# pouët.net

## Coastline/area ratio for certain countries

category: offtopic [glöplog]
hoover: it does indeed, but fortunately countries aren't actually circle shaped :D

I get where you're coming from though - but it's a bit wrong. Think of a square, 1m square, so 4m of edge. Break it into 4 quarters, each 0.5m x 0.5m. Still 1m square, but now it has 0.5 * 16 = 8m of edge.

Same thing with a fractal. Each time you iterate (or look a little closer), the 'circumference' might double, but the area might stay the same.
added on the 2012-07-27 15:58:07 by psonice
jcl: closest I can see to the centre of canada is the town of Yellowknife. Here's a picture of it.
added on the 2012-07-27 16:01:22 by psonice
Quote:
Canada has 243,000 km coastline, vs 9,984,670 km^2 surface, roughly 40km^2/km... does that make it 2.2 times easier to be near a beach than in Spain?

Yes. Have you looked at a map of Canada?

Quote:

Well, I can't know for sure, but I guess they would look at the math and go: "Hey, it's 2.2 times easier to be near a beach in Canada than in Spain!"
added on the 2012-07-27 18:46:53 by revival
No wait, actually I think they'd go "Hey, it's 2.5 times easier to be near a beach in Canada than in Spain!"

Haha, I see what you did there!
added on the 2012-07-27 18:48:52 by revival
Hey guys, I don't know about the relative size of foo or bar, but I would just like to mention that coastline != beach. At least not a beach you would like for Sun and bath
added on the 2012-07-27 21:32:00 by texel
psonice: if lakes count, then the whole argument is flawed (it is, for many other reasons, but let's forget about that), since coastline length won't include those :-)
added on the 2012-07-30 09:18:27 by Jcl
For the record: In the original numbers I was counting the area of lakes but not their shorelines. :-)
added on the 2012-07-30 10:15:57 by revival
Really, you cannot measure the length of a coastline, all those numbers are bogus. Here's an article on that:

How Long Is the Coast of Britain? Statistical Self-Similarity and Fractional Dimension
added on the 2012-07-30 16:03:13 by Zonkham
Or even better:

added on the 2012-07-30 16:05:42 by Zonkham
Well that's all very nice, but assuming
a) the fractal dimension of coastlines is constant over planet earth
b) the coastlines have been measured at the same scale
(neither of which seem a strech)
we can still make RELATIVE comparisons, and the argument still stands!

WHAT ELSE YOU GOT, BITCHES?
added on the 2012-07-30 17:15:08 by revival
go make a demo about it?
added on the 2012-07-30 17:18:35 by wysiwtf
Most boring demo ever