Well, it’s been a couple years now since I’ve posted anything so if there’s any time to start fresh it’s now. Here’s my plan:
I’m making this post so that anyone who is following this blog and doesn’t want their feed to get more crowded can unfollow if they want. Attention would be nice, but I don’t want to impose on anyone.
The idea for this blog now is to provide answers to interesting questions using mathematics and the beautiful typesetting power of . Barring anything new, I plan on providing solutions to interesting problems in physics and mathematics. If that doesn’t keep you around then I’m sorry to see you go, but understand.
Now let’s get started.
For this we need to know how many people there are and the average amount of blood in each one. Unfortunately, I will be assuming that all humans are adult sized with an adult amount of blood, which I’m fairly sure is not the case, so the estimated value will be higher than the actual value by a fairly substantial amount.
Now then. As of January 3rd, 2014, the date which this was written, the Worldometers world population clock  put the total world population at about 7.204 billion people.
As for blood, hypertextbook  cites several scientific studies which have found that the amount of blood in the average adult is right around 5 liters (or about 5 quarts). This means that the average person has about 1.25 gallons of blood.
By multiplying the two results we find that the total amount of human blood is right around 9 billion gallons.
Using data from a 2010 Pew poll of world religions  we find that there are 2.8 billion gallons of Christian blood, 2.1 billion gallons of Muslim blood, 1.4 gallons of Hindu blood and only 18 million gallons of Jewish blood. (These numbers don’t add up to the total because of other religions and the 1.5 gallons of unaffiliated blood)
We need to know a few things for this answer, the volume of an Olympic swimming pool and the volume of the penny (US coin).
First of all, the FINA lists the dimensions of an Olympic swimming pool as such:
50 meters long by 25 meters wide by at least 2.0 meters deep 
Since the depth could conceivably be unlimited, we will use a depth of 2.0 meters, meaning that the total volume of an Olympic swimming pool is 2,500 cubic meters.
The US Mint gives the following specifications for a penny:
A diameter of 19.05 millimeters and a thickness of 1.52 millimeters 
This means that the US penny has a volume of 4.3323E-7 cubic meters
Using these results, we find that 5.771 billion pennies are needed to fill the pool, which all together are worth 57.7 million US dollars.
One more thing:
Forbes lists the worlds billionaires here, the richest people on Earth. Currently, Carlos Slim Helu and his family are listed at #1 with a net worth of about 73 billion US dollars. 
If they so desired, they could fill over 1200 Olympic swimming pools with pennies. So yeah.
I doubt anyone still checks this, but I’m back.
I’ve decided to change the format of this blog, instead of pseudo-random facts and information about various subjects I will be posting various quantities of interest. The next few posts will show what I mean exactly.
Anyway, Happy New Year!
What is weird?
So, I promised a post, and seeing as I will be spending 4-6 hours in a wheeled metal box traveling north at about twelve times the speed at which I can run on Sunday, and have other plans for Saturday, I figure now is as good a time as any. I’ve gotten into watching Ze Frank on YouTube. This is about the former, specifically a video entitled “Breaking Normal” where he talks about how otherwise normal things can be made so seem really weird when you describe them as accurately as possible without using the name of that thing. For instance, I am, right now, sitting on a white cushioned platform suspended approximately one and a half feet off the ground by four wooden posts. There is a wooden board attached to the platform such that I can recline at an angle of about 15 degrees from a vertical position, and there is another, uncushioned, wooden platform, wider and longer than the cushioned platform, suspended about two and a half feet off the ground by four more, slightly larger, wooden posts. The inside of the large uncushioned platform has a metal linkage so that, when the two ends of the platform are pulled apart, a gap can be opened in the middle of the platform so a slab of wood can be inserted or removed to change the length of the platform. So, when you really think about it, a table and chair can be weird…
Have a great spring.
Ghoti can either be silent or pronounced like “fish” or “goatee”, ghoti is an amalgam of parts of other English words, where gh from enough, o from women (plural) and ti from nation are combined to spell the word fish. Ghoti is one example of weirdness in English pronunciation which has been used to promote spelling reform in the English language. Silent ghoti uses gh from though, o from people, t from ballet, and i from business.
2012 was a leap year, 2013 wasn’t, 2016 will be, 2014 won’t be, 2000 was and 1900 was not. Years are about 365 days long, but not exactly (measuring years is kind of hard to do and there are different ways of doing it, but a sidereal year is about 365.256363004 days long, and a tropical year is about 365.24219 days long, the difference is in the way the two are measured), and this difference between clean lengths of time like 365 days and the awkward 365.24219 days is enough to throw seasons off so that summer occurs in December. The Gregorian calendar uses a trick to adjust for this, adding a day to February. Normally, a year in the Gregorian calendar has 365 days, except for every fourth year (4, 8, 12, 16, …2004, 2008, 2012, 2016) which have 366 days. However, every 100th year (100, 200, 300, …2100, 2200, 2300) will not have a leap day, and thus have 365 days. Finally, every 400th year (400, 800, 1200, 1600, 2000, 2400) will have a leap day, and be 366 days long. This brings the average Gregorian calendar year to 365.2425 days long, not terribly different from the 365.24219 day long tropical year. Finally, leap seconds. The length of a day varies slightly, caused by gravitational forces on the Earth by the moon, sun, and other planets and usually only changes by a second, over the course of time. To keep the average length of a day as close to 86400 seconds as possible. Like leap years, leap seconds keep the rigid 86400 second day from drifting so 12-noon was sunset.