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Monday, May 19, 2014

A Fibonacci Finger?

This kind of surprised me. If you look around online, you will find a number of claims that say that the ratio of the length of your forearm (elbow to wrist) to the length of your hand (same wrist to the tip of your middle finger), is about phi, or 1.618. I tried it and didn't come close. Maybe I have long fingers, I don't know. My ratio was 9:8, or about 1.125.

Photo credit:
But then I started measuring other parts of my hand and found this:

Looking at just my forefinger, I see that it is broken (no pun intended) into three segments. The tip, the middle section, and the longer main section, back to where my large knuckle is. From there, my hand continues down to the base of my thumb (not my wrist, but where my thumb kind of melds into my hand).

I brought out a ruler and here is what I found. Note that I am using rough estimates, but something easily enough seen on a standard ruler.

My fingertip (the last segment of my forefinger) is one (1) inch long. The second segment is also one (1) inch long. The third (base) segment of my forefinger (again, measured on top of my hand, back to the knuckle, is two (2) inches long. Finally, that last segment (not really my finger, but the rest of my hand) is three (3) inches long.

1, 1, 2, 3....Weird, huh? Of course, if you REALLY wanted to get into it, we have 2 hands, each with 5 digits, and technically just 8 fingers (2 thumbs). All Fibonacci numbers.

While you ponder this remarkable set of findings, watch these kittens meet a guinea pig, thanks to Animal Planet. After, I will give you some links to sites that explain some of the simple human anatomy relationships involved with Fibonacci.

Video courtesy of Animal Planet

Here are some links you might enjoy: