The global population is expected to reach 7 billion today -- just 12 years after hitting 6 billion.
So, just how big is 7 billion really?
On the surface, it doesn't look much different than 6 billion, either in written form or numeric form. There are nine zeros in 6,000,000,000, just like there are nine zeros in 7,000,000,000. But if you counted every number in between them, it would take more than 30 years. Yes, three decades.
Early this year, there were only 140 people in the world who were worth $7 billion, according to Forbes magazine.
More ways to envision the enormousness of 7 billion:
-- Seven billion seconds ago, the year was 1789. That was the year George Washington was inaugurated as the first U.S. president and Congress met for the very first time.
-- If you took 7 billion steps along the Earth's equator -- at 2 feet per step -- you could walk around the world at least 106 times.
-- Suppose an average thimble holds 2 milliliters of water. Seven billion of those thimbles would fill at least five Olympic-sized swimming pools.
-- Let's say the average human is about 5 feet tall, accounting for children. If you stack those 7 billion people end to end, they would reach about 1/14th of the way to the sun -- or 27 times the distance to the moon.
-- Seven billion ants, at an average size of 3 milligrams each, would weigh at least 23 tons (46,297 pounds).
You get the idea, right?