How big is Manta?

June 16, 2011 by reuben | Filed under Work.

Sometimes when working on a big site for a long time, you get used to the big numbers. It’s easy to talk about hundreds of thousands of these and millions of those and lose perspective of just how many companies are on Manta. For fun today I decided to do some simple math to try and put the volume of companies I work with into perspective by providing references to more familiar items.


Printing

A Dell 5130cdn laser printer [1], touted as one of the fastest laser printers, would take over 2.5 years of nonstop printing to print out all 64 million companies. You’d need 2,836 of these printers running non stop to print them all out during an 8 hour working day.


Length

Once printed I could lay them end to end and form a line about half way around the world [2], about 423 marathon [3] runs end to end. If you ran all those marathons back to back at the fastest pace ever run[4] you would be running for over 36 days without a break.


Height

I could stack them flat to reach a height of about 20,000 feet, which is higher than the maximum altitude of most helicopters. The Boeing Apache AH-64 gunship has a maximum service ceiling of 21,000 feet[5]. Most skydivers bail out between 3,000-13,000 feet [6].

If we took the papers and stood them up end to end, instead of going half way around the globe, they’d go up just over 11,000 miles, almost twice the thickness of the Earth’s atmosphere[7]. The space shuttle and space station orbit the Earth between 100-300 miles, while GPS satellites orbit the Earth between 6,000-12,000 miles[8].

The ~24M companies in the US arranged this way would create a line of paper about 22,000 feet high, or 17,600 Empire State buildings[9] stacked ontop of each other.


Area

If we laid all the paper out and taped it all together into a rectangle it would have an area approx 1.5 square miles which would cover 722 football fields[10].


Weight

I would need 128,000 reams of office paper needed to print every company which would weigh about 1,280 tons[11], equivalent to about 640 SUVs[12], or a pod of 116 world record male orcas[13].


Volume

These reams of paper would take up 13,851 cubic feet, so I would need 34 shipping containers[14] to hold them all.


Counting

If each company was a dollar bill and if we used a money counting machine typically used by banks[15], it would take almost 27 days to count them all, not including time to load and unload the machine.


Population

If each piece of paper was held by one person, I would need almost all the people in California, New York and Virginia[16].





References


  1. Dell 5130cdn laser printer prints at 47 pages per minute, single sided
    http://www.dell.com/us/en/highered/peripherals/printer-dell-5130cdn/pd.aspx?refid=printer-dell-5130cdn&cs=RC956904&s=hied

  2. The circumference of the earth at the equator is 24,901.55 miles
    http://geography.about.com/library/faq/blqzcircumference.htm

  3. A marathon is 26 miles and 385 yards
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marathon

  4. Fastest marathon ever run is by Geoffrey Mutai of Kenya in 2:03:02
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marathon_world_record_progression

  5. The Boeing Apache AH-64 has a service ceiling of 21,000 feet
    http://www.boeing.com/history/mdc/ah-64.htm

  6. Skydivers jump between 3,000-13,000 feet
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sky_diving

  7. The Exosphere is the outer layer of the atmosphere at ranges up to 6,213 miles (10,000 km)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atmosphere_of_Earth

  8. Satellite orbit altitudes
    http://www.spacetoday.org/Questions/PolarSats.html

  9. The Empire State Building is 1,250 feet high
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empire_State_Building

  10. An American Football field is 120 yards by 53.3 yards
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_football#Field_and_players

  11. Calculations were done using 20lb paper.

  12. Assuming the average weight of an SUV is 4,000 lbs.

  13. The largest known Killer Whale was a male that weighed around 22,000 lbs and was 32 feet long
    http://www.seaworld.org/infobooks/KillerWhale/physchkw.html

  14. The volume of a twenty-foot cargo container is 1,360 cubic feet
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-foot_equivalent_unit

  15. The Tay-Chian TC-5500 desktop note counter can process 1500 to 1800 notes per hour, I used an average of 1650 notes/hr for the calculation
    http://www.taychian.com.tw/5500/index.files/5500.HTM

  16. List of populations by State taken from April 2010 census data
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by_population

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