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Re: st: Problem with seed and bootstrap

From   "Svend Juul" <SJ@SOCI.AU.DK>
To   <>
Subject   Re: st: Problem with seed and bootstrap
Date   Sat, 17 Sep 2005 14:45:33 +0200

Two messages about unstable and stable sorts:

Thank you very much Gary. -Sort- was creating the problem
and the option -stable- solved it.
It is interesting that setting the seed does not solve this sort of problem.
I've always wondered how and why -sort- produces inconsistent results anyway.
I would think a stable sort is easiest to do, but apparently not.
I suspect it is a good idea to just pay the performance penalty and get in
the habit of using the -stable- option routinely.

Imagine that -sort ... , stable- was the default, but that you could
avoid it with an -unstable- option. Can anybody imagine a situation
where a user would benefit from the -unstable- option?

A stable sort might take some more computer time (does it?), but quite
a few users have spent quite some human time trying to figure out what
happens. A wish to StataCorp.: Let -stable- be the default, and add a
-fast- or -unstable- option if there is a point in doing that.


Svend Juul
Institut for Folkesundhed, Afdeling for Epidemiologi
(Institute of Public Health, Department of Epidemiology)
Vennelyst Boulevard 6
DK-8000 Aarhus C,  Denmark
Phone, work:  +45 8942 6090
Phone, home:  +45 8693 7796
Fax:          +45 8613 1580

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