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Why It's Impossible to Know a Coastline's True Length

Puget Sound from the sky, as seen this past winter. (Photo: EcologyWA/Public Domain) Imagine, for a moment, that you and your friend have been given a seemingly straightforward task: to measure the coastline of Puget Sound, in Washington State. Resources are tight, so you've got a yardstick, while your friend has a foot-long ruler. You each walk along, laying your measuring stick along the edge of the water, following the the ins and outs of the shore as best you can.
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