Jarrett (jarrett) wrote,

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4, 8, 15, 16, 23, 42

Our biggest accomplishment this weekend was finally getting caught up on Lost. My brother gave me the season one DVD set for my birthday, and the DVR has been saving all the episodes so far this season in glorious high definition.

I love the show. But something about Lost has been bugging me.

When Hurley goes to Australia to talk to the crazy guy's boss's wife, she says that her husband used the spooky magic island numbers to guess the number of beans in a pony-sized jar (thus cursing him forever). But that doesn't work. One naturally assumes that he guessed 4,815,162,342 beans.

That's an unimaginable quantity of beans. Assuming a very small bean -- maybe something smaller than a pea, displacing (on average) a quarter inch in each dimension...

*punching on calculator*

That's 43,539 ft3 of beans! The interior of our house, floor to ceiling, is less than half that volume.

Even assuming that someone in Austraila has a jar of beans about 50 feet in diamater and 25 feet high, counting the beans in the jar is a pretty big problem to begin with. Let's say you paid someone to count beans 16 hours a day, and they were able to manage 2 beans a second. A single person would complete this task after about 115 years.
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