Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Different Ways To Look At The Olympics

The thing that strikes me as most farcical about the olympics is that it's pretty much inevitable that the US and China will be in the top two places in the medal table. Obviously this is because they have the largest populations and therefore the largest pool of potential athletes to pick from. To illustrate this, the US and China have both sent about 600 athletes each, whereas Britain has around 300 and most of the other countries much less. So I thought it would be clever to change the medal table so that it takes this into account. Here is the original medal table (from the BBC)

Country Total
China 76
USA 77
Great Britain 32
Australia 34
Germany 26
Russia 42
South Korea 24
Japan 22
Italy 19
Ukraine 17

But here it is in medals/million people

Country Medals/Million People
Australia 1.59
Great Britain 0.53
South Korea 0.5
Ukraine 0.37
Italy 0.32
Germany 0.32
Russia 0.3
USA 0.25
Japan 0.17
China 0.06

Interesting eh? Australia wins because of it's surprisingly small population (only 21 million) whereas China gets shafted due to having over a billion people. The only other country with a population that size is India which only has 1 gold so far, putting their ratio at 0.001.

In conclusion, USA sux, GB rulez.

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