baked numbers

Arnold M. Zwicky zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Wed May 26 17:27:47 UTC 2004

from a story in the Palo Alto Daily News, 5/25/04, about a woman who
tried to extract some information from the city planning and
transportation office about traffic in a neighborhood where a "traffic
calming" scheme had been instituted, p. 38:

In the end, [Kathleen] Rotow collected around a 1,000 [sic] pages of
documents about the traffic, which she felt showed some baked numbers
and more recorded outrage from residents than the city made public.

it's the "baked numbers" that caught my eye.  my interpretation was
that this was the same as "cooked numbers", numbers that have been
altered or transformed or displayed in a misleading fashion.  a google
search, both web and groups, turned up no instances of "baked numbers"
in this sense -- a lot of "cooked" numbers, though, and a respectable
collection of "half-baked" or "half baked" numbers, in the sense of
crude or approximate numbers.  it's possible she meant the latter, or
she might have blended the two expressions.  (i could phone her and

has anyone seen "baked" as a synonym for "cooked" 'altered,
manipulated' *or* "half-baked" 'approximate?

(a search on "baked data" produces mostly instances of "half-baked",
but some of an apparently technical use in a computer context that i
don't understand.)

arnold (zwicky at, wondering if data can also
   be roasted, toasted, grilled, boiled, simmered, sauteed, etc.

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