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Significant Digits For Tuesday, June 5, 2018

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.


5 days of protests

The prime minister of Jordan, Hani al-Mulki, has resigned following five days of nationwide protests against austerity measures in that country, including tax hikes and subsidy cuts. Roads were blocked, tires burned and a “sea of protesters has been gathering outside al-Mulki’s office at night, after the breaking of the Ramadan fast at dusk.” [CNN]


2,350 t-shirts

(Sponsored by Mott & Bow) When you find a t-shirt that looks good and fits right, get one while you still can. These t-shirts perfectly combine comfort and style, which explains why 2,350 of them were sold during their launch week alone. That type of demand can be tough to keep up with. Fortunately, the manufacturer was able to replenish most sizes just in time for summer.


16-hour eruption

A volcano in Guatemala called Fuego erupted for 16 hours on Sunday. That was followed on Monday by further pyroclastic flow — a mix of lava, pumice, ash and volcanic gas that races down slopes at temperatures of up to 1,300 degrees Fahrenheit. The volcano has killed 62 people, according to officials, and dozens more are missing. [BBC]


18 seconds

Senator Ted Cruz, a constitutional lawyer, was asked by a reporter if he agreed with the president that the president could pardon himself. Eighteen silent, torturous seconds followed. “That is not a constitutional issue I’ve studied,” he finally responded. [Mediaite]


13,000 projects

Microsoft has purchased GitHub. It cost the multinational behemoth $7.5 billion in stock to acquire the free code and data hosting service that had become the “de facto home of open source software development.” (I use it myself, as does FiveThirtyEight.) More than 13,000 projects left GitHub within an hour of the news, migrating to its competitor, GitLab. [Motherboard]


21,000 percent growth

Howard Schultz, the executive chairman of Starbucks, is stepping down at the end of the month. Schultz joined the company in 1982, and Starbucks stock has grown 21,000 percent since its IPO in 1992. He owns shares worth $2.2 billion. And of course, the buzz goes, he’s running for president. As my boss tweeted: “Hard to think of anyone who would formulate a better contrast with Trump than an old white business dude who once ran a professional sports team into the ground.” [CNBC]


$4.84 million in crosswords and cooking

The New York Times crossword puzzle is serious business. The paper’s crossword and cooking products generated $4.84 million in the first quarter. (The company reports the two products’ financials together, despite the fact that many people can be hopeless crossword addicts who don’t really cook. Or at least that’s what I tell myself.) Its online puzzle has over 400,000 subscribers, nearly double its total two years ago. The growth has been driven, apparently, by mini-crosswords and expansion to Android devices. The paper pays its freelance crossword constructors about $150,000 a year — about $300-$450 for a weekday and $1,000-$1,200 for a Sunday puzzle. [Bloomberg]


If you see a significant digit in the wild, please send it to @ollie.

Oliver Roeder is a senior writer for FiveThirtyEight.

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