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RE: st: My last word on strange world

From   "Nick Cox" <[email protected]>
To   <[email protected]>
Subject   RE: st: My last word on strange world
Date   Thu, 10 Jan 2008 15:48:18 -0000

Jeph Herrin

I'd like to weigh in with the . detractors.

Logically, a missing value should return FALSE when compared
with any number. Period. (ahem). That StataCorp has chosen
to jettison this logic has caused me no small number of large
headaches, even after years of Stata use. That StataCorp seems
to have jettisoned this logic simply to be consistent with
an arbitrary -sort- implementation is mystifying.

NJC>>> Are you asking that 42 > . and 42 < . _both_ return FALSE? 
That . == . returns FALSE? 

If a user sorts on a variable which has missing values, then
Stata could return an error message saying that the variable
cannot be sorted because of missing values. The user can then
repair or truncate their data so that sorting makes sense.

NJC >>> Sorry, but I think that's the most impracticable suggestion 
so far in this thread, with some stiff competition! 

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