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The above definition seems to be the most comprehensive
1.5 Functions of Statistics:
There are many functions of statistics. Let us consider the
following five important functions.
Generally speaking by the word ‘ to condense’ , we mean to
reduce or to lessen. Condensation is mainly applied at embracing
the understanding of a huge mass of data by providing only few
observations. If in a particular class in Chennai School, only marks
in an examination are given, no purpose will be served. Instead if
we are given the average mark in that particular examination,
definitely it serves the better purpose. Similarly the range of marks
is also another measure of the data. Thus, Statistical measures help
to reduce the complexity of the data and consequently to
understand any huge mass of data.
3 1.5.2 Comparison:
Classification and tabulation are the two methods that are
used to condense the data. They help us to compare data collected
from different sources. Grand totals, measures of central tendency
measures of dispersion, graphs and diagrams, coefficient of
correlation etc provide ample scope for comparison.
If we have one group of data, we can compare within itself.
If the rice production (in Tonnes) in Tanjore district is known, then
we can compare one region with another region within the district.
Or if the rice production (in Tonnes) of two different districts
within Tamilnadu is known, then also a comparative study can be
made. As statistics is an aggregate of facts and figures, comparison
is always possible and in fact comparison helps us to understand
the data in a better way.
By the word forecasting, we mean to predict or to estimate
before hand. Given the data of the last ten years connected to
rainfall of a particular district in Tamilnadu, it is possible to predict
or forecast the rainfall for the near future. In business also
forecasting plays a dominant role in connection with production,
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- Winter '08