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Except that in many of these sports, the margins are so low as to be completely laughable. The 100 m swimmers this year, for instance, have a spread between first and second place of a fraction of a second. There is no way that the measurement of the time it takes a swimmer to cross a 100 m basin is accurate to one tenth of a second.

I did the calculation once for similarly ridiculous differences, and it turned out that to measure the difference between gold and silver in the 100 m swimming Olympics, you have to have a swimming course with a length that is accurate to about a millimeter, nevermind the accuracy of the clocks...

A reasonable interpretation of those data is that the two guys arrived simultaneously and should share a first place. Or flip a coin for the gold medal - that'd be about as reasonable.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Mon Aug 25th, 2008 at 01:37:21 PM EST
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