Road Trip Genius Calculates the Shortest Route Through 47 National Parks

Screenshot From Randalolson.com
Screenshot From Randalolson.com

The “Optimal U.S. National Parks Centennial Road Trip” map is the creation of road trip mastermind Randy Olson. The trip includes stops at all 47 national parks in mainland America (for the sake of practicality, the 12 national parks in Alaska, Hawaii, and other U.S. territories were left out).

Olson came up with the ideal route by plugging his destinations into the Gurobi TSP solver. TSP, or the Traveling Salesman Problem, refers to calculating the shortest route between a number of cities and ending up back where you started. It’s the same task he faced when creating the ultimate road trip across America and the optimal strategy for searching for Waldo.

To complete this latest trip, Olson suggests drivers set aside at least two months to fully take in the 14,500 miles worth of sites. It follows a circular route, so travelers can enter at any point they like from North Cascades in Washington to Dry Tortugas in Florida. For true NPS enthusiasts, this list is just the beginning: The service also includes hundreds of monuments, battlefields, and historic sites not included on the map.

Here's How Much Money You Need to Retire Early in Each State

iStock.com/katso80
iStock.com/katso80

If you're complacent with your career, your goals might be limited to grabbing the last office doughnut. But if you have an eye on retirement, you might be wondering how much it's going to take to walk away from the desk forever.

Cost information website How Much has compiled estimates of the savings residents of each state might need in order to retire early at the ages of 35, 45, and 55. The site used figures from GoBankingRates that looked at the cost of living in the various regions and then estimated annual expenses based on age with an average 4 percent withdrawal rate annually.

If you wanted to retire at age 35 in Ohio, for example, having $1.61 million in your savings account would be ideal. In California, you’d need $2.37 million.

An infographic shows how much money is needed to retire at age 35 in each state
howmuch

An infographic shows how much money is needed to retire by age 45 in each state
howmuch

An infographic shows how much money is needed to retire by age 55 in each state
howmuch

The site cautions that this is an oversimplification of what should be some highly individualized financial planning. Everyone has different needs, and the numbers don't account for inflation or for adjusting the 4 percent annual withdrawal. In short, this is nothing you should pass along to your accountant. What these charts can do, however, is spark motivation to make your own plans for having a comfortable retirement. If you want to spend it in Hawaii, it might be best to start saving now.

[h/t Thrillist]

Each State’s Most Streamed TV Show in 2018

iStock.com/gpetric
iStock.com/gpetric

The ladies of Litchfield are loved across America. According to a state-by-state analysis from HowtoWatch.com, Orange is the New Black was the country's most streamed show in 2018, with eight states searching for OITNB-related news more than any other series. The prison drama, which is due for its seventh and final season likely sometime this summer, was also the third most-streamed show of 2018 overall.

To create its map of the most beloved shows by state, HowtoWatch.com started with a list of the most popular shows on the four major streaming platforms: Netflix, Hulu, HBO GO, and Amazon’s Prime Video. Its analysts then used Google Trends to determine which shows were most popular in certain states.

As it turns out, newer isn’t necessarily better. Plenty of old favorites and guilty pleasures like Cheers, Frasier, Sex and the City, ER, Friday Night Lights, and Lost topped the charts. The Office, which ended in 2013 and remains the most popular show on Netflix, reigned as king in two states in HowToWatch.com's findings.

Although Netflix claims more than 70 percent of the country’s streaming customers, according to HowtoWatch.com, a few shows from other platforms also cropped up. Alaskans are watching Game of Thrones on HBO GO, Coloradans and North Carolinians are watching South Park on Hulu, and residents in several states are watching Goliath on Amazon Prime.

Check out the map below to see what your friends and family are streaming, and click on the link below it to enlarge the picture.

A map showing the most streamed shows by state

HowtoWatch.com (click here to enlarge)

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