To be sure, they are fascinating structures, but what better way to understand their complexity than building Lego replicas, right? That's the task that the Hong Kong Lego User Group set for themselves, using more than 300,000 Lego bricks and 4,500 Lego people. The model measures 8m x 3m and includes models of the Bird’s Nest, the Water Cube, the Equestrian centre and took 100 hours of work.
These are just some examples of their designs. Be sure to see their gallery for high-res versions of the building process and the incredible attention to detail.
Of course if you're not impressed by that, than how about the Bird's Nest, entirely built out of playing cards? World Record cardstacker Bryan Berg recreated the Bejing Olympic Village using 140,000 playing cards over 20 days.