Are there more wheels or more doors in the world? A simple question, with a not-so-simple answer (at least not yet.) Twitter user Ryan Nixon posed the question five days ago, and the internet is divided over it.
My mates and I are having the STUPIDEST debate...— Ryan Nixon (@NewYorkNixon) March 5, 2022
And I am here for it.
Do you think there are more doors or wheels in the world?
The mind goes to cars first. Your average car is pretty 1:1 with four doors and four wheels. Homes and buildings, with all their doors inside and outside the buildings, might swing things in favor of doors -- but then again, what about all the door-less vehicles in the world? Scooters, skateboards, motorcycles etc. Heck, maybe it is wheels.
But things get weirder. Thinking of all the door-less structures in the world -- how many homes and skyscrapers etc. -- it might seem obvious that it must be doors.
But, digging deeper, did you know a supermarket has more wheels than doors? Shopping carts. Elevators. Forklifts. Even the office this is being written in has nine doors -- and 234 wheels from the chairs alone.
So, if you ask us, we're officially on Team Wheels.
But the internet is fussing about it. It's a tough cookie to crack. And while the answer, at first, will seem obvious to you, the more people chime into the question the more confusing it becomes. There are some good points to be made for both sides.
Must be doors.— David ️ (@DaveyBlahBlah) March 6, 2022
Cars have 4 wheels and let's say an average of 4 doors so offset each other.
I have 15 doors in my house and I can only count 6 wheels from a cabinet and bicycle.
Office/apartment buildings. Cupboards/cabinets.
Although, toys with wheels and bikes...
Indeed, what with all of the Hot Wheels and Tech Decks and Lego wheels floating around, do those count towards wheels?
Doors.— Jeff Meyer (@JeffyMeyer) March 5, 2022
Valves are doors that occur in nature and are innumerable; wheels do not occur naturally, no plant or animal has a wheel.
And here, Twitter user Jeff Meyer points to a larger question -- what defines a door? If you hold that valves are doors, each human heart has four valves. Multiply that by the total population and you have several dozen billion doors to add, excluding all the other valves present in nature.
This is crazy enough as it is. An we agree only portals for the transport of people are doors, and wheels must be part of some vehicle?— EvidenceBasedFx (@BasedFx) March 5, 2022
For the purposes of this debate, we would agree that aortic valves are a bit of a stretch by Team Doors, but it makes an important point: calculating whether there are more doors or more wheels in the world requires a clear definition of what constitutes a wheel or a door first.
We would argue, like EvidencedBasedFX up there, that doors should be portals for human movement with hinged barriers that rotate on a vertical axis. Hatches, trapdoors and empty doorways don't count. There's a case to be made for other varieties, such as sliding and rotating doors, as well.
Wheels, a little trickier to define, we argue require an axle. The wheel was a useless invention until someone figured out that drilling a hole through the center and putting a stick through it was like, really good. It should also be used in the movement of something across a plane -- this includes things like the wheels in drawers or even a rolling pin (if it's of the two-piece axle variety).
I spent far too long on this please like and subscribe pic.twitter.com/qeImmTuoPH— Mr.Darcy sans money and good breeding (@FuriousLives) March 6, 2022
Heck yes this goes deep, eagerly awaiting your answer to this https://t.co/hBhMx61713— disasteradio / eyeliner in 2 person horse costume (@disasteradio) March 6, 2022
I agree with you that sometimes internal things are wheels rather than cogs, however, I would argue that MOST (not all) push-pull mechanisms involve runners (or bearings) not wheels.— Tim (@timbuc) March 6, 2022
Using the ideology that wheels are only for vehicles and doors only count if they can be walked through.— Alex (@LFCALEX_7) March 7, 2022
Think it’s quite clear that doors win. Let me know if I’ve missed anything major or something needs explaining. #wheelsvsdoors @whujoe pic.twitter.com/yvyOZYgmoP
Let’s try this with some lateral thinking.— Honk Honk (@CurtisStrange9) March 6, 2022
What do you think has been a greater - meaning in an economic sense of productive - invention? The wheel or the door?
The most productive one is likely to be more prolific.
I would tip to wheels on that basis.
Seriously, thinking about it, is there any reliable way to find the answer to the question? What makes an object what it is -- is a wheel because of its shape or because of its function? Is a bottle of hand sanitizer a wheel if it's used as one? Does a wheel become a chair if you're sitting on it? It's an interesting question, and one the internet will likely be divided over for some time to come.