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Pop Quiz: Inauguration Math

Michael Alison Chandler's x = why? blog offers up these inauguration-themed brain-teasers, which should be good for killing part of a slow Friday afternoon:

1. As mentioned above, when January 20th falls on a Sunday the public ceremony is moved to Monday, January 21. In what year, will the next January 21st inauguration be held?

2. The 2009 inauguration is expected to see record levels of attendance. Lyndon B Johnson’s inauguration currently holds the record for attendance at 1.2 million people. Originally, attendance for the 2009 inauguration was projected to be as high as 5 million. Now, based on more accurate data, the projected attendance is around 2 million. What is the positive difference between the originally estimated percent increase over the current record attendance and the newly estimated percent increase over the current record attendance? Express your answer to the nearest whole number.

3. The National Mall is 300 acres. It stretches 1.9 miles from the Capitol building to the Lincoln Memorial. This will be the first time in history that the entire mall will be open for an inauguration. If attendance is the estimated 2 million people and all of the people spread out evenly over the mall, how many square feet will each person get? Note that 1 acre is equal to 43,560 square feet. Express your answer as a decimal to the nearest tenth.

If you're extra-ambitious, post your own inauguration number puzzles in the comments.

By Christopher Dean Hopkins  |  January 9, 2009; 2:30 PM ET  | Category:  Around the Web
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Haven't bothered with the others, but since I'll be on the Mall for the ceremony, I figured I'd want to know the answer to the third question. The total comes to 6.5 square feet for each person (although considering how people will crush towards the capitol, I doubt anyone will enjoy that much room).

Posted by: Maitiu | January 9, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

1) 2020

Posted by: whatitdo | January 9, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

1. 2013. The inauguration is not held in the election year, it's the year after.

2. I got 250%?

3. Yep, 6.5 sq. ft. Good, we'll be able to play cards!

Posted by: lostlo | January 12, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

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