cvs commit: src/games/fortune/datfiles fortunes

Poul-Henning Kamp phk at phk.freebsd.dk
Wed Nov 12 12:17:50 PST 2003


In message <200311122008.hACK8mWu013352 at repoman.freebsd.org>, Poul-Henning Kamp
 writes:
>phk         2003/11/12 12:08:48 PST
>
>  FreeBSD src repository
>
>  Modified files:
>    games/fortune/datfiles fortunes 
>  Log:
>  Add a card carryring member of the Pointless Comparison Collection.

Modern journalism seems to demand that any measurement or numeric
quantity gets translated into "something people can relate to"
before publication.

Typical examples are that volumes are measured in "swiming pools"
(sometimes qualified as "Olympic size"), area in football or baseball
fields, heights in multiple of some randomly chosen tourist attraction,
small angular sizes as how far away a randomly chosen small household
item looks that size ("A golfball on the moon").

You get the idea.

I generally think this is silly, but as long as the "real" numbers
are given, I ignore it, but recently it seems that the actual
numerical+unit quantity magnitude has been dispensed with entirely
which I think is a great way to disenfranchise even more kids from
science.

Anyhow, every now and then somebody goes waaaaay too far, and this
one triggered the creation of a new "section" in fortune(6): The
Pointless Comparison Collection:

	To give you an idea of how sensitive these antennas are,
	if we were to "listen" to one spacecraft in the outer solar
	system by Jupiter or Saturn for 1 billion years and add up
	all the signal we collected, it would be enough power to
	set off the flash bulb on your camera once.

	(http://spaceflightnow.com/news/n0311/10dsn/)

Feel free to add any similar rubbish you find.


-- 
Poul-Henning Kamp       | UNIX since Zilog Zeus 3.20
phk at FreeBSD.ORG         | TCP/IP since RFC 956
FreeBSD committer       | BSD since 4.3-tahoe    
Never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence.


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