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YouTube / Ze Frank

The Days of Your Life (in Jelly Beans)

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YouTube / Ze Frank

In this three-minute video, Ze Frank counts out the days of an average American life* using jelly beans. He puts the beans on the floor and counts through them, showing us how much time we spend sleeping, working, eating, washing, traveling. But the most important point comes at the end. Watch:

This video is half bummer, half inspiration. Yes, we spend a lot of time doing things that are meaningless. But also, yes, we have a choice about a good chunk of those jelly beans. And if you're too bummed out by the above, you should watch Frank's Sad Cat Diary to get your smile back.

* = Frank's data comes from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics and its American Time Use Survey.

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This Puzzling Math Brain Teaser Has a Simple Solution
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Fans of number-based brainteasers might find themselves pleasantly stumped by the following question, posed by TED-Ed’s Alex Gendler: Which sequence of integers comes next?

1, 11, 21, 1211, 111221, ?

Mathematicians may recognize this pattern as a specific type of number sequence—called a “look-and-say sequence"—that yields a distinct pattern. As for those who aren't number enthusiasts, they should try reading the numbers they see aloud (so that 1 becomes "one one," 11 is "two ones," 21 is "one two, one one,” and so on) to figure the answer.

Still can’t crack the code? Learn the surprisingly simple secret to solving the sequence by watching the video below.

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What Number Is The Answer?
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