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.

Video Orientation Guide

We made it to Friday, everybody. Although for me it, was a short week. I spent the last week on holiday in Ireland to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. And that meant I took a lot of photos. And I mean a lot. But the question when taking a photo is, in which orientation should I take the shot? A few times people would ask me to take their photo and I would take them both vertically and horizontally. Well, thankfully, xkcd has us all set with a guide to shooting video by orientation.

It's easiest with dynamically rotating televisions for video playback.
It’s easiest with dynamically rotating televisions for video playback.

I have to admit, I definitely took one or two diagonal photos.

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 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.

The Atom

We made it to the end of the week, everyone. And that is worth celebrating. Today’s post is for all the scientists out there and anyone who has ever been interested in the atom. You know, the little things that make up matter. xkcd put together a chronological history of several different models of the atom that attempt to explain its structure.

I have to love that 538 model.
I have to love that 538 model.

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.

Feathered Raptors

Well we made it to Friday. Admittedly, for many of us it was a short week.  But we can end it all the same with this piece from xkcd. It asks the question, are feathered dinosaurs scary? Back when they made the first Jurassic Park, we didn’t know how prevalent feathers were and so the dinosaurs were scaly. Now the Jurassic World films keep the dinosaurs scaly because, well, anti-science?

I think feathered raptors would be terrifying
I think feathered raptors would be terrifying

Credit for the piece goes to Randall Munroe.