Exponential water tank

Posted to Infographics  |  Tags: ,  |  Nathan Yau

Hibai Unzueta, based on a paper by Albert Bartlett, demonstrates exponential growth with a simple animation. It depicts a man standing in a tank with finite capacity and water rising slowly, but at an exponential rate.

Our brains are wired to predict future behaviour based on past behaviour (see here). But what happens when something growths exponentially? For a long time, the numbers are so little in relation to the scale that we hardly see the changes. But even at moderate growth rates exponential functions reach a point where the numbers grow too fast. Once we confirm that our predictions about the future have failed, very little time to react may be left.

All looks safe at first, because the water rises so slowly, but it seems to rise all of a sudden. Oh, the suspense. What will happen to cartoon pixel man?


Interactive: When Do Americans Leave For Work?

We don’t all start our work days at the same time, despite what morning rush hour might have you think.

How We Spend Our Money, a Breakdown

We know spending changes when you have more money. Here’s by how much.

Think Like a Statistician – Without the Math

I call myself a statistician, because, well, I’m a statistics graduate student. However, the most important things I’ve learned are less formal, but have proven extremely useful when working/playing with data.

How You Will Die

So far we’ve seen when you will die and how other people tend to die. Now let’s put the two together to see how and when you will die, given your sex, race, and age.