Thursday, October 26, 2006

Whew! What a Relief!

Link thanks to Jeff Meyerson. - Vampires a Mathematical Impossibility, Scientist Says: "A researcher has come up with some simple math that sucks the life out of the vampire myth, proving that these highly popular creatures can't exist.

University of Central Florida physics professor Costas Efthimiou's work debunks pseudoscientific ideas, such as vampires and zombies, in an attempt to enhance public literacy. Not only does the public believe in such topics, but the percentages are at dangerously high level, Efthimiou told LiveScience.

Legend has it that vampires feed on human blood and once bitten a person turns into a vampire and starts feasting on the blood of others.

Efthimiou's debunking logic: On Jan 1, 1600, the human population was 536,870,911. If the first vampire came into existence that day and bit one person a month, there would have been two vampires by Feb. 1, 1600. A month later there would have been four, and so on. In just two-and-a-half years the original human population would all have become vampires with nobody left to feed on.

If mortality rates were taken into consideration, the population would disappear much faster. Even an unrealistically high reproduction rate couldn't counteract this effect.

'In the long run, humans cannot survive under these conditions, even if our population were doubling each month,' Efthimiou said. 'And doubling is clearly way beyond the human capacity of reproduction."


Anonymous said...

Ahh! Maybe that explains what really happened to the dinosaurs, huh?

Richard said...

Efthimiou clearly is living in some fictional world of his own devising. In the real, scientific world that I (and all sensible readers of this blog) inhabit, everyone knows that convergent evolution combined with Newtonian physics ensures that for every vampire, nature provides an equal and opposite Vampire Hunter. The things are dormant twelve hours a day; the human race would have to be collectively dumb as a stump not to get the upper hand on a regular basis.