Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Thought Food for People Who Enjoy Numbers, Analytics and Scorekeeping

Every picture tells a story. So do numbers. I've often been heard to say you can't manage what you don't measure. Numbering things is one of those activities that goes as far back in time as another favorite, naming things.

I've always been fascinated by numbers, so I always enjoyed reading the Harper's Index. These numbers come from a variety of places. Many of these numbers were assembled in a 2008 blog post. I've added a few more to keep it interesting.

In answer to the question, “How much of the time do you think you can trust the government in Washington to do what’s right – just about always, most of the time, or only some of the time?”
In 1958: 76% said “just about always” or “most of the time”
In 1970: 50%
In 1976: 33%

Number of buildings the Pentagon owns or rents around the world, 2008: 316,238
Number of sites where these building are located: 4,668
Number of sites that are in foreign countries: 761
Number of sites located in foreign countries in 1967: 1,014

Percentage of persons classified as poor in U.S. who have air conditioning (2008): 85%
Percentage who had air conditioning in 1971: 36%

Percentage of persons classified as poor in U.S. who have a color TV set: 97%
Percentage in 1971: 40%

Percentage of U.S. poor who own an automatic dishwasher: 40%
In in '71: 20%

Percentage who own a refrigerator: Almost 100%
In 1970: 75%

Total Federal spending, 1968: $774 billion
Total Federal spending today: $2.5 trillion
Current Federal Wall Street/AIG bailout package: $700 billion

Number of persons in prison with drug crimes as most serious offense: 400,000
Number in 1980: 24,000

Number of persons worldwide who have died from starvation in the last hour while I was writing this: 1080
Number of children in past 24 hours who died from malaria: 1200

Percentage of Haitian babies born with low birth weight: 25
Percentage of Haitians using adequate sanitation facilities: 30
Percentage of world illness caused by unsanitary drinking water: 80

Approximate number of deaths caused by 1998 civil war in Congo: 2.9 million
Number of deaths caused by the conflict in Syria since 2011: 470,000

Number of live nuclear warheads in U.S. arsenal, 1966: 32,040
Estimated number of live warheads in U.S. arsenal today: 7,100*
Estimated number in Russia: 7,300*
Estimated number of warheads in Pakistan today: 60-80

Number of synapses in human brain: 100 trillion

Number of video surveillance cameras worldwide: 245 million
Number of smart phones in the U.S., 2016: 207 million
Number of smart phones worldwide: 2.1 billion

Total revenue generated, U.S. 2016: 2.99 trillion dollars
Total spending: 3.54 trillion
Current status of Federal Debt: 17.4 trillion dollars

Number of times Bob Dylan has performed "Mr. Tambourine Man" live in concert: 903
Number of times he's performed "Tangled Up In Blue": 1582
Number of times Dylan says the word "Broken" on the song "Everything Is Broken": 33

Estimated number of times average person blinks in a day: 17,000
Estimated number of times average person laughs: Not enough

*Arms Control Assn.

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