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Re: st: dots and non-dots

From   Tom Palmer <>
Subject   Re: st: dots and non-dots
Date   Tue, 7 Aug 2012 17:30:23 +0100

Hi Stas,

See "Stata tip 41: Monitoring loop iterations" by David A. Harrison in The Stata Journal 7(1) page 140.

Available here


> When running the replicate variance estimation methods, such as
> bootstrap or jackknife, we are being entertained by the running dots
> for each replication. If everything goes well, we see just the dots.
> If things don't go that well, we see some red "x"s or "e"s or "s".
> What are the meanings of these special codes? (Hint: I know what to
> -viewsource- here, but I would hate to second guess how this cute
> little fully undocumented command is being used. By "fully
> undocumented" I mean that it is not even mentioned in -help
> undocumented-.)
> Some of the reasons when the user needs to know something went awry
> may be: no observations (somehow we bootstrapped a bad sample that
> does not have anything satisfying the "if" condition of the main
> command); some of the estimated coefficients don't exist (-rmcoll-
> dropped a different variable in the bootstrapped sample than in the
> first call); an iterative procedure did not converge or produced some
> other meaningless result (a perfect prediction in -logit-). There may
> be other circumstances. Are these symbols explained anywhere?
> If it is not documented, may be it is worth writing a blog entry about
> these dots, just to help something to lean on.
> -- 
> ---- Stas Kolenikov
> -- 
> ---- Senior Survey Statistician, Abt SRBI
> -- Opinions stated in this email are mine only, and do not reflect the
> position of my employer

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