Pizza: FSI Calculations



  1. Purpose
    1. What to document
    2. Measurement technique
      1. Normal Pizzas
      2. Stuffed and Folded Crust
  2. Pizza places
  3. The PVI (Pizza Value Index)

Its really difficult to figure out which pizzeria has the best deal. The most accurate approach is to buy every pizza in town, dismantle them, and compare their relative masses. Although this approach might appeal to Lucky Charms eaters, it's just not feasible. A more reasonable approach is to calculate the surface area of toppings by using the Functional Square Inch (FSI) calculation. By systematically comparing this number across Davis pizzerias, and will ultimately expose the best and shadiest pizzeria practices.

What to document

Measurement technique

Pizza places

Coho Extra-Large: 6.5" (12:30 PM, Mo, 5-2-05), ...

Mountain Mike's Pizza Extra-Large: 9.1" (7PM, Sa, 5-1-05), Medium: 5.5" (12PM, Tu, 7-27-05),...

Pizza Guys Large: 5.75" (Mo, 6-6-05), 6" (7PM, Mo, 6-6-05), ...

Symposium Medium: 5.5" (6:30 PM, We, 5-4-05), 7" (9:00 PM, Mo, 8-15-05)...

Woodstock's Pizza Large: 5.5" (4-05), ...

The PVI (Pizza Value Index)

The PVI is an alternate index. It is simply pizza area/cost. Size (in inches) is taken from actual (vs. advertised) measurements and goes to the edge of the crust. Rectangular pizzas are calculated using (L*W/$). Cost is in dollars, excluding tax and gratuity (if any). Precision is 2-3 digits. Typical values are around 10. For auditing, the size and cost must be given, not just the PVI.


PVI=3.14*(inches dia/2)*(inches dia/2)/cost


Example: A 16.0" pizza costs $12.00. Compute 16*16*.785/12 yields 16.74666, round to 16.7

PVI Size Cost Datestamp, source, type, comments, author
16.7 16.0" dia. $12.00 2005-10-30 09:34 Pizza example Extra-large (16") cheese —SteveDavison *example data*
13.6 16.0" dia. $17.74 2005-10-28 17:50 Woodstocks Pizza X-Large (16") 1-topping —SteveDavison *example data*
11.7 14.0" dia. $13.14 2005-10-28 17:52 Woodstocks Pizza Large (14") 1-topping —SteveDavison *example data*
10.3 12.0" dia. $10.99 2005-10-28 17:54 Woodstocks Pizza Medium (12") 1-topping —SteveDavison *example data*
9.07 8.0" dia. $5.54 2005-10-28 17:58 Woodstocks Pizza Personal (8") 1-topping —SteveDavison *example data*

(sorted by descending PVI)


Note: You must be logged in to add comments

2005-05-01 09:56:58 Please describe the methodology you want used more clearly. How do we handle stuffed or folded crusts in the calculation. We should also document each measurement with a date to see if the pizzarias change over time. Maybe a format of Diameter, Crustless Diameter, Content Diameter would cover most cases? Where Diameter is overall, Crustless is center to crust, and Content is center to end of sauce/and or toppings. —JasonAller

2005-05-01 20:53:33 The greatest thing about this page is that it gives me an excuse to eat more pizza where I otherwise wouldn't, similar to my epic quest to try all the energy drinks and compare them (coming to a livejournal near you as soon as Nugget restocks Wired!). Unfortunately the cost of pizza will probably but a damper on my enthusiasm for this experiment. Maybe we can have official wiki pizza sampling events wherein several of us get together and order a pizza or two from an untested location, thus furthering science and distributing costs... —KrisFricke

2006-09-22 14:57:12   Hmm, would it not simply be logical to calculate the food value of the pizza per unit currency by consulting the web to find the caloric content of the pizza? I mean if you really wanted to figure out the food value in the most reliable terms. —Users/DavePoole

2008-10-25 22:16:50   Yes, I agree with Dave that your method is open to question. You're making an assumption about what constitutes the value of pizza (apparently only the toppings). It *is* true that the toppings are the most expensive ingredients. But caloric content could be another valid basis for determining value, as could protein content, which could also be found online. —stephthrasher

This is a Wiki Spot wiki. Wiki Spot is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that helps communities collaborate via wikis.