1219: "Reports"

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Eutychus
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1219: "Reports"

http://xckd.com/1219

Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"

As a translator I often feel like translating reports in that sort of vein.

As a Bible scholar I often wonder if that happened with some of the numbers in the Old Testament.
Be very careful about rectilinear assumptions. Raptors could be hiding there - ucim

rhomboidal
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

I make myself take a sip of lukewarm water every time I catch a typo. It's eerily thrilling.

chridd
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Eutychus wrote:Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Original text: "The .002nd St speed limit were set at 2½ mph, it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents last month."?
I'm not entirely sure, but that doesn't sound quite right to me. Maybe it was multiplied by 100? 25 MPH seems more likely than 2.5.
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keithl
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

stag019
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

chridd wrote:
Eutychus wrote:Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Original text: "The .002nd St speed limit were set at 2½ mph, it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents last month."?
I'm not entirely sure, but that doesn't sound quite right to me. Maybe it was multiplied by 100? 25 MPH seems more likely than 2.5.

I love how came here to post this, only to see I was already beaten to it. Bravo.

peter_spikings
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

stag019 wrote:I love how came here to post this, only to see I was already beaten to it. Bravo.

Ditto

Eutychus
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

I see the alt-text has had to be corrected for words, if not (yet) numbers, too.

'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"

'The 2nd St speed limit should be set at 2,500 mph, which would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Be very careful about rectilinear assumptions. Raptors could be hiding there - ucim

joeyvalentine
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

I miss the days when xkcd was funny

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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Not just the Old Testament. Look what happened in the New Testament to the report of the miraculous feeding of the five.

Alltat
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

chridd wrote:
Eutychus wrote:Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Original text: "The .002nd St speed limit were set at 2½ mph, it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents last month."?
I'm not entirely sure, but that doesn't sound quite right to me. Maybe it was multiplied by 100? 25 MPH seems more likely than 2.5.

You forgot the time. I assume it should be "...it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents in the last 43 minutes."

Nooska
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Alltat wrote:
chridd wrote:
Eutychus wrote:Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Original text: "The .002nd St speed limit were set at 2½ mph, it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents last month."?
I'm not entirely sure, but that doesn't sound quite right to me. Maybe it was multiplied by 100? 25 MPH seems more likely than 2.5.

You forgot the time. I assume it should be "...it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents in the last 43 minutes."

Well, no.
Month is not a number, and arguably "2nd street" isn't either, though the 2 in 2nd definately is.

The 2500 mph however is clearly a typo needing an extra 0.

Eutychus
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

MTGradwell wrote:Not just the Old Testament. Look what happened in the New Testament to the report of the miraculous feeding of the five.

You mean with 0.005 loaves and 0.002 fish? Hallelujah
Be very careful about rectilinear assumptions. Raptors could be hiding there - ucim

Klear
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Alltat wrote:
chridd wrote:
Eutychus wrote:Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Original text: "The .002nd St speed limit were set at 2½ mph, it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents last month."?
I'm not entirely sure, but that doesn't sound quite right to me. Maybe it was multiplied by 100? 25 MPH seems more likely than 2.5.

You forgot the time. I assume it should be "...it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents in the last 43 minutes."

Month is not a number.

drachefly
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

It is a quantity. You can rescale it if it ends up funnier. In this case, though, it just maintains the meaning of the scaled-up version, so I'm not sure that helps.

rmsgrey
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

keithl wrote:I read technical reports naked.

I laminate them first.

Araoth
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

chridd wrote:
Eutychus wrote:Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Original text: "The .002nd St speed limit were set at 2½ mph, it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents last month."?
I'm not entirely sure, but that doesn't sound quite right to me. Maybe it was multiplied by 100? 25 MPH seems more likely than 2.5.

Darn it. I came too late it seems.

But next time! Next time This honor shall be mine!

Draco18s
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Eutychus wrote:
MTGradwell wrote:Not just the Old Testament. Look what happened in the New Testament to the report of the miraculous feeding of the five.

You mean with 0.005 loaves and 0.002 fish? Hallelujah

Having recently taken a tour of the holy land, it was pointed out to me that the miracle was not feeding 5000 people with 5 loaves and 2 fish.

It was getting 5000 people to break bread at all. In those days people only ate with family and in a private setting.

cellocgw
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

It would be more useful, tho' maybe less funny, to list suggestions for how to write the report to make reading it more interesting.
There's the time-(dis)honored method of anthropomorphizing all the lab equipment, or adding comments about the co-authors' lack of haberdashery style; one of my favorites is to stick some easter-eggs into the abbreviation/acronym list that's required at the end of gov't technical reports. I always wonder if anyone even notices when I stick in TINSSTAAFL or ROTFL in there.
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Trry writing them in the style of Asimov, Burroughs, Camus, Dick, Eddison, Faulkner, Gibson, Hemingway...Shakespeare, Twain...etc.

Speaking of anthropomorphizing the lab equipment...I wonder how many like to play chess and hold imaginary conversations among the pieces?

Someguy945
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Treating the 2 in "2nd Street" like a number makes me imagine a database that stores phone numbers as "int" instead of "varchar".

Some numbers are really just text.

Lopsidation
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Re the alt text, I laugh at posters which try to abuse the bigger-numbers-are-more-exciting gimmick.

"Rising gas prices rob us of more than ten milllion dollars every day!"

(Well, considering there are more than 300 million people just in the US, that's about 4 cents each.)

"If everyone uses these handy eco-friendly tips, we'll prevent 10 million pounds of carbon dioxide pollution every year!"

(Not that I don't agree with the sentiment, but I can't help but read this as "we'll prevent 10 BILLION BILLION BILLION pounds of carbon dioxide pollution every septillion years!" It'd be nice to get a sense of scale for this kind of message.)

mathmannix
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Someguy945 wrote:Treating the 2 in "2nd Street" like a number makes me imagine a database that stores phone numbers as "int" instead of "varchar".

Some numbers are really just text.

But that deprives us of knowing the correct value of the phone number... (800)588-2300 = 468100, for example.
I hear velociraptor tastes like chicken.

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Re: 1219: "Reports"

joeyvalentine wrote:I miss the days when xkcd was funny

This comic is hilarious, heathen!

Klear
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

drachefly wrote:It is a quantity. You can rescale it if it ends up funnier. In this case, though, it just maintains the meaning of the scaled-up version, so I'm not sure that helps.

Month isn't a quantity either...

Selcouth
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

joeyvalentine wrote:I miss the days when xkcd was funny

Yeah, seems like Randall's been stressed for the past few weeks.... the comics aren't quite the same. Of course, maybe he's just spending some of his humor on Time?
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Sandman81
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Eutychus wrote:As a Bible scholar I often wonder if that happened with some of the numbers in the Old Testament.

If you apply it the other way to Genesis, the creation story becomes slightly more accurate.

On the other hand, it would mean that Noah lived to be 950,000 years old; the disciples had to wait 3,000 days for Jesus to rise from the dead; and that, rather than being one God to worship, there are one thousand Gods, all of them equally jealous. And one thousand sons and holy ghosts too.

WriteBrainedJR
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Sandman81 wrote:
Eutychus wrote:As a Bible scholar I often wonder if that happened with some of the numbers in the Old Testament.

If you apply it the other way to Genesis, the creation story becomes slightly more accurate.

On the other hand, it would mean that Noah lived to be 950,000 years old; the disciples had to wait 3,000 days for Jesus to rise from the dead; and that, rather than being one God to worship, there are one thousand Gods, all of them equally jealous. And one thousand sons and holy ghosts too.

1000 of them and none are philanderers? Apparently the Greeks were even wronger than the Christians.

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Re: 1219: "Reports"

keithl wrote:I read technical reports naked.

Jabba the Hut did that, too.
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Jackpot777
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

Nooska wrote:
Alltat wrote:
chridd wrote:
Eutychus wrote:Alt-text: "If that fails, just multiply every number by a thousand. 'The 2nd St speed limit were set at 2,500 mph, it would likely have prevented 1,000 of the intersection's 3,000 serious accidents last month.'"
Original text: "The .002nd St speed limit were set at 2½ mph, it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents last month."?
I'm not entirely sure, but that doesn't sound quite right to me. Maybe it was multiplied by 100? 25 MPH seems more likely than 2.5.

You forgot the time. I assume it should be "...it would likely have prevented 1 of the intersection's 3 serious accidents in the last 43 minutes."

Well, no.
Month is not a number, and arguably "2nd street" isn't either, though the 2 in 2nd definately is.

The 2500 mph however is clearly a typo needing an extra 0.

Definately isn't a word, but definitely definitely is.

(Of the finite. De finite. That's how I remember it.)

da Doctah
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

cellocgw wrote:It would be more useful, tho' maybe less funny, to list suggestions for how to write the report to make reading it more interesting.
There's the time-(dis)honored method of anthropomorphizing all the lab equipment, or adding comments about the co-authors' lack of haberdashery style; one of my favorites is to stick some easter-eggs into the abbreviation/acronym list that's required at the end of gov't technical reports. I always wonder if anyone even notices when I stick in TINSSTAAFL or ROTFL in there.

I once toyed with an idea that I never go around to following through on, that of writing an incident memo that looks like straightforward prose, but if you read it aloud it turns out to be a sonnet. The meter is easy (in fact, after a marathon reading of The Faerie Queene I found it difficult not to formulate all my thoughts in iambic pentameter) but I could never quite manage the rhyme scheme.

Got as far once as "Last Thursday, as I'm sure you're all aware, an outage caused the backup site to crash...."

Tova
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Re: 1219: "Reports"

cellocgw wrote:It would be more useful, tho' maybe less funny, to list suggestions for how to write the report to make reading it more interesting.

That is how I originally interpreted the comic.

Pretty much guaranteed that the joke would fall flat, even after I figured out what it meant.