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Significant Digits For Thursday, April 18, 2019

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news. For even more facts, figures and discussion, check out our live FiveThirtyEight Politics podcasts in Texas in May.

55 million times

The eighth season premiere of HBO’s “Game of Thrones” drew strong ratings and 17.4 million viewers. However, within 24 hours, the show had also been pirated nearly 55 million times, according to the analytics firm MUSO. Of those, 77 percent were unofficial streams, 12 percent were downloads and 11 percent were torrents. [The Verge]

11 months

Christina Koch, a NASA astronaut, is scheduled to spend about 11 months aboard the International Space Station, setting a record time in space for women. She will come close to Scott Kelly’s American record of 340 days. “One month down. Ten to go,” Koch tweeted, while, presumably, doing some cool, weightless mid-air spins. [Associated Press]

100s of schools

Hundreds of schools in the Denver metro area were closed yesterday, a few days before the 20th anniversary of the Columbine massacre, after a woman who the FBI said was “infatuated with Columbine” had arrived in the area and purchased a shotgun. A search was launched overnight, and the woman was later found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound near Mount Evans west of Denver. [The Denver Post]

More than 32 million pills

Thirty-one doctors, seven pharmacists, eight nurse practitioners and seven other licensed medical professionals across Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama and West Virginia have been charged in alleged schemes involving “opioid pushing” and health care fraud, according to the Justice Department. In one instance, a doctor was writing 100 prescriptions a day. In another, a doctor had a pharmacy operating outside his waiting room. The cases combined involve some 350,000 prescriptions and more than 32 million pills. [NPR]

55.089 km

Victor Campenaerts, a Belgian cyclist, broke the one-hour track cycling distance record. It’s a grueling test: You start riding around a track and keep riding around the track for as far as you can go in an hour — utterly blasting your legs in the process. Campenaerts rode 55.089 km — or about 34.23 miles — on a specially designed bike without gears or brakes. [Bicycling]

191 to 6

Pennsylvania, at long last, has an official state amphibian. It is the … drum roll … Eastern hellbender, a two-foot long salamander, aka the snot otter, aka the lasagna lizard aka the mud devil. The state’s House voted in a landslide, 191-6, to honor the snot otter. [Associated Press]

From ABC News:

News headlines today: April 18, 2019

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Oliver Roeder was a senior writer for FiveThirtyEight. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Texas at Austin, where he studied game theory and political competition.