How do you illustrate one million as in one million people?
I once saw a poster in a classroom that simply consisted of
fairly small dots on a page. At first glance it looked unimpressive
- there were just thousands of these little greyish smudges. But
looking closer, one saw that the dots were actually each
comprised of a 10x10 array of miniscule black points, of which
there were in total a million. Which was the point, of course.
Enough for everyone in my city to have a couple each. A little
googling will find you one of these posters or an online
substitute. A million people holding hands in a line might stretch
as far as 1600km. or 1000 miles. That would take you from England
to Finland, if you had enough boats for them to stand on. One
million people stood on each other, meanwhile, could tower almost
as far as this upward into the sky. A million people standing
together, without being too squashed, would take up roughly
a third of a square mile (almost a square km). The total floor
space of the Pentagon building in all its vastness could not
accomodate them. If one million people were, very inadvisably,
packed into a large cubic box, it would need to be more than 40m.
(44 yards) down each side. This is equivalent to 25 times the
volume of an Olympic swimming pool. One million seconds are
equivalent to over 111/2 days. A period of one million years is
getting on for 200 times the duration of recorded human history.
One million UK pounds represents a lifetime's total income
for an average person in a wealthier country. One million earths
almost match the volume of the sun.