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Re: st: To STATA experts - BOOK

From   Richard Williams <[email protected]>
To   [email protected], [email protected]
Subject   Re: st: To STATA experts - BOOK
Date   Fri, 14 Sep 2007 08:45:00 -0400

At 08:30 AM 9/13/2007, Joseph Trubisz wrote:
As a computer scientist with 39-years experience, the last 5 finishing a PhD, I
have quite a bit of exposure to 'technical manuals'.

I was not exposed to Stata prior to my PhD experience. Hence, I was at the mercy
of either the lecturer or the books. In all my years, I have never seen a set of books
without an index or page numbers. And, I mean an index like "<topic> on page X",
not just point to a book. I find this quite annoying, especially if you are a newbie.
It rarely gets mentioned when talking about intro books, but I think the Stata User's Guide is excellent. Its main limitation is that its discussion of the actual estimation commands is fairly brief. But you certainly pick up a lot of the essentials and also advanced material from it, including programming advice. Indeed, I don't think you can understand the Programming Manual very well unless you have read the User's Guide first.

As far as an index goes, Stata 10 has the "Quick Reference and Index.", which gives you both an alphabetical index and a Combined Subject Table of Contents for all the Stata Manuals. Exact page numbers are lacking, but I think it is clear enough to find exactly what you are looking for, i.e. you either get section numbers (e.g. 13.7) or the name of a section in an alphabetically organized reference manual.

Richard Williams, Notre Dame Dept of Sociology
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