Month: November 2019

Fractions: What Are They, and Why?

We’ve looked at some specific ideas about fractions (their proper definition, their relationship to decimals, and how to divide them); it’s time to go through this topic from the beginning. Here we’ll look at how they are introduced to beginners, and how to keep them from hurting our brains!

Rank of a Binary Number

(A new question of the week) A few months ago, I wrote about Ranking a Word Among Its Permutations, that is, finding where a word would be found in an ordered list of all possible “words” made by permuting its letters. The problem in general requires a (sometimes lengthy) algorithm. A month or so later, …

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More About Independent Events

Last time, we looked at the basic definition of independent events. This time I want to explore some deeper questions about the concept.

What Are Independent Events?

The concept of independent events can be both very simple and easily misunderstood. We’ll be looking at several explanations of the idea, starting with the basics and then digging into some deeper questions that are often overlooked.

Cumulative Distribution Functions (Ogive)

(An archive question of the week) We’ve been looking at some issues involving frequency distributions and the classes used in them. Let’s look at a related concept with some similar issues, namely the cumulative distribution function (CDF), also called an ogive (more on that name at the end of the post!).

Grouped Data: Open-ended Classes?

(A new question of the week) A recent question raised a different issue about grouped frequency distributions than we have discussed previously: What do you do when the last class is labelled something like “30 or more”? As we’ll see, there is no one right answer!