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Data Is Plural

From Strategic Petroleum to Gargantuan Gourds

This week’s roundup of notable data

Illustration of an open envelope, with arrows coming out from within. The arrows are pointing to various spreadsheets. Behind the spreadsheets are data visualizations, clouds and strings of numbers.
Gabriel Hongsdusit

Data Is Plural is a weekly newsletter of useful/curious datasets. This edition, dated Oct. 26, 2022, has been republished with permission of the author.

Strategic petroleum. The U.S. Energy Information Administration maintains a dataset tracking the monthly volume of the country’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve, measured in the thousands of barrels. The figures go back to 1977, the year the first crude oil was delivered to the reserve, but lag by a couple of months; the end-of-August volume is scheduled for publication on Oct. 31. Read more: The Department of Energy’s history of reserve releases. Previously: Petroleum Supply Monthly reports (DIP 2017.08.16) and weekly gas prices (DIP 2021.06.09), both also published by the EIA. [h/t u/CountBayesie]

Internet service offers. For an investigation into speed disparities in internet service offers, published last week at The Markup, reporters Leon Yin and Aaron Sankin examined more than one million address-specific offers across dozens of U.S. cities. To support the findings, they’ve shared the raw data gathered from internet server providers’ websites, as well as tabular files that summarize each offer and attach the contextual variables used for the analysis. (Disclosure: I served, and am credited, as a “data coach” for this project.)

Boston’s first women voters. The City of Boston’s Mary Eliza Project has been compiling a dataset of women who registered to vote in 1920, the year the 19th Amendment granted them that right. The dataset, transcribed from the original registration books, “is updated periodically as additional voter registers are transcribed.” It contains more than 6,000 entries so far, each listing a voter’s name, registration date, ward, precinct, address, age, country of birth, occupation, husband’s information, and more. [h/t Julie Rosier]

Euro-area securities. The European Central Bank collects detailed records concerning the financial instruments issued and held by organizations and individuals under its jurisdiction. Its Securities Holdings Statistics dataset, available through the ECB’s data warehouse and updated quarterly, aggregates the latter by investor type (bank, nonbank company, pension fund, household, etc.), investor country of residence, issuer country, type of financial instrument, and more. [h/t Martijn Boermans et al.]

Gargantuan gourds. At, you can find annual “weigh-off” results from 100-plus local competitions affiliated with the Great Pumpkin Commonwealth, an international standards-setting organization. Although pumpkins represent the titular attraction, the site also publishes results for the squash, long gourd, watermelon, tomato, field pumpkin, bushel gourd, and marrow competition classes. HTML tables list each specimen’s weight, grower, location, weigh-off site, and lineage. [h/t Julia Silge + Tidy Tuesday]

Notice: Unlike most of our content, this edition of Data Is Plural by Jeremy Singer-Vine is not available for republication under a Creative Commons license.

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