Sunday, January 02, 2011

fuzzy maths


How to Reach a Quadrillion Ancestors in 50 Generations.

(follow-up to my previous post)

you have 2 parents.
they each had 2 parents,
who each had 2 parents,
who each had 2 parents,
ad infinitum (assuming your ancestors reproduced sexually).

each generation the number of ancestors doubles.

2 parents
4 grandparents
8 great-grandparents
16 great-great-grandparents

this quickly leads to an absurdly large number.  by the time you calculate back to ancient greece your progenitors outnumber the stars.

the solution?  inbreeding.  we share the same relatives and they liberally shared each other.

viewed from a distance our family tree does not resemble the upside down triangle pictured above.  it looks rather more like a dull pencil.  skip back several generations and you share relatives with most of people you know.

take care, cousins.


Natália said...


tomi991 said...

love your blog, following :)

Theta^2 said...

That's funny and gross at the same time. And that tag, I'm seriously laughing so hard right now.

mind said...

i may have japaniess in my blood some where

runewake2 said...

But what happens when people have 11 or 10 siblings? The triangle looks a lot different.

Les said...

when you call people 'bro', it's not so far from the truth, hey bro?

Mister Sharaf said...

all people are my brothers :D

Suciô Sanchez said...

So we can all play the banjo?

erics said...

hey bro.

Classically Trained Nub said...

Well...there was a couple of relatives I woulda boned back in the day. Don't judge me.

Justsayin' said...

Well alrighty then! :)

Laughing Vault said...

i hate math xD

MRanthrope said...

wincest? ha