trivia question: traffic deaths vs beeminder datapoints

Which happens more often:
Someone somewhere in the world adds a datapoint to a Beeminder
graph, or someone somewhere in the world gets killed by a car?

I’ll give the answer tomorrow.


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com

Good metareasoning! And you’re close…
More people are currently getting killed in traffic accidents (1400
dead every day) but Beeminder is projected to surpass that many
datapoints added per day in another month.

(It’s very frustrating that people refuse to understand how bad the
problem of traffic deaths is! Our society is demonstrating a
tragically low value for human life.)

On Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 07:55, David Reiley david@davidreiley.com wrote:

I’m going to guess that Beeminder has just overtaken the worldwide car
fatalities…

David

On Mar 29, 2012, at 8:52 PM, Daniel Reeves wrote:

Which happens more often:
Someone somewhere in the world adds a datapoint to a Beeminder
graph, or someone somewhere in the world gets killed by a car?

I’ll give the answer tomorrow.


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com


My home page: http://www.davidreiley.com


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com

Daniel,

Cite your sources, please.

best,
Dan

On Mar 30, 2:08 pm, Daniel Reeves dree...@umich.edu wrote:

Good metareasoning! And you’re close…
More people are currently getting killed in traffic accidents (1400
dead every day) but Beeminder is projected to surpass that many
datapoints added per day in another month.

(It’s very frustrating that people refuse to understand how bad the
problem of traffic deaths is! Our society is demonstrating a
tragically low value for human life.)

On Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 07:55, David Reiley da...@davidreiley.com wrote:

I’m going to guess that Beeminder has just overtaken the worldwide car
fatalities…

David

On Mar 29, 2012, at 8:52 PM, Daniel Reeves wrote:

Which happens more often:
Someone somewhere in the world adds a datapoint to a Beeminder
graph, or someone somewhere in the world gets killed by a car?

I’ll give the answer tomorrow.


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road –http://beeminder.com


My home page: http://www.davidreiley.com

http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road –http://beeminder.com

I’m curious about that too.

“In 2000, an estimated 1.26 million people worldwide [around
3450/day] died as a result of road traffic injuries.” - World Health
Organization. Injury Chart Book

On Sat, Mar 31, 2012 at 10:47 AM, dangoldstein dangoldstein@gmail.com
wrote:

Daniel,

Cite your sources, please.

best,
Dan

On Mar 30, 2:08 pm, Daniel Reeves dree...@umich.edu wrote:

Good metareasoning! And you’re close…
More people are currently getting killed in traffic accidents (1400
dead every day) but Beeminder is projected to surpass that many
datapoints added per day in another month.

(It’s very frustrating that people refuse to understand how bad the
problem of traffic deaths is! Our society is demonstrating a
tragically low value for human life.)

On Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 07:55, David Reiley da...@davidreiley.com
wrote:

I’m going to guess that Beeminder has just overtaken the worldwide car
fatalities…

David

On Mar 29, 2012, at 8:52 PM, Daniel Reeves wrote:

Which happens more often:
Someone somewhere in the world adds a datapoint to a Beeminder
graph, or someone somewhere in the world gets killed by a car?

I’ll give the answer tomorrow.


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road –http://beeminder.com


My home page: http://www.davidreiley.com

http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road –http://beeminder.com

Interesting. WolframAlpha is saying 1390/day, citing myriad sources
including the WHO:
http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=traffic+deaths

I don’t suppose cars got more than twice as safe in 12 years.
Actually, maybe this is the answer: WolframAlpha is summing over the
142 countries it has data for and ignoring the 98 it doesn’t.
The WHO is, appropriately enough, extrapolating to get an estimate for
the whole world.

Ok, Beeminder will need a few more months then!

(Or we could stop letting someone get killed every 25 seconds by a
car! I think it demonstrates a shamefully low value for human life
that society is as blase about that as we are.)

On Sat, Mar 31, 2012 at 08:34, Josh Jordan josh@joshjordan.name wrote:

I’m curious about that too.

“In 2000, an estimated 1.26 million people worldwide [around
3450/day] died as a result of road traffic injuries.” - World Health
Organization. Injury Chart Book
http://whqlibdoc.who.int/publications/924156220X.pdf

On Sat, Mar 31, 2012 at 10:47 AM, dangoldstein dangoldstein@gmail.com
wrote:

Daniel,

Cite your sources, please.

best,
Dan

On Mar 30, 2:08 pm, Daniel Reeves dree...@umich.edu wrote:

Good metareasoning! And you’re close…
More people are currently getting killed in traffic accidents (1400
dead every day) but Beeminder is projected to surpass that many
datapoints added per day in another month.

(It’s very frustrating that people refuse to understand how bad the
problem of traffic deaths is! Our society is demonstrating a
tragically low value for human life.)

On Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 07:55, David Reiley da...@davidreiley.com
wrote:

I’m going to guess that Beeminder has just overtaken the worldwide car
fatalities…

David

On Mar 29, 2012, at 8:52 PM, Daniel Reeves wrote:

Which happens more often:
Someone somewhere in the world adds a datapoint to a Beeminder
graph, or someone somewhere in the world gets killed by a car?

I’ll give the answer tomorrow.


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road –http://beeminder.com


My home page: http://www.davidreiley.com

http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road –http://beeminder.com


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com

On Mar 31, 2012, at 9:23 AM, Daniel Reeves wrote:

(Or we could stop letting someone get killed every 25 seconds by a
car! I think it demonstrates a shamefully low value for human life
that society is as blase about that as we are.)

What’s your proposed solution? So far I’ve only heard you propose getting rid of traffic lights… :slight_smile:

Suppose a billion people drive cars every day, and if they each get $20 of utility that they wouldn’t have been able to get without their car (because they couldn’t get to their jobs or because public transit was that much more inconvenient). And since we have some disagreement on the death figure, let me assume it’s 2000 deaths per day, to get a round number. Then society is implicitly saying the average life accidentally ended in a car accident is worth at most ($20B/2000 deaths) = $1M. That doesn’t sound totally ridiculous to me. The statistical value of a life in calculations like this usually comes out to be over a million for Americans (who have more earning potential and maybe higher quality lives), but for developing countries it’s usually considered less than a million. I’d argue that society has at least got the order of magnitude correct.

David


My home page: http://www.davidreiley.com

Here’s my list:

  1. lower speed limits on non-interstates – maybe big speed bumps everywhere
  2. much higher gas taxes
  3. self-driving cars!
  4. more trains
  5. abolish the TSA and make flying sane
  6. more roads that are mainly for bikes (like portland has! silicon
    valley too; i’m not sure where else. amsterdam, of course)
  7. free public transit (ie, paid for by taxes, not fares)

The last one sounds perhaps anti-free-market but I think it’s highly
economically sound and fair. If you’re driving then you get massive
benefit from other people taking public transit. Ie, less congestion
(and safer!). So it’s only fair that you chip in whether or not you’re
on the buses and trains yourself.

At the very least, public transit should always be free during
non-peak times. Otherwise it’s blatantly socially inefficient.

On Sat, Mar 31, 2012 at 12:15, David Reiley david@davidreiley.com wrote:

On Mar 31, 2012, at 9:23 AM, Daniel Reeves wrote:

(Or we could stop letting someone get killed every 25 seconds by a
car! I think it demonstrates a shamefully low value for human life
that society is as blase about that as we are.)

What’s your proposed solution? So far I’ve only heard you propose getting
rid of traffic lights… :slight_smile:

Suppose a billion people drive cars every day, and if they each get $20 of
utility that they wouldn’t have been able to get without their car (because
they couldn’t get to their jobs or because public transit was that much more
inconvenient). And since we have some disagreement on the death figure, let
me assume it’s 2000 deaths per day, to get a round number. Then society is
implicitly saying the average life accidentally ended in a car accident is
worth at most ($20B/2000 deaths) = $1M. That doesn’t sound totally
ridiculous to me. The statistical value of a life in calculations like this
usually comes out to be over a million for Americans (who have more earning
potential and maybe higher quality lives), but for developing countries it’s
usually considered less than a million. I’d argue that society has at
least got the order of magnitude correct.

David


My home page: http://www.davidreiley.com


http://dreev.es – search://“Daniel Reeves”
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com