Happiness and Acceleration

Acceleration, the rate of change of the rate of change, is plotted below for the amount of resources, consumption, and population as a function of average happiness, where the minimum happiness is 20.6%.

Note that per-capita consumption (resources used per year per person) has the same rates as population because two are proportional to each other. For the same reason, transport speed is has the same rates as consumption (total).

For reference, happiness when the remaining resources are 50% of their original amount (R=50%) is shown, along with the happiness associated with the world consuming all natural capacity is shown (C=Earth). The population growth rate has reached its maximum (Poprate Peak) before happiness triples its minimum amount.

The happiness associated with when 10% of initial resources had been consumed (R=90%) is also shown, which occurs about the same time that the population stops accelerating (Popacc Peak). When the population reaches its maximum (Pop Peak), which occurs as its acceleration is switching from negative to positive, there will be 10% of the initial resources remaining.

This appears to show a correlation between happiness, resources, and population growth, suggesting that how we feel about our lives is linked to the amount of resources we have consumed.

A similar observation can be made about lifespan (life expectancy), as shown below, which is linearly related to happiness. Note that minimum lifespan is 37.1 years.

The following graph shows the relationship between happiness and lifespan, both as fractions of their minimum values. The upper limit of the plot is where the transportation speed would be the speed of light.

Interestingly, when happiness is 100% (indicated by the dotted line), lifespan is about 2.716 times its minimum, a number very close to the base of natural logarithms.

Also interesting is the apparent correlation between prime number multiples of minimum happiness. For most of human existance, it was at 1 (the minimum). Population growth sped up with the advent of civilization until the happiness multiple reached 2 (and lifespan had increased by half), where it peaked and began to decelerate. Around a multiple of 3 we are facing population collapse with depletion of our planet's resources. Moving into space, we might achieve a multiple of (nearly) 5, corresponding to 100% happiness. The ultimate limit is a multiple of (just above) 7, where we can't move resources fast enough to continue growing.

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© Copyright 2011 Bradley Jarvis. All rights reserved.