Archaeology

Download e-book for kindle: Quantifying Archaeology by Stephen Shennan

By Stephen Shennan

This ebook introduces archaeologists to crucial quantitative equipment, from the preliminary description of archaeological facts to innovations of multivariate research. those are offered within the context of wide-spread difficulties in archaeological perform, an process designed to demonstrate their relevance and to beat the phobia of arithmetic from which archaeologists usually undergo

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Let us now have a look at the symbolism that relates to the arithmetic mean, which is conventionally expressed by x (called x-bar). We can say in general that : X\ i Λ*2 i X3 1 ... 1 Xn X = n where χλ is our first observation, x2 the second observation, and so on. In the particular case of the post-holes : χλ = 48 x2 = 57 x3 = 66 x4 = 48 x5 = 50 x6 = 58 JC7 = 47 There are seven observations here, n = 7, and the last observation is the seventh ; so here xn = x7 = 47. But we can summarise conveniently still further and say X] T" X2 1 X3 "Γ .

Such difficulties present less of a problem nowadays because of the sophistication of modern calculators but it is probably still worth giving one of the versions of the formula that are easier to compute : Let us work out the standard deviation of the seven post-hole diameters, using both versions of the formula. We have already seen that Numerical Summaries of a Single Variable 43 Using the first formula the sum of the squared deviations is Before illustrating the second method, and making sure we get the same result, it is important to be clear about the difference between the terms Σχ?

4. The distances from the median to the hinges will be smaller than those from the hinges to the extremes because of the concentration of the cases in the middle part of the distribution. 7) but, as we shall see, this form of numerical summary does not give as much weight as it might to the distribution tails and these need to be investigated as well. Numerical summaries of the kind we have just seen may be contrasted with visual summaries of a distribution, as opposed also to the more complete visual representation of the stem-and-leaf diagram.

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