It sounds kind of complicated, but the award-winning Canadian geneticist, environmentalist and broadcaster — best known for his long-running biology show The Nature of Things — uses a simple analogy to get the point across.
The interactive experience begins with a question: “I know you’re busy…”
As you might expect, what you decide to do with that minute will probably change after you watch the video.
Suzuki begins by explaining exponential growth — in which something doubles itself at regular intervals. He then asks us to imagine that we are bacteria that grow exponentially. We live in a test tube full of food, and in one hour that tube will be full of bacteria. We will have no food left, and we will all die. Then he asks: At what point in that hour is the test tube only half full?
No more spoilers. You’ll have to watch the video.
The Test Tube
National Film Board of Canada
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