statistical software

Tim Dickinson timd at ROM.ON.CA
Sun Jun 9 21:00:20 CDT 1996

i saw this query and dick jensen's reply just now.  i agree with dick that in
many ways systat is the best single pkg for data analysis and graphics that is
also fairly easy to start using for both uni- and multivariate analyses right
out of the box.  likewise, jim rohlf's pgms are also very useful.  ntsys-pc can
be particularly helpful in a teaching situation as it breaks analyses down into
their component steps.

that said, and depending on yr needs, there are two more pkg's you shd
consider:  s-plus and syn-tax 5.0.  s-plus is a very powerful environment for
data analysis and graphics that lets you do quite a bit straight from the box,
and much, much more if you are willing to learn how to program functions in its
object-oriented environment.  not for the faint-hearted, but potentially very
rewarding.  syn-tax is much closer to ntsys-pc in being as much a teaching tool
as an analytical one.  what makes it special is the wealth of methods for
clustering, and the inclusion of methods for comparing not only ordination
results from different analyses but also dendrograms.  the author has just
written a routine to convert tree files in the nexus format (cf. paup,
macclade, phylip) to the format used by syn-tax, so that phenetic analyses
(clustering, ordination) of cladograms can readily be carried out.  s-plus
comes from a division of mathsoft, inc.  101 main st. cambridge ma02142 usa;
syn-tax is available in north america from rohlf's exeter software (100 north
country road, setauket ny 11733 usa) or from the author, janos podani
(podani at  cheers, ---tad.

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