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Every person that was alive 7 thousand years ago has 389 billion descendants alive today.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/24/2012 Category: Society
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 880 times Debate No: 27464
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
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Assuming that in the last thousand years that the average increase in population per generation is 1.1, that is, each person will have on average 1.1 offspring (which seems generous, considering that birth control was not a factor until the last 100 years or so), and that there are 4 generations every hundred years, you can conclude that 4*70 (for 7 thousand years) = 280, and that 1.1^280 = 3,890,020,09100, therefore everyone, on average, from the 5th century B.C has 389 billion descendants in this generation.
note: when arguing against this topic don't just say 'it doesn't make sense', use math.


Hello Ganguscon. Thank you for the debate. Your proposal is clearly nonsense. Not every person that was alive 7 thousand years ago would have lived to have descendants. Some would have died before reproducing. Many would have reproduced, but those descendant lines would have died off in subsequent generations. MOST people who were alive 7 thousand years ago would have NO descendants alive today.
Debate Round No. 1


While I agree that some people that lived 7 thousand years ago and their decedents died before procreation. I contend that there were a far greater number of people that did have 1 or more children. This can be determined because of population growth, if the average number of offspring per person were 1 or less then the population wouldn't increase. Thus the generous figure of 1.1 offspring per person.

Also note that the number of decedents in the first round was a typo, this is the correct figure:

389,002,009,100 or 389 Billion


Hello again. You really should have put "on average" somewhere in the resolution.


Here are some rough numbers. They don't need to be super-accurate to prove the point. I got them from this website

world population for most of history: 10 million
by 1 A.D: 300 million
200 years ago: 1 billion
today: 6.5 billion

According to your formula, by about 200 A.D. each person would have 1.1^208, or about 400 million descendants, in other words the entire population of the world the time. Operating within your assumptions, every person alive at 300 A.D. was descended from everyone alive at 5000 B.C. From that point on, the number of descendants per person alive 7000 years ago would be identical with population growth, and this generation they would each have, on average, 6.5 billion descendants.

Debate Round No. 2


ganguscon forfeited this round.


And also if the world population goes from 10 million to 6.5 billion in 7000 years, the average generational increase is only just over 1.02 so your estimate was too generous.

I may have missed the point of this debate.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Zaradi 5 years ago
Impossible for pro to prove, although this resolution is really really really bad.
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