Per Sense

For some levity given today is Friday, let us get to the really contentious matters of late. Is the percentage sign acceptable in text? According to the AP, it now is. Thankfully, xkcd was on it and took a look at the acceptability of various forms of expressing a percentage.

I mean it could also be: p¢
I mean it could also be: p¢

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.

Basic Statistics

Happy Friday, everybody. We made it to the end of the week. And so now we have xkcd going all back to school and teaching us all simple statistics.

And if they ask for the mode, you serve the chart with ice cream.
And if they ask for the mode, you serve the chart with ice cream.

For those unfamiliar with statistics, that’s not at all how it works.

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.

What About the Magic JPEG

We made it to the end of the week, everybody. And that’s saying something.

Part of my jobs over the last several years has been to work with context experts and help them tell their stories. Sometimes I have to do it through charts and graphics. When that happens,  I often need data files to help me create the final piece. I cannot tell you how many times this has happened.

So. Many. Times.
So. Many. Times.

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.

Opportunity Lost

Last summer NASA’s Martian exploration rover Opportunity went dark as its solar panels, needed to power the golf-cart sized explorer, were covered in dust from a planet-wide dust storm. Everyone hoped that over the following months the light Martian winds and dust devils would wipe clean the dust from the solar panels and the rover could recharge its batteries, turn on its heaters, and resume contact with Earth. It hasn’t. Consequently, on Wednesday NASA called Opportunity’s mission complete. And thanks to xkcd we have a proper little farewell.

So much science
So much science

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.

Regionalisms for a Drink

We made it to the end of the week, everybody. And so now we get a look an xkcd take on one of my favourite little pieces: regionalisms. We all use terms that are specific to the areas where we live or grew up. For example, here in Philadelphia we call a cured meat, cheese, lettuce, and tomato on a long roll a hoagie. In other places, they are called a sub.

xkcd’s piece looks at regionalisms for a carbonated beverage.

I drink Brad's elixir
I drink Brad’s elixir

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.

The Business Cycle and Golf

Yesterday I started working on the next quarter of Economic Insights, the quarterly publication I work on as a creative director at the Philadelphia Fed. For the first issue of 2019 we will be working on an article that talks a great deal about the business cycle, the expansions and contractions that define an economy.

So today we have a piece from Indexed that succinctly puts the business cycle in context, at least from the perspective of a golf course. Well done. Very well done.

We're still in an expansion, for those who may wonder. So more golf!
We’re still in an expansion, for those who may wonder. So more golf!

Happy Friday, everyone.

Credit for the piece goes to Jessica Hagy.

The Intersection of Geography and Politics

We made it to the end of the week, everybody. And to help celebrate, xkcd posted a little comic that contains two of my favourite subjects: geography and politics. In particular, the piece looks at the 2020 election and plate tectonics.

Break it all apart
Break it all apart

One doesn’t often hear of the Midcontinent Rift System.

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.