bettiwettiwoo writes "Slate reports that PricewaterhouseCooper claims to have devised a model predicting the final medal tally for nations competing in the Olympic Games. GDP is of particular importance in bringing home the bacon, closely followed by population size and and past performance. Other factors can also affect the outcome: hosting the games usually gives a medal boost. With the possible exception of China, the titan nations of the games (US, Russia, China and Germany) are predicted to see a successive drop in their total medal tally in the future (and compared to the Sydney Games, the future starts now). So if you were wondering why the Iraqi soccer team seems on its way to the quarter finals, why Greece takes gold in synchronized diving, or why Michael Phelps has to eat Ian Thorpe's bubbles, don't worry: it's only evolution, baby, and it's all perfectly predictable!"