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(NPR)   Tired of the annual "how much would the twelve days of Christmas cost" stories? How about estimating the size of Santa's organization if he were a delivery company?   (npr.org ) divider line
    More: Amusing, Santa Claus, Planet Money, flight plans  
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4692 clicks; posted to Main » on 20 Dec 2012 at 1:24 AM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-20 03:41:47 AM  
2 votes:

FirstNationalBastard: Stupid article...

everyone knows the elves aren't a workforce, they're slave labor! They even have to pick the cotton they stuff into each doll!


img35.imageshack.us
2012-12-20 04:27:30 PM  
1 vote:
That number is fairly inaccurate... let's take a look at an alternative way to see what Santa would have to do... (yes Math farkers, I know this isn't perfect, but humor me for Christmas will you?)

1. "Christmas" is celebrated by Christians That's 2,331,509,000 of the 6.9 Billion people in the world.
2. Of those Christians... How many are children? I couldn't find a good number, so let's make an assumption (not a great one). Child is defined as 12 or under. The average age of death is 78. If this was an even distribution (it isn't) that would mean that 12/78 (roughly 15%) of the Christian population would be considered a child. What's left with that figure? 358,693,692
3. Of those 358,693,692 children, how many are "good"? That's hard to define, but let's try.

a. Doing well with schoolwork would be considered a good indicator of how "good" a kid is. While there are kids who don't do well in school who are good, there are also smart kids who are bad. We'll assume they cancel each other out and say that grades mean that (on a 20% distributed bell curve), only 40% would be considered "good" by a school system. We're down to 143,477,476 kids now.
b. How many regularly attend church? Again, not a great indicator, but a "good" Christian kid should probably attend church a least once in a while. Some random internet stats say that 28% of people haven't attended church in the last 6 months... let's knock them out... 103,303,783
c. It's getting harder, but let's do this... 6.6% of the U.S. population will serve time in a prison during their lifetime (ouch)... let's assume they were bad kids too. 96,485,733
d. Santa is a charitable guy, and those kids should be too... turns out 75% of kids in a survey donated to charity, so let's knock out the other 25%. 72,364,300
e. Good kids need to make their bed. Turns out only about 71% of us do that... 51,378,653
f. Good kids should eat their fruits and vegetables...only about 32.5% of us get enough fruits and 26.3% of us enough vegetables, so let's double whammy this number (yes, bad math, I know). 4,391,590
g. Brush their teeth. Turns out 2/3 of us don't do it right... 1,463,863
h. Go to bed on time. Only about 1/3 of us get enough sleep. 487,954
i. Do their own homework. Turns out a lot of you do your kid's homework (46%)... naughty for you and naughty for them. 263,495
j. Good kids don't cheat in school either... Turns out up to 85% will have cheated by the time they graduate. 39,524
k. This article covers how many kids do chores (71.9%) and how many are whiny and think they have it harder than their parents (37.3% -using the higher number) 17,818
l. 44% of children don't believe in Santa. 9,978
m. 70% of kids watch too much TV. 2,993
n. 75% of kids don't get enough exercise...748

Even though I've gotten it down to 748, this number is still too high. There's a ton of other measurements and some of these areas probably overlap.

That being said.. this is only about 1 present every two minutes for Santa to deliver over a 24 hour period. With his magic sleigh, 8 tiny reindeer, and Rudolph... it's probably a breeze.
2012-12-20 02:52:32 AM  
1 vote:

maxheck: anfrind:

GhostFish: Now let's calculate how much energy it would take to turn water into wine, or conjure bread and fish from thin air.

I have heard that it's possible to transmute metals such as iron and copper (but not necessarily lead) into gold using a particle accelerator, but the energy required to transmute even a gram of metal is off the charts (in nature it usually takes a star several times larger than our sun to create metal through fusion of hydrogen). You could probably use a similar technique to transmute hydrogen into carbon, nitrogen, etc., and then reassemble those atoms into the various molecules that make wine, but I think it's safe to assume that the energy required is just as "off the charts" as transmuting common metals into gold. Conjuring bread and fish from air would have all the same difficulties, plus the fact that you'd be assembling atoms into even more complex forms.

/why am I thinking about alchemy when I should be going to bed?

You should probably be going to bed, but...

Actually, lead naturally transmutes into gold. Wait a while longer, and the gold will transmute into something lighter. Anything with a higher atomic number than iron will, if you wait long enough, drop a few protons.

Iron's actually at a sweet spot in the periodic table. It doesn't transmute into anything without a lot of coercing.


What, you have to threaten to beat up its wife and turn its kids gay?
2012-12-20 02:38:15 AM  
1 vote:

dletter: 12 million employees?

Well, this is obvious then.... Obama needs to make Santa come true.... imagine it, 12 million new jobs, and we all get something we wanted for free once a year!

I mean, why not, the GOP accuses Obama of winning because he "gives stuff" to people... might as well live up to it.


Really? you're asking Santa to outsource his jobs to US citizens? No enough mexicans coming in from down south? now you want 12 million elves sneaking across from Canada too?
2012-12-20 02:32:29 AM  
1 vote:
12 million employees?
 
Well, this is obvious then.... Obama needs to make Santa come true.... imagine it, 12 million new jobs, and we all get something we wanted for free once a year!
 
I mean, why not, the GOP accuses Obama of winning because he "gives stuff" to people... might as well live up to it.
2012-12-20 02:04:31 AM  
1 vote:

GhostFish: Now let's calculate how much energy it would take to turn water into wine, or conjure bread and fish from thin air.


We could just ask that dude Buddha how he did it.
2012-12-20 02:02:46 AM  
1 vote:

GhostFish: Now let's calculate how much energy it would take to turn water into wine, or conjure bread and fish from thin air.


I have heard that it's possible to transmute metals such as iron and copper (but not necessarily lead) into gold using a particle accelerator, but the energy required to transmute even a gram of metal is off the charts (in nature it usually takes a star several times larger than our sun to create metal through fusion of hydrogen). You could probably use a similar technique to transmute hydrogen into carbon, nitrogen, etc., and then reassemble those atoms into the various molecules that make wine, but I think it's safe to assume that the energy required is just as "off the charts" as transmuting common metals into gold. Conjuring bread and fish from air would have all the same difficulties, plus the fact that you'd be assembling atoms into even more complex forms.

/why am I thinking about alchemy when I should be going to bed?
2012-12-20 01:29:19 AM  
1 vote:
So, Foxconn?
 
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