# Tagged Questions

Mathematical statistics is the study of statistics from a mathematical standpoint, using probability theory as well as other branches of mathematics such as linear algebra and analysis.

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### Calculate variance from a stream of sample values

I'd like to calculate a standard deviation for a very large (but known) number of sample values, with the highest accuracy possible. The number of samples is larger than can be efficiently stored in ...
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### The birthday paradox [duplicate]

I would like a better understanding of the famous birthday paradox. "What is the probability that, in a set of n randomly chosen people, some pair of them will have the same birthday?" I understood ...
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### What does multiplication mean in probability theory?

For independent events, the probability of both occurring is the product of the probabilities of the individual events: $Pr(A\; \text{and}\;B) = Pr(A \cap B)= Pr(A)\times Pr(B)$. Example: if you ...
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### Why are maximum likelihood estimators used?

Is there a motivating reason for using maximum likelihood estimators? As for as I can tell there is no reason why they should be unbiased estimators (Can their expectation even be calculated in a ...
1answer
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### What's the difference between Rao-Blackwell Theorem and Lehmann-Scheffé Theorem?

I know that the Rao-Blackwell theorem states that an unbiased estimator given a sufficient statistic will yield the best unbiased estimator. Is the only difference between Lehmann-Scheffé and Rao-...
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### How does accuracy of a survey depend on sample size and population size?

Which survey is more accurate? Assume the samples are taken perfectly randomly. A sample of 100 people out of a population of 1000 (sample is 10% of population) A sample of 1000 people out of a ...
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### Improbable vs Impossible?

I was wondering how mathematics in general or any of its sub fields e.g.statistics, probability, define the words Improbable and Impossible. I get their English meaning, that something is impossible ...
2answers
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### What is the T-distribution, and what is it used for?

(I'll post my own answer to this, but don't hesitate to post your own!) Student's t-distribution, or T-distribution, was introduced in 1908 by William Sealey Gossett writing under the pseudonym "...
1answer
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### Expected number of card draws to get all 4 suits

You have a standard 52 card deck, with 13 cards of each of the 4 suits (Hearts, Diamonds, Spades, Clubs). What is the expected number of cards you have to draw from the deck until you have all 4 suits ...
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### Proof for the calculation of mean in negative binomial distribution

I am trying to figure out the mean for negative binomial distribution but have run into mistakes. I know there are other posts on deriving the mean bu I am attempting to derive it in my own way. I ...
3answers
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### Birthday “Paradox” - another, different, version!

Background Many people are familiar with the so-called Birthday "Paradox" that, in a room of $23$ people, there is a better than $50/50$ chance that two of them will share the same birthday. In its ...
1answer
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### Probability of duplicate GUID

A GUID (globally unique identifier) is a 32 character hexadecimal string: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Globally_Unique_Identifier If you randomly generate 2, the chance of them being the same is ...
2answers
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### Determine the Size of a Test Bank

Suppose you have two people take an exam which is composed of 30 questions which are randomly chosen from a test bank of n questions. Person A and Person B both take different randomly generated ...
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### What does the Big intersection or union sign of a set means?

Normally what I know is that you can make a union or an intersection between 2 sets. In this expression Its a big union of a set. I'm asking about the meaning of such expression, What does it mean. ...
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### Consecutive Coin Toss with static tosses

I'm writing an algorithm for a coin toss problem. But I have a problem understanding the calculation given. Here is the question: You have an unbiased coin which you want to keep tossing until ...
1answer
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### Mean and Median in a Classic River Crossing Problem

Consider the following classic problem: Four people on the west side of a river wish to use their single boat to get to the east side of a river. Each boat ride can hold at most two people, and the ...
1answer
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### A function of two cumulative probability distributions with same first 2 moments

Let $\Phi_1$ and $\Phi_2$ be cumulative probability distribution functions with domain $[L, \infty)$, $L\geq 0$, both distributions having the same expectation $\mu$ and the same second moment (hence ...
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1answer
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### Median of the F-distribution

Is the median of the F-distribution with m and n degrees of freedom decreasing in n, for any m? From experiments it looks like it might be, but I have been unable to prove it.
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573 views

### Variance of a max function

Say $x_1$ and $x_2$ are normal random variables with known means and standard deviations and $C$ is a constant. If $y = \max(x_1,x_2,C)$, what is $\mathrm{Var}(y)$? Well, I forgot to tell that $x_1$ ...
1answer
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### “How many public playgrounds exist in the United States?” How to answer using statistics and probability

I have a goal of estimating how many public playgrounds exist in the United States. There are many methods of gathering real data about playgrounds, but, unfortunately, there is no single authority ...
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### Sufficient statistics vs. Bayesian sufficient statistics

Given sample data $x_1, \ldots, x_n$ generated from a probability distribution $f(x|\theta)$ ($\theta$ being an unknown parameter), a statistic $T(x_1, \ldots, x_n)$ of the sample data is called ...
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### Higher math and statistics/probability

So I've heard that certain areas of statistics and probability use manifolds and results from analysis and topology. Given that I lack the background to see where manifolds would become useful in ...
0answers
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### Hottest Days of The Year

Recently, there has been much talk in the media of it being the hottest day of the year so far. It has always seemed to me that there are likely many more of these in the northern hemisphere than the ...
0answers
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### Donsker's Theorem for triangular arrays

Assume we have a sequence of smooth i.i.d. random variables $(X_i)_{i=1}^{\infty}$. Given $\alpha>0$, does some sort of Donsker's Theorem hold for $\left(\frac{X_i}{n^{\alpha}}\right)_{i=1}^n$? ...
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### Does this calculation have a name, or a generic formulation?

Background I would appreciate help in identifying / explaining this operation: To calculate each of the $n$ values of $f(\Phi)$: sample from the distribution of each of $i$ parameters, $\phi_i$ ...
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### Expected Value of the maximum of two exponentially distributed random variables

I want to find the expected value of $\text{max}\{X,Y\}$ where $X$ ist $\text{exp}(\lambda)$-distributed and $Y$ ist $\text{exp}(\eta)$-distributed. X and Y are independent. I figured out how to do ...
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### Why does the keyword “distinct” change the solution to much?

I don't understand why the second answer is different from the first. Aren't they the exact same thing? How many ways can we distribute 10 distinct balls into 5 distinct boxes? $5^{10}$ is correct ...
4answers
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### Closed form equation for win percentage of two battling armies

I was pondering a battle mechanic for a board game that is similar to, but simpler than battling armies in Risk. Consider one army of size X and a second army of size Y. The battle occurs by ...
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### Can you demystify the Power Law?

How would you describe the Power Law in simple words? The Wikipedia entry is too long and verbose. I would like to understand the concept of the power law and how and why it shows up everywhere. For ...