Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Alley Oop & Graphing Peak Oil

I've been thinking that the bell curve is a poor tool for communicating the problem of peak oil. It contains the information we need -- the volume of the planet's oil reserves, and whether we can expect to have more or less of it as we move along the curve -- but that's the area under the curve, and my habit, cultivated when Mr. Wassisname showed me how to graph mathematical functions, is to look at the line on the paper.

A graph like the one above would be more effective. If I were a citizen of the Jurassic Period, trying to plan an economy dependent upon the size of the dinosaur herd, this would give me a better intuitive understanding than the same information displayed as bell curves.

Me and all the other Alley Oops have our caveman enterprises in the dinosaur economy. I want to try something new and stegosaur-dependent in the late Jurassic. If I want to count on enough stegosaurs, I'll have to count on several business failures among the other stego-businesses.

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