What are some scary numbers?
October 5, 2013 8:13 AM Subscribe
I'm thinking about setting up a tongue in cheek project for Halloween that involves showing numbers that are scary. What numbers (with the context of a description) make you anxious, or at least spook you a bit on first glance?
posted by mccarty.tim to grab bag (47 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
It could be numbers that are initially jolting on sight without any other numbers to back them up (hypothetically, someone gave you the accurate number of days you had left to live), or numbers that are scary in context of another number (IE, Bill McKibben's 350 PPB safe level of atmospheric CO2 figure, which makes the current level of about 390 PPB pretty scary).
If at all possible, I'd like to not end up using political ones like the national debt or unemployment (although any answer involving a scary number would be interesting).
Even silly numbers that seem scary but are actually benign might be good. (IE number of eyelash mites/bacteria on your body)
What would be really cool is numbers that are likely to change several times a minute, whether through accurate estimates (like how populations can be projected down to the second using the functions of the birthrate and deathrate) or real time data pulled from the web.
I'm not sure if I'll actually build this project, but I'm really curious to explore this idea.