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Re: st: What is EGEN_Varname and EGEN_SVarname ?

From   Maarten Buis <[email protected]>
To   [email protected]
Subject   Re: st: What is EGEN_Varname and EGEN_SVarname ?
Date   Mon, 30 Jul 2012 16:16:35 +0200

On Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 3:48 PM, Pradipto Banerjee wrote:
> I don't understand your line of thought ... you actually want me NOT to advance my understanding of programming in Stata? Why are some folks allowed to understand advanced programming and others not?

I think I do understand that line of thought. It is very common in a
statistical consulting session that someone comes in with a question
like "I need to do complicated model abc" and leave with the advise
"look at a cross tabulation". It is not that we want to prevent you
from learning complicated model abc, but we think a cross tabulation
is a better answer to your research question. I think something
similar is going on here: you thought you needed to program your own
-egen- command and Nick told you that that is a bad idea. You can
decide to follow Nick's advise or not, that is up to you.

> Sorry to say this, but one huge negative of Stata is that there is so much undocumented stuff - and for efficient programming we have to repeatedly rely on email lists like this.

I do a lot of programming in Stata and that is not my experience. I
guess it takes a bit of getting use to each system of documenting
software, and if you are new to a piece of software like Stata, the
documentation can be daunting, but that does not mean the
documentation does not exist. There are some helper programs that are
not documented(*). In general, you do not want to use those, as
StataCorp will reserve the right to change those without ensuring
backwards compatibility. You can look inside those, and borrow the
tricks you need.

Hope this helps,

(*) This is different from undocumented, see: -help undocumented-.

Maarten L. Buis
Institut fuer Soziologie
Universitaet Tuebingen
Wilhelmstrasse 36
72074 Tuebingen
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