When I was a kid (40 years ago), the NYSE traded 13 million shares per day; the US budget deficit was measured in billions of dollars and the budget debt was hundreds of billions of dollars.
Now, we have multiplied these quantities by 100; they are measured in billions, hundreds of billions and 10+ trillion.
Will we be talking about quadrillions in 2060? What about the 24th century (in the Star Trek era)? I suppose if "things" increase by a factor of 100 every 40 (actually, let's say 50) years, then in 2363, we'll be talking about ...
1E13 (2012) --> 1E15 (2062) --> 1E17 (2112) --> 1E19 (2162) --> 1E21 (2212) --> 1E23 (2262) --> 1E25 (2312) --> 1E27 (2362)!
^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Million
^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Billion
^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Trillion
^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Quadrillion
^ ^ ^ ^ ^ Quintillion
^ ^ ^ ^ Sextillion
^ ^ ^ Septillion
^ ^ Octillion
I predict the US National Debt will cross 1 nonillion dollars in 2362. Prove me wrong! Go ahead!
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
As is well known now, the OPERA results on the faster-than-light neutrinos has been retracted. It seems that there was a loose cable that threw off the results by just about the right amount.
Here is a link to an excellent blog post from the famous physicist, Lawrence Krauss, on this topic: http://phys.org/news/2011-10-cern-colliding-theories.html. I couldn't have said it better myself.