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st: programatically dropping variables that don't actually vary

From   "Earl, Jennifer Suzanne - (jenniferearl)" <>
To   "" <>
Subject   st: programatically dropping variables that don't actually vary
Date   Thu, 9 Aug 2012 18:46:13 +0000


I am working with a large number of dummy variables and using collapse to create derivative datasets that are the frequencies of 1's for each dummy variable (a couple of hundred through foreach loops). I want to drop any of the dummy variables that never had a 1 (so mean(dummy1)==0, or max(dummy)==0) but it seems that drop only lets you use an if statement to drop observations, but not an if statement to drop variables.  

My best guess is to use a list means to create a list of the variable names that can be stored in a local and then fed into a drop command, but can't seem to make that work either since I only want the list of variable names that have a mean of 0. Or maybe transpose the dataset, drop then since the variables are now observations, and transpose back? Another solution would be save through StatTansfer and use it's drop constants feature, and then bring the data back in, but there must be an easier way. 

Any ideas?



Jennifer Earl
Professor of Sociology
Social Sciences 421
University of Arizona
Tucson, AZ 85721-0027

Phone: (520) 621-3296

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