Data Is Plural

... is a weekly newsletter of useful/curious datasets.

2016.02.23 edition

The Supreme Court, armed conflict, nuclear capabilities, cruise ship inspections, and some laffs.

Supremely useful data. The Supreme Court Database is exactly what it sounds like — and definitively so. The most recent release covers all SCOTUS cases from 1946 through 2014. For each case, the database contains 247 “pieces of information,” including the source of the case, why the court agreed to hear the case, the legal provisions at play, and how each justice voted.

Armed conflict. The Uppsala Conflict Data Program maintains several large, interconnected datasets describing decades of war, genocide, and other armed hostilities. Looking for a slightly less depressing experience? Try the UCDP’s dataset of 216 peace agreements signed between 1975 and 2011. [h/t Tony Gray]

Nuclear capabilities. The Nuclear Latency Dataset contains “all known uranium enrichment and plutonium reprocessing facilities” built between 1939 and 2012. That amounts to 253 plants around the world, each with information on its construction timeframe, civilian-vs-military purpose, international oversight, and more. [h/t Abraham Epton]

Cruise ship inspections. The CDC publishes a searchable database of its cruise ship sanitation inspections but doesn’t provide an option to download the data. Last week, an open-data enthusiast scraped the database and posted CSVs of specific deficiencies and overall inspection scores since 1990. The lowest score: The Nippon Maru’s 38 points (out of 100) in 1998. Related: ProPublica’s “Cruise Control,” a searchable database of health and safety reports. [h/t Mike Stucka + Lena Groeger]

Funny ha ha. Since 1999, Jester has been telling jokes. The website, built by UC Berkeley’s Laboratory for Automation Science and Engineering, asks you to rate its sometimes-humorous offerings, and then uses those answers to guess which of the remaining 100+ jokes you’ll like best. The UC Berkeley team behind the project has released millions of joke ratings from more than 100,000 anonymous users. [h/t Alex Gude]