A little more reasonable, maybe, but just as speculative. The real answer? Nobody knows. No one has a freakin' clue. Any answer provided is a guess.
 
2012-10-31 10:23:39 AM  

untaken_name: notmtwain: It is admittedly speculative but the steps in his approach sound a little more reasonable than yours.

A little more reasonable, maybe, but just as speculative.


Amount of reasoning in his approach = finite

Amount of reasoning in your approach = zero

ratio = finite / 0 = infinite

Sounds like it's a LOT more reasonable to me.
 
2012-10-31 10:24:09 AM  

TeddyRooseveltsMustache: Why does that chart indicate that there were 0 people until 8000 BC? That makes no sense.


That's zero people plus or minus a few million. The margin of error is bigger than the population.

A lot of them were hiding in boxes with their cats and couldn't be counted by the enumerator without breaking and entering, so he or she put down a number based on the volume of the box and the amount of arguing and meowing coming from in the box.

While searching through Census records, I found that one person Charles G. Lewis, 18, was absent from the home at the time of enumeration. As a result, a whole new family, the Gabsent family, was accidentally created by a careless transcriber. A household of Old American WASPs in another census was turned into Italians by careless reading. As any Fortean knows, mysterious people pop into and out of existence constantly.

Since census-records are the basis for entitlements, there is a lot of political shenanigans as well, with conservatives denying the existence of possibly millions of Americans. The number of Muslims in America ranges from 1.5 million (if counted by Jews, B'nai B'rith) to 12 million (if counted by Muslims at the American Muslim Association or something like). That's a gap of over 10 million people, many of them members of the Ali Gabsent family. Republicans are not content to deny government services to people. They also try to deny people to government services.

This teaches us to be skeptical of statistics and numbers generally. Even with good faith and best practices, the population of the USA is only known to three, perhaps two, significant digits You could lose or gain a few small states without anybody noticing or caring. For example, when President Obama "accidentally" claimed there were 54 states HE MAY HAVE BEEN INADVERTANTLY LETTING THE CAT OUT OF THE BAG.

Personally I suspect that Obama has several states in reserve just in case the Election doesn't go his way.

Why, for example, is there a North Dakota and and a South Dakota? Why? Why? Do you even need one? Don't be surprise if East Dakota goes Democratic on Election Day. On the other hand, the Republicans are even worse. Don't be surprised if California disappears mysteriously, only to be won by the Republicans with 18,182 votes when it returns.

The world is full of Brigadoons, pockets of reality that float around and occasionally appear long enough to play nasty practical jokes on people.

Negative people are everywhere. Don't be fooled into thinking that the numbers are carved in stainless steel.
 
2012-10-31 10:25:38 AM  
that's missing at least 145,000 years of human population
 
2012-10-31 10:27:17 AM  

prekrasno: Eleventy billion.


Is that counting the Irish too?
 
2012-10-31 10:29:00 AM  
 
2012-10-31 10:29:50 AM  

toddslacks: Contrabulous Flabtraption: Threeve

Texa$


oooh, reference fail.

so close.
 
2012-10-31 10:31:53 AM  
If you think that population statistics are fraught with assumptions (false) and problems (real) you should probably not take a look at calculations of the load-bearing capacity of the Earth. This is the number (imaginary) of people the Earth can comfortably support without going bust.

I have a book on the subject which contains estimates that run from zero (the zero population cranks) to numbers so large you have to assume the perpetrators are expecting us to develop a way of miniturizing people like the Chinese do in one of Kurt Vonnegut Jr.'s weirder novels.

Personally I suspect that the Earth could support the number of people who were alive the day that I was born. Let's say three or four billion and leave it at that.
 
2012-10-31 10:36:03 AM  
thirty-six billion, six million, nine thousand, six hundred and thirty-seven.

Give or take the titanthrops.
 
2012-10-31 10:43:26 AM  

The All-Powerful Atheismo: toddslacks: Contrabulous Flabtraption: Threeve

Texa$

oooh, reference fail.

so close.


You obviously understood the reference so how was it a fail?
 
2012-10-31 10:44:45 AM  
I'm not saying there's a lot more but I'm tentatively in the camp that maybe there is just a little more history than we know.

Just like the whole pre-Clovis debate, as science and exploration let us look in greater detail than we can sometimes move settlement and exploration back.

Cool graph, though. It's nice to have that one silly talking point done away with.
 
2012-10-31 10:47:55 AM  

fruitloop: We should count. I'll start...

1


I have a better idea. Let's insult them. All of them. Individually, personally, one by one, and (this is the thing we have to grit our teeth over) in Alphabetical Order.
 
2012-10-31 10:53:49 AM  

toddslacks: The All-Powerful Atheismo: toddslacks: Contrabulous Flabtraption: Threeve

Texa$

oooh, reference fail.

so close.

You obviously understood the reference so how was it a fail?


Because the reference is actually:

$Texas

It's like misquoting something. You can be executed in some hipster countries for that.
 
2012-10-31 10:56:21 AM  

Jairzinho: karnal: Time to thin out the herd

At the pace earth resources are being consumed and depleted with any regard for future generations, that will take care of itself relatively soon.


I know it's not quite the same, but looking at the slope of that graph brings to mind a graph of the population in a bacterial culture I saw once. Exponential growth, followed by saturation and then a crash as the resources are depleted and/or the medium becomes too saturated with waste. I don't want to live to see the last part of that graph. I am hoping we'll back off the throttle a bit before it gets to that point.
 
2012-10-31 11:08:21 AM  

I_Am_Weasel: All of them.


FFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU

I wanted to say this
 
2012-10-31 11:11:47 AM  

gweilo8888: Five, plus or minus a margin of error.


Christ! how many alts do you have here?
 
2012-10-31 11:17:33 AM  
But where do you bury the survivers?
 
2012-10-31 11:21:04 AM  

Anderson's Pooper: Just me. The rest of you were hatched.


Wrong, you were hatched as well
 
2012-10-31 11:23:32 AM  

karnal: Jairzinho


karnal: Time to thin out the herd

At the pace earth resources are being consumed and depleted with any regard for future generations, that will take care of itself relatively soon.

Nature takes care of overpopulation in its own way.....Disease, Starvation.....Predators


Alternatively, we can address the issue with greater access to education, healthcare and contraceptive medicine.

... but, since those words mean "SOCIALISM" to Red State Americans, we're probably in for a nice long stretch of starvation and nuclear war.
 
2012-10-31 11:23:37 AM  

stuhayes2010: Boy things took off 8,000 years ago. Was that agriculture?


Sedentary settlement, to be precise, but that usually is linked to agriculture, so yeah.

High levels of mobility favor long birth spacing so that the first child is old enough to keep up with the group before the next is born, so that mothers never need to be carrying more than one child at a time. Sedentary settlement allows for "babysitting" so that mom can gather food while the kids are safe at home. It relaxes the selection pressure against rapid reproduction, so populations start to grow pretty rapidly. That's going to require intensification of food-getting strategies, so in a lot of cases, it may be that rapid population growth "causes" agriculture, rather than the other way around, but the two are definitely causally linked.



How long until the Christian fundies grab this, manipulate it to say seeeeeeeeeeeee even scientists agree with bible!

At least negative 40 years. They've been saying that crap since at least the 1960s that I know of, and probably longer.
 
2012-10-31 11:23:49 AM  

ThrobblefootSpectre: The dalai lama tells me it's much less, since most of these are rebirths of people who didn't get it right the first time.


There's an idea in Christianity that all the souls of all the humans who will ever live were created when (or before) God made Adam and Eve. This would mean that we're essentially counting down to the moment when the last human being ever will be born. This only works if either (A) God knows to the second when the Rapture/Armageddon will occur or (B) God made a lot of extra souls that will never get to be born.

Not saying that all, or even most, Christians believe this. I guess the alternative is that souls are created "on the spot" as needed.
 
2012-10-31 11:26:17 AM  

drkdstryer: Mrs.Sharpier: Epoch_Zero: How many people have ever been born?

Has anyone really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like?

You've got to be kidding me. I've been further even more decided to use even go need to do look more as anyone can. Can you really be far even as decided half as much to use go wish for that? My guess is that when one really been far even as decided once to use even go want, it is then that he has really been far even as decided to use even go want to do look more like. It's just common sense.

whatthef*ckamIreading.jpg


It's a meme.

/And I just broke the first rule of Meme Club.
 
2012-10-31 11:29:02 AM  
FAIL

Did not differentiate between Reincarnation vs. Newbs
 
2012-10-31 11:29:34 AM  

Pair-o-Dice: A brazillion.


You're seriously underestimating. There are at least two Brazilian women.

i105.photobucket.com
 
2012-10-31 11:29:41 AM  

liam76: I think about 6 or seven. They keep being re-born and interacting in different wasy.

/Or maybe this wasn't a documentary


upload.wikimedia.org
I'll see your Hollywood movie and raise you Kim Stanley Robinson,
 
2012-10-31 11:30:43 AM  

The All-Powerful Atheismo: toddslacks: The All-Powerful Atheismo: toddslacks: Contrabulous Flabtraption: Threeve

Texa$

oooh, reference fail.

so close.

You obviously understood the reference so how was it a fail?

Because the reference is actually:

$Texas

It's like misquoting something. You can be executed in some hipster countries for that.


That's funny. I've obviously heard this reference more than I've seen it. I always pictured it that way. This makes more sense. Being at work, I didn't put in the time to research my reference. Also, I work in IT and see S replaced with $ on a weekly if not daily basis. So just laugh at my reference and keep quiet buck futter!
 
2012-10-31 11:31:10 AM  

I_Am_Weasel: All of them.


Aaaannnd We're done!
 
2012-10-31 11:34:01 AM  
stuhayes2010: How long until the Christian fundies grab this, manipulate it to say seeeeeeeeeeeee even scientists agree with bible!

FloydA: At least negative 40 years. They've been saying that crap since at least the 1960s that I know of, and probably longer.


upload.wikimedia.org
"Negative 40 years" sounds about right.
 
2012-10-31 11:36:47 AM  

HotIgneous Intruder: If that were true, there would be many, many more cemeteries.


Bill Bryson in At Home talks about all the 'sunken churches' all over the English countryside. Turns out the churches aren't sinking, the graves in the yard are reused every couple of generations or so, and the cumulative effect is the yards are 3 to 4 feet higher than they were when the church was built.
 
2012-10-31 11:39:21 AM  
i49.tinypic.com 

Reminded me of this.
Not sure why.
 
2012-10-31 11:41:39 AM  

Dictatorial_Flair: Jairzinho: karnal: Time to thin out the herd

At the pace earth resources are being consumed and depleted with any regard for future generations, that will take care of itself relatively soon.

I know it's not quite the same, but looking at the slope of that graph brings to mind a graph of the population in a bacterial culture I saw once. Exponential growth, followed by saturation and then a crash as the resources are depleted and/or the medium becomes too saturated with waste. I don't want to live to see the last part of that graph. I am hoping we'll back off the throttle a bit before it gets to that point.


My first thought was how a garden grows - bear at first, things grow, then they flower and heaps of fruit appear ---> HARVEST (if I was an immortal being who liked flesh, waiting few million years would be nothing more than me waiting for my tomatoes to grow (or your chickens/cows/other cousins for you carnivores.)
 
2012-10-31 11:46:41 AM  

ciberido: There's an idea in Christianity that all the souls of all the humans who will ever live were created when (or before) God made Adam and Eve. This would mean that we're essentially counting down to the moment when the last human being ever will be born. This only works if either (A) God knows to the second when the Rapture/Armageddon will occur or (B) God made a lot of extra souls that will never get to be born.


Judaism, actually. The concept is described in the Talmud, and that where the name "Guf" comes from. I'm not sure I've ever heard of it being a widely held christian belief, though there are several popular movies that attribute it to christianity. (probably because a horror/thriller about Juews doesn't have as much bite. Or they would be sued to smithereensm, or something.) Seventh Sign was one, I think.
 
2012-10-31 11:51:17 AM  
Oops, didn't mean to misspell "Jews". It was accidental. Don't hate me.
 
2012-10-31 11:57:51 AM  
i2.kym-cdn.com
 
2012-10-31 12:03:01 PM  

crohret: But where do you bury the survivers?


First you need to learn that you don't bury survivors.
Second you need to learn to spell survivors.
 
2012-10-31 12:05:12 PM  

TeddyRooseveltsMustache: Why does that chart indicate that there were 0 people until 8000 BC? That makes no sense.


DUH! that's because Adam and Eve wasn;t born until about 8000BC

Do I have to EXPLAIN everythin' roun tis parts?
 
#2 [TotalFark]
2012-10-31 12:05:19 PM  
How many have -fb as the father????
 
2012-10-31 12:06:56 PM  

Tommy Moo: Jairzinho: karnal: Time to thin out the herd

At the pace earth resources are being consumed and depleted with any regard for future generations, that will take care of itself relatively soon.

Yeah, but wouldn't it be nice if politicians acted like grownups and initiated a serious discussion with the public about how we can make choices that transition to a sustainable population level in the least painful way possible before the enviro-economy makes those decisions for us, catastrophically?

EUGENICS?
Should the politicians in Sub-Saharan Africa be the ones to take the lead?

 
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