High school kids armed with rolls of toilet paper usually mean there’s going to be a mess on someone’s lawn. A group of Massachusetts students, who had amassed a stockpile of more than 10 miles of toilet paper, could have been the terror of the neighborhood—had they not put their arsenal towards a more cerebral purpose: folding it 13 times. Folding toilet paper hardly sounds like an accomplishment, particularly to those of us who are long since potty trained, but try folding a spare sheet (of any paper) and see how many folds you can manage; until recently, folding paper more than seven times was thought to be mathematically impossible.
But these high schoolers (and their enthusiastic math teacher) crunched the numbers and got to folding, nearly doubling the long-assumed limit and surpassing the 2002 record of 12 folds. The resulting structure stood two-and-a-half feet tall and was made of 8192 layers of toilet tissue. Just in case 2-ply wasn’t enough.
[via New Scientist]