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Significant Digits For Wednesday, March 28, 2018

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news. This is Julia Wolfe, filling in for Walt Hickey, our most significant leader, for a couple of days while he gets a little R&R.

1 out of 3 black Americans

There will be no charges brought against the two officers involved in the 2016 fatal shooting of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge. This decision is unlikely to help the reputation of law enforcement among black Americans, only 30 percent of whom have confidence in the police, according to a Gallup poll last June. [Washington Post]

No. 3

An American could become the next world chess champion. Fabiano Caruana, the third-ranked player in the world, will be facing Magnus Carlsen of Norway for the world championship in November. If he wins, it’ll be the first time an American has been the undisputed champion since Bobby Fischer. [FiveThirtyEight]

12 states

The Trump administration plans to add a citizenship question to the census. In response, at least 12 states are planning to sue. They hope to block the move, which critics worry will lead to more undocumented immigrants being missed in the census’s count. If the change goes through, it’s likely that Democratic-leaning areas will see the greatest shift. [New York Times]

$29.99 per month

Wishing you could bring more of Silicon Valley into your love life? Then boy, do I have the gadget for you. A company called Lovely is looking to disrupt tech with its smart sex toy priced at $169.00 (subtle). For an additional $29.99 a month, you get access to sex educators and relationship experts through the app. [The Verge]

500-foot blimp

The commercial blimp market is heating up, and French company Flying Whales wants in. It has secured $246 million for their rigid airship, a 500-footer designed to lift lumber. “There have been a lot of blimp projects over time and there have been many failures,” their CEO said. No kidding. [Bloomberg]


Wall Street bonuses are the highest they’ve been since before the Great Recession. The average bonus in 2017 was $184,220 according to estimates from New York’s state comptroller. If that bonus is more than double your annual salary, take comfort that you aren’t alone. The median household income in the U.S. in 2016 was $59,039. [Quartz]

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

Julia Wolfe is FiveThirtyEight’s former senior editor, data visualization.