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By the 10th century, [Baghdad]'s population was between 300,000 and 500,000.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baghdad#A_center_of_learning_.288th_to_9th_c..29

That's about the size of the city where I live.  I reckon you can more or less see the city limits from a (not so) tall building or vantage point.

Were DeAnander and DoDo talking about this size of population?

Put another way, maybe you can have all the top class science (well, not all, but a lot) going on in a town of 300-500,000.  They would be city states, perhaps, so following the less dystopian line it may be a return to something like Italy after the plague (as you said a while back), only with better connections (no reason for entire networks to collapse I don't think), and 21st Century know-how in agricultural practices, building, materials etc.

Or, to put it another way, England has an area of 130,000 sq km and a population of 61 million--London has a population of 7 million (and the rest!); Bulgaria has an area of 110,00 sq km and a population of 7.3 million; this site gives me 43 cities with populations over 7 million, (468 with populations over a million)...

So...I'm suggesting that what was once a city would today be called a medium-sized town.

Another way of thinking about it ("it" being, how could you survive without a modern civilisation around you) is: how reduced does the world's population have to get before you see the disappearance of centres of learning?  They existed in 500BC (world population: 100 million--that's the combined populations of Tokyo, Seoul, Ciudad de Mexico, and New York (more or less.)

So, if we see a collapse of world population...hmmm..

6.6 billion today?

-90% = 660 million?

-99%...

6,600,000,000 / 100 = 66,000,000?

So around 500 AD the world population (300 million) was equivalent to 5% of today's population?

Of course if life dies back to small mammal level, it might be trickier...

But I'm assuming that survivors of any catastrophes will be:  (add AND/OR between each item)

Intelligent
Farmers
Rearers/butchers of livestock
Materials specialists
Builders
Educators
Computer types
Sailors
Mechanics
Bakers

etc...

Plenty to build a complex civilisation...in fact, I doubt there has ever been a society that completely lacked an aspect of its existence complicated enough for you to find enjoyable....(he types wildly.)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Sun Sep 23rd, 2007 at 01:33:26 PM EST
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