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Please could some real experts give an opinion on this question on English.SE: What preposition to use when fitting data?

Do we fit data with, by, or as a linear function?


Forgive me as I do not know how best to highlight this and I'm happy for this question be be deleted.

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By analogy: "Data" is a person with fixed size. "Function with adjustable parameters" is a suit. Does the tailor fit the suit to the person, or fit the person to the suit? –  user2468 Aug 25 '12 at 1:03
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@Jen, with the last option, you've heard of Procrustes? :) –  J. M. Aug 25 '12 at 1:14
    
we fit data on behalf of a linear function –  martin Aug 25 '12 at 1:32

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

One does no such thing. One fits a linear function to data, not the other way around. Unless of course one is inventing "data" that will nearly fit a preconceived pattern, a practice not entirely unknown in Science.

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The last sentence is true, funny, and depressing all at the same time... –  J. M. Aug 25 '12 at 1:13
    
Applied Ramsey theory... –  Arkamis Aug 25 '12 at 1:46

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