A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘census

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

  • Bad Astronomer Phil Plait notes that mysterious Boyajian’s Star has nearly two dozen identified analogues, like HD 139139.
  • James Bow reports from his con trip to Portland.
  • Caitlin Kelly at the Broadside Blog notes the particular pleasure of having old friends, people with long baselines on us.
  • Centauri Dreams describes a proposed mission to interstellar comet C/2019 Q4 (Borisov).
  • The Crux notes how feeding cows seaweed could sharply reduce their methane production.
  • D-Brief notes that comet C/2019 Q4 is decidedly red.
  • Bruce Dorminey notes a claim that water-rich exoplanet K2-18b might well have more water than Earth.
  • Gizmodo reports on a claim that Loki, biggest volcano on Io, is set to explode in a massive eruption.
  • io9 notes that Warner Brothers is planning a Funko Pop movie.
  • Joe. My. God. notes the claim of Donald Trump that he is ready for war with Iran.
  • JSTOR Daily looks at how people in early modern Europe thought they could treat wounds with magic.
  • Language Hat considers how “I tip my hat” might, translated, sound funny to a speaker of Canadian French.
  • Language Log considers how speakers of Korean, and other languages, can find word spacing a challenge.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money looks at the partisan politics of the US Supreme Court.
  • At the NYR Daily, Naomi Klein makes a case for the political and environmental necessity of a Green New Deal.
  • Peter Watts takes apart a recent argument proclaiming the existence of free will.
  • Peter Rukavina tells how travelling by rail or air from Prince Edward Island to points of the mainland can not only be terribly inconvenient, but environmentally worse than car travel. PEI does need better rail connections.
  • The Russian Demographics Blog examines how different countries in Europe will conduct their census in 2020.
  • Window on Eurasia shares the arguments of a geographer who makes the point that China has a larger effective territory than Russia (or Canada).
  • Yorkshire Ranter Alex Harrowell looks at a 1971 prediction by J.G. Ballard about demagoguery and guilt, something that now looks reasonably accurate.
  • Arnold Zwicky considers models of segregation of cartoon characters from normal ones in comics.

[BLOG] Some Friday links

  • Shir Lerman Ginzburg at anthro{dendum} writes about kintsugi in her own life.
  • Bad Astronomy’s Phil Plait looks at the massive black hole, massing two billion suns, measured in the heart of NGC 3258.
  • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly shares some photos from her Hudson River life.
  • D-Brief notes how astronomers may be able to detect the radio signals emitted from the cores of planets orbiting dead stars.
  • The Everyday Sociology Blog looks at the sociology of religion.
  • JSTOR Daily looks at how Ferdinand Magellan acted in many ways like a pirate.
  • Language Hat reports on the remarkable differences between the two dubbed French versions of The Simpsons, one in France and one in Québec.
  • Language Log reports on the Chinese placename “Xinjiang Uygur.”
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money makes the point that Joe Biden is too old, too set in his ways, to be president.
  • Molly Crabapple writes at the NYR Daily about the nature and goals of the massive protest movement in Puerto Rico.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel looks even-handedly at the controversy surrounding the idea of building the Thirty Metre Telescope on top of sacred Mauna Kea.
  • Window on Eurasia looks at controversy in Russia over the representation of different Tatar populations on the Russian 2020 census.
  • Stephen Gordon at Worthwhile Canadian Initiative wonders why it was 1953 that, in Canada, saw the growth in women on the job market.

[BLOG] Some Saturday links

  • Bad Astronomer Phil Plait notes the import of the discovery of asteroid 2019 AQ3, a rare near-Venus asteroid.
  • Centauri Dreams notes the how the choice of language used by SETI researchers, like the eye-catching “technosignatures”, may reflect the vulnerability of the field to criticism on Earth.
  • John Holbo at Crooked Timber considers what is to be done about Virginia, given the compromising of so many of its top leaders by secrets from the past.
  • The Crux notes how the imminent recovery of ancient human DNA from Africa is likely to lead to a revolution in our understanding of human histories there.
  • D-Brief notes how astronomers were able to use the light echoes in the accretion disk surrounding stellar-mass black hole MAXI J1820+070 to map its environment.
  • JSTOR Daily considers the snow day as a sort of modern festival.
  • Robert Farley at Lawyers, Guns and Money links to his consideration of the plans of the German Empire to build superdreadnoughts, aborted only by defeat. Had Germany won the First World War, there surely would have been a major naval arms race.
  • The NYR Daily looks at two exhibitions of different photographers, Brassaï and Louis Stettner.
  • Emily Lakdawalla at the Planetary Society Blog shares an evocative crescent profile of Ultima Thule taken by New Horizons, and crescent profiles of other worlds, too.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel looks at the mystery of why there is so little antimatter in the observable universe.
  • Frank Jacobs at Strange Maps shares a map exploring the dates and locations of first contact with aliens in the United States as shown in film.
  • Window on Eurasia notes a new push by Circassian activists for the Circassian identity to be represented in the 2020 census.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • D-Brief notes that, with the Dawn probe unresponsive, its mission to Vesta and Ceres is now over.
  • The Dragon’s Tales reports that NASA is seeking commercial partners to deliver cargo to the proposed Gateway station.
  • JSTOR Daily looks back to a time where chestnuts were a staple food in Appalachia.
  • Language Log takes a look at prehistoric words in Eurasia for honey, in Indo-European and Old Sinitic.
  • Joy Katz at the LRB Blog writes about her lived experience of the conventional Pittsburgh neighbourhood of Squirrel Hill, a perhaps unlikely scene of tragedy.
  • The Map Room Blog links to an interactive map showing the Québec election results.
  • Marginal Revolution links to that New York Magazine article about young people who do not vote to start a discussion.
  • Roads and Kingdoms looks at the real dangers faced by Venezuelan refugees in the northern Brazilian state of Roraima, at the start of the era of Bolsonaro.
  • Window on Eurasia argues that changes to the Russian census allowing people to identify with multiple ethnicities could lead to a sharp shrinking in the numbers of minority nationalities.

[URBAN NOTE] Four notes about cities, communities: Smiths Falls, Oshawa, Halifax, same-sex couples

  • I am glad that Smiths Falls survived–it was lovely when I visited in 2003. If it is marijuana that saved it, good. From Global News.
  • That Oshawa–the ‘Shwa, to GTAers–has managed to evolve past dependence on cars is a very good thing indeed. The Toronto Star reports.
  • Can Halifax support the proposed light rail network? This sounds like a good idea, but I would say that, then. Global News describes the proposal.
  • Patrick Cain does a great job analyzing the 2016 Census data on same-sex couples in Canada: distribution, ages, etc. His analysis is at Global News.

[NEWS] Four links on Canada, from economics to language to poverty to greenhouses

  • Bloomberg reports on how Canada-Mexico relations will be tested by NAFTA and Trump.
  • Canada, the 2016 Census reported, is marked by noteworthy linguistic diversity (Tagalog does particularly well.)
  • Vice notes how Galen Weston’s opposition to the minimum wage increase for workers at Loblaws is not in his self-interest.
  • Vice’s Motherboard looks at how greenhouse agriculture in Nunavut could help drastically reduce food insecurity in that territory.

[DM] “”Census still vulnerable to political meddling, says former chief””

At Demography Matters, I linked to Canadian newsmagazine MacLean’s, which hosts Jordan Press’ Canadian Press article “Census still vulnerable to political meddling, says former chief”. Wayne Smith warns that the Canadian census is still vulnerable to political interference, even with new legislation.

The federal government’s bid to protect Statistics Canada from political interference has a significant oversight that exposes the census to the possibility of government meddling, says Canada’s former chief statistician.

Wayne Smith, who resigned abruptly from the agency in September, said newly introduced legislation doesn’t change the parts of the Statistics Act that give cabinet control over the content of the questionnaire.

That leaves the census – used by governments to plan infrastructure and services – vulnerable to the sorts of changes the Conservatives imposed in 2011 by turning the long-form census into a voluntary survey, Smith said.

“That’s a major flaw in this bill,” he said. “The government brought this bill in because of the census, but it’s failing to deal with the census.”

Smith described the bill as a first step towards broadening the agency’s authority over how information on all types of subjects is collected, analyzed and disseminated, shifting that authority away from the minister.

Freedom, including access to public data both accurate and meaningful, is a constant struggle now, as it always has been.

Written by Randy McDonald

December 9, 2016 at 8:00 pm

[LINK] “Statistics Canada sees record census response, sends 347 compliance letters”

The Globe and Mail‘s Bill Curry reports on the 2016 census’ few issues.

The Globe and Mail has learned that 347 letters were sent last month to individuals who had not yet completed the 2016 census (202 for the short form and 145 for the long form). That is about in line with 331 letters that were sent after the 2011 census, when only the short form was mandatory.

Restoring the mandatory long-form census was one of the first official acts of the new Liberal government last year. The quick decision allowed Statistics Canada to shift gears in time for the 2016 survey, which is now complete. The agency has said it received a response rate of 98.4 per cent, including 97.8 per cent for the long-form census, which does not go out to all households.

Statistics Canada’s chief statistician, Wayne Smith, announced his resignation on Sept. 19 as a protest against information technology issues that he said were compromising the agency’s independence. Mr. Smith sent the 347 compliance letters on Aug. 19, and the letters give a deadline of Sept. 9.

“Anyone convicted of an offence under the Statistics Act is liable to punishment as set out in the Statistics Act,” the compliance letters stated.

The act says a person found guilty could face a fine of up to $500, up to three months in jail, or both.

How to manage these files is now an issue for Mr. Smith’s replacement, Anil Arora.

Written by Randy McDonald

September 26, 2016 at 7:00 pm

[DM] “On the physical constraints to the independence of Statistics Canada”

I’ve a post up looking at the recent resignation of Statistics Canada’s chief statistician Wayne Smith, prompted by the insecure data services offered by the federal government’s ill-conceived platform.

Written by Randy McDonald

September 20, 2016 at 7:59 pm

[BLOG] Some Tuesday links

There were a lot of interesting posts made around the web from Sunday evening on.

  • blogTO takes issue with the poor design of the buildings on Bloor Street West east of Dundas West.
  • Crooked Timber notes the tragedy inherent in the life of Phyllis Schlafly.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze notes that two of the worlds in the TRAPPIST-1 system may have Venus-like environments.
  • The Dragon’s Tales looks at the fate of Planet Nine at the end of the sun’s life.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money looks at good music from the past.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer has two questions about the SpaceX explosion.
  • Savage Minds has its own blog roundup.
  • Strange Maps considers the Icelandic letter that reached its destination with a map of its destination.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy wonders if people of recent immigrant stock are less nativist.
  • Window on Eurasia looks at school crowding in Dagestan, notes the popularity of Arabic in the highlands, worries about changes to Russian census-taking methodology, and suggests the number of Jews in Russia has been underestimated.
  • Yorkshire Ranter Alex Harrowell looks at the demographics of the Brexit referendum.