January 30, 2014, by Ken Jorgustin
You must read and visualize this very sobering metaphor for what exponential growth looks like. If a killer pandemic were to leap across the globe, it may have the potential to approach the mind-numbing growth as in the example below.
The thing is… as you will see when you read this… most people will be caught off-guard, thinking that they have time…
This is an example of exponential growth.
It’s 1pm. Imagine a normal sized football stadium. In this stadium you are sitting on the seat at the very top of the stadium, with the best overview of the whole stadium.
To make things more interesting, imagine the stadium is completely water-tight.
The question is, if a drop of water is added to the stadium and then one minute later it doubles in size to two drops, and then one minute after that it doubles again to 4 drops, and so on.. doubling in size every minute, how much time do you have to leave your seat and get out of the stadium before the water reaches your seat at the very top?
Think about it for a moment. Is it hours, days, weeks, months?
The first drop of water lands right in the middle of the field, at 1pm.
You have exactly until 1:49pm. It takes less than 50 minutes to fill a whole football stadium with water! This is impressive!
But it gets better:
At what time do you think the football stadium is still 93% empty? Take a guess.
The answer: At 1:45pm. So, you sit and watch the drop growing, and after 45 minutes all you see is the playing field covered with water. And then, within four more minutes, the water fills the whole stadium.