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delirium happy

Just keep on trying till you run out of cake

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A better medals table
delirium happy
rho
The olympic medals table has a tendancy to annoy me for several reasons. Firstly, they work on the assumption that one gold is better than an infinite nuber of silver medals, and likewise that a single silver is better than an infinite number of bronze. I don't like that. Secondly, they don't take into account the size of the country. A gold medal for the Bahamas is much more special than a gold for China.

Seeing as I'm still unable to accomplish anything productive, I decided to produce my own version of the table to fix these problems. I gave each country a score whereby a gold medal was worth 4, a silver worth 2 and a bronze worth 1, and then divided this by the country's population in millions for a final score, resulting in the following list:

RankCountryScore
1Bahamas16.8
2Australia5.8
3Cuba5.4
4Hungary4.7
5Norway4.6
6Jamaica4.4
7New Zealand4
8Greece3.7
9Latvia3.4
10Estonia2.8
11Denmark2.6
12Netherlands2.6
13Slovenia2.6
14Belarus2.6
15Slovakia2.5
16Bulgaria2.5
17Georgia2.4
18Lithuania2.2
19Croatia2.2
20Sweden2.2
21Romania2.1
22Austria2.0
23United Arab Emirates1.6
24South Korea1.4
25Russia1.3
26Czech Republic1.3
27Germany1.2
28Italy1.2
29France1.2
30Switzerland1.2
31Ukraine1.1
32United Kingdom1.1
33Azerbaijan1.0
34Ireland1.0
35Spain0.9
36Trinidad and Tobago0.9
37Kazakhstan0.8
38United States0.8
39Canada0.8
40Israel0.8
41Finland0.7
42Japan0.7
43Belgium0.5
44Taiwan0.5
45Chile0.5
46Zimbabwe0.5
47Poland0.5
48Portugal0.4
49Uzbekistan0.4
50Dominican Republic0.4
51Kenya0.4
52North Korea0.4
53Serbia and Montenegro0.3
54Mongolia0.3
55Paraguay0.3
56Turkey0.3
57Morocco0.3
58Argentina0.3
59Thailand0.2
60South Africa0.2
61Hong Kong0.2
62Cameroon0.2
63Ethiopia0.2
64Eritrea0.2
65Iran0.2
66Brazil0.1
67China0.1
68Egypt0.1
69Venezuela0.0
70Mexico0.0
71Syrian Arab Republic0.0
72Indonesia0.0
73Colombia0.0
74Nigeria0.0
75India0.0


I've only given the scores to one decimal place, because I didn't enter the populations to large or unifrom precission and because I was too lazy to figure out how to get excel to output to a given numbe of significant figures, or to write a more complicated regexp to do so. Hence the 0.0s and the 4 and other such things.

Sources:
BBC Sport's Olympic Medals Table
Wikipedia's list of countries by population.

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Right. If I was trying to be more sophisticated, I'd probably have included that, and probably also do something non-linear with the total from the medals to account for the fact that a lot of the events only allowed a limited number of competitors from each country, which restricts the potential slightly for highly populous countries.

And so on and so forth. The thing is though, while I was bored, I wasn't that bored. Increased sophistication can wait for the day when I'm really, really spectacularly bored.

<nod>

Boredom is the mother of all pointless statistics, or something.

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