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Mother Nature's Raging Index (MNRI)

A number.
  (+5, -3)
(+5, -3)
  [vote for,

This is an idea for a single number to help keep an idea of how badly mother nature is acting up on a consistent basis.

MNRI = -log(number of human deaths on a given day attributable to mother nature / number of people alive on the earth at the beginning of the day)

The MNRI will approach zero from the positive as we approach armageddon. Additionally, the idiot's version may be used, which is just the inverse of the MNRI. The IMNRI (stands for inverse, or idiot's, MNRI) approaches infinity from zero as things get worse, which the general public may be more comfortable with.

daseva, May 13 2008


       It would be pretty high right now - in recent weeks there's been: a cyclone and massive storm surge, tornadoes, a volcanic eruption, a large earthquake, not to mention the droughts, blizzards and other stuff.
neutrinos_shadow, May 13 2008

       I like the general idea - sort of like the Doomsday Clock - but I don't like your approach for arriving at the Index. How about basing it roughly on the amount of damage done to the environment by people? Like the Doomsday Clock, it could be a subjective value chosen by a panel of experts.
phoenix, May 13 2008

       phoenix, I object to your insertion of an environmentalist rant into this idea, and respectfully request that you remove said anno post-haste.
Voice, May 13 2008

       That would be a different number, [Phoenix], and almost entirely opposite in nature to my proposed number. However, I don't think the anno should be removed since it is relevant.
daseva, May 13 2008

       <discussion of controversial topic alert!> // How about basing it roughly on the amount of damage done to the environment by people?//   

       I don't think this, or even the sign of this, can be calculated with any accuracy. Is it positive due to global warming and widespread extinctions, or negative due to humanity's growing ability to give purpose to the natural world or protect against a planet-destroying asteroid strike?   

sninctown, May 13 2008

       My heart goes out to those in the path of destruction and my wrath goes out to the Burma government that blocked aid to it's own people. That was an invasion I would have supported.   

bneal27, May 13 2008

       [Ian] Typical daily life doesn't qualify as mother nature rage. Gazelles being eaten doesn't factor in for the same reason that people dying of old age doesn't factor in. Somebody has to be at the top of the food chain. It might as well be us.
bneal27, May 13 2008

       I'm sure there's something similar: a combination of factors to determine how pissed Gaea is in general, as opposed to how many human beans got knocked off the vine on any given day, which assumes that humans are in harmony with Mother Nature to begine with. [-]
FlyingToaster, May 13 2008

       That's the beauty of this number: There are no assumptions, other than the one where we call being killed by natural forces Mother Nature's rage. Even that's not really an assumption. More of a terminology. Whether or not the number holds meaning with relation to some intangible 'harmony' hasn't been discussed, [Toaster].   

       It's like not being able to count all of the bacteria on the dish, but we can count a few small squares worth and extrapolate, such is the power and simplicity of only using human deaths. Plus, human deaths are well charted. Ant deaths aren't, [Ian].
daseva, May 13 2008

       It's possible that this number may give us a glimpse at some larger trend. At the very least it would give us something else to lose sleep over.   

       [flyingtoaster] We will never live in harmony with Mother Nature, but I'm sure we can improve. There's no doubt we can improve our response to her rage.
bneal27, May 13 2008

       Maybe we could give her a bunch of flowers.
Ling, May 13 2008

       "I don't think this, or even the sign of this, can be calculated with any accuracy."
Just like the Doomsday Clock then, which is what I had in mind ("a subjective value"). No advocacy intended. I use fossil fuels with the best of them.

       The problem I have with this idea is that it seems to anthropomorphize weather with no apparent benefit or reason. Mother nature doesn't kill people, living next to the coast during a hurricane kills people.
phoenix, May 13 2008

       "Killing people doesn't make something person-like."
No, but implying the deaths are due to the thing's "rage" does. Introduce me to Mother Nature and prove she's enraged at, well anyone, and I'll retract my annotations. It's not that I'm against the idea, just the way it's implemented.
phoenix, May 13 2008

       I get that basic idea, but object to the measurement for a different reason. Per [phoenix]'s anno it only counts Gaia's "successful" raging. I think a better and more accurate measurement would be something like number of Hurricanes with weighting for force, like with tornadoes, tidal waves, cyclones, volcanic eruptions, flooding, etc. It seems unfair that Gaea can rage in an unpopulated or prepared area and it not be counted.   

       I wish there was a Tsunami warning system for the Pacific that could have warned people and saved maybe hundreds of thousands of lives, but in that case your system would have considered the identical raging event as being much more minor just because people were prepared for the event. Your index seems more like Human Lack of Preparation Index.
MisterQED, May 13 2008

       Mother nature doesn't need to be mad to reach for the antibiotics...just sick.   

       [phoenix] I think you’re getting too hung up on the syntax. “Mother Nature” is just a mythical creature like elves, fairies, and eskimoes. (Sorry, one of my favorite Homer Simpson lines)
bneal27, May 13 2008

       Now I feel like an idiot. I like the idiot's version better.
MikeD, May 14 2008


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