Monday, 7 April 2008

Excel and statistics: using the binomial distribution to find unexpected values

A very long time ago (no, I’m not saying how long, and it’d be rude of you to ask) I managed to just about scrape a pass-mark at A Level Maths & Statistics.  Since then I’ve managed to remember nothing but a few pieces of terminology (“poisson distribution” was my favourite) without remembering what any of it was actually for.
I vaguely recall that we spent a lot of time getting our heads round binomial distribution, which I kind of remember as being important but I couldn’t remember how or why.
Anyway, it seems I needn’t have bothered because after reading Gabhan Berry’s post on the Excel blog I now understand it better than I did when I took the exam.  And without having to sit in a warm, stuffy room listening to our lecturer, Mr Monotone.  Marvellous :o)

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