Rick Kitagawa's Daily Blog

Tiny Halves

Half a degree isn’t much. I wouldn’t be able to tell you the difference in half a degree in terms of temperature, and I definitely wouldn’t be able to tell the difference of half a degree if I was drawing an angle with a compass.

Half of one percent isn’t a whole lot, sometimes.  It’s the difference between $10 and $9.95.  

Half of a minute is a fractional amount of time.  Reading this post could easily take up more than 30 seconds.  30 seconds isn’t enough time to make instant ramen in a microwave. 

But at scale, these seemingly insignificant differences add up.  

Half a degree can get a ship stuck in Antarctica if it’s continuously off course.

Half of one percent can be 1,650,000 lives lost if you’re talking disaster casualties as half of one percent of the population of the United States.

Half a minute can be the difference between life and death if your ambulance arrives 30 seconds too late to the hospital.  

Don’t be too dismissive of small problems, as they can add up quickly, especially in different contexts. 

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