Tuesday, February 14, 2006

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This is hilarious. From the Wikipedia entry for the Student's t-distribution:

Student's distribution arises when (as in nearly all practical statistical work) the population standard deviation is unknown and has to be estimated from the data. Textbook problems treating the standard deviation as if it were known are of two kinds: (1) those in which the sample size is so large that one may treat a data-based estimate of the variance as if it were certain, and (2) those that illustrate mathematical reasoning, in which the problem of estimating the standard deviation is temporarily ignored because that is not the point that the author or instructor is then explaining. [emphasis added]

Ahh, the priveleges of being a statistics teacher/prof (did I tell you I have a new job?).

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