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st: Collapse error: "Factor variables not allowed"

From   Lynne Morgan <>
Subject   st: Collapse error: "Factor variables not allowed"
Date   Tue, 11 Dec 2012 10:27:19 -0600

Hi All,

I have a dataset that I need to collapse by the id number because each ID has several rows (hhidnum). Mostly I just want to know the sum, because the variables are if a condition is present or absent (1/0) in the various rows for each ID. Here is the code that I run:

*Collapse by HHID
collapse (sum) segmentnum SBE_SEGLEN SBE_1A SBE_1B SBE_1C SBE_1D SBE_1E SBE_1F /// diSBE_12A diSBE_12B diSBE_12C diSBE_12D diSBE_12E diSBE_12F diSBE_12G diSBE_12H ///
    SBE_11A SBE_11B SBE_11C SBE_11D SBE_11E  littersmall litterhaz ///
    (mean) meanmph=SBE_5A meanlanes=SBE_7A ///
    by(hhidnum) cw

The error I get, though, is "factor variables not allowed". What does this mean? How do I get around it?

Thanks so much!

Lynne Morgan, MPH
Assistant Researcher
Survey of the Health of Wisconsin
University of Wisconsin, Madison
(p) 608-821-1243

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