Saturday, April 29, 2017

"Was Uber’s CEO really the second-best Wii Sports tennis player?"

Ars:

The line baffled me for a number of reasons, not least of which was that the concept of a "high score" in "Wii Tennis" didn't make much sense. Claiming the "world's second-highest score" in Wii Sports tennis is like claiming the second-highest score in Pong based on nothing but playing against the computer and your friends. Absent some sort of sanctioned tournament or logical third-party ranking system, the claim just doesn't parse.

And yet, the boast is oddly specific. Kalanick hadn't earned the best "Wii Tennis" score in the world according to The New York Times. He achieved the second best. If this was just a fabulist boast, why limit yourself to number two? And if it wasn't just puffery, who was number one?

...

With Kalanick and Uber yet to respond to a request for comment, the rest of this piece necessarily delves into speculation of what's driving Kalanick's Wii Sports "high score" claim. That said, I think the explanation detailed below adequately explains all the claimed facts involved with a few small wriggles to account for the vagaries of human memory.

So with all that preamble, here's what I think actually led to the "second-highest score" claim: