Probability Distributions

PDF generated using the open source mwlib toolkit. See for more information. PDF generated at: Tue, 05 Oct 2010 15:08:33 UTC

Probability distribution 1 7 7 13 15 21 27 34 37 45 53 57 60 64 68 71 78 84 88 108 117 129 134 140 140 142 148 156 158 163 170 177

Continous Distributions
Beta distribution Burr distribution Cauchy distribution Chi-square distribution Dirichlet distribution F-distribution Gamma distribution Exponential distribution Erlang distribution Kumaraswamy distribution Inverse Gaussian distribution Laplace distribution L€vy distribution Log-logistic distribution Log-normal distribution Logistic distribution Normal distribution Pareto distribution Student's t-distribution Uniform distribution (continuous) Weibull distribution

Discrete distributions
Bernoulli distribution Beta-binomial distribution Binomial distribution Uniform distribution (discrete) Geometric distribution Hypergeometric distribution Negative binomial distribution Yule€Simon distribution

Zipf's law

180 186 186 189 196

Multivariate distributions
Multinomial distribution Multivariate normal distribution Wishart distribution

Article Sources and Contributors Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors 200 203

Article Licenses
License 205

Probability distribution


Probability distribution
In probability theory and statistics, a probability distribution identifies either the probability of each value of a random variable (when the variable is discrete), or the probability of the value falling within a particular interval (when the variable is continuous).[1] The probability distribution describes the range of possible values that a random variable can attain and the probability that the value of the random variable is within any (measurable) subset of that range. When the random variable takes values in the set of real numbers, the probability distribution is completely described by the cumulative distribution function, whose value at each real x is the probability that the random variable is smaller than or equal to x. The concept of the probability distribution and the random variables The Normal distribution, often called the "bell curve". which they describe underlies the mathematical discipline of probability theory, and the science of statistics. There is spread or variability in almost any value that can be measured in a population (e.g. height of people, durability of a metal, sales growth, traffic flow, etc.); almost all measurements are made with some intrinsic error; in physics many processes are described probabilistically, from the kinetic properties of gases to the quantum mechanical description of fundamental particles. For these and many other reasons, simple numbers are often inadequate for describing a quantity, while probability distributions are often more appropriate. There are various probability distributions that show up in various different applications. Two of the most important ones are the normal distribution and the categorical distribution. The normal distribution, also known as the Gaussian distribution, has a familiar "bell curve" shape and approximates many different naturally occurring distributions over real numbers. The categorical distribution describes the result of an experiment with a fixed, finite number of outcomes. For example, the toss of a fair coin is a categorical distribution, where the possible outcomes are heads and tails, each with probability 1/2.

Formal definition
In the measure-theoretic formalization of probability theory, a random variable is defined as a measurable function X from a probability space to measurable space . A probability distribution is the pushforward measure X*P€=€PX €1 on .

Probability distributions of real-valued random variables
Because a probability distribution Pr on the real line is determined by the probability of a real-valued random variable X being in a half-open interval (-•,€x], the probability distribution is completely characterized by its cumulative distribution function:

Probability distribution Discrete probability distribution A probability distribution is called discrete if its cumulative distribution function only increases in jumps. More precisely, a probability distribution is discrete if there is a finite or countable set whose probability is 1. For many familiar discrete distributions, the set of possible values is topologically discrete in the sense that all its points are isolated points. But, there are discrete distributions for which this countable set is dense on the real line. Discrete distributions are characterized by a probability mass function, such that


Continuous probability distribution By one convention, a probability distribution is called continuous if its cumulative distribution function for all . is continuous and, therefore, the probability measure of singletons

Another convention reserves the term continuous probability distribution for absolutely continuous distributions. These distributions can be characterized by a probability density function: a non-negative Lebesgue integrable function defined on the real numbers such that

Discrete distributions and some continuous distributions (like the Cantor distribution) do not admit such a density.

The support of a distribution is the smallest closed interval/set whose complement has probability zero. It may be understood as the points or elements that are actual members of the distribution. A discrete random variable is a random variable whose probability distribution is discrete. Similarly, a continuous random variable is a random variable whose probability distribution is continuous.

Simulated sampling
The following algorithm lets one sample from a probability distribution (either discrete or continuous). This algorithm assumes that one has access to the inverse of the cumulative distribution (easy to calculate with a discrete distribution, can be approximated for continuous distributions) and a computational primitive called "random()" which returns an arbitrary-precision floating-point-value in the range of [0,1).
define function sampleFrom(cdfInverse (type="function")): // input: // // // cdfInverse(x) - the inverse of the CDF of the probability distribution example: if distribution is [[Gaussian]], one can use a [[Taylor approximation]] of the inverse of [[erf]](x) example: if distribution is discrete, see explanation below pseudocode

// output: // type="real number" - a value sampled from the probability distribution represented by cdfInverse

r = random()

while(r == 0): r = random()

(make sure r is not equal to 0; discontinuity possible)

return cdfInverse(r)

Probability distribution For discrete distributions, the function cdfInverse (inverse of cumulative distribution function) can be calculated from samples as follows: for each element in the sample range (discrete values along the x-axis), calculating the total samples before it. Normalize this new discrete distribution. This new discrete distribution is the CDF, and can be turned into an object which acts like a function: calling cdfInverse(query) returns the smallest x-value such that the CDF is greater than or equal to the query.
define function dataToCdfInverse(discreteDistribution (type="dictionary")) // input: // // // discreteDistribution - a mapping from possible values to frequencies/probabilities example: {0 -> 1-p, 1 -> p} would be a [[Bernoulli distribution]] with chance=p example: setting p=0.5 in the above example, this is a [[fair coin]] where P(X=1)->"heads" and P(X=0)->"tails"


// output: // type="function" - a function that represents (CDF^-1)(x)

define function cdfInverse(x): integral = 0 go through mapping (key->value) in sorted order, adding value to integral... stop when integral > x (or integral >= x, doesn't matter) return last key we added

return cdfInverse

Note that often, mathematics environments and computer algebra systems will have some way to represent probability distributions and sample from them. This functionality might even have been developed in third-party libraries. Such packages greatly facilitate such sampling, most likely have optimizations for common distributions, and are likely to be more elegant than the above bare-bones solution.

Some properties
• The probability density function of the sum of two independent random variables is the convolution of each of their density functions. • The probability density function of the difference of two independent random variables is the cross-correlation of their density functions. • Probability distributions are not a vector space ‚ they are not closed under linear combinations, as these do not preserve non-negativity or total integral 1 ‚ but they are closed under convex combination, thus forming a convex subset of the space of functions (or measures).

Common probability distributions
The following is a list of some of the most common probability distributions, grouped by the type of process that they are related to. For a more complete list, see list of probability distributions, which groups by the nature of the outcome being considered (discrete, continuous, multivariate, etc.) Note also that all of the univariate distributions below are singly-peaked; that is, it is assumed that the values cluster around a single point. In practice, actually-observed quantities may cluster around multiple values. Such quantities can be modeled using a mixture distribution.

Probability distribution


Related to real-valued quantities that grow linearly (e.g. errors, offsets)
• Normal distribution (aka Gaussian distribution), for a single such quantity; the most common continuous distribution • Multivariate normal distribution (aka multivariate Gaussian distribution), for vectors of correlated outcomes that are individually Gaussian-distributed

Related to positive real-valued quantities that grow exponentially (e.g. prices, incomes, populations)
• Log-normal distribution, for a single such quantity whose log is normally distributed • Pareto distribution, for a single such quantity whose log is exponentially distributed; the prototypical power law distribution

Related to real-valued quantities that are assumed to be uniformly distributed over a (possibly unknown) region
• Discrete uniform distribution, for a finite set of values (e.g. the outcome of a fair die) • Continuous uniform distribution, for continuously-distributed values

Related to Bernoulli trials (yes/no events, with a given probability)
Basic distributions • Bernoulli distribution, for the outcome of a single Bernoulli trial (e.g. success/failure, yes/no) • Binomial distribution, for the number of "positive occurrences" (e.g. successes, yes votes, etc.) given a fixed total number of independent occurrences • Negative binomial distribution, for binomial-type observations but where the quantity of interest is the number of failures before a given number of successes occurs • Geometric distribution, for binomial-type observations but where the quantity of interest is the number of failures before the first success; a special case of the negative binomial distribution Related to sampling schemes over a finite population • Binomial distribution, for the number of "positive occurrences" (e.g. successes, yes votes, etc.) given a fixed number of total occurrences, using sampling with replacement • Hypergeometric distribution, for the number of "positive occurrences" (e.g. successes, yes votes, etc.) given a fixed number of total occurrences, using sampling without replacement • Beta-binomial distribution, for the number of "positive occurrences" (e.g. successes, yes votes, etc.) given a fixed number of total occurrences, sampling using a Polya urn scheme (in some sense, the "opposite" of sampling without replacement)

Probability distribution


Related to categorical outcomes (events with K possible outcomes, with a given probability for each outcome)
• Categorical distribution, for a single categorical outcome (e.g. yes/no/maybe in a survey); a generalization of the Bernoulli distribution • Multinomial distribution, for the number of each type of catergorical outcome, given a fixed number of total outcomes; a generalization of the binomial distribution • Multivariate hypergeometric distribution, similar to the multinomial distribution, but using sampling without replacement; a generalization of the hypergeometric distribution

Related to events in a Poisson process (events that occur independently with a given rate)
• Poisson distribution, for the number of occurrences of a Poisson-type event in a given period of time • Exponential distribution, for the time before the next Poisson-type event occurs

Useful for hypothesis testing related to normally-distributed outcomes
• Chi-square distribution, the distribution of a sum of squared standard normal variables; useful e.g. for inference regarding the sample variance of normally-distributed samples (see chi-square test) • Student's t distribution, the distribution of the ratio of a standard normal variable and the square root of a scaled chi squared variable; useful for inference regarding the mean of normally-distributed samples with unknown variance (see Student's t-test) • F-distribution, the distribution of the ratio of two scaled chi squared variables; useful e.g. for inferences that involve comparing variances or involving R-squared (the squared correlation coefficient)

Useful as conjugate prior distributions in Bayesian inference
• Beta distribution, for a single probability (real number between 0 and 1); conjugate to the Bernoulli distribution and binomial distribution • Gamma distribution, for a non-negative scaling parameter; conjugate to the rate parameter of a Poisson distribution or exponential distribution, the precision (inverse variance) of a normal distribution, etc. • Dirichlet distribution, for a vector of probabilities that must sum to 1; conjugate to the categorical distribution and multinomial distribution; generalization of the beta distribution • Wishart distribution, for a symmetric non-negative definite matrix; conjugate to the inverse of the covariance matrix of a multivariate normal distribution; generalzation of the gamma distribution

See also
• • • Copula (statistics) • Cumulative distribution function Histogram • • Inverse transform sampling Likelihood function List of statistical topics • • • Probability density function Random variable Riemann‚Stieltjes integral application to probability theory

[1] Everitt, B.S. (2006) The Cambridge Dictionary of Statistics, Third Edition. pp. 313‚314. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. ISBN 0521690277

Probability distribution


External links
• An 8-foot-tall (2.4 m) Probability Machine (named Sir Francis) comparing stock market returns to the randomness of the beans dropping through the quincunx pattern. ( watch?v=AUSKTk9ENzg) from Index Funds Advisors (, • Interactive Discrete and Continuous Probability Distributions ( SOCR_Distributions.html), • A Compendium of Common Probability Distributions ( Compendium.pdf) • A Compendium of Distributions (, • Statistical Distributions - Overview (, • Probability Distributions ( in Quant Equation Archive, • A Probability Distribution Calculator (, • (, Distribution Explorer: a mixed C++ and C# Windows application that allows you to explore the properties of 20+ statistical distributions, and calculate CDF, PDF & quantiles. Written using open-source C++ from the ( Math Toolkit library. • Explore different probability distributions and fit your own dataset online - interactive tool (http://www.xjtek. com/anylogic/demo_models/111/),


Continous Distributions
Beta distribution
Beta Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

shape (real) shape (real)

no closed form for

see text see text

Beta distribution In probability theory and statistics, the beta distribution is a family of continuous probability distributions defined on the interval (0, 1) parameterized by two positive shape parameters, typically denoted by ‚ and ƒ. It is the special case of the Dirichlet distribution with only two parameters. Just as the Dirichlet distribution is the conjugate prior of the multinomial distribution and categorical distribution, the beta distribution is the conjugate prior of the binomial distribution and bernoulli distribution. In Bayesian statistics, it can be seen as the likelihood of the parameter p of a binomial distribution from observing ‚€€€1 independent events with probability p and ƒ€€€1 with probability 1€€€p.


Probability density function
The probability density function of the beta distribution is:


is the gamma function. The beta function, B, appears as a normalization constant to ensure that the total

probability integrates to unity.

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function is


is the incomplete beta function and

is the regularized incomplete beta function.

The expected value ( ), variance (second central moment), skewness (third central moment), and kurtosis excess (forth central moment) of a Beta distribution random variable X with parameters ‚ and ƒ are:

The skewness is

The kurtosis excess is:

In general, the

th raw moment is given by

Beta distribution where is a Pochhammer symbol representing rising factorial. It can also be written in a recursive form as


One can also show that

Quantities of information
Given two beta distributed random variables, X ~ Beta(‚, ƒ) and Y ~ Beta(‚', ƒ'), the information entropy of X is [1] where is the digamma function.

The cross entropy is It follows that the Kullback‚Leibler divergence between these two beta distributions is

The beta density function can take on different shapes depending on the values of the two parameters: • • • • • • • • • • • Moreover, if is the uniform [0,1] distribution is U-shaped (red plot) or is strictly decreasing (blue plot) is strictly convex is a straight line is strictly concave or is strictly increasing (green plot) is strictly convex is a straight line is strictly concave is unimodal (purple & black plots) then the density function is symmetric about 1/2 (red & purple plots).

Parameter estimation

be the sample mean and

be the sample variance. The method-of-moments estimates of the parameters are

When the distribution is required over an interval other than [0,€1], say with in the above equations.[2] [3]

, then replace



Beta distribution There is no closed-form of the maximum likelihood estimates for the parameters.


Related distributions
• If X has a beta distribution, then T€=€X/(1€€€X) has a "beta distribution of the second kind", also called the beta prime distribution. • The connection with the binomial distribution is mentioned below. • The Beta(1,1) distribution is identical to the standard uniform distribution. • If X has the Beta(3/2,3/2) distribution and R > 0 is a real parameter, then Y€:=€2RX€‚€R has the Wigner semicircle distribution. • If X and Y are independently distributed Gamma(€,€•) and Gamma(‚,€•) respectively, then X€/€(X€+€Y) is distributed Beta(€,€‚). • If X and Y are independently distributed Beta(‚,ƒ) and F(2‚,€2€) (Snedecor's F distribution with 2‚ and 2€ degrees of freedom), then Pr(X€ƒ€€/(€€+€x‚)) =€Pr(Y€>€x) for all x€>€0. • The beta distribution is a special case of the Dirichlet distribution for only two parameters. • The Kumaraswamy distribution resembles the beta distribution. • If has a uniform distribution, then , which is a special case of the Beta distribution called the power-function distribution. • Binomial opinions in subjective logic are equivalent to Beta distributions. • Beta(1/2,1/2) is the Jeffreys prior for a proportion and is equivalent to arcsine distribution. Beta(i,€j) with integer values of i and j is the distribution of the i-th order statistic (the i-th smallest value) of a sample of i€+€j€€€1 independent random variables uniformly distributed between 0 and 1. The cumulative probability from 0 to x is thus the probability that the i-th smallest value is less than x, in other words, it is the probability that at least i of the random variables are less than x, a probability given by summing over the binomial distribution with its p parameter set to x. This shows the intimate connection between the beta distribution and the binomial distribution.

Rule of succession
A classic application of the beta distribution is the rule of succession, introduced in the 18th century by Pierre-Simon Laplace in the course of treating the sunrise problem. It states that, given s successes in n conditionally independent Bernoulli trials with probability p, that p should be estimated as . This estimate may be regarded as the

expected value of the posterior distribution over p, namely Beta(s€+€1,€n€€€s€+€1), which is given by Bayes' rule if one assumes a uniform prior over p (i.e., Beta(1,€1)) and then observes that p generated s successes in n trials.

Bayesian statistics
Beta distributions are used extensively in Bayesian statistics, since beta distributions provide a family of conjugate prior distributions for binomial (including Bernoulli) and geometric distributions. The Beta(0,0) distribution is an improper prior and sometimes used to represent ignorance of parameter values.

Task duration modeling
The beta distribution can be used to model events which are constrained to take place within an interval defined by a minimum and maximum value. For this reason, the beta distribution „ along with the triangular distribution „ is used extensively in PERT, critical path method (CPM) and other project management / control systems to describe the time to completion of a task. In project management, shorthand computations are widely used to estimate the mean and standard deviation of the beta distribution:

Beta distribution


where a is the minimum, c is the maximum, and b is the most likely value. Using this set of approximations is known as three-point estimation and are exact only for particular values of ‚ and ƒ, specifically when[4] :

or vice versa. These are notably poor approximations for most other beta distributions exhibiting average errors of 40% in the mean and 549% in the variance[5] [6] [7]

Information theory
We introduce one exemplary use of beta distribution in information theory, particularly for the information theoretic performance analysis for a communication system. In sensor array systems, the distribution of two vector production is used for the performance estimation in frequent. Assume that s and v are vectors the (M€€€1)-dimensional nullspace of h with isotropic i.i.d. where s, v and h are in CM and the elements of h are i.i.d complex Gaussian random values. Then, the production of s and v with absolute of the result |sHv| is beta(1,€M€€€2) distributed.

Four parameters
A beta distribution with the two shape parameters € and ‚ is supported on the range [0,1]. It is possible to alter the location and scale of the distribution by introducing two further parameters representing the minimum and maximum values of the distribution.[8] The probability density function of the four parameter beta distribution is given by

The standard form can be obtained by letting

[1] A. C. G. Verdugo Lazo and P. N. Rathie. "On the entropy of continuous probability distributions," IEEE Trans. Inf. Theory, IT-24:120‚122,1978. [2] Engineering Statistics Handbook (http:/ / www. itl. nist. gov/ div898/ handbook/ eda/ section3/ eda366h. htm) [3] Brighton Webs Ltd. Data & Analysis Services for Industry & Education (http:/ / www. brighton-webs. co. uk/ distributions/ beta. asp) [4] Grubbs, Frank E. (1962). Attempts to Validate Certain PERT Statistics or …Picking on PERT†. Operations Research 10(6), p. 912‚915. [5] Keefer, Donald L. and Verdini, William A. (1993). Better Estimation of PERT Activity Time Parameters. Management Science 39(9), p. 1086‚1091. [6] Keefer, Donald L. and Bodily, Samuel E. (1983). Three-point Approximations for Continuous Random variables. Management Science 29(5), p. 595‚609. [7] DRMI Newsletter, Issue 12, April 8, 2005 (http:/ / www. nps. edu/ drmi/ docs/ 1apr05-newsletter. pdf) [8] Beta4 distribution (http:/ / www. vosesoftware. com/ ModelRiskHelp/ Distributions/ Continuous_distributions/ Beta_distribution. htm)

Beta distribution


External links
• Weisstein, Eric W., " Beta Distribution (" from MathWorld. • "Beta Distribution" ( by Fiona Maclachlan, the Wolfram Demonstrations Project, 2007. • Beta Distribution ‚ Overview and Example (, • Beta Distribution (, • Beta Distributions ( ‚ Applet showing beta distributions in action.

Burr distribution


Burr distribution
Burr Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: where B() is the beta function

Burr distribution

mgf: cf:

In probability theory, statistics and econometrics, the Burr Type XII distribution or simply the Burr distribution is a continuous probability distribution for a non-negative random variable. It is also known as the Singh-Maddala distribution and is one of a number of different distributions sometimes called the "generalized log-logistic distribution". It is most commonly used to model household income (See: Household income in the U.S. and compare to magenta graph at right). The Burr distribution has probability density function:[1] [2]

and cumulative distribution function:

See also
Log-logistic distribution

[1] Maddala, G.S.. 1983, 1996. Limited-Dependent and Qualitative Variables in Econometrics. Cambridge University Press. [2] Tadikamalla, Pandu R. (1980), "A Look at the Burr and Related Distributions" (http:/ / links. jstor. org/ sici?sici=0306-7734(198012)48:3<337:ALATBA>2. 0. CO;2-Z), International Statistical Review 48 (3): 337‚344, doi:10.2307/1402945,

Cauchy distribution


Cauchy distribution
Not to be confused with the Lorenz curve.
Cauchy€Lorentz Probability density function

The purple curve is the standard Cauchy distribution Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf:

location (real) scale (real)

cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: not defined not defined not defined not defined not defined

The Cauchy€Lorentz distribution, named after Augustin Cauchy and Hendrik Lorentz, is a continuous probability distribution. As a probability distribution, it is known as the Cauchy distribution, while among physicists, it is known as the Lorentz distribution, Lorentz(ian) function, or Breit€Wigner distribution.

Cauchy distribution Its importance in physics is due to its being the solution to the differential equation describing forced resonance.[1] In mathematics, it is closely related to the Poisson kernel, which is the fundamental solution for the Laplace equation in the upper half-plane. In spectroscopy, it is the description of the shape of spectral lines which are subject to homogeneous broadening in which all atoms interact in the same way with the frequency range contained in the line shape. Many mechanisms cause homogeneous broadening, most notably collision broadening, and Chantler‚Alda radiation.[2]


Probability density function
The Cauchy distribution has the probability density function

where x0 is the location parameter, specifying the location of the peak of the distribution, and ƒ is the scale parameter which specifies the half-width at half-maximum (HWHM). ƒ is also equal to half the interquartile range. Cauchy himself exploited such a density function in 1827, with infinitesimal scale parameter, in defining a Dirac delta function (see there). The amplitude of the above Lorentzian function is given by

The special case when x0 = 0 and ƒ = 1 is called the standard Cauchy distribution with the probability density function

In physics, a three-parameter Lorentzian function is often used, as follows:

where I is the height of the peak.

Cauchy distribution


Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function (cdf) is:

and the inverse cumulative distribution function of the Cauchy distribution is

The Cauchy distribution is an example of a distribution which has no mean, variance or higher moments defined. Its mode and median are well defined and are both equal to x0. When U and V are two independent normally distributed random variables with expected value 0 and variance 1, then the ratio U/V has the standard Cauchy distribution. If X1, ..., Xn are independent and identically distributed random variables, each with a standard Cauchy distribution, then the sample mean (X1 + ... + Xn)/n has the same standard Cauchy distribution (the sample median, which is not affected by extreme values, can be used as a measure of central tendency). To see that this is true, compute the characteristic function of the sample mean:


is the sample mean. This example serves to show that the hypothesis of finite variance in the central limit

theorem cannot be dropped. It is also an example of a more generalized version of the central limit theorem that is characteristic of all stable distributions, of which the Cauchy distribution is a special case. The Cauchy distribution is an infinitely divisible probability distribution. It is also a strictly stable distribution. The standard Cauchy distribution coincides with the Student's t-distribution with one degree of freedom. Like all stable distributions, the location-scale family to which the Cauchy distribution belongs is closed under linear transformations with real coefficients. In addition, the Cauchy distribution is the only univariate distribution which is closed under linear fractional transformations with real coefficients. In this connection, see also McCullagh's parametrization of the Cauchy distributions.

Characteristic function
Let X denote a Cauchy distributed random variable. The characteristic function of the Cauchy distribution is given by which is just the Fourier transform of the probability density. It follows that the probability may be expressed in terms of the characteristic function by:

Explanation of undefined moments
If a probability distribution has a density function f(x) then the mean is

The question is now whether this is the same thing as

Cauchy distribution


If at most one of the two terms in (2) is infinite, then (1) is the same as (2). But in the case of the Cauchy distribution, both the positive and negative terms of (2) are infinite. This means (2) is undefined. Moreover, if (1) is construed as a Lebesgue integral, then (1) is also undefined, since (1) is then defined simply as the difference (2) between positive and negative parts. However, if (1) is construed as an improper integral rather than a Lebesgue integral, then (2) is undefined, and (1) is not necessarily well-defined. We may take (1) to mean

and this is its Cauchy principal value, which is zero, but we could also take (1) to mean, for example,

which is not zero, as can be seen easily by computing the integral. Various results in probability theory about expected values, such as the strong law of large numbers, will not work in such cases.

Second moment
Without a defined mean, it is impossible to consider the variance or standard deviation of a standard Cauchy distribution, as these are defined with respect to the mean. But the second moment about zero can be considered. It turns out to be infinite:

Estimation of parameters
Since the mean and variance of the Cauchy distribution are not defined, attempts to estimate these parameters will not be successful. For example, if N samples are taken from a Cauchy distribution, one may calculate the sample mean as:

Although the sample values will be concentrated about the central value , the sample mean will become increasingly variable as more samples are taken, due to the increased likelihood of encountering sample points with a large absolute value. In fact, the distribution of the sample mean will be equal to the distribution of the samples themselves, i.e., the sample mean of a large sample is no better (or worse) an estimator of than any single observation from the sample. Similarly, calculating the sample variance will result in values that grow larger as more samples are taken. Therefore, more robust means of estimating the central value and the scaling parameter are needed. One simple method is to take the median value of the sample as an estimator of and half the sample interquartile range as an estimator of . Other, more precise and robust methods have been developed [3] For example, the truncated mean of the middle 24% sample order statistics produces an estimate for that is more efficient than [4] [5] using either the sample median or the full sample mean. However, due to the fat tails of the Cauchy distribution, the efficiency of the estimator decreases if the mean more than 24% of the sample is used.[4] [5] Maximum likelihood can also be used to estimate the parameters and . However, this tends to be complicated by the fact that this requires finding the roots of a high degree polynomial, and there can be multiple roots that represent local maxima.[6] Also, while the maximum likelihood estimator is asymptotically efficient, it is relatively inefficient for small samples.[7] The log-likelihood function for the Cauchy distribution for sample size n is: Maximizing the log likelihood function with respect to and produces the following system of equations:

Cauchy distribution


Solving just for

requires solving a polynomial of degree 2n€€€1,[6] and solving just for (first for , then ). It is also worthwhile to note that must satisfy

requires solving a is a .

polynomial of degree monotone function in

and that the solution

Therefore, whether solving for one parameter or for both paramters simultaneously, a numerical solution on a computer is typically required. The benefit of maximum likelihood estimation is asymptotic efficiency; estimating using the sample median is only about 81% as asymptotically efficient as estimating by maximum [5] [8] likelihood. The truncated sample mean using the middle 24% order statistics is about 88% as asymptotically efficient an estimator of as the maimum likelihood estimate.[5] When Newton's method is used to find the solution for the maximum likelihood estimate, the middle 24% order statistics can be used as an initial solution for .

Multivariate Cauchy distribution
A random vector X = (X1, ‡, Xk)ˆ is said to have the multivariate Cauchy distribution if every linear combination of its components Y€=€a1X1 + ‡ + akXk has a Cauchy distribution. That is, for any constant vector a ‰ Rk, the random variable Y = a€X should have a univariate Cauchy distribution.[9] The characteristic function of a multivariate Cauchy distribution is given by:



are real functions with

a homogeneous function of degree one and

a positive

homogeneous function of degree one. and

More formally:

An example of a bivariate Cauchy distribution can be given by:[10]

Note that in this example, even though there is no analogue to a covariance matrix, x and y are not statistically independent.[10]

Related distributions
• The ratio of two independent standard normal random variables is a standard Cauchy variable, a Cauchy(0,1). Thus the Cauchy distribution is a ratio distribution. • The standard Cauchy(0,1) distribution arises as a special case of Student's t distribution with one degree of freedom. • Relation to stable distribution: if X ~ Stable , then X ~Cauchy(„, ƒ).

Relativistic Breit€Wigner distribution
In nuclear and particle physics, the energy profile of a resonance is described by the relativistic Breit‚Wigner distribution, while the Cauchy distribution is the (non-relativistic) Breit‚Wigner distribution.

Cauchy distribution


See also
• • • • McCullagh's parametrization of the Cauchy distributions L„vy flight and L„vy process Slash distribution Wrapped Cauchy distribution

[1] http:/ / webphysics. davidson. edu/ Projects/ AnAntonelli/ node5. html Note that the intensity, which follows the Cauchy distribution, is the square of the amplitude. [2] E. Hecht (1987). Optics (2nd ed.). Addison-Wesley. p.€603. [3] Cane, Gwenda J. (1974). "Linear Estimation of Parameters of the Cauchy Distribution Based on Sample Quantiles" (http:/ / www. jstor. org/ stable/ 2285535). Journal of the American Statistical Association 69 (345): 243‚245. . [4] Rothenberg, Thomas J.; Fisher, Franklin, M.; Tilanus, C.B. (1966). "A note on estimation from a Cauchy sample". Journal of the American Statistical Association 59 (306): 460‚463. [5] Bloch, Daniel (1966). "A note on the estimation of the location parameters of the Cauchy distribution" (http:/ / www. jstor. org/ pss/ 2282794). Journal of the American Statistical Association 61 (316): 852‚855. . [6] Ferguson, Thomas S. (1978). "Maximum Likelihood Estimates of the Parameters of the Cauchy Distribution for Samples of Size 3 and 4" (http:/ / www. jstor. org/ pss/ 2286549). Journal of the American Statistical Association 73 (361): 211. . [7] Cohen Freue, Gabriella V. (2007). "The Pitman estimator of the Cauchy location parameter" (http:/ / faculty. ksu. edu. sa/ 69424/ USEPAP/ Coushy dist. pdf). Journal of Statistical Planning and Inference 137: 1901. . [8] Barnett, V. D. (1966). "Order Statistics Estimators of the Location of the Cauchy Distribution" (http:/ / www. jstor. org/ pss/ 2283210). Journal of the American Statistical Association 61 (316): 1205. . [9] Ferguson, Thomas S. (1962). "A Representation of the Symmetric Bivariate Cauchy Distribution" (http:/ / www. jstor. org/ pss/ 2237984). Journal of the American Statistical Association: 1256. . [10] Molenberghs, Geert; Lesaffre, Emmanuel (1997). "Non-linear Integral Equations to Approximate Bivariate Densities with Given Marginals and Dependence Function" (http:/ / www3. stat. sinica. edu. tw/ statistica/ oldpdf/ A7n310. pdf). Statistica Sinica 7: 713‚738. .

External links
• Earliest Uses: The entry on Cauchy distribution has some historical information. ( html) • Weisstein, Eric W., " Cauchy Distribution (" from MathWorld. • GNU Scientific Library ‚ Reference Manual ( html#SEC294)

Chi-square distribution


Chi-square distribution
Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function



parameters: k ‰ N1 „ degrees of freedom support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: (1 € 2 t)€k/2 € for t < … (1 € 2 i t)€k/2€€€€€€

x ‰ [0, +•)


max{ k € 2, 0 } 2k

12 / k

In probability theory and statistics, the chi-square distribution (also chi-squared or €€-distribution) with k degrees of freedom is the distribution of a sum of the squares of k independent standard normal random variables. It is one of the most widely used probability distributions in inferential statistics, e.g. in hypothesis testing, or in construction of confidence intervals.[2] [3] [4] [5] The best-known situations in which the chi-square distribution is used are the common chi-square tests for goodness of fit of an observed distribution to a theoretical one, and of the independence of two criteria of classification of

Chi-square distribution qualitative data. Many other statistical tests also lead to a use of this distribution, like Friedman's analysis of variance by ranks. The chi-square distribution is a special case of the gamma distribution.


If X1, ‡, Xk are independent, standard normal random variables, then the sum of their squares

is distributed according to the chi-square distribution with k degrees of freedom. This is usually denoted as

The chi-square distribution has one parameter: k „ a positive integer that specifies the number of degrees of freedom (i.e. the number of Xi†s)

Further properties of the chi-square distribution can be found in the box at right.

Probability density function
The probability density function (pdf) of the chi-square distribution is

where †(k/2) denotes the Gamma function, which has closed-form values at the half-integers. For derivations of the pdf in the cases of one and two degrees of freedom, see Proofs related to chi-square distribution.

Cumulative distribution function
Its cumulative distribution function is:

where ‡(k,z) is the lower incomplete Gamma function and P(k,z) is the regularized Gamma function. In a special case of k = 2 this function has a simple form:

Tables of this distribution „ usually in its cumulative form „ are widely available and the function is included in many spreadsheets and all statistical packages. For a closed form approximation for the CDF, see under Noncentral chi-square distribution.

Chi-square distribution


It follows from the definition of the chi-square distribution that the sum of independent chi-square variables is also chi-square distributed. Specifically, if {Xi}i=1n are independent chi-square variables with {ki}i=1n degrees of freedom, respectively, then Y = X1 + Š + Xn is chi-square distributed with k1 + Š + kn degrees of freedom.

Information entropy
The information entropy is given by where …(x) is the Digamma function.

Noncentral moments
The moments about zero of a chi-square distribution with k degrees of freedom are given by[6] [7]

The cumulants are readily obtained by a (formal) power series expansion of the logarithm of the characteristic function:

Asymptotic properties
By the central limit theorem, because the chi-square distribution is the sum of k independent random variables, it converges to a normal distribution for large k (k€>€50 is ‹approximately normalŒ).[8] Specifically, if X€~€†ˆ(k), then as k tends to infinity, the distribution of tends to a standard normal distribution. However, convergence is slow as the skewness is and the excess kurtosis is 12/k.

Other functions of the chi-square distribution converge more rapidly to a normal distribution. Some examples are: • If X ~ †ˆ(k) then to R. A. Fisher). • If X ~ †ˆ(k) then and Hilferty, 1931) is approximately normally distributed with mean and variance (Wilson is approximately normally distributed with mean and unit variance (result credited

Related distributions
A chi-square variable with k degrees of freedom is defined as the sum of the squares of k independent standard normal random variables. If Y is a k-dimensional Gaussian random vector with mean vector „ and rank k covariance matrix C, then X€=€(Y€„)TC€1(Y€„) is chi-square distributed with k degrees of freedom. The sum of squares of statistically independent unit-variance Gaussian variables which do not have mean zero yields a generalization of the chi-square distribution called the noncentral chi-square distribution. If Y is a vector of k i.i.d. standard normal random variables and A is a k‡k idempotent matrix with rank k•n then the quadratic form YTAY is chi-square distributed with k•n degrees of freedom. The chi-square distribution is also naturally related to other distributions arising from the Gaussian. In particular, • Y is F-distributed, Y€~€F(k1,k2) if • If X is chi-square distributed, then
2 2

where X1€~€†ˆ(k1) and X2 €~€†ˆ(k2) are statistically independent. is chi distributed.

• If X1 €~€ † k1 and X2 €~€ † k2 are statistically independent, then X1 + X2 €~€†2k1+k2. If X1 and X2 are not independent, then X1 + X2 is not chi-square distributed.

Chi-square distribution


The chi-square distribution is obtained as the sum of the squares of k independent, zero-mean, unit-variance Gaussian random variables. Generalizations of this distribution can be obtained by summing the squares of other types of Gaussian random variables. Several such distributions are described below.

Chi-square distributions
Noncentral chi-square distribution The noncentral chi-square distribution is obtained from the sum of the squares of independent Gaussian random variables having unit variance and nonzero means. Generalized chi-square distribution The generalized chi-square distribution is obtained from the quadratic form z€Az where z is a zero-mean Gaussian vector having an arbitrary covariance matrix, and A is an arbitrary matrix.

Gamma, exponential, and related distributions
The chi-square distribution X€~€†ˆ(k) is a special case of the gamma distribution, in that X€~€†(k/2,€2) (using the shape parameterization of the gamma distribution). Because the exponential distribution is also a special case of the Gamma distribution, we also have that if X€~€†ˆ(2), then X€~€Exp(1/2) is an exponential distribution. The Erlang distribution is also a special case of the Gamma distribution and thus we also have that if X€~€†ˆ(k) with even k, then X is Erlang distributed with shape parameter k/2 and scale parameter 1/2.

The chi-square distribution has numerous applications in inferential statistics, for instance in chi-square tests and in estimating variances. It enters the problem of estimating the mean of a normally distributed population and the problem of estimating the slope of a regression line via its role in Student†s t-distribution. It enters all analysis of variance problems via its role in the F-distribution, which is the distribution of the ratio of two independent chi-squared random variables divided by their respective degrees of freedom. Following are some of the most common situations in which the chi-square distribution arises from a Gaussian-distributed sample. • if X1, ‡, Xn are i.i.d. N(„, ˆ2) random variables, then . • The box below shows probability distributions with name starting with chi for some statistics based on Xi • Normal(„i, ˆ2i), i = 1, Š, k, independent random variables: where

Chi-square distribution


Name chi-square distribution


noncentral chi-square distribution chi distribution

noncentral chi distribution

Table of €€ value vs P value
The P-value is the probability of observing a test statistic at least as extreme in a Chi-square distribution. Accordingly, since the cumulative distribution function (CDF) for the appropriate degrees of freedom (df) gives the probability of having obtained a value less extreme than this point, subtracting the CDF value from 1 gives the P-value. The table below gives a number of P-values matching to †ˆ for the first 10 degrees of freedom. A P-value of 0.05 or less is usually regarded as statistically significant.
Degrees of freedom (df) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 P value (Probability) €€ value 0.004 0.02 0.06 0.15 0.46 1.07 0.10 0.35 0.71 1.14 1.63 2.17 2.73 3.32 3.94 0.95 0.21 0.45 0.71 1.39 2.41 0.58 1.01 1.42 2.37 3.66 1.06 1.65 2.20 3.36 4.88 1.61 2.34 3.00 4.35 6.06 2.20 3.07 3.83 5.35 7.23 2.83 3.82 4.67 6.35 8.38 3.49 4.59 5.53 7.34 9.52 [9]

1.64 3.22 4.64 5.99 7.29 8.56 9.80

2.71 4.60 6.25 7.78 9.24

3.84 5.99 7.82 9.49

6.64 9.21

10.83 13.82

11.34 16.27 13.28 18.47

11.07 15.09 20.52

10.64 12.59 16.81 22.46 12.02 14.07 18.48 24.32

11.03 13.36 15.51 20.09 26.12

4.17 5.38 6.39 8.34 10.66 12.24 14.68 16.92 21.67 27.88 4.86 6.18 7.27 9.34 11.78 13.44 15.99 18.31 23.21 29.59 0.90 0.80 0.70 0.50 0.30 Nonsignificant 0.20 0.10 0.05 0.01 0.001


Chi-square distribution


See also
• • • • • • • • • • • Cochran's theorem Degrees of freedom (statistics) Fisher's method for combining independent tests of significance Generalized chi-square distribution High-dimensional space Inverse-chi-square distribution Noncentral chi-square distribution Normal distribution Pearson's chi-square test Proofs related to chi-square distribution Wishart distribution

[1] M.A. Sanders. "Characteristic function of the central chi-square distribution" (http:/ / www. planetmathematics. com/ CentralChiDistr. pdf). . Retrieved 2009-03-06. [2] Abramowitz, Milton; Stegun, Irene A., eds. (1965), "Chapter 26" (http:/ / www. math. sfu. ca/ ~cbm/ aands/ page_940. htm), Handbook of Mathematical Functions with Formulas, Graphs, and Mathematical Tables, New York: Dover, pp.€940, MR0167642, ISBN€978-0486612720, . [3] NIST (2006). Engineering Statistics Handbook - Chi-Square Distribution (http:/ / www. itl. nist. gov/ div898/ handbook/ eda/ section3/ eda3666. htm) [4] Jonhson, N.L.; S. Kotz, , N. Balakrishnan (1994). Continuous Univariate Distributions (Second Ed., Vol. 1, Chapter 18). John Willey and Sons. ISBN€0-471-58495-9. [5] Mood, Alexander; Franklin A. Graybill, Duane C. Boes (1974). Introduction to the Theory of Statistics (Third Edition, p. 241-246). McGraw-Hill. ISBN€0-07-042864-6. [6] Chi-square distribution (http:/ / mathworld. wolfram. com/ Chi-SquaredDistribution. html), from MathWorld, retrieved Feb. 11, 2009 [7] M. K. Simon, Probability Distributions Involving Gaussian Random Variables, New York: Springer, 2002, eq. (2.35), ISBN 978-0-387-34657-1 [8] Box, Hunter and Hunter. Statistics for experimenters. Wiley. p.€46. [9] Chi-Square Test (http:/ / www2. lv. psu. edu/ jxm57/ irp/ chisquar. html) Table B.2. Dr. Jacqueline S. McLaughlin at The Pennsylvania State University. In turn citing: R.A. Fisher and F. Yates, Statistical Tables for Biological Agricultural and Medical Research, 6th ed., Table IV

• Wilson, E.B. Hilferty, M.M. (1931) The distribution of chi-square. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Washington, 17, 684‚688.

External links
• Earliest Uses of Some of the Words of Mathematics: entry on Chi square has a brief history (http://jeff560. • Course notes on Chi-Square Goodness of Fit Testing ( htm) from Yale University Stats 101 class. • Mathematica demonstration showing the chi-squared sampling distribution of various statistics, e.g. ‰xˆ, for a normal population ( • Simple algorithm for approximating cdf and inverse cdf for the chi-square distribution with a pocket calculator (

Dirichlet distribution


Dirichlet distribution

Several images of the probability density of the Dirichlet distribution when K=3 for various parameter vectors €. Clockwise from top left: €=(6,€2,€2), (3,€7,€5), (6,€2,€6), (2,€3,€4).

In probability and statistics, the Dirichlet distribution (after Johann Peter Gustav Lejeune Dirichlet), often denoted , is a family of continuous multivariate probability distributions parametrized by a vector of positive reals. It is the multivariate generalization of the beta distribution, and conjugate prior of the categorical distribution and multinomial distribution in Bayesian statistics. That is, its probability density function returns the belief that the probabilities of K rival events are given that each event has been observed times. The support of the Dirichlet distribution (i.e. the set of values for which the density is non-zero) is a -dimensional vector of real numbers in the range , all of which sum to 1. These can be viewed as the probabilities of a K-way categorical event. Another way to express this is that the domain of the Dirichlet distribution is itself a probability distribution, specifically a -dimensional discrete distribution. Note that the technical term for the set of points in the support of a -dimensional Dirichlet distribution is the open standard -simplex, which is a generalization of a triangle, embedded in the next-higher dimension. For example, with , the support looks like an equilateral triangle embedded in a downward-angle fashion in three-dimensional space, with vertices at and , i.e. touching each of the coordinate axes at a point 1 unit away from the origin. A very common special case is the symmetric Dirichlet distribution, where all of the elements making up the vector have the same value. In this case, the distribution can be parametrized by a single scalar value , called the concentration parameter. When this value is 1, the symmetric Dirichlet distribution is equivalent to a uniform distribution over the open standard standard -simplex, i.e. it is uniform over all points in its support. Values of the concentration parameter above 1 prefer variates that are dense, evenly-distributed distributions, i.e. all probabilities returned are similar to each other. Values of the concentration parameter below 1 prefer sparse distributions, i.e. most of the probabilities returned will be close to 0, and the vast majority of the mass will be concentrated in a few of the probabilities. The infinite-dimensional generalization of the Dirichlet distribution is the Dirichlet process.

Dirichlet distribution


Probability density function
The Dirichlet distribution of order K€Ž€2 with parameters €1, ..., €K >€0 has a probability density function with respect to Lebesgue measure on the Euclidean space RK‚1 given by

for all x1, ..., xK‚1 >€0 satisfying x1 + ... + xK‚1 <€1, where xK is an abbreviation for 1 ‚ x1 ‚ ... ‚ xK‚1. The density is zero outside this open (K€€€1)-dimensional simplex. The normalizing constant is the multinomial beta function, which can be expressed in terms of the gamma function:

Let , meaning that the first K€‚€1 components have the above density and


. Then

in fact, the marginals are Beta distributions:

Furthermore, if

(note that the matrix so defined is singular). The mode of the distribution is the vector (x1, ..., xK) with

Conjugate to multinomial
The Dirichlet distribution is conjugate to the multinomial distribution in the following sense: if

where ‚i is the number of occurrences of i in a sample of n points from the discrete distribution on {1, ..., K} defined by X, then

This relationship is used in Bayesian statistics to estimate the hidden parameters, X, of a categorical distribution (discrete probability distribution) given a collection of n samples. Intuitively, if the prior is represented as Dir(€), then Dir(€ + ‚) is the posterior following a sequence of observations with histogram ‚.

Dirichlet distribution


If X is a Dir(€) random variable, then we can use the exponential family differential identities to get an analytic expression for the expectation of and its associated covariance matrix:



is the digamma function,

is the trigamma function, and

is the Kronecker delta. The formula for

yields the following formula for the information entropy of X:

If marginal distribution of mentioned above. , then . This aggregation property may be used to derive the

If independent of Observe that any permutation of Dirichlet distribution). The derivation of the neutrality property: Let ,€ ,€ . And let ,€ ,€ . Here we aim to derive that . to is the following: . , then the vector~ is said to be neutral[1] in the sense that is and similarly for . is also neutral (a property not possessed by samples drawn from a generalized

For the purpose of convenience, we set also follow a Dirichlet distribution as We start the derivation with change of variables from The Jacobian can be calculated easily: Thus, the probability density function of

From the above equation, it is obvious that the derived probability density function is actually a joint distribution of two independent parts, a Beta distributed part and a Dirichlet distributed part. By trivially integrating out , the result is obvious.

Dirichlet distribution


Related distributions
• If, for


and Though the Xis are not independent from one another, they can be seen to be generated from a set of independent gamma random variables. Unfortunately, since the sum is lost in forming X, it is not possible to recover the original gamma random variables from these values alone. Nevertheless, because independent random variables are simpler to work with, this reparametrization can still be useful for proofs about properties of the Dirichlet distribution. The following is a derivation of Dirichlet distribution from Gamma distribution. Let Yi, i=1,2,...K be a list of i.i.d variables, following Gamma distributions with the same scale parameter • then the joint distribution of Yi, i=1,2,...K is

Through the change of variables, set Then, it's easy to derive that Then, the Jacobian is It means


By integrating out ƒ, we can get the Dirichlet distribution as the following.

According to the Gamma distribution,

Finally, we get the following Dirichlet distribution

where XK is (1-X1 - X2... -XK-1) • Multinomial opinions in subjective logic are equivalent to Dirichlet distributions.

Dirichlet distribution


Random number generation
Gamma distribution
A fast method to sample a random vector parameters from gamma distributions each with density from the K-dimensional Dirichlet distribution with follows immediately from this connection. First, draw K independent random samples

and then set

Marginal beta distributions
A less efficient algorithm[2] relies on the univariate marginal and conditional distributions being beta and proceeds as follows. Simulate For Finally, set from a , simulate . from a distribution. Then simulate distribution, and let in order, as follows. .

Dirichlet distribution


Intuitive interpretations of the parameters
String cutting
One example use of the Dirichlet distribution is if one wanted to cut strings (each of initial length 1.0) into K pieces with different lengths, where each piece had a designated average length, but allowing some variation in the relative sizes of the pieces. The €/€0 values specify the mean lengths of the cut pieces of string resulting from the distribution. The variance around this mean varies inversely with €0.

P•lya's urn
Consider an urn containing balls of K different colors. Initially, the urn contains €1 balls of color 1, €2 balls of color 2, and so on. Now perform N draws from the urn, where after each draw, the ball is placed back into the urn with an additional ball of the same color. In the limit as N approaches infinity, the proportions of different colored balls in the urn will be distributed as Dir(€1,...,€K).[3] For a formal proof, note that the proportions of the different colored balls form a bounded [0,1]K-valued martingale, hence by the martingale convergence theorem, these proportions converge almost surely and in mean to a limiting random vector. To see that this limiting vector has the above Dirichlet distribution, check that all mixed moments agree. Note that each draw from the urn modifies the probability of drawing a ball of any one color from the urn in the future. This modification diminishes with the number of draws, since the relative effect of adding a new ball to the urn diminishes as the urn accumulates increasing numbers of balls. This "diminishing returns" effect can also help explain how large € values yield Dirichlet distributions with most of the probability mass concentrated around a single point on the simplex.

Dirichlet distribution


See also
• • • • • • • • Beta distribution Binomial distribution Categorical distribution Generalized Dirichlet distribution Latent Dirichlet allocation Dirichlet process Multinomial distribution Multivariate Polya distribution

[1] Connor, Robert J.; Mosimann, James E (1969). "Concepts of Independence for Proportions with a Generalization of the Dirichlet Distribution" (http:/ / jstor. org/ stable/ 2283728). Journal of the American statistical association (American Statistical Association) 64 (325): 194‚206. doi:10.2307/2283728. . [2] A. Gelman and J. B. Carlin and H. S. Stern and D. B. Rubin (2003). Bayesian Data Analysis (2nd ed.). pp.€582. ISBN€1-58488-388-X. [3] Blackwell, David; MacQueen, James B. (1973). "Ferguson distributions via Polya urn schemes". Ann. Stat. 1 (2): 353‚355. doi:10.1214/aos/1176342372.

External links
• Dirichlet Distribution ( • Estimating the parameters of the Dirichlet distribution ( dirichlet/minka-dirichlet.pdf) • Non-Uniform Random Variate Generation (, Luc Devroye



Fisher-Snedecor Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf:

deg. of freedom

cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: for for for



for ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: does not exist, raw moments defined elsewhere defined elsewhere
[1] [2] [1] [2]

see text

In probability theory and statistics, the F-distribution is a continuous probability distribution.[1] [2] [3] [4] It is also known as Snedecor's F distribution or the Fisher-Snedecor distribution (after R.A. Fisher and George W. Snedecor). The F-distribution arises frequently as the null distribution of a test statistic, especially in likelihood-ratio tests, perhaps most notably in the analysis of variance; see F-test.

A random variate of the F-distribution arises as the ratio of two chi-squared variates:

where • U1 and U2 have chi-square distributions with d1 and d2 degrees of freedom respectively, and • U1 and U2 are independent (see Cochran's theorem for an application). The probability density function of an F(d1, d2) distributed random variable is given by

for real x Ž 0, where d1 and d2 are positive integers, and B is the beta function. The cumulative distribution function is where I is the regularized incomplete beta function. The expectation, variance, and other details about the is are given in the sidebox; for , the kurtosis

where The F-distribution is a particular parametrization of the beta prime distribution, which is also called the beta distribution of the second kind.



A generalization of the (central) F-distribution is the noncentral F-distribution.

Related distributions and properties
• If • then has the chi-square distribution is equivalent to the scaled Hotelling's T-square distribution . • If • if • if • if then then . . has a Beta-distribution. is the quantile for

has a Student's t-distribution then and is the quantile for . then and

[1] Johnson, Norman Lloyd; Samuel Kotz, N. Balakrishnan (1995). Continuous Univariate Distributions, Volume 2 (Second Edition, Section 27). Wiley. ISBN€0-471-58494-0. [2] Abramowitz, Milton; Stegun, Irene A., eds. (1965), "Chapter 26" (http:/ / www. math. sfu. ca/ ~cbm/ aands/ page_946. htm), Handbook of Mathematical Functions with Formulas, Graphs, and Mathematical Tables, New York: Dover, pp.€946, MR0167642, ISBN€978-0486612720, . [3] NIST (2006). Engineering Statistics Handbook - F Distribution (http:/ / www. itl. nist. gov/ div898/ handbook/ eda/ section3/ eda3665. htm) [4] Mood, Alexander; Franklin A. Graybill, Duane C. Boes (1974). Introduction to the Theory of Statistics (Third Edition, p. 246-249). McGraw-Hill. ISBN€0-07-042864-6.

External links
• Table of critical values of the F-distribution ( eda3673.htm) • Earliest Uses of Some of the Words of Mathematics: entry on F-distribution contains a brief history (http://

Gamma distribution


Gamma distribution
Gamma Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

shape scale

no simple closed form

In probability theory and statistics, the gamma distribution is a two-parameter family of continuous probability distributions. It has a scale parameter • and a shape parameter k. If k is an integer, then the distribution represents an Erlang distribution, i.e., the sum of k independent exponentially distributed random variables, each of which has a mean of • (which is equivalent to a rate parameter of •€€1) . The gamma distribution is frequently a probability model for waiting times; for instance, in life testing, the waiting time until death is a random variable that is frequently modeled with a gamma distribution.[1] Gamma distributions

Gamma distribution were fitted to rainfall amounts from different storms, and differences in amounts from seeded and unseeded storms were reflected in differences in estimated k and parameters [2]


A random variable X that is gamma-distributed with scale • and shape k is denoted

Probability density function
The probability density function of the gamma distribution can be expressed in terms of the gamma function parameterized in terms of a shape parameter k and scale parameter •. Both k and • will be positive values. The equation defining the probability density function of a gamma-distributed random variable x is

(This parameterization is used in the infobox and the plots.) Alternatively, the gamma distribution can be parameterized in terms of a shape parameter €€=€k and an inverse scale parameter ‚€=€1/•, called a rate parameter:

If € is a positive integer, then

Both parametrizations are common because either can be more convenient depending on the situation.

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function is the regularized gamma function:

Illustration of the Gamma PDF for parameter values over k and x with • set to 1,€2,€3,€4,€5€and€6. One can see each • layer by itself here [3] as well as by€k [4] and€x. [5].

Gamma distribution where is the lower incomplete gamma function.


It can also be expressed as follows, if k is a positive integer (i.e., the distribution is an Erlang distribution)[6] :

If Xi has a †(ki, Š) distribution for i€=€1,€2,€...,€N, then

provided all Xi' are independent. The gamma distribution exhibits infinite divisibility.


then for any €€>€0,

Exponential family
The Gamma distribution is a two-parameter exponential family with natural parameters k€€€1 and €1/•, and natural statistics X and ln€(X).

Information entropy
The information entropy is given by where …(k) is the digamma function. One can also show that (if we use the shape parameter k and the inverse scale parameter€‚),

Or alternately, using the scale parameterۥ,

Gamma distribution


Kullback€Leibler divergence
The directed Kullback‚Leibler divergence between †(Š0, ƒ0) ('true' distribution) and †(Š, ƒ) ('approximating' distribution), for shape parameter Š and inverse scale parameter ƒ is given by

Laplace transform
The Laplace transform of the gamma PDF is
Illustration of the Kullback‚Leibler (KL) divergence for two Gamma PDF's. Here ‚€=€‚0€+€1 which are set to 1,€2,€3,€4,€5€and€6. The typical asymmetry for the KL divergence is clearly visible.

Parameter estimation
Maximum likelihood estimation
The likelihood function for N iid observations (x1,€...,€xN) is

from which we calculate the log-likelihood function Finding the maximum with respect to • by taking the derivative and setting it equal to zero yields the maximum likelihood estimator of the Š parameter:

Substituting this into the log-likelihood function gives

Finding the maximum with respect to k by taking the derivative and setting it equal to zero yields


is the digamma function. There is no closed-form solution for k. The function is numerically very well behaved, so if a numerical solution is desired, it can be found using, for example, Newton's method. An initial value of k can be found either using the

Gamma distribution method of moments, or using the approximation


If we let

then k is approximately

which is within 1.5% of the correct value. An explicit form for the Newton-Raphson update of this initial guess is given by Choi and Wette (1969) as the following expression:


denotes the trigamma function (the derivative of the digamma function).

The digamma and trigamma functions can be difficult to calculate with high precision. However, approximations known to be good to several significant figures can be computed using the following approximation formulae: and For details, see Choi and Wette (1969).

Bayesian minimum mean-squared error
With known k and unknown , the posterior PDF for theta (using the standard scale-invariant prior for ) is


Integration over Š can be carried out using a change of variables, revealing that 1/Š is gamma-distributed with parameters . The moments can be computed by taking the ratio (m by m = 0)

which shows that the mean ‹ standard deviation estimate of the posterior distribution for theta is

Gamma distribution


Generating gamma-distributed random variables
Given the scaling property above, it is enough to generate gamma variables with any value of with simple division. distribution is the same as an distribution, and noting the method of , then € is Using the fact that a distributed as we can later convert to

generating exponential variables, we conclude that if

is uniformly distributed on

. Now, using the "‚-addition" property of gamma distribution, we expand this result:


are all uniformly distributed on

and independent. for and apply the "‚-addition"

All that is left now is to generate a variable distributed as

property once more. This is the most difficult part. We provide an algorithm without proof. It is an instance of the acceptance-rejection method: 1. Let be 1. , , where and as independent uniformly distributed on , then go to step 4, else go to step 5. . Go to step 6. , then increment to be the realization of . and go to step 2. variables. 2. Generate 3. If 4. Let 5. Let 6. If 7. Assume Now, to summarize,


is the integral part of ), and

, and

has been generated using the algorithm above with


fractional part of

are distributed as explained above and are all independent.

Related distributions
• If • If , then X has an exponential distribution with rate parameter Œ. , then X is identical to •2(‰), the chi-square distribution with ‰ degrees of

freedom. Conversely, if and c is a positive constant, then . • If is an integer, the gamma distribution is an Erlang distribution and is the probability distribution of the waiting time until the • If • distribution. -th "arrival" in a one-dimensional Poisson process with intensity 1/Š. , then X has a Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution with parameter a. , then , i.e. an exponential distribution: see skew-logistic

Gamma distribution


Conjugate prior
In Bayesian inference, the gamma distribution is the conjugate prior to many likelihood distributions: the Poisson, exponential, normal (with known mean), Pareto, gamma with known shape Ž, and inverse gamma with known shape parameter. The Gamma distribution's conjugate prior is [7] :

Where Z is the normalizing constant, which has no closed form solution. The posterior distribution can be found by updating the parameters as follows. , Where is the number of observations, and is the observation.

• If X has a †(k, Š) distribution, then 1/X has an inverse-gamma distribution with parameters k and Š-1. • If X and Y are independently distributed †(‚, Š) and †(ƒ, Š) respectively, then X€/€(X€+€Y) has a beta distribution with parameters ‚ and ƒ. • If Xi are independently distributed †(‚i,Š) respectively, then the vector (X1€/€S,€...,€Xn€/€S), where S€=€X1€+€...€+€Xn, follows a Dirichlet distribution with parameters ‚1,€...,€‚n. • For large k the gamma distribution converges to Gaussian distribution with mean and variance . • The Gamma distribution is the conjugate prior for the precision of the normal distribution with known mean. • The Wishart distribution is a multivariate generalization of the gamma distribution (samples are positive-definite matrices rather than positive real numbers). • The Gamma distribution is a special case of the generalized gamma distribution. • Among the discrete distributions, the negative binomial distribution is sometimes considered the discrete analogue of the Gamma distribution

The gamma distribution has been used to model the size of insurance claims and rainfalls. This means aggregate insurance claims and the amount of rainfall accumulated in a reservoir are modelled by a gamma process. The gamma distribution is also used to model errors in multi-level Poisson regression models, because the combination of the Poisson distribution and a gamma distribution is a negative binomial distribution.

See also
• Gamma process • Lukacs's proportion-sum independence theorem

Gamma distribution


[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] See Hogg and Craig Remark 3.3.1. for an explicit motivation.test Rice, John (1995), Mathematical Statistics and Data Analysis (Second ed.), Duxbury Press, p.€244, ISBN€0-534-20934-3 http:/ / commons. wikimedia. org/ wiki/ File:Gamma-PDF-3D-by-k. png http:/ / commons. wikimedia. org/ wiki/ File:Gamma-PDF-3D-by-Theta. png http:/ / commons. wikimedia. org/ wiki/ File:Gamma-PDF-3D-by-x. png Papoulis, Pillai, Probability, Random Variables, and Stochastic Processes, Fourth Edition Fink, D. 1995 A Compendium of Conjugate Priors (http:/ / www. stat. columbia. edu/ ~cook/ movabletype/ mlm/ CONJINTRnew+ TEX. pdf). In progress report: Extension and enhancement of methods for setting data quality objectives. (DOE contract 95•831).

• R. V. Hogg and A. T. Craig. Introduction to Mathematical Statistics, 4th edition. New York: Macmillan, 1978. (See Section 3.3.) • Weisstein, Eric W., " Gamma distribution (" from MathWorld. • Engineering Statistics Handbook ( • S. C. Choi and R. Wette. (1969) Maximum Likelihood Estimation of the Parameters of the Gamma Distribution and Their Bias, Technometrics, 11(4) 683‚690

Exponential distribution


Exponential distribution
Exponential Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: Š > 0 rate, or inverse scale support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: x ‰ [0, •) Š e•Šx 1 € e•Šx Š€1 Š€1 ln 2 0 Š€2 2 6 1 € ln(Š)

In probability theory and statistics, the exponential distributions (a.k.a. negative exponential distributions) are a class of continuous probability distributions. They describe the times between events in a Poisson process, i.e. a process in which events occur continuously and independently at a constant average rate.

Exponential distribution


Probability density function
The probability density function (pdf) of an exponential distribution is

Here Š€>€0 is the parameter of the distribution, often called the rate parameter. The distribution is supported on the interval [0,€•). If a random variable X has this distribution, we write X€~€Exp(Š).

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function is given by

Alternative parameterization
A commonly used alternative parameterization is to define the probability density function (pdf) of an exponential distribution as

where ‚€>€0 is a scale parameter of the distribution and is the reciprocal of the rate parameter, Œ, defined above. In this specification, ‚ is a survival parameter in the sense that if a random variable X is the duration of time that a given biological or mechanical system manages to survive and X€~€Exponential(‚) then E[X]€=€‚. That is to say, the expected duration of survival of the system is ‚ units of time. The parameterisation involving the "rate" parameter arises in the context of events arriving at a rate€Š, when the time between events (which might be modelled using an exponential distribution) has a mean of ‚€=€Š€1. The alternative specification is sometimes more convenient than the one given above, and some authors will use it as a standard definition. This alternative specification is not used here. Unfortunately this gives rise to a notational ambiguity. In general, the reader must check which of these two specifications is being used if an author writes "X€~€Exponential(Š)", since either the notation in the previous (using€Š) or the notation in this section (here, using ‚ to avoid confusion) could be intended.

Occurrence and applications
The exponential distribution occurs naturally when describing the lengths of the inter-arrival times in a homogeneous Poisson process. The exponential distribution may be viewed as a continuous counterpart of the geometric distribution, which describes the number of Bernoulli trials necessary for a discrete process to change state. In contrast, the exponential distribution describes the time for a continuous process to change state. In real-world scenarios, the assumption of a constant rate (or probability per unit time) is rarely satisfied. For example, the rate of incoming phone calls differs according to the time of day. But if we focus on a time interval during which the rate is roughly constant, such as from 2 to 4 p.m. during work days, the exponential distribution can be used as a good approximate model for the time until the next phone call arrives. Similar caveats apply to the following examples which yield approximately exponentially distributed variables:

Exponential distribution • The time until a radioactive particle decays, or the time between clicks of a geiger counter • The time it takes before your next telephone call • The time until default (on payment to company debt holders) in reduced form credit risk modeling Exponential variables can also be used to model situations where certain events occur with a constant probability per unit length, such as the distance between mutations on a DNA strand, or between roadkills on a given road. In queuing theory, the service times of agents in a system (e.g. how long it takes for a bank teller etc. to serve a customer) are often modeled as exponentially distributed variables. (The inter-arrival of customers for instance in a system is typically modeled by the Poisson distribution in most management science textbooks.) The length of a process that can be thought of as a sequence of several independent tasks is better modeled by a variable following the Erlang distribution (which is the distribution of the sum of several independent exponentially distributed variables). Reliability theory and reliability engineering also make extensive use of the exponential distribution. Because of the memoryless property of this distribution, it is well-suited to model the constant hazard rate portion of the bathtub curve used in reliability theory. It is also very convenient because it is so easy to add failure rates in a reliability model. The exponential distribution is however not appropriate to model the overall lifetime of organisms or technical devices, because the "failure rates" here are not constant: more failures occur for very young and for very old systems. In physics, if you observe a gas at a fixed temperature and pressure in a uniform gravitational field, the heights of the various molecules also follow an approximate exponential distribution. This is a consequence of the entropy property mentioned below.


Mean, variance, and median
The mean or expected value of an exponentially distributed random variable X with rate parameter Š is given by

In light of the examples given above, this makes sense: if you receive phone calls at an average rate of 2 per hour, then you can expect to wait half an hour for every call. The variance of X is given by

The median of X is given by

where ln refers to the natural logarithm. Thus the absolute difference between the mean and median is

in accordance with the median-mean inequality.

Exponential distribution


An important property of the exponential distribution is that it is memoryless. This means that if a random variable T is exponentially distributed, its conditional probability obeys

This says that the conditional probability that we need to wait, for example, more than another 10 seconds before the first arrival, given that the first arrival has not yet happened after 30 seconds, is equal to the initial probability that we need to wait more than 10 seconds for the first arrival. So, if we waited for 30 seconds and the first arrival didn't happen (T€>€30), probability that we'll need to wait another 10 seconds for the first arrival (T€>€30€+€10) is the same as the initial probability that we need to wait more than 10 seconds for the first arrival (T€>€10). This is often misunderstood by students taking courses on probability: the fact that Pr(T€>€40€|€T€>€30) =€Pr(T€>€10) does not mean that the events T€>€40 and T€>€30 are independent. To summarize: "memorylessness" of the probability distribution of the waiting time T until the first arrival means

It does not mean

(That would be independence. These two events are not independent.) The exponential distributions and the geometric distributions are the only memoryless probability distributions. The exponential distribution is consequently also necessarily the only continuous probability distribution that has a constant Failure rate.

The quantile function (inverse cumulative distribution function) for Exponential(Œ) is

for 0 ƒ p < 1. The quartiles are therefore: first quartile ln(4/3)/Š median ln(2)/Š third quartile ln(4)/Š

Kullback€Leibler divergence
The directed Kullback‚Leibler divergence between Exp(Œ0) ('true' distribution) and Exp(Œ) ('approximating' distribution) is given by

Maximum entropy distribution
Among all continuous probability distributions with support [0,•) and mean •, the exponential distribution with Œ = 1/• has the largest entropy.

Exponential distribution


Distribution of the minimum of exponential random variables
Let X1, ..., Xn be independent exponentially distributed random variables with rate parameters Š1, ..., Šn. Then is also exponentially distributed, with parameter

This can be seen by considering the complementary cumulative distribution function: The index of the variable which achieves the minimum is distributed according to the law

Note that

is not exponentially distributed.

Parameter estimation
Suppose a given variable is exponentially distributed and the rate parameter Πis to be estimated.

Maximum likelihood
The likelihood function for Œ, given an independent and identically distributed sample x = (x1, ..., xn) drawn from the variable, is where

is the sample mean. The derivative of the likelihood function's logarithm is Consequently the maximum likelihood estimate for the rate parameter is

While this estimate is the most likely reconstruction of the true parameter Š, it is only an estimate, and as such, one can imagine that the more data points are available the better the estimate will be. It so happens that one can compute an exact confidence interval ‚ that is, a confidence interval that is valid for all number of samples, not just large ones. The 100(1€€€€)% exact confidence interval for this estimate is given by[1]


is the MLE estimate, Š is the true value of the parameter, and †2k;


is the value of the chi squared

distribution with k degrees of freedom that gives x cumulative probability (i.e. the value found in chi-squared tables [2]).

Exponential distribution


Bayesian inference
The conjugate prior for the exponential distribution is the gamma distribution (of which the exponential distribution is a special case). The following parameterization of the gamma pdf is useful:

The posterior distribution p can then be expressed in terms of the likelihood function defined above and a gamma prior:

Now the posterior density p has been specified up to a missing normalizing constant. Since it has the form of a gamma pdf, this can easily be filled in, and one obtains

Here the parameter ‚ can be interpreted as the number of prior observations, and ƒ as the sum of the prior observations.

Having observed a sample of n data points from an unknown exponential distribution a common task is to use these samples to make predictions about future data from the same source. A common predictive distribution over future samples is the so-called plug-in distribution, formed by plugging a suitable estimate for the rate parameter Š into the exponential density function. A common choice of estimate is the one provided by the principle of maximum likelihood, and using this yields the predictive density over a future sample xn+1, conditioned on the observed samples x = (x1, ..., xn) given by

The Bayesian approach provides a predictive distribution which takes into account the uncertainty of the estimated parameter, although this may depend crucially on the choice of prior. A recent alternative that is free of the issues of choosing priors is the Conditional Normalized Maximum Likelihood (CNML) predictive distribution [3]

The accuracy of a predictive distribution may be measured using the distance or divergence between the true exponential distribution with rate parameter, Š0, and the predictive distribution based on the sample x. The Kullback‚Leibler divergence is a commonly used, parameterisation free measure of the difference between two distributions. Letting •(Š0||p) denote the Kullback‚Leibler divergence between an exponential with rate parameter Š0 and a predictive distribution p it can be shown that

where the expectation is taken with respect to the exponential distribution with rate parameter Š0 ‰ (0, •), and …( ‘ ) is the digamma function. It is clear that the CNML predictive distribution is strictly superior to the maximum likelihood plug-in distribution in terms of average Kullback‚Leibler divergence for all sample sizes n > 0.

Exponential distribution


Generating exponential variates
A conceptually very simple method for generating exponential variates is based on inverse transform sampling: Given a random variate U drawn from the uniform distribution on the unit interval (0,€1), the variate has an exponential distribution, where F€€1 is the quantile function, defined by

Moreover, if U is uniform on (0,€1), then so is 1€€€U. This means one can generate exponential variates as follows:

Other methods for generating exponential variates are discussed by Knuth[4] and Devroye.[5] The ziggurat algorithm is a fast method for generating exponential variates. A fast method for generating a set of ready-ordered exponential variates without using a sorting routine is also available.[5]

Related distributions
• An exponential distribution is a special case of a gamma distribution with € = 1 (or k = 1 depending on the parameter set used). • Both an exponential distribution and a gamma distribution are special cases of the phase-type distribution. • Y • Weibull(ƒ, Š), i.e. Y has a Weibull distribution, if Y = X1/ƒ and X • Exponential(Š€). In particular, every exponential distribution is also a Weibull distribution. • Y • Rayleigh(ˆ), i.e. Y has a Rayleigh distribution, if and X • Exponential(Š). • Y • Gumbel(„, ‚), i.e. Y has a Gumbel distribution if Y = „ • ‚log(XŠ) and X • Exponential(Š). • Y • Laplace, i.e. Y has a Laplace distribution, if Y = X1 € X2 for two independent exponential distributions X1 and X2. • Y • Exponential, i.e. Y has an exponential distribution if Y = min(X1, ‡, XN) for independent exponential distributions Xi. • Y • Uniform(0, 1), i.e. Y has a uniform distribution if Y = exp( € XŠ) and X • Exponential(Š). • X • †22, i.e. X has a chi-square distribution with 2 degrees of freedom, if . • Let X1‡Xn • Exponential(Š) be exponentially distributed and independent and Y = •i=1nXi. Then Y • Gamma(n, 1/Š), i.e. Y has a Gamma distribution. • X • SkewLogistic(•), then log(1 + e••) • Exponential(•): see skew-logistic distribution. • Let X • Exponential(ŠX) and Y • Exponential(ŠY) be independent. Then function Other related distributions: • Hyper-exponential distribution ‚ the distribution whose density is a weighted sum of exponential densities. • Hypoexponential distribution ‚ the distribution of a general sum of exponential random variables. • exGaussian distribution ‚ the sum of an exponential distribution and a normal distribution. . This can be used to obtain a confidence interval for has probability density .

Exponential distribution


See also
• Dead time ‚ an application of exponential distribution to particle detector analysis.

[1] K. S. Trivedi, Probability and Statistics with Reliability, Queueing and Computer Science applications, Chapter 10 Statistical Inference, http:/ / www. ee. duke. edu/ ~kst/ BLUEppt/ chap10f_secure. pdf [2] http:/ / www. unc. edu/ ~farkouh/ usefull/ chi. html [3] D. F. Schmidt and E. Makalic, "Universal Models for the Exponential Distribution", IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, Volume 55, Number 7, pp. 3087‚3090, 2009 doi:10.1109/TIT.2009.2018331 [4] Donald E. Knuth (1998). The Art of Computer Programming, volume 2: Seminumerical Algorithms, 3rd edn. Boston: Addison‚Wesley. ISBN 0-201-89684-2. See section 3.4.1, p. 133. [5] Luc Devroye (1986). Non-Uniform Random Variate Generation (http:/ / cg. scs. carleton. ca/ ~luc/ rnbookindex. html). New York: Springer-Verlag. ISBN 0-387-96305-7. See chapter IX (http:/ / cg. scs. carleton. ca/ ~luc/ chapter_nine. pdf), section 2, pp. 392‚401.

Erlang distribution


Erlang distribution
Erlang Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: alt.: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

shape rate (real) scale (real)

no simple closed form for


The Erlang distribution is a continuous probability distribution with wide applicability primarily due to its relation to the exponential and Gamma distributions. The Erlang distribution was developed by A. K. Erlang to examine the number of telephone calls which might be made at the same time to the operators of the switching stations. This work on telephone traffic engineering has been expanded to consider waiting times in queueing systems in general.

Erlang distribution The distribution is now used in the fields of stochastic processes and of biomathematics.


The distribution is a continuous distribution, which has a positive value for all real numbers greater than zero, and is given by two parameters: the shape , which is a non-negative integer, and the rate , which is a non-negative real number. The distribution is sometimes defined using the inverse of the rate parameter, the scale When the shape parameter distribution is a special case of the Gamma distribution where the shape parameter distribution, this parameter is not restricted to the integers. . equals 1, the distribution simplifies to the exponential distribution. The Erlang is an integer. In the Gamma

Probability density function
The probability density function of the Erlang distribution is

The parameter ):

is called the shape parameter and the parameter

is called the rate parameter. An alternative, but

equivalent, parametrization uses the scale parameter

which is the reciprocal of the rate parameter (i.e.

When the scale parameter

equals 2, then distribution simplifies to the chi-square distribution with 2k degrees of

freedom. It can therefore be regarded a generalized chi-square distribution. Because of the factorial function in the denominator, the Erlang distribution is only defined when the parameter k is a positive integer. In fact, this distribution is sometimes called the Erlang-k distribution (e.g., an Erlang-2 distribution is an Erlang distribution with k=2). The Gamma distribution generalizes the Erlang by allowing to be any real number, using the gamma function instead of the factorial function.

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function of the Erlang distribution is:


is the lower incomplete gamma function. The CDF may also be expressed as

Erlang distribution


Waiting times
Events which occur independently with some average rate are modeled with a Poisson process. The waiting times between k occurrences of the event are Erlang distributed. (The related question of the number of events in a given amount of time is described by the Poisson distribution.) The Erlang distribution, which measures the time between incoming calls, can be used in conjunction with the expected duration of incoming calls to produce information about the traffic load measured in Erlang units. This can be used to determine the probability of packet loss or delay, according to various assumptions made about whether blocked calls are aborted (Erlang B formula) or queued until served (Erlang C formula). The Erlang-B and C formulae are still in everyday use for traffic modeling for applications such as the design of call centers.

Compartment models
The Erlang distribution also occurs as a description of the rate of transition of elements through a system of compartments. Such systems are widely used in biology and ecology. For example, in mathematical epidemiology, an individual may progress at an exponential rate from healthy to carrier and again exponentially from carrier to infectious. The probability of seeing an infectious individual at time t would then be given by Erlang distribution with k=2. Such models have the useful property that the variance in the infectious compartment is large. In a pure exponential model the variance is - which is often unrealistically small.

Stochastic processes
The Erlang distribution is the distribution of the sum of k independent identically distributed random variables each having an exponential distribution. The rate of the Erlang distribution is the rate of this exponential distribution.

See also
• • • • • • • • • • Erlang B formula Exponential distribution Gamma distribution Poisson distribution Coxian distribution Poisson process Erlang unit Engset calculation Phase-type distribution Traffic generation model

Erlang distribution


External links
• Erlang Distribution [1] • An Introduction to Erlang B and Erlang C by Ian Angus [2] (PDF Document - Has terms and formulae plus short biography) • Resource Dimensioning Using Erlang-B and Erlang-C [3] • Erlang-C [4] • Erlang-B and Erlang-C spreadsheets [5]

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] http:/ / www. xycoon. com/ erlang. htm http:/ / www. tarrani. net/ linda/ ErlangBandC. pdf http:/ / www. eventhelix. com/ RealtimeMantra/ CongestionControl/ resource_dimensioning_erlang_b_c. htm http:/ / www. kooltoolz. com/ Erlang-C. htm http:/ / www. pccl. demon. co. uk/ spreadsheets/

Kumaraswamy distribution


Kumaraswamy distribution
Kumaraswamy Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median:

(real) (real)

mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy:

for (complicated-see text) (complicated-see text) (complicated-see text)

Kumaraswamy distribution

mgf: cf:

In probability and statistics, the Kumaraswamy's double bounded distribution is a family of continuous probability distributions defined on the interval [0,1] differing in the values of their two non-negative shape parameters, a and b. It is similar to the Beta distribution, but much simpler to use especially in simulation studies due to the simple closed form of both its probability density function and cumulative distribution function. This distribution was originally proposed by Poondi Kumaraswamy for variables that are lower and upper bounded.

Probability density function
The probability density function of the Kumaraswamy distribution is

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function is therefore

Generalizing to arbitrary range
In its simplest form, the distribution has a range of [0,1]. In a more general form, we may replace the normalized variable x with the unshifted and unscaled variable z where:

The distribution is sometimes combined with a "pike probability" or a Dirac delta function, e.g.:

The raw moments of the Kumaraswamy distribution are given by :

where B is the Beta function. The variance, skewness, and excess kurtosis can be calculated from these raw moments. For example, the variance is:

Kumaraswamy distribution


Relation to the Beta distribution
The Kuramaswamy distribution is closely related to Beta distribution. Assume that Xa,b is a Kumaraswamy distributed random variable with parameters a and b. Then Xa,b is the a-th root of a suitably defined Beta distributed random variable. More formally, Let Y1,b denote a Beta distributed random variable with parameters and . One has the following relation between Xa,b and Y1,b.

with equality in distribution. One may introduce generalised Kuramaswamy distributions by considering random variables of the form with and where denotes a Beta distributed random variable with parameters and . The raw ,

moments of this generalized Kumaraswamy distribution are given by:

Note that we can reobtain the original moments setting



. However, in general the

cumulative distribution function does not have a closed form solution.

A good example of the use of the Kumaraswamy distribution is the storage volume of a reservoir of capacity zmax whose upper bound is zmax and lower bound is 0 (Fletcher, 1996).

• Kumaraswamy, P. (1980). "A generalized probability density function for double-bounded random processes". Journal of Hydrology 46: 79‚88. doi:10.1016/0022-1694(80)90036-0. • Fletcher, S.G., and Ponnambalam, K. (1996). "Estimation of reservoir yield and storage distribution using moments analysis". Journal of Hydrology 182: 259‚275. doi:10.1016/0022-1694(95)02946-X.

Inverse Gaussian distribution


Inverse Gaussian distribution
In probability theory, the inverse Gaussian distribution (also known as the Wald distribution) is a two-parameter family of continuous probability distributions with support on (0,•). Its probability density function is given by

Inverse Gaussian Probability density function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: where Gaussian) distribution c.d.f. mean: median: mode: is the standard normal (standard

variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

for x > 0, where

is the mean and

is the shape parameter.

Inverse Gaussian distribution As Œ tends to infinity, the inverse Gaussian distribution becomes more like a normal (Gaussian) distribution. The inverse Gaussian distribution has several properties analogous to a Gaussian distribution. The name can be misleading: it is an "inverse" only in that, while the Gaussian describes a Brownian Motion's level at a fixed time, the inverse Gaussian describes the distribution of the time a Brownian Motion with positive drift takes to reach a fixed positive level. Its cumulant generating function (logarithm of the characteristic function) is the inverse of the cumulant generating function of a Gaussian random variable. To indicate that a random variable X is inverse Gaussian-distributed with mean • and shape parameter Œ we write


If Xi has a IG(•0wi, Œ0wiˆ) distribution for i€=€1,€2,€...,€n and all Xi are independent, then

Note that

is constant for all i. This is a necessary condition for the summation. Otherwise S would not be inverse Gaussian.

For any t > 0 it holds that

Exponential family
The inverse Gaussian distribution is a two-parameter exponential family with natural parameters -Œ/(2•ˆ) and -Œ/2, and natural statistics X and 1/X.

Relationship with Brownian motion
The stochastic process Xt given by

(where Wt is a standard Brownian motion and Then, the first passage time for a fixed level

) is a Brownian motion with drift ’. by Xt is distributed according to an inverse-gaussian:

Inverse Gaussian distribution


When drift is zero
A common special case of the above arises when the Brownian motion has no drift. In that case, parameter • tends to infinity, and the first passage time for fixed level ‚ has probability density function .

Maximum likelihood
The model where

with all wi known, („,€Š) unknown and all Xi independent has the following likelihood function Solving the likelihood equation yields the following maximum likelihood estimates


are independent and

Generating random variates from an inverse-Gaussian distribution
Generate a random variate from a normal distribution with a mean of 0 and 1 standard deviation

Square the value

and use this relation

Generate another random variate, this time sampled from a uniformed distribution between 0 and 1


then return

else return

Sample code in Java language: public double inverseGaussian(double mu, double lambda) { Random rand = new Random(); double v = rand.nextGaussian(); // sample from a normal distribution with a mean of 0 and 1 standard deviation double y = v*v;

Inverse Gaussian distribution double x = mu + (mu*mu*y)/(2*lambda) - (mu/(2*lambda)) * Math.sqrt(4*mu*lambda*y + mu*mu*y*y); double test = rand.nextDouble(); // sample from a uniform distribution between 0 and 1 if (test <= (mu)/(mu + x)) return x; else return (mu*mu)/x; }


See also
• Generalized inverse Gaussian distribution • Tweedie distributions

• The inverse gaussian distribution: theory, methodology, and applications by Raj Chhikara and Leroy Folks, 1989 ISBN 0-8247-7997-5 • System Reliability Theory by Marvin Rausand and Arnljot H“yland • The Inverse Gaussian Distribution by Dr. V. Seshadri, Oxford Univ Press, 1993

External links
• Inverse Gaussian Distribution [1] in Wolfram website.

[1] http:/ / mathworld. wolfram. com/ InverseGaussianDistribution. html

Laplace distribution


Laplace distribution
Laplace Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf:

location (real) scale (real)

see text



In probability theory and statistics, the Laplace distribution is a continuous probability distribution named after Pierre-Simon Laplace. It is also sometimes called the double exponential distribution, because it can be thought of as two exponential distributions (with an additional location parameter) spliced together back-to-back, but the term double exponential distribution is also sometimes used to refer to the Gumbel distribution. The difference between two independent identically distributed exponential random variables is governed by a Laplace distribution, as is a Brownian motion evaluated at an exponentially distributed random time. Increments of Laplace motion or a variance gamma process evaluated over the time scale also have a Laplace distribution.

Laplace distribution


Probability density function
A random variable has a Laplace(„, b) distribution if its probability density function is

Here, „ is a location parameter and b > 0 is a scale parameter. If „ = 0 and b = 1, the positive half-line is exactly an exponential distribution scaled by 1/2. The pdf of the Laplace distribution is also reminiscent of the normal distribution; however, whereas the normal distribution is expressed in terms of the squared difference from the mean „, the Laplace density is expressed in terms of the absolute difference from the mean. Consequently the Laplace distribution has fatter tails than the normal distribution.

Cumulative distribution function
The Laplace distribution is easy to integrate (if one distinguishes two symmetric cases) due to the use of the absolute value function. Its cumulative distribution function is as follows:

The inverse cumulative distribution function is given by

Generating random variables according to the Laplace distribution
Given a random variable U drawn from the uniform distribution in the interval (-1/2,€1/2], the random variable

has a Laplace distribution with parameters • and b. This follows from the inverse cumulative distribution function given above. A Laplace(0, b) variate can also be generated as the difference of two i.i.d. Exponential(1/b) random variables. Equivalently, a Laplace(0, 1) random variable can be generated as the logarithm of the ratio of two iid uniform random variables.

Laplace distribution


Parameter estimation
Given N independent and identically distributed samples x1, x2, ..., xN, an estimator and the maximum likelihood estimator of b is of is the sample median,[1]

(revealing a link between the Laplace distribution and least absolute deviations).


Related distributions
• If • If • If • If then and . and € and independent of , then is . • The generalized Gaussian distribution (version 1) equals the Laplace distribution when its shape parameter set to 1. The scale parameter is then equal to . independent of , then is an exponential distribution. independent of , then

Relation to the exponential distribution
A Laplace random variable can be represented as the difference of two iid exponential random variables. One way to show this is by using the characteristic function approach. For any set of independent continuous random variables, for any linear combination of those variables, its characteristic function (which uniquely determines the distribution) can be acquired by multiplying the correspond characteristic functions. Consider two i.i.d random variables . The characteristic functions for are

, respectively. On multiplying these characteristic functions (equivalent to the characteristic function of the sum of therandom variables This is the same as the characteristic function for ), the result is , which is . .

Laplace distribution


Sargan distributions
Sargan distributions are a system of distributions of which the Laplace distribution is a core member. A p'th order Sargan distribution has density[2] [3]

for parameters ‚€>€0, ‚j € Ž€0. The Laplace distribution results for p=0.

See also
• Log-Laplace distribution • Cauchy distribution, also called the "Lorentzian distribution" (the Fourier transform of the Laplace) • Characteristic function (probability theory)

[1] Robert M. Norton (May 1984). "The Double Exponential Distribution: Using Calculus to Find a Maximum Likelihood Estimator" (http:/ / www. jstor. org/ pss/ 2683252). The American Statistician (American Statistical Association) 38 (2): 135‚136. doi:10.2307/2683252. . [2] Everitt, B.S. (2002) The Cambridge Dictionary of Statistics, CUP. ISBN 0-521-81099-x [3] Johnson, N.L., Kotz S., Balakrishnan, N. (1994) Continuous Univariate Distributions, Wiley. ISBN 0-471-58495-9. p. 60

L„vy distribution


L‚vy distribution
L‚vy (unshifted) Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: gamma mgf: cf: undefined infinite undefined undefined is Euler infinite

In probability theory and statistics, the L‚vy distribution, named after Paul Pierre L„vy, is a continuous probability distribution for a non-negative random variable. In spectroscopy this distribution, with frequency as the dependent variable, is known as a van der Waals profile.[1]

L„vy distribution It is one of the few distributions that are stable and that have probability density functions that are analytically expressible, the others being the normal distribution and the Cauchy distribution. All three are special cases of the stable distributions, which does not generally have an analytically expressible probability density function.


The probability density function of the L„vy distribution over the domain is


is the location parameter and

is the scale parameter. The cumulative distribution function is


is the complementary error function. The shift parameter , and changing the support to the interval [ ,

has the effect of shifting the curve to ). Like all stable distributions, the

the right by an amount

Levy distribution has a standard form f(x;0,1) which has the following property: where y is defined as

The characteristic function of the L„vy distribution is given by

Note that the characteristic function can also be written in the same form used for the stable distribution with and :


, the nth moment of the unshifted L„vy distribution is formally defined by:

which diverges for all n€>€0 so that the moments of the L„vy distribution do not exist. The moment generating function is then formally defined by:

which diverges for

and is therefore not defined in an interval around zero, so that the moment generating

function is not defined per se. Like all stable distributions except the normal distribution, the wing of the probability density function exhibits heavy tail behavior falling off according to a power law:

This is illustrated in the diagram below, in which the probability density functions for various values of c and are plotted on a log-log scale.

L„vy distribution


Probability density function for the L„vy distribution on a log-log scale.

Related distributions
• Relation to stable distribution: If • Relation to Scale-inverse-chi-square distribution: If • Relation to inverse gamma distribution: If • Relation to Normal distribution: If • Relation to Folded normal distribution: If then then then then then

• The L„vy distribution is of interest to the financial modeling community due to its empirical similarity to the returns of securities. • It is claimed that fruit flies follow a form of the distribution to find food (L„vy flight).[2] • The frequency of geomagnetic reversals appears to follow a L„vy distribution • The time of hitting a single point (different from the starting point 0) by the Brownian motion has the L„vy distribution. • The length of the path followed by a photon in a turbid medium follows the L„vy distribution. [3] • The L„vy distribution has been used post 1987 crash by the Options Clearing Corporation for setting margin requirements because its parameters are more robust to extreme events than those of a normal distribution, and thus extreme events do not suddenly increase margin requirements which may worsen a crisis.[4] • The statistics of solar flares are described by a non-Gaussian distribution. The solar flare statistics were shown to be describable by a L„vy distribution and it was assumed that intermittent solar flares perturb the intrinsic fluctuations in Earth†s average temperature. The end result of this perturbation is that the statistics of the temperature anomalies inherit the statistical structure that was evident in the intermittency of the solar flare data.

L„vy distribution


[1] "van der Waals profile" appears with lowercase "van" in almost all sources, such as: Statistical mechanics of the liquid surface by Clive Anthony Croxton, 1980, A Wiley-Interscience publication, ISBN 0471276634, 9780471276630, (http:/ / books. google. it/ books?id=Wve2AAAAIAAJ& q="Van+ der+ Waals+ profile"& dq="Van+ der+ Waals+ profile"& hl=en); and in Journal of technical physics, Volume 36, by Instytut Podstawowych Problem”w Techniki (Polska Akademia Nauk), publisher: Pa•stwowe Wydawn. Naukowe., 1995, (http:/ / books. google. it/ books?id=2XpVAAAAMAAJ& q="Van+ der+ Waals+ profile"& dq="Van+ der+ Waals+ profile"& hl=en) [2] "The L„vy distribution as maximizing one's chances of finding a tasty snack" (http:/ / www. livescience. com/ animalworld/ 070403_fly_tricks. html). . Retrieved April 7 2007. [3] Rogers, Geoffrey L, Multiple path analysis of reflectance from turbid media. Journal of the Optical Society of America A, 25:11, p 2879-2883 (2008). [4] Do economists make markets?: on the performativity of economics (http:/ / books. google. com/ books?id=7BkByw1gtigC) by Donald A. MacKenzie, Fabian Muniesa, Lucia Siu, Princeton University Press, 2007, ISBN 978 0 69113016 3, p. 80 (http:/ / books. google. com/ books?id=7BkByw1gtigC& pg=PA80) [5] Scafetta, N., Bruce, J.W., Is climate sensitive to solar variability? Physics Today, 60, 50-51 (2008) (http:/ / www. fel. duke. edu/ ~scafetta/ pdf/ opinion0308. pdf).

Notes References
• "Information on stable distributions" ( Retrieved July 13 2005. - John P. Nolan's introduction to stable distributions, some papers on stable laws, and a free program to compute stable densities, cumulative distribution functions, quantiles, estimate parameters, etc. See especially An introduction to stable distributions, Chapter 1 ( chap1.pdf)

Log-logistic distribution
Log-logistic Probability density function

values of

as shown in legend

Log-logistic distribution

Cumulative distribution function

values of parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean:

as shown in legend scale shape

if median: mode: if variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

, else undefined

, 0 otherwise

See main text

In probability and statistics, the log-logistic distribution (known as the Fisk distribution in economics) is a continuous probability distribution for a non-negative random variable. It is used in survival analysis as a parametric model for events whose rate increases initially and decreases later, for example mortality from cancer following diagnosis or treatment. It has also been used in hydrology to model stream flow and precipitation, and in economics as a simple model of the distribution of wealth or income. The log-logistic distribution is the probability distribution of a random variable whose logarithm has a logistic distribution. It is similar in shape to the log-normal distribution but has heavier tails. Its cumulative distribution function can be written in closed form, unlike that of the log-normal.

Log-logistic distribution


There are several different parameterizations of the distribution in use. The one shown here gives reasonably interpretable parameters and a simple form for the cumulative distribution function.[1] [2] The parameter is a scale parameter and is also the median of the distribution. The parameter distribution is unimodal when and its dispersion decreases as increases. The cumulative distribution function is is a shape parameter. The




The probability density function is

The th raw moment exists only when when it is given by[3] [4]

where B() is the beta function. Expressions for the mean, variance, skewness and kurtosis can be derived from this. Writing for convenience, the mean is

and the variance is Explicit expressions for the skewness and kurtosis are lengthy.[5] As

tends to infinity the mean tends to

, the

variance and skewness tend to zero and the excess kurtosis tends to 6/5 (see also related distributions below).

Log-logistic distribution


The quantile function (inverse cumulative distribution function) is :

It follows that the median is

, the lower quartile is

and the upper quartile is


Survival analysis
The log-logistic distribution provides one parametric model for survival analysis. Unlike the more commonly-used Weibull distribution, it can have a non-monotonic hazard function: when the hazard function is unimodal (when €ƒ€1, the hazard decreases monotonically). The fact that the cumulative distribution function can be written in closed form is particularly useful for analysis of survival data with censoring.[6] The log-logistic distribution can be used as the basis of an accelerated failure time model by allowing to differ between groups, or more generally by introducing covariates that affect by modelling

Hazard function.

values of

as shown in legend

but not

as a linear function of the

covariates. The survival function is

and so the hazard function is

The log-logistic distribution has been used in hydrology for modelling stream flow rates and precipitation.[1] [2]

The log-logistic has been used as a simple model of the distribution of wealth or income in economics, where it is known as the Fisk distribution.[8] Its Gini coefficient is .[9]

Related distributions
• If X has a log-logistic distribution with scale parameter distribution with location parameter • As the shape parameter and shape parameter . then Y€=€log(X) has a logistic and scale parameter ‘•,

of the log-logistic distribution increases, its shape increasingly resembles that of a

(very narrow) logistic distribution. Informally, as

Log-logistic distribution • The log-logistic distribution with shape parameter Pareto distribution with location parameter and scale parameter , shape parameter is the same as the generalized


and scale parameter

Several different distributions are sometimes referred to as the generalized log-logistic distribution, as they contain the log-logistic as a special case.[9] These include the Burr Type XII distribution (also known as the Singh-Maddala distribution) and the Dagum distribution, both of which include a second shape parameter. Both are in turn special cases of the even more general generalized beta distribution of the second kind. Another more straightforward generalization of the log-logistic is given in the next section.

Shifted log-logistic distribution
Shifted log-logistic Probability density function

values of

as shown in legend

Cumulative distribution function

values of

as shown in legend

Log-logistic distribution

parameters: location (real) scale (real) shape (real)


pdf: where cdf: where mean: where median: mode:

variance: where skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

The shifted log-logistic distribution is also known as the generalized log-logistic or the three-parameter log-logistic distribution.[10] [11] It has also been called the generalized logistic distribution,[12] but this conflicts with other uses of the term. It can be obtained from the log-logistic distribution by addition of a shift parameter : if has a log-logistic distribution then distribution if has a shifted log-logistic distribution. So has a shifted log-logistic has a logistic distribution. The shift parameter adds a location parameter to the scale and

shape parameters of the (unshifted) log-logistic. The properties of this distribution are straightforward to derive from those of the log-logistic distribution. However, an alternative parameterisation, similar to that used for the generalized Pareto distribution and the generalized extreme value distribution, gives more interpretable parameters and also aids their estimation. In this parameterisation, the cumulative distribution function of the shifted log-logistic distribution is


, where

is the location parameter,

the scale parameter and
[12] [13]


shape parameter. Note that some references use The probability density function is

to parameterise the shape.

Log-logistic distribution again, for The shape parameter . is often restricted to lie in [-1,1], when the probability density function is bounded. When . Reversing the sign of reflects the pdf and the cdf about , it has an asymptote at


Related distributions
• When • When the shifted log-logistic reduces to the log-logistic distribution. ‘ 0, the shifted log-logistic reduces to the logistic distribution. is the same as the generalized Pareto distribution with shape

• The shifted log-logistic with shape parameter parameter

The three-parameter log-logistic distribution is used in hydrology for modelling flood frequency.[12] [13] [14]

See also
• Probability distributions: List of important distributions supported on semi-infinite intervals

[1] Shoukri, M.M.; Mian, I.U.M.; Tracy, D.S. (1988), "Sampling Properties of Estimators of the Log-Logistic Distribution with Application to Canadian Precipitation Data" (http:/ / links. jstor. org/ sici?sici=0319-5724(198809)16:3<223:SPOEOT>2. 0. CO;2-E), The Canadian Journal of Statistics (The Canadian Journal of Statistics / La Revue Canadienne de Statistique, Vol. 16, No. 3) 16 (3): 223‚236, doi:10.2307/3314729, [2] Ashkar, Fahim; Mahdi, Smail (2006), "Fitting the log-logistic distribution by generalized moments", Journal of Hydrology 328: 694‚703, doi:10.1016/j.jhydrol.2006.01.014 [3] Tadikamalla, Pandu R.; Johnson, Norman L. (1982), "Systems of Frequency Curves Generated by Transformations of Logistic Variables" (http:/ / links. jstor. org/ sici?sici=0006-3444(198208)69:2<461:SOFCGB>2. 0. CO;2-Y), Biometrika 69 (2): 461‚465, doi:10.1093/biomet/69.2.461, [4] Tadikamalla, Pandu R. (1980), "A Look at the Burr and Related Distributions" (http:/ / links. jstor. org/ sici?sici=0306-7734(198012)48:3<337:ALATBA>2. 0. CO;2-Z), International Statistical Review (International Statistical Review / Revue Internationale de Statistique, Vol. 48, No. 3) 48 (3): 337‚344, doi:10.2307/1402945, [5] McLaughlin, Michael P. (2001), A Compendium of Common Probability Distributions (http:/ / www. causascientia. org/ math_stat/ Dists/ Compendium. pdf), p.€A-37, , retrieved 2008-02-15 [6] Bennett, Steve (1983), "Log-Logistic Regression Models for Survival Data" (http:/ / links. jstor. org/ sici?sici=0035-9254(1983)32:2<165:LRMFSD>2. 0. CO;2-F), Applied Statistics (Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. Series C (Applied Statistics), Vol. 32, No. 2) 32 (2): 165‚171, doi:10.2307/2347295, [7] Collett, Dave (2003), Modelling Survival Data in Medical Research (2nd ed.), CRC press, ISBN€1584883251 [8] Fisk, P.R. (1961), "The Graduation of Income Distributions" (http:/ / links. jstor. org/ sici?sici=0012-9682(196104)29:2<171:TGOID>2. 0. CO;2-Y), Econometrica (Econometrica, Vol. 29, No. 2) 29 (2): 171‚185, doi:10.2307/1909287, [9] Kleiber, C.; Kotz, S (2003), Statistical Size Distributions in Economics and Actuarial Sciences, Wiley, ISBN€0471150649 [10] Venter, Gary G. (Spring 1994), "Introduction to selected papers from the variability in reserves prize program" (http:/ / www. casact. org/ pubs/ forum/ 94spforum/ 94spf091. pdf), Casualty Actuarial Society Forum 1: 91‚101, [11] Geskus, Ronald B. (2001), "Methods for estimating the AIDS incubation time distribution when date of seroconversion is censored", Statistics in Medicine 20 (5): 795‚812, doi:10.1002/sim.700, PMID€11241577 [12] Hosking, Jonathan R. M.; Wallis, James R (1997), Regional Frequency Analysis: An Approach Based on L-Moments, Cambridge University Press, ISBN€0521430453 [13] Robson, A.; Reed, D. (1999), Flood Estimation Handbook, 3: "Statistical Procedures for Flood Frequency Estimation", Wallingford, UK: Institute of Hydrology, ISBN€0948540893 [14] Ahmad, M. I.; Sinclair, C. D.; Werritty, A. (1988), "Log-logistic flood frequency analysis", Journal of Hydrology 98: 205‚224, doi:10.1016/0022-1694(88)90015-7

Log-normal distribution


Log-normal distribution
Log-normal Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

notation: parameters: ˆ2 > 0 „ squared scale (real), „ ‰ R „ location x ‰ (0, +•)

support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis:

Log-normal distribution


entropy: mgf: cf: Fisher information: (defined only on the negative half-axis, see text) representation is asymptotically divergent but sufficient for numerical purposes

In probability theory, a log-normal distribution is a probability distribution of a random variable whose logarithm is normally distributed. If Y is a random variable with a normal distribution, then X€=€exp(Y) has a log-normal distribution; likewise, if X is log-normally distributed, then Y€=€log(X) is normally distributed. (This is true regardless of the base of the logarithmic function: if loga(Y) is normally distributed, then so is logb(Y), for any two positive numbers a,€b€’€1.) Log-normal is also written logƒnormal or lognormal. It is occasionally referred to as the Galton distribution or Galton's distribution, after Francis Galton. A variable might be modeled as log-normal if it can be thought of as the multiplicative product of many independent random variables each of which is positive. For example, in finance, a long-term discount factor can be derived from the product of short-term discount factors. In wireless communication, the attenuation caused by shadowing or slow fading from random objects is often assumed to be log-normally distributed. See log-distance path loss model.

Probability density function
The probability density function of a log-normal distribution is:

where „ and ˆ are the mean and standard deviation of the variable†s natural logarithm (by definition, the variable†s logarithm is normally distributed).

Cumulative distribution function

where erfc is the complementary error function, and – is the standard normal cdf.

Mean and standard deviation
If X is a lognormally distributed variable, its expected value (mean), variance, and standard deviation are

Equivalently, parameters „ and ˆ can be obtained if the values of mean and variance are known:

Log-normal distribution The geometric mean of the log-normal distribution is , and the geometric standard deviation is equal to .


Mode and median
The mode is the point of global maximum of the pdf function. In particular, it solves the equation (ln€‹)ˆ€=€0:

The median is such a point where FX€=€…:

Confidence interval
If X is distributed log-normally with parameters „ and ˆ, then the (1€€€€)-confidence interval for X will be

where q* is the (1€€€€/2)-quantile of the standard normal distribution: q*€=€–€1(1€€€€/2).

For any real or complex number s, the sth moment of log-normal X is given by

A log-normal distribution is not uniquely determined by its moments E[Xk] for k€Ž€1, that is, there exists some other distribution with the same moments for all k. In fact, there is a whole family of distributions with the same moments as the log-normal distribution.

Characteristic function and moment generating function
The characteristic function E[e€itX] has a number of representations. The integral itself converges for Im(t)€ƒ€0. The simplest representation is obtained by Taylor expanding e€itX and using formula for moments above.

This series representation is divergent for Re(ˆ2)€>€0, however it is sufficient for numerically evaluating the characteristic function at positive as long as the upper limit in sum above is kept bounded, n€ƒ€N, where

and ˆ2€<€0.1. To bring the numerical values of parameters „,€ˆ into the domain where strong inequality holds true one could use the fact that if X is log-normally distributed then Xm is also log-normally distributed with parameters „m,€ˆm. Since , the inequality could be satisfied for sufficiently small€m. The sum of series first converges to the value of Œ(t) with arbitrary high accuracy if m is small enough, and left part of the strong inequality is satisfied. If considerably larger number of terms are taken into account the sum eventually diverges when the right part of the strong inequality is no longer valid. Another useful representation was derived by Roy Lepnik (see references by this author and by Daniel Dufresne below) by means of double Taylor expansion of e(ln€x€€€„)2/(2ˆ2). The moment-generating function for the log-normal distribution does not exist on the domain R, but only exists on the half-interval (€•,€0].

Log-normal distribution


Partial expectation
The partial expectation of a random variable X with respect to a threshold k is defined as g(k) = E[X€|€X€>€k]P[X€>€k]. For a log-normal random variable the partial expectation is given by

This formula has applications in insurance and economics, it is used in solving the partial differential equation leading to the Black‚Scholes formula.

Maximum likelihood estimation of parameters
For determining the maximum likelihood estimators of the log-normal distribution parameters • and Ž, we can use the same procedure as for the normal distribution. To avoid repetition, we observe that

where by ‹L we denote the probability density function of the log-normal distribution and by ‹N that of the normal distribution. Therefore, using the same indices to denote distributions, we can write the log-likelihood function thus: Since the first term is constant with regard to • and Ž, both logarithmic likelihood functions, ƒL ƒL and ƒN, reach their maximum with the same „ and€ˆ. Hence, using the formulas for the normal distribution maximum likelihood parameter estimators and the equality above, we deduce that for the log-normal distribution it holds that

Generating log-normally-distributed random variates
Given a random variate N drawn from the normal distribution with 0 mean and 1 standard deviation, then the variate

has a Log-normal distribution with parameters



Related distributions
• If • If • If is a normal distribution, then is distributed log-normally, then is a normal random variable. , then Y is

are n independent log-normally distributed variables, and

also distributed log-normally:

• Let parameters, and

be independent log-normally distributed variables with possibly varying ˆ and „ . The distribution of Y has no closed-form expression, but can be reasonably

approximated by another log-normal distribution Z at the right tail. Its probability density function at the neighborhood of 0 is characterized in (Gao et al., 2009) and it does not resemble any log-normal distribution. A commonly used approximation (due to Fenton and Wilkinson) is obtained by matching the mean and variance:

In the case that all

have the same variance parameter

, these formulas simplify to

Log-normal distribution


• If

, then X€+€c is said to have a shifted log-normal distribution with support x ‰ (c, +•).

E[X€+€c] = E[X]€+€c, Var[X€+€c] =€Var[X]. • If , then Y€=€aX is also log-normal, • If , then Y€=€1“X is also log-normal, • If and€a€’€0, then Y€=€Xa is also log-normal,

Similar distributions
• A substitute for the log-normal whose integral can be expressed in terms of more elementary functions (Swamee, 2002) can be obtained based on the logistic distribution to get the CDF

This is a log-logistic distribution. • An exGaussian distribution is the distribution of the sum of a normally distributed random variable and an exponentially distributed random variable. This has a similar long tail, and has been used as a model for reaction times.

Further reading
• Robert Brooks, Jon Corson, and J. Donal Wales. "The Pricing of Index Options When the Underlying Assets All Follow a Lognormal Diffusion" [1], in Advances in Futures and Options Research, volume 7, 1994.

[1] http:/ / papers. ssrn. com/ sol3/ papers. cfm?abstract_id=5735

• The Lognormal Distribution, Aitchison, J. and Brown, J.A.C. (1957) • Log-normal Distributions across the Sciences: Keys and Clues ( bioscience.pdf), E. Limpert, W. Stahel and M. Abbt,. BioScience, 51 (5), p.€341‚352 (2001). • Eric W. Weisstein et al. Log Normal Distribution ( html) at MathWorld. Electronic document, retrieved October 26, 2006. • Swamee, P.K. (2002). Near Lognormal Distribution ( GetabsServlet?prog=normal&id=JHYEFF000007000006000441000001&idtype=cvips&gifs=yes), Journal of Hydrologic Engineering. 7(6): 441-444 • Roy B. Leipnik (1991), On Lognormal Random Variables: I - The Characteristic Function (http://anziamj., Journal of the Australian Mathematical Society Series B, vol. 32, pp 327‚347. • Gao et al. (2009), (, Asymptotic Behaviors of Tail Density for Sum of Correlated Lognormal Variables. International Journal of Mathematics and Mathematical Sciences. • Daniel Dufresne (2009), (, SUMS OF LOGNORMALS, Centre for Actuarial Studies, University of Melbourne.

Log-normal distribution


See also
• • • • • • • Normal distribution Geometric mean Geometric standard deviation Error function Log-distance path loss model Slow fading Stochastic volatility

Logistic distribution


Logistic distribution
Logistic Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf:

location (real) scale (real)

for function cf: for

, Beta

In probability theory and statistics, the logistic distribution is a continuous probability distribution. Its cumulative distribution function is the logistic function, which appears in logistic regression and feedforward neural networks. It resembles the normal distribution in shape but has heavier tails (higher kurtosis).

Logistic distribution


Cumulative distribution function
The logistic distribution receives its name from its cumulative distribution function (cdf), which is an instance of the family of logistic functions:

In this equation, x is the random variable, „ is the mean, and s is a parameter proportional to the standard deviation.

Probability density function
The probability density function (pdf) of the logistic distribution is given by:

Because the pdf can be expressed in terms of the square of the hyperbolic secant function "sech", it is sometimes referred to as the sech-square(d) distribution. See also: hyperbolic secant distribution

Quantile function
The inverse cumulative distribution function of the logistic distribution is function, defined as follows: , a generalization of the logit

Alternative parameterization
An alternative parameterization of the logistic distribution can be derived using the substitution This yields the following density function: .

The logistic distribution and the S-shaped pattern that results from it have been extensively used in many different areas, including: • • • • • • Biology ‚ to describe how species populations grow in competition[1] Epidemiology ‚ to describe the spreading of epidemics[2] Psychology ‚ to describe learning[3] Technology ‚ to describe how new technologies diffuse and substitute for each other[4] Market ‚ the diffusion of new-product sales[5] Energy ‚ the diffusion and substitution of primary energy sources[6]

Logistic distribution Both the United States Chess Federation and FIDE have switched their formulas for calculating chess ratings from the normal distribution to the logistic distribution; see Elo rating system.


Related distributions
If log(X) has a logistic distribution then X has a log-logistic distribution and X ‚ a has a shifted log-logistic distribution.

Expected Value

Note the odd function:

Higher order moments
The n-th order central moment can be expressed in terms of the quantile function:

This integral is well-known[7] and can be expressed in terms of Bernoulli numbers:

See also
• Generalized logistic distribution • Logistic regression • Sigmoid function

[1] P. F. Verhulst, "Recherches math„matiques sur la loi d'accroissement de la population", Nouveaux M•moirs de l'Acad•mie Royale des Sciences et des Belles-Lettres de Bruxelles, vol. 18 (1845); Alfred J. Lotka, Elements of Physical Biology, (Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins Co., 1925). [2] Theodore Modis, Predictions: Society's Telltale Signature Reveals the Past and Forecasts the Future, Simon & Schuster, New York, 1992, pp 97-105. [3] Theodore Modis, Predictions: Society's Telltale Signature Reveals the Past and Forecasts the Future, Simon & Schuster, New York, 1992, Chapter 2. [4] J. C. Fisher and R. H. Pry , "A Simple Substitution Model of Technological Change", Technological Forecasting & Social Change, vol. 3, no. 1 (1971).

Logistic distribution
[5] Theodore Modis, Conquering Uncertainty, McGraw-Hill, New York, 1998, Chapter 1. [6] Cesare Marchetti, "Primary Energy Substitution Models: On the Interaction between Energy and Society", Technological Forecasting & Social Change, vol. 10, (1977). [7] (http:/ / www. research. att. com/ ~njas/ sequences/ A001896)


• N., Balakrishnan (1992). Handbook of the Logistic Distribution. Marcel Dekker, New York. ISBN€0-8247-8587-8. • Johnson, N. L., Kotz, S., Balakrishnan N. (1995). Continuous Univariate Distributions. Vol. 2 (2nd Ed. ed.). ISBN€0-471-58494-0.

Normal distribution


Normal distribution
Probability density function

The red line is the standard normal distribution Cumulative distribution function

Colors match the image above notation: parameters: „ ‰ R „ mean (location) ˆ2 Ž 0 „ variance (squared scale) x ‰ R € if ˆ2 > 0 x = „ € if ˆ2 = 0


pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: Fisher information: „ „ „ ˆ2 0 0

In probability theory and statistics, the normal distribution, or Gaussian distribution, is an absolutely continuous probability distribution whose cumulants of all orders above two are zero. The graph of the associated probability density function is€ ‹bellŒ-shaped, with peak at the mean, and is known as the Gaussian function or bell curve:[1]

Normal distribution


where parameters „ and ˆ 2 are the mean and the variance. The distribution with „ = 0 and ˆ 2 = 1 is called standard normal. The normal distribution is often used to describe, at least approximately, any variable that tends to cluster around the mean. For example, the heights of adult males in the United States are roughly normally distributed, with a mean of about 70€inches (1.8 m). Most men have a height close to the mean, though a small number of outliers have a height significantly above or below the mean. A histogram of male heights will appear similar to a bell curve, with the correspondence becoming closer if more data are used. By the central limit theorem, under certain conditions the sum of a number of random variables with finite means and variances approaches a normal distribution as the number of variables increases. For this reason, the normal distribution is commonly encountered in practice, and is used throughout statistics, natural sciences, and social sciences[2] as a simple model for complex phenomena. For example, the observational error in an experiment is usually assumed to follow a normal distribution, and the propagation of uncertainty is computed using this assumption. The Gaussian distribution was named after Carl Friedrich Gauss, who introduced it in 1809 as a way of rationalizing the method of least squares. One year later Laplace proved the first version of the central limit theorem, demonstrating that the normal distribution occurs as a limiting distribution of arithmetic means of independent, identically distributed random variables with finite second moment. For this reason the normal distribution is sometimes called Laplacian, especially in French-speaking countries.

The simplest case of a normal distribution is known as the standard normal distribution, described by the probability density function

The constant in this expression ensures that the total area under the curve Ž(x) is equal to one,[proof] and 1“2 in the exponent makes the€ ‹widthŒ of the curve (measured as half of the distance between the inflection points of the curve) also equal to one. It is traditional[3] in statistics to denote this function with the Greek letter Ž (phi), whereas density functions for all other distributions are usually denoted with letters ‹ or€p. The alternative glyph Œ is also used quite often, however within this article we reserve€ ‹ŒŒ to denote characteristic functions. More generally, a normal distribution results from exponentiating a quadratic function (just as an exponential distribution results from exponentiating a linear function):

This yields the classic€ ‹bell curveŒ shape (provided that a < 0 so that the quadratic function is concave). Notice that f(x) > 0 everywhere. One can adjust a to control the€ ‹widthŒ of the bell, then adjust b to move the central peak of the bell along the x-axis, and finally adjust c to control the€ ‹heightŒ of the bell. For f(x) to be a true probability density function over R, one must choose c such that (which is only possible when€a€<€0). Rather than using a, b, and c, it is far more common to describe a normal distribution by its mean „ = €b/(2a) and variance ˆ2 = €1/(2a). Changing to these new parameters allows us to rewrite the probability density function in a convenient standard form,

Notice that for a standard normal distribution, „ = 0 and ˆ2 = 1. The last part of the equation above shows that any other normal distribution can be regarded as a version of the standard normal distribution that has been stretched horizontally by a factor€ˆ and then translated rightward by a distance€„. Thus, „ specifies the position of the bell

Normal distribution curve†s central peak, and ˆ specifies the€ ‹widthŒ of the bell curve. The parameter „ is at the same time the mean, the median and the mode of the normal distribution. The parameter ˆ2 is called the variance; as for any random variable, it describes how concentrated the distribution is around its mean. The square root of ˆ2 is called the standard deviation and is the width of the density function. The normal distribution is usually denoted by N(„, ˆ2).[4] Commonly the letter N is written in calligraphic font (typed as \mathcal{N} in LaTeX). Thus when a random variable X is distributed normally with mean „ and variance ˆ2, we write


Alternative formulations
Some authors[5] instead of ˆ2 use its reciprocal •€=€ˆ€2, which is called the precision. This parameterization has an advantage in numerical applications where ˆ2 is very close to zero and is more convenient to work with in analysis as • is a natural parameter of the normal distribution. Another advantage of using this parameterization is in the study of conditional distributions in multivariate normal case. The question which normal distribution should be called the€ ‹standardŒ one is also answered differently by various authors. Starting from the works of Gauss the standard normal was considered to be the one with variance ˆ2 = 1/2:

Stigler (1982) goes even further and suggests the standard normal with variance ˆ2 = 1/(2•):

According to the author, this formulation is advantageous because of a much simpler and easier-to-remember formula, the fact that the pdf has unit height at zero, and simple approximate formulas for the quantiles of the distribution.

In the previous section the normal distribution was defined by specifying its probability density function. However there are other ways to characterize a probability distribution. They include: the cumulative distribution function, the moments, the cumulants, the characteristic function, the moment-generating function, etc.

Probability density function
The probability density function (pdf) of a random variable describes the relative frequencies of different values for that random variable. The pdf of the normal distribution is given by the formula explained in detail in the previous section: This is a proper function only when the variance ˆ2 is not equal to zero. In that case this is a continuous smooth function, defined on the entire real line, and which is called the€ ‹Gaussian functionŒ. When ˆ2 = 0, the density function doesn†t exist. However we can consider a generalized function that would behave in a manner similar to the regular density function (in the sense that it defines a measure on the real line, and it can be plugged in into an integral in order to calculate expected values of different quantities):

This is the Dirac delta function, it is equal to infinity at x = „ and is zero elsewhere. Properties: • Function ‹(x) is symmetric around the point x = „, which is at the same time the mode, the median and the mean of the distribution.

Normal distribution • The inflection points of the curve occur one standard deviation away from the mean (i.e., at x = „ € ˆ and x = „ + ˆ). • The standard normal density Ž(x) is an eigenfunction of the Fourier transform. • The function is supersmooth of order 2, implying that it is infinitely differentiable. • The first derivative of Ž(x) is Žˆ(x) = €x‘Ž(x); the second derivative is Žˆˆ(x) = (x2 € 1)Ž(x). More generally, the n-th derivative is given by Ž(n)(x) = (€1)nHn(x)Ž(x), where Hn is the Hermite polynomial of order n.[6]


Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function (cdf) describes probabilities for a random variable to fall in the intervals of the form (ۥ, x]. The cdf of the standard normal distribution is denoted with the capital Greek letter Р(phi), and can be computed as an integral of the probability density function:

This integral can only be expressed in terms of a special function erf, called the error function. The numerical methods for calculation of the standard normal cdf are discussed below. For a generic normal random variable with mean „ and variance ˆ2€>€0 the cdf will be equal to

For a normal distribution with zero variance, the cdf is the Heaviside step function:

The complement of the standard normal cdf, Q(x) = 1 € –(x), is referred to as the Q-function, especially in engineering texts.[7] [8] This represents the tail probability of the Gaussian distribution, that is the probability that a standard normal random variable X is greater than the number x. Other definitions of the Q-function, all of which are simple transformations of –, are also used occasionally.[9] Properties: • The standard normal cdf is 2-fold rotationally symmetric around point (0,€…):€ –(€x) = 1 € –(x). • The derivative of –(x) is equal to the standard normal pdf Ž(x):€ –ˆ(x) = Ž(x). • The antiderivative of –(x) is:€ ” –(x) dx = x –(x) + Ž(x).

Quantile function
The inverse of the standard normal cdf, called the quantile function or probit function, is expressed in terms of the inverse error function:

Quantiles of the standard normal distribution are commonly denoted as zp. The quantile zp represents such a value that a standard normal random variable X has the probability of exactly p to fall inside the (€•, zp] interval. The quantiles are used in hypothesis testing, construction of confidence intervals and Q-Q plots. The most€ ‹famousŒ normal quantile is 1.96 = z0.975. A standard normal random variable is greater than 1.96 in absolute value in only 5% of cases. For a normal random variable with mean „ and variance ˆ2, the quantile function is

Normal distribution


Characteristic function and moment generating function
The characteristic function ŒX(t) of a random variable X is defined as the expected value of eitX, where i is the imaginary unit, and t€‰€R is the argument of the characteristic function. Thus the characteristic function is the Fourier transform of the density Ž(x). For a normally distributed X with mean „ and variance ˆ2, the characteristic function is

The moment generating function is defined as the expected value of etX. For a normal distribution, the moment generating function exists and is equal to

The cumulant generating function is the logarithm of the moment generating function:

Since this is a quadratic polynomial in t, only the first two cumulants are nonzero.

The normal distribution has moments of all orders. That is, for a normally distributed X with mean „ and variance ˆ 2 , the expectation E|X|p exists and is finite for all p such that Re[p] > €1. Usually we are interested only in moments of integer orders: p = 1, 2, 3, ‡. • Central moments are the moments of X around its mean „. Thus, a central moment of order p is the expected value of (X • „) p. Using standardization of normal random variables, this expectation will be equal to ˆ p ‘ E[Zp], where Z is standard normal.

Here n!! denotes the double factorial, that is the product of every other number from n to 1. • Central absolute moments are the moments of |X€€€„|. They coincide with regular moments for all even orders, but are nonzero for all odd p†s.

• Raw moments and raw absolute moments are the moments of X and |X| respectively. The formulas for these moments are much more complicated, and are given in terms of confluent hypergeometric functions 1F1 and U.

These expressions remain valid even if p is not integer. See also generalized Hermite polynomials. • First two cumulants are equal to „ and ˆ 2 respectively, whereas all higher-order cumulants are equal to zero.

Normal distribution



Raw moment

Central moment


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

„ „2 + ˆ2 „3 + 3„ˆ2 „4 + 6„2ˆ2 + 3ˆ4 „5 + 10„3ˆ2 + 15„ˆ4 „6 + 15„4ˆ2 + 45„2ˆ4 + 15ˆ6 „7 + 21„5ˆ2 + 105„3ˆ4 + 105„ˆ6 „8 + 28„6ˆ2 + 210„4ˆ4 + 420„2ˆ6 + 105ˆ8

0 ˆ2 0 3ˆ 4 0 15ˆ 6 0 105ˆ 8

„ ˆ2 0 0 0 0 0 0

Standardizing normal random variables
As a consequence of property 1, it is possible to relate all normal random variables to the standard normal. For example if X is normal with mean „ and variance ˆ2, then

has mean zero and unit variance, that is Z has the standard normal distribution. Conversely, having a standard normal random variable Z we can always construct another normal random variable with specific mean „ and variance ˆ2:

This€ ‹standardizingŒ transformation is convenient as it allows one to compute the pdf and especially the cdf of a normal distribution having the table of pdf and cdf values for the standard normal. They will be related via

Standard deviation and confidence intervals

Normal distribution


About 68% of values drawn from a normal distribution are within one standard deviation ˆ€>€0 away from the mean „; about 95% of the values are within two standard deviations and about 99.7% lie within three standard deviations. This is known as the 68-95-99.7 rule, or the empirical rule, or the 3-sigma rule. To be more precise, the area under the bell curve between „€€€nˆ and „€+€nˆ in terms of the cumulative normal distribution function is given by

Dark blue is less than one standard deviation from the mean. For the normal distribution, this accounts for about 68% of the set (dark blue), while two standard deviations from the mean (medium and dark blue) account for about 95%, and three standard deviations (light, medium, and dark blue) account for about 99.7%.

where erf is the error function. To 12 decimal places, the values for the 1-, 2-, up to 6-sigma points are:
i.e. 1 minus ... or 1 in ...

1 0.682689492137 0.317310507863 3.15148718753 2 0.954499736104 0.045500263896 21.9778945081 3 0.997300203937 0.002699796063 370.398347380 4 0.999936657516 0.000063342484 15,787.192684 5 0.999999426697 0.000000573303 6 0.999999998027 0.000000001973 1,744,278.331 506,842,375.7

The next table gives the reverse relation of sigma multiples corresponding to a few often used values for the area under the bell curve. These values are useful to determine (asymptotic) confidence intervals of the specified levels based on normally distributed (or asymptotically normal) estimators:

0.80 0.90 0.95 0.98 0.99 0.995 0.998 0.999 0.9999

1.281551565545 1.644853626951 1.959963984540 2.326347874041 2.575829303549 2.807033768344 3.090232306168 3.290526731492 3.890591886413

0.99999 4.417173413469

Normal distribution where the value on the left of the table is the proportion of values that will fall within a given interval and n is a multiple of the standard deviation that specifies the width of the interval.


Central limit theorem
The theorem states that under certain, fairly common conditions, the sum of a large number of random variables will have an approximately normal distribution. For example if (x1, ‡, xn) is a sequence of iid random variables, each having mean „ and variance ˆ2 but otherwise distributions of xi†s can be arbitrary, then the central limit theorem states that

The theorem will hold even if the summands xi are not iid, although some constraints on the degree of dependence and the growth rate of moments still have to be imposed. The importance of the central limit theorem cannot be overemphasized. A great number of test statistics, scores, and estimators encountered in practice contain sums of certain random variables in them, even more estimators can be represented as sums of random variables through the use of influence functions „ all of these quantities are governed by the central limit theorem and will have asymptotically normal distribution as a result. Another practical consequence of the central limit theorem is that certain other distributions can be approximated by the normal distribution, for example: • The binomial distribution B(n, p) is approximately normal N(np, np(1€€€p)) for large n and for p not too close to zero or one. • The Poisson(Š) distribution is approximately normal N(Š, Š) for large values of€Œ. • The chi-squared distribution †2(k) is approximately normal N(k, 2k) for large ks. • The Student†s t-distribution t(‰) is approximately normal N(0, 1) when ‰ is large.

As the number of discrete events increases, the function begins to resemble a normal distribution

Whether these approximations are sufficiently accurate depends on the purpose for which they are needed, and the rate of convergence to the normal distribution. It is typically the case that such approximations are less accurate in the tails of the distribution. A general upper bound for the approximation error in the central limit theorem is given by the Berry‚Esseen theorem, improvements of the approximation are given by the Edgeworth expansions.

1. The family of normal distributions is closed under linear transformations. That is, if X is normally distributed with mean€„ and variance€ˆ2, then a linear transform aX + b (for some real numbers a and b) is also normally distributed:

Also if X1, X2 are two independent normal random variables, with means „1, „2 and standard deviations ˆ1, ˆ2, then their linear combination will also be normally distributed: [proof] 2. The converse of (1) is also true: if X1 and X2 are independent and their sum X1 + X2 is distributed normally, then both X1 and X2 must also be normal. This is known as Cram„r†s theorem. The interpretation of this property is that

Normal distribution a normal distribution is only divisible by other normal distributions. 3. It is a common fallacy that if two normal random variables are uncorrelated then they are also independent. This is false.[proof] The correct statement is that if the two random variables are jointly normal and uncorrelated, only then they are independent. 4. Normal distribution is infinitely divisible: for a normally distributed X with mean€„ and variance€ˆ2 we can find n independent random variables {X1, ‡, Xn} each distributed normally with means€„/n and variances€ˆ2/n such that 5. Normal distribution is stable (with exponent € = 2): if X1, X2 are two independent N(„, ˆ2) random variables and a, b are arbitrary real numbers, then where X3 is also N(„, ˆ2). This relationship directly follows from property (1). 6. The Kullback‚Leibler divergence between two normal distributions X1 • N(„1, ˆ21 )and X2 • N(„2, ˆ22 )is given by:[11]


The Hellinger distance between the same distributions is equal to

7. The Fisher information matrix for normal distribution is diagonal and takes form

8. Normal distributions belongs to an exponential family with natural parameters


, and natural

statistics x and x . The dual, expectation parameters for normal distribution are ’1 = „ and ’2 = „ + ˆ2. 9. Of all probability distributions over the reals with mean€„ and variance€ˆ2, the normal distribution N(„, ˆ2) is the one with the maximum entropy. 10. The family of normal distributions forms a manifold with constant curvature €1. The same family is flat with respect to the (‹1)-connections •(e) and •(m).[12]

Related distributions
• If X is distributed normally with mean „ and variance ˆ2, then • The exponent of X is distributed log-normally: eX ~ lnN („, ˆ2). • The absolute value of X has folded normal distribution: IXI ~ Nf („, ˆ2). If „ = 0 this is known as the half-normal distribution. • The square of X/ˆ has the non-central chi-square distribution with one degree of freedom: X2/ˆ2 ~ †21(„2/ˆ2). If „ = 0, the distribution is called simply chi-square. • Variable X restricted to an interval [a, b] is called the truncated normal distribution. • (X € „)€2 has a L„vy distribution with location 0 and scale ˆ€2. • If X1 and X2 are two independent standard normal random variables, then • Their sum and difference is distributed normally with mean zero and variance two: X1 ‹ X2 • N(0, 2). • Their product Z = X1‘X2 follows the€ ‹product-normalŒ distribution[13] with density function fZ(z) = •€1K0(|z|), where K0 is the modified Bessel function of the second kind. This distribution is symmetric around zero, unbounded at z = 0, and has the characteristic function ŒZ(t) = (1 + t 2)€1/2. • Their ratio follows the standard Cauchy distribution: X1 — X2 • Cauchy(0, 1).

Normal distribution • Their Euclidean norm has the Rayleigh distribution, also known as the chi distribution with 2


degrees of freedom. • If X1, X2, ‡, Xn are independent standard normal random variables, then the sum of their squares has the chi-square distribution with n degrees of freedom: . • If X1, X2, ‡, Xn are independent normally distributed random variables with means „ and variances ˆ2, then their sample mean is independent from the sample standard deviation, which can be demonstrated using the Basu†s theorem or Cochran†s theorem. The ratio of these two quantities will have the Student†s t-distribution with n € 1 degrees of freedom: • If X1, ‡, Xn, Y1, ‡, Ym are independent standard normal random variables, then the ratio of their normalized sums of squares will have the F-distribution with (n, m) degrees of freedom:

The notion of normal distribution, being one of the most important distributions in probability theory, has been extended far beyond the standard framework of the univariate (that is one-dimensional) case. All these extensions are also called normal or Gaussian laws, so a certain ambiguity in names exists. • Multivariate normal distribution describes the Gaussian law in the k-dimensional Euclidean space. A vector X ‰ Rk is multivariate-normally distributed if any linear combination of its components € € has a (univariate) normal distribution. The variance of X is a k‡k symmetric positive-definite matrix€V. • Complex normal distribution deals with the complex normal vectors. A complex vector X ‰ Ck is said to be normal if both its real and imaginary components jointly possess a 2k-dimensional multivariate normal distribution. The variance-covariance structure of X is described by two matrices: the variance matrix€†, and the relation matrix€C. • Matrix normal distribution describes the case of normally distributed matrices. • Gaussian processes are the normally distributed stochastic processes. These can be viewed as elements of some infinite-dimensional Hilbert space€H, and thus are the analogues of multivariate normal vectors for the case k = •. A random element h ‰ H is said to be normal if for any constant a ‰ H the scalar product (a, h) has a (univariate) normal distribution. The variance structure of such Gaussian random element can be described in terms of the linear covariance operator K: H „ H. Several Gaussian processes became popular enough to have their own names: • Brownian motion, • Brownian bridge, • Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process. • Gaussian q-distribution is an abstract mathematical construction which represents a€ ‹q-analogueŒ of the normal distribution. One of the main practical uses of the Gaussian law is to model the empirical distributions of many different random variables encountered in practice. In such case a possible extension would be a richer family of distributions, having more than two parameters and therefore being able to fit the empirical distribution more accurately. The examples of such extensions are: • Pearson distribution „ a four-parametric family of probability distributions that extend the normal law to include different skewness and kurtosis values.

Normal distribution


Normality tests
Normality tests assess the likelihood that the given data set {x1, ‡, xn} comes from a normal distribution. Typically the null hypothesis H0 is that the observations are distributed normally with unspecified mean „ and variance ˆ2, versus the alternative Ha that the distribution is arbitrary. A great number of tests (over 40) have been devised for this problem, the more prominent of them are outlined below: • •Visual‚ tests are more intuitively appealing but subjective at the same time, as they rely on informal human judgement to accept or reject the null hypothesis. • Q-Q plot „ is a plot of the sorted values from the data set against the expected values of the corresponding quantiles from the standard normal distribution. That is, it†s a plot of point of the form (–€1(pk), x(k)), where plotting points pk are equal to pk€=€(k•€)/(n+1€2€) and € is an adjustment constant which can be anything between 0 and 1. If the null hypothesis is true, the plotted points should approximately lie on a straight line. • P-P plot „ similar to the Q-Q plot, but used much less frequently. This method consists of plotting the points (–(z(k)), pk), where . For normally distributed data this plot should lie on a 45˜ line between (0,0) and (1,1). • Wilk‚Shapiro test employs the fact that the line in the Q-Q plot has the slope of ˆ. The test compares the least squares estimate of that slope with the value of the sample variance, and rejects the null hypothesis if these two quantities differ significantly. • Normal probability plot (rankit plot) • Moment tests: • D†Agostino†s K-squared test • Jarque‚Bera test • Empirical distribution function tests: • Kolmogorov‚Smirnov test • Lilliefors test • Anderson‚Darling test

Estimation of parameters
It is often the case that we don†t know the parameters of the normal distribution, but instead want to estimate them. That is, having a sample (x1, ‡, xn) from a normal N(„, ˆ2) population we would like to learn the approximate values of parameters „ and ˆ2. The standard approach to this problem is the maximum likelihood method, which requires maximization of the log-likelihood function: Taking derivatives with respect to „ and ˆ2 and solving the resulting system of first order conditions yields the maximum likelihood estimates:

Estimator is called the sample mean, since it is the arithmetic mean of all observations. The statistic is complete and sufficient for „, and therefore by the Lehmann‚Scheff„ theorem, is the uniformly minimum variance unbiased (UMVU) estimator. In finite samples it is distributed normally:

The variance of this estimator is equal to the „„-element of the inverse Fisher information matrix . This implies that the estimator is finite-sample efficient. Of practical importance is the fact that the standard error of is proportional to , that is, if one wishes to decrease the standard error by a factor of 10, one must increase the number of points in the sample by a factor of 100. This fact is widely used in determining sample sizes for opinion polls and the number of trials in Monte Carlo simulations.

Normal distribution From the standpoint of the asymptotic theory, is consistent, that is, it converges in probability to „ as n ‘ •. The estimator is also asymptotically normal, which is a simple corollary of the fact that it is normal in finite samples:


The estimator is called the sample variance, since it is the variance of the sample (x1, ‡, xn). In practice, another estimator is often used instead of the . This other estimator is denoted s2, and is also called the sample variance, which represents a certain ambiguity in terminology; its square root s is called the sample standard deviation. The estimator s2 differs from by having (n € 1) instead of€n in the denominator (the so called Bessel†s correction):

The difference between s2 and becomes negligibly small for large n†s. In finite samples however, the motivation behind the use of s2 is that it is an unbiased estimator of the underlying parameter ˆ2, whereas is biased. Also, by the Lehmann‚Scheff„ theorem the estimator s2 is uniformly minimum variance unbiased (UMVU), which makes it the€ ‹bestŒ estimator among all unbiased ones. However it can be shown that the biased estimator is€ ‹betterŒ than the s2 in terms of the mean squared error (MSE) criterion. In finite samples both s2 and have scaled chi-squared distribution with (n € 1) degrees of freedom:

The first of these expressions shows that the variance of s2 is equal to 2ˆ4/(n€1), which is slightly greater than the ˆˆ-element of the inverse Fisher information matrix . Thus, s2 is not an efficient estimator for ˆ2, and moreover, since s2 is UMVU, we can conclude that the finite-sample efficient estimator for ˆ2 does not exist. Applying the asymptotic theory, both estimators s2 and are consistent, that is they converge in probability to ˆ2 as the sample size n ‘ •. The two estimators are also both asymptotically normal: In particular, both estimators are asymptotically efficient for ˆ2. By Cochran†s theorem, for normal distribution the sample mean and the sample variance s2 are independent, which means there can be no gain in considering their joint distribution. There is also a reverse theorem: if in a sample the sample mean and sample variance are independent, then the sample must have come from the normal distribution. The independence between and s can be employed to construct the so-called t-statistic:

This quantity t has the Student†s t-distribution with (n € 1) degrees of freedom, and it is an ancillary statistic (independent of the value of the parameters). Inverting the distribution of this t-statistics will allow us to construct the confidence interval for „; similarly, inverting the †2 distribution of the statistic s2 will give us the confidence interval for ˆ2: where tk,p and †k,p2 are the pth quantiles of the t- and †2-distributions respectively. These confidence intervals are of the level 1 € €, meaning that the true values „ and ˆ2 fall outside of these intervals with probability €. In practice people usually take € = 5%, resulting in the 95% confidence intervals. The approximate formulas in the display above were derived from the asymptotic distributions of and s2. The approximate formulas become valid for large values of n, and are more convenient for the manual calculation since the standard normal quantiles z€/2 do not depend on n. In particular, the most popular value of € = 5%, results in |z0.025| = 1.96.

Normal distribution


The occurrence of normal distribution in practical problems can be loosely classified into three categories: 1. Exactly normal distributions; 2. Approximately normal laws, for example when such approximation is justified by the central limit theorem; and 3. Distributions modeled as normal „ the normal distribution being one of the simplest and most convenient to use, frequently researchers are tempted to assume that certain quantity is distributed normally, without justifying such assumption rigorously. In fact, the maturity of a scientific field can be judged by the prevalence of the normality assumption in its methods.

Exact normality
Certain quantities in physics are distributed normally, as was first demonstrated by James Clerk Maxwell. Examples of such quantities are: • Velocities of the molecules in the ideal gas. More generally, velocities of the particles in any system in thermodynamic equilibrium will have normal distribution, due to the maximum entropy principle. • Probability density function of a ground state in a quantum harmonic oscillator. • The density of an electron cloud in 1s state.

The ground state of a quantum harmonic oscillator has the Gaussian distribution.

• The position of a particle which experiences diffusion. If initially the particle is located at a specific point (that is its probability distribution is a dirac delta function), then after time t its location is described by a normal distribution with variance t, which satisfies the diffusion equation€ . If the initial location is given by a certain density function g(x), then the density at time t is the convolution of g and the normal pdf.

Approximate normality
Approximately normal distributions occur in many situations, as explained by the central limit theorem. When the outcome is produced by a large number of small effects acting additively and independently, its distribution will be close to normal. The normal approximation will not be valid if the effects act multiplicatively (instead of additively), or if there is a single external influence which has a considerably larger magnitude than the rest of the effects. • In counting problems, where the central limit theorem includes a discrete-to-continuum approximation and where infinitely divisible and decomposable distributions are involved, such as • Binomial random variables, associated with binary response variables; • Poisson random variables, associated with rare events; • Thermal light has a Bose‚Einstein distribution on very short time scales, and a normal distribution on longer timescales due to the central limit theorem.

Normal distribution


Assumed normality

I can only recognize the occurrence of the normal curve „ the Laplacian curve of errors „ as a very abnormal phenomenon. It is roughly approximated to in certain distributions; for this reason, and on account for its beautiful simplicity, we may, perhaps, use it as a first approximation, particularly in theoretical investigations. „ Pearson (1901)

There are statistical methods to empirically test that assumption, see the #Normality tests section. • In biology: • The logarithm of measures of size of living tissue (length, height, skin area, weight);[14] • The length of inert appendages (hair, claws, nails, teeth) of biological specimens, in the direction of growth; presumably the thickness of tree bark also falls under this category; • Certain physiological measurements, such as blood pressure of adult humans (after separation on male/female subpopulations). • In finance, in particular the Black‚Scholes model, changes in the logarithm of exchange rates, price indices, and stock market indices are assumed normal (these variables behave like compound interest, not like simple interest, and so are multiplicative). Some mathematicians such as Beno™t Mandelbrot argue that log-Levy distributions which possesses heavy tails would be a more appropriate model, in particular for the analysis for stock market crashes. • Measurement errors in physical experiments are often assumed to be normally distributed. This assumption allows for particularly simple practical rules for how to combine errors in measurements of different quantities. However, whether this assumption is valid or not in practice is debatable. A famous remark of Lippmann says:€ ‹Everyone believes in the [normal] law of errors: the mathematicians, because they think it is an experimental fact; and the experimenters, because they suppose it is a theorem of mathematics.Œ [15] • In standardized testing, results can be made to have a normal distribution. This is done by either selecting the number and difficulty of questions (as in the IQ test), or by transforming the raw test scores into€ ‹outputŒ scores by fitting them to the normal distribution. For example, the SAT†s traditional range of 200‚800 is based on a normal distribution with a mean of 500 and a standard deviation of 100. • Many scores are derived from the normal distribution, including percentile ranks (€ ‹percentilesŒ or € ‹quantilesŒ), normal curve equivalents, stanines, z-scores, and T-scores. Additionally, a number of behavioral statistical procedures are based on the assumption that scores are normally distributed; for example, t-tests and ANOVAs. Bell curve grading assigns relative grades based on a normal distribution of scores.

Normal distribution


Generating values from normal distribution
For computer simulations, especially in applications of Monte-Carlo method, it is often useful to generate values that have a normal distribution. All algorithms described here are concerned with generating the standard normal, since a N(„, ˆ2) can be generated as X = „ + ˆZ, where Z is standard normal. The algorithms rely on the availability of a random number generator capable of producing random values distributed uniformly. • The most straightforward method is based on the probability integral transform property: if U is distributed uniformly on (0,1), then –€1(U) will have the standard normal distribution. The drawback of this method is that it relies on calculation of the probit function –€1, which cannot be done analytically. Some approximate methods are described in Hart (1968) and in the erf article.

The bean machine, a device invented by sir Francis Galton, can be called the first generator of normal random variables. This machine consists of a vertical board with interleaved rows of pins. Small balls are dropped from the top and then bounce randomly left or right as they hit the pins. The balls are collected into bins at the bottom and settle down into a pattern resembling the Gaussian curve.

• A simple approximate approach that is easy to program is as follows: simply sum 12 uniform (0,1) deviates and subtract 6 „ the resulting random variable will have approximately standard normal distribution. In truth, the distribution will be Irwin‚Hall, which is a 12-section eleventh-order polynomial approximation to the normal distribution. This random deviate will have a limited range of (€6,€6).[16] • The Box‚Muller method uses two independent random numbers U and V distributed uniformly on (0,1]. Then two random variables X and Y

will both have the standard normal distribution, and be independent. This formulation arises because for a bivariate normal random vector (X Y) the squared norm X2 + Y2 will have the chi-square distribution with two degrees of freedom, which is an easily generated exponential random variable corresponding to the quantity €2ln(U) in these equations; and the angle is distributed uniformly around the circle, chosen by the random variable V. • Marsaglia polar method is a modification of the Box‚Muller method algorithm, which does not require computation of functions sin() and cos(). In this method U and V are drawn from the uniform (€1,1) distribution, and then S = U2 + V2 is computed. If S is greater or equal to one then the method starts over, otherwise two quantities

are returned. Again, X and Y here will be independent and standard normally distributed. • Ratio method[17] starts with generating two independent uniform deviates U and V. The algorithm proceeds as follows: • Compute X = –(8/e) (V € 0.5)/U; • If X2 ƒ 5 € 4e1/4U then accept X and terminate algorithm; • If X2 Ž 4e€1.35/U + 1.4 then reject X and start over from step 1; • If X2 ƒ €4 / lnU then accept X, otherwise start over the algorithm.

Normal distribution • The ziggurat algorithm (Marsaglia & Tsang 2000) is faster than the Box‚Muller transform and still exact. In about 97% of all cases it uses only two random numbers, one random integer and one random uniform, one multiplication and an if-test. Only in 3% of the cases where the combination of those two falls outside the€ ‹core of the zigguratŒ a kind of rejection sampling using logarithms, exponentials and more uniform random numbers has to be employed. • There is also some investigation into the connection between the fast Hadamard transform and the normal distribution, since the transform employs just addition and subtraction and by the central limit theorem random numbers from almost any distribution will be transformed into the normal distribution. In this regard a series of Hadamard transforms can be combined with random permutations to turn arbitrary data sets into a normally distributed data.


Numerical approximations for the normal cdf
The standard normal cdf is widely used in scientific and statistical computing. The values –(x) may be approximated very accurately by a variety of methods, such as numerical integration, Taylor series, asymptotic series and continued fractions. Different approximations are used depending on the desired level of accuracy. • Abramowitz & Stegun (1964) give the approximation for –(x) for x > 0 with the absolute error |“(x)|€<€7.5‘10€8 (algorithm 26.2.17 [18]):where Ž(x) is the standard normal pdf, and b0 = 0.2316419, b1 = 0.319381530, b2 = €0.356563782, b3 = 1.781477937, b4 = €1.821255978, b5 = 1.330274429. • Hart (1968) lists almost a hundred of rational function approximations for the erfc() function. His algorithms vary in the degree of complexity and the resulting precision, with maximum absolute precision of 24 digits. An algorithm by West (2009) combines Hart†s algorithm 5666 with a continued fraction approximation in the tail to provide a fast computation algorithm with a 16-digit precision. • Marsaglia (2004) suggested a simple algorithm[19] based on the Taylor series expansion for calculating –(x) with arbitrary precision. The drawback of this algorithm is comparatively slow calculation time (for example it takes over 300 iterations to calculate the function with 16 digits of precision when x = 10). • The GNU Scientific Library calculates values of the standard normal cdf using Hart†s algorithms and approximations with Chebyshev polynomials.

Some authors[20] [21] attribute at least partially the credit for the discovery of the normal distribution to de Moivre, who in 1738 published in the second edition of his€ ‹The Doctrine of ChancesŒ[22] [23] the study of the coefficients in the binomial expansion of (a + b)n. De Moivre proved that the middle term in this expansion has the approximate magnitude of , and that€ ‹If m or …n be a Quantity infinitely great, then the Logarithm of the Ratio, which a Term dištant from the middle by the Interval ƒ, has to the middle Term, is .Œ Although this theorem can be interpreted as the first obscure expression for the normal probability law, Stigler points out that de Moivre himself did not interpret his results as anything more than the approximate rule for the binomial coefficients, and in particular de Moivre lacked the concept of the probability density function.[24]

Normal distribution

104 In 1809 Gauss published the monograph€ ‹Theoria motus corporum coelestium in sectionibus conicis solem ambientiumŒ where among other things he introduces and describes several important statistical concepts, such as the method of least squares, the method of maximum likelihood, and the normal distribution. Gauss used M, M€, M€€,€‡ to denote the measurements of some unknown quantity€V, and sought the€ ‹most probableŒ estimator: the one which maximizes the probability Œ(M•V) ‘ Œ(M€•V) ‘ Œ(M€€•V) ‘ ‡ of obtaining the observed experimental results. In his notation Œ” is the probability law of the measurement errors of magnitude ”. Not knowing what the function Œ is, Gauss requires that his method should reduce to the well-known answer: the arithmetic mean of the measured values.[25] Starting from these principles, Gauss demonstrates that the only law which rationalizes the choice of arithmetic mean as an estimator of the location parameter, is the normal law of errors:[26]

Carl Friedrich Gauss invented the normal distribution in 1809 as a way to rationalize the method of least squares.

where h is€ ‹the measure of the precision of the observationsŒ. Using this normal law as a generic model for errors in the experiments, Gauss formulates what is now known as the non-linear weighted least squares (NWLS) method.[27] Although Gauss was the first to suggest the normal distribution law, the merit of the contributions of Laplace cannot be underestimated.[28] It was Laplace who first posed the problem of aggregating several observations in 1774,[29] although his own solution led to the Laplacian distribution. It was Laplace who first calculated the value of the integral ” e€t ˆdt = –• in 1782, providing the normalization constant for the normal distribution.[30] Finally, it was Laplace who in 1810 proved and presented to the Academy the fundamental central limit theorem, which emphasized the theoretical importance of the normal distribution.[31] It is of interest to note that in 1809 an American mathematician Adrain published two derivations of the normal probability law, simultaneously and independently from Gauss.[32] His works remained unnoticed until 1871 when they were rediscovered by Abbe,[33] mainly because the scientific community was virtually non-existent in the United States at that time.

In the middle of the 19th century Maxwell demonstrated that the normal distribution is not just a convenient mathematical tool, but may also occur in natural phenomena:[34] ‹The number of particles whose velocity, resolved in a certain direction, lies between x and x+dx is

Marquis de Laplace proved the central limit theorem in 1810, consolidating the importance of the normal distribution in statistics.

Since its introduction, the normal distribution has been known by many different names: the law of error, the law of facility of errors, Laplace†s second law, Gaussian law, etc. By the end of the 19th century some authors[35] start to

Normal distribution occasionally use the name normal distribution, where the word ‹normalŒ is used as an adjective „ the term was derived from the fact that this distribution was seen as typical, common, normal. Around the turn of the 20th century Pearson popularizes the term normal as a designation for this distribution.[36]


Many years ago I called the Laplace‚Gaussian curve the normal curve, which name, while it avoids an international question of priority, has the disadvantage of leading people to believe that all other distributions of frequency are in one sense or another …abnormal.† „ Pearson (1920)

Also, it was Pearson who first wrote the distribution in terms of the standard deviation ˆ as in modern notation. Soon after this, in year 1915, Fisher added the location parameter to the formula for normal distribution, expressing it in the way it is written nowadays:

The term ‹standard normalŒ which denotes the normal distribution with zero mean and unit variance came into general use around 1950s, appearing in the popular textbooks by P.G. Hoel (1947) ‹Introduction to mathematical statisticsŒ and A.M. Mood (1950) ‹Introduction to the theory of statisticsŒ.[37]

See also
• Behrens‚Fisher problem „ the long-standing problem of testing whether two normal samples with different variances have same means; • Erd›s-Kac theorem „ on the occurrence of the normal distribution in number theory • Gaussian blur „ convolution which uses the normal distribution as a kernel

[1] The designation€ ‹bell curveŒ is ambiguous: there are many other distributions in probability theory which can be recognized as€ ‹bell-shapedŒ: the Cauchy distribution, Student†s t-distribution, generalized normal, logistic, etc. [2] Gale Encyclopedia of Psychology „ Normal Distribution (http:/ / findarticles. com/ p/ articles/ mi_g2699/ is_0002/ ai_2699000241) [3] Halperin & et al. (1965, item 7) [4] McPherson (1990) page 110 [5] Bernardo & Smith (2000) [6] Patel & Read (1996, [2.1.8]) [7] Scott, Clayton; Robert Nowak (August 7, 2003). "The Q-function" (http:/ / cnx. org/ content/ m11537/ 1. 2/ ). Connexions. . [8] Barak, Ohad (April 6, 2006). "Q function and error function" (http:/ / www. eng. tau. ac. il/ ~jo/ academic/ Q. pdf). Tel Aviv University. . [9] Weisstein, Eric W., " Normal Distribution Function (http:/ / mathworld. wolfram. com/ NormalDistributionFunction. html)" from MathWorld. [10] Sanders, Mathijs A.. "Characteristic function of the univariate normal distribution" (http:/ / www. planetmathematics. com/ CharNormal. pdf). . Retrieved 2009-03-06. [11] http:/ / www. allisons. org/ ll/ MML/ KL/ Normal/ [12] Amari & Nagaoka (2000) [13] Mathworld entry for Normal Product Distribution (http:/ / mathworld. wolfram. com/ NormalProductDistribution. html) [14] Huxley (1932) [15] Whittaker, E. T.; Robinson, G. (1967). The Calculus of Observations: A Treatise on Numerical Mathematics. New York: Dover. p.€179. [16] Johnson et al. (1995, Equation (26.48)) [17] Kinderman & Monahan (1976) [18] http:/ / www. math. sfu. ca/ ~cbm/ aands/ page_932. htm [19] For example, this algorithm is given in the article Bc programming language. [20] Johnson et al. (1994, page 85) [21] Le Cam (2000, p.€74) [22] De Moivre (1738) [23] De Moivre first published his findings in 1733, in a pamphlet€ ‹Approximatio ad Summam Terminorum Binomii (a + b)n in Seriem ExpansiŒ that was designated for private circulation only. But it was not until the year 1738 that he made his results publicly available. The original pamphlet was reprinted several times, see for example Helen M. Walker (1985). [24] Stigler (1986, p.€76)

Normal distribution
[25] ‹It has been customary certainly to regard as an axiom the hypothesis that if any quantity has been determined by several direct observations, made under the same circumstances and with equal care, the arithmetical mean of the observed values affords the most probable value, if not rigorously, yet very nearly at least, so that it is always most safe to adhere to it.Œ „ Gauss (1809, section 177) [26] Gauss (1809, section 177) [27] Gauss (1809, section 179) [28] ‹My custom of terming the curve the Gauss‚Laplacian or normal curve saves us from proportioning the merit of discovery between the two great astronomer mathematicians.Œ quote from Pearson (1905, p.€189) [29] Laplace (1774, Problem III) [30] Pearson (1905, p.€189) [31] Stigler (1986, p.€144) [32] Stigler (1978, p.€243) [33] Stigler (1978, p.€244) [34] Maxwell (1860), p. 23 [35] Such use is encountered in the works of Peirce, Galton and Lexis approximately around 1875. [36] Kruskal & Stigler (1997) [37] "Earliest uses‡ (entry STANDARD NORMAL CURVE)" (http:/ / jeff560. tripod. com/ s. html). .


References Literature
• Aldrich, John; Miller, Jeff. "Earliest uses of symbols in probability and statistics" ( stat.html). • Aldrich, John; Miller, Jeff. "Earliest known uses of some of the words of mathematics" (http://jeff560.tripod. com/mathword.html). In particular, the entries for ‹bell-shaped and bell curveŒ ( html), ‹normal (distribution)Œ (, ‹GaussianŒ ( html), and ‹Error, law of error, theory of errors, etc.Œ ( • Amari, Shun-ichi; Nagaoka, Hiroshi (2000). Methods of information geometry. Oxford University Press. ISBN€0-8218-0531-2. • Bernardo, J. M.; Smith, A.F.M. (2000). Bayesian Theory. Wiley. ISBN€0-471-49464-X. • de Moivre, Abraham (1738). The Doctrine of Chances. ISBN€0821821032. • Gavss, Carolo Friderico (1809) (in Latin). Theoria motvs corporvm coelestivm in sectionibvs conicis Solem ambientivm [Theory of the motion of the heavenly bodies moving about the Sun in conic sections]. English translation ( • Gould, Stephen Jay (1981). The mismeasure of man (first ed.). W.W. Norton. ISBN€0-393-01489-4. • Halperin, Max; Hartley, H. O.; Hoel, P. G. (1965). "Recommended standards for statistical symbols and notation. COPSS committee on symbols and notation" ( The American Statistician 19 (3): 12‚14. doi:10.2307/2681417. • Hart, John F.; et al (1968). Computer approximations. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. ISBN€0882756427. • Herrnstein, C.; Murray (1994). The bell curve: intelligence and class structure in American life. Free Press. ISBN€0-02-914673-9. • Huxley, Julian S. (1932). Problems of relative growth. London. ISBN€0486611140. OCLC€476909537. • Johnson, N.L.; Kotz, S.; Balakrishnan, N. (1994). Continuous univariate distributions, Volume 1. Wiley. ISBN€0-471-58495-9. • Johnson, N.L.; Kotz, S.; Balakrishnan, N. (1994). Continuous univariate distributions, Volume 2. Wiley. ISBN€0-471-58494-0. • Kruskal, William H.; Stigler, Stephen M. (1997). Normative terminology: …normal† in statistics and elsewhere. Statistics and public policy, edited by Bruce D. Spencer. Oxford University Press. ISBN€0-19-852341-6. • la Place, M. de (1774). "M„moire sur la probabilit„ des causes par les „vœnemens". M•moires de Math•matique et de Physique, Present•s • l†Acad•mie Royale des Sciences, par divers Savans & l–s dans ses Assembl•es, Tome Sixi—me: 621‚656. Translated by S.M.Stigler in Statistical Science 1 (3), 1986: JSTOR€2245476.

Normal distribution • Laplace, Pierre-Simon (1812). Analytical theory of probabilities. • McPherson, G. (1990). Statistics in scientific investigation: its basis, application and interpretation. Springer-Verlag. ISBN€0-387-97137-8. • Marsaglia, George; Tsang, Wai Wan (2000). "The ziggurat method for generating random variables" (http:// Journal of Statistical Software 5 (8). • Marsaglia, George (2004). "Evaluating the normal distribution" ( Journal of Statistical Software 11 (4). • Maxwell, James Clerk (1860). "V. Illustrations of the dynamical theory of gases. „ Part I: On the motions and collisions of perfectly elastic spheres". Philosophical Magazine, series 4 19 (124): 19‚32. doi:10.1080/14786446008642818 (inactive 2010-09-14). • Patel, Jagdish K.; Read, Campbell B. (1996). Handbook of the normal distribution. ISBN€0824715411. • Pearson, Karl (1905). "…Das Fehlergesetz und seine Verallgemeinerungen durch Fechner und Pearson†. A rejoinder". Biometrika 4: 169‚212. JSTOR€2331536. • Pearson, Karl (1920). "Notes on the history of correlation". Biometrika 13 (1): 25‚45. doi:10.1093/biomet/13.1.25. JSTOR€2331722. • Stigler, Stephen M. (1978). "Mathematical statistics in the early states". The Annals of Statistics 6 (2): 239‚265. doi:10.1214/aos/1176344123. JSTOR€2958876. • Stigler, Stephen M. (1982). "A modest proposal: a new standard for the normal". The American Statistician 36 (2). JSTOR€2684031. • Stigler, Stephen M. (1986). The history of statistics: the measurement of uncertainty before 1900. Harvard University Press. ISBN€0-674-40340-1. • Stigler, Stephen M. (1999). Statistics on the table. Harvard University Press. ISBN€0674836014. • Walker, Helen M. (editor) (1985) "De Moivre on the law of normal probability" in: Smith, David Eugene (1985), A Source Book in Mathematics, Dover. ISBN 0486646904 pages 566‚575. (online pdf) ( uk/depts/maths/histstat/demoivre.pdf) • Weisstein, Eric W. "Normal distribution" ( MathWorld. • West, Graeme (2009). "Better approximations to cumulative normal functions" ( 090721_west.pdf). Wilmott Magazine: 70‚76. • Zelen, Marvin; Severo, Norman C. (1964). Probability functions (chapter 26) ( aands/page_931.htm). Handbook of mathematical functions with formulas, graphs, and mathematical tables, by Abramowitz and Stegun: National Bureau of Standards. New York: Dover. ISBN€0-486-61272-4.


Pareto distribution


Pareto distribution
Pareto Probability density function

Pareto probability density functions for various €€ with xm€=€1. The horizontal axis is the x€ parameter. As €€‘€• the distribution approaches •(x€€€xm) where • is the Dirac delta function. Cumulative distribution function

Pareto cumulative distribution functions for various €€ with xm€=€1. The horizontal axis is the x€ parameter. parameters: support: pdf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: scale (real) shape (real)

Pareto distribution


ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: Fisher information:

The Pareto distribution, named after the Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, is a power law probability distribution that coincides with social, scientific, geophysical, actuarial, and many other types of observable phenomena. Outside the field of economics it is at times referred to as the Bradford distribution. Pareto originally used this distribution to describe the allocation of wealth among individuals since it seemed to show rather well the way that a larger portion of the wealth of any society is owned by a smaller percentage of the people in that society. He also used it to describe distribution of income.[1] This idea is sometimes expressed more simply as the Pareto principle or the "80-20 rule" which says that 20% of the population controls 80% of the wealth[2] . The probability density function (PDF) graph on the right shows that the "probability" or fraction of the population that owns a small amount of wealth per person is rather high, and then decreases steadily as wealth increases. This distribution is not limited to describing wealth or income, but to many situations in which an equilibrium is found in the distribution of the "small" to the "large". The following examples are sometimes seen as approximately Pareto-distributed: • • • • • • • • • • The sizes of human settlements (few cities, many hamlets/villages) File size distribution of Internet traffic which uses the TCP protocol (many smaller files, few larger ones) Hard disk drive error rates[3] Clusters of Bose‚Einstein condensate near absolute zero The values of oil reserves in oil fields (a few large fields, many small fields) The length distribution in jobs assigned supercomputers (a few large ones, many small ones) The standardized price returns on individual stocks Sizes of sand particles Sizes of meteorites Numbers of species per genus (There is subjectivity involved: The tendency to divide a genus into two or more increases with the number of species in it) • Areas burnt in forest fires • Severity of large casualty losses for certain lines of business such as general liability, commercial auto, and workers compensation.

Pareto distribution


If X is a random variable with a Pareto distribution, then the probability that X is greater than some number x is given by

where xm is the (necessarily positive) minimum possible value of X, and € is a positive parameter. The family of Pareto distributions is parameterized by two quantities, xm and €. When this distribution is used to model the distribution of wealth, then the parameter € is called the Pareto index. It follows from the above that therefore the cumulative distribution function of a Pareto random variable with parameters € and xm is

Density function
It follows (by differentiation) that the probability density function is

Moments and characteristic function
• The expected value of a random variable following a Pareto distribution with €€>€1 is

(if €€ƒ€1, the expected value does not exist). • The variance is

(If €€ƒ€2, the variance does not exist). • The raw moments are

but the nth moment exists only for n€<€€. • The moment generating function is only defined for non-positive values t€ƒ€0 as • The characteristic function is given by

where †(a,€x) is the incomplete gamma function.

Pareto distribution


Degenerate case
The Dirac delta function is a limiting case of the Pareto density:

Conditional distributions
The conditional probability distribution of a Pareto-distributed random variable, given the event that it is greater than or equal to a particular number€x1 exceeding€xm, is a Pareto distribution with the same Pareto index€€ but with minimum€x1 instead of€xm.

Relation to the exponential distribution
The Pareto distribution is related to the exponential distribution as follows. If X is Pareto-distributed with minimum xm and index€€, then

is exponentially distributed with intensity€€. Equivalently, if Y is exponentially distributed with intensity€€, then

is Pareto-distributed with minimum xm and index€€.

A characterization theorem
Suppose Xi, i = 1, 2, 3, ... are independent identically distributed random variables whose probability distribution is supported on the interval [xm,€•) for some xm€>€0. Suppose that for all n, the two random variables min{€X1,€...,€Xn€} and (X1€+€...€+€Xn)/min{€X1,€...,€Xn€} are independent. Then the common distribution is a Pareto distribution.

Relation to Zipf's law
Pareto distributions are continuous probability distributions. Zipf's law, also sometimes called the zeta distribution, may be thought of as a discrete counterpart of the Pareto distribution.

Relation to the "Pareto principle"
The "80-20 law", according to which 20% of all people receive 80% of all income, and 20% of the most affluent 20% receive 80% of that 80%, and so on, holds precisely when the Pareto index is€€€=€log45. Moreover, the following have been shown[4] to be mathematically equivalent: • Income is distributed according to a Pareto distribution with index €€>€1. • There is some number 0€ƒ€p€ƒ€1/2 such that 100p% of all people receive 100(1€€€p)% of all income, and similarly for every real (not necessarily integer) n€>€0, 100pn% of all people receive 100(1€€€p)n% of all income. This does not apply only to income, but also to wealth, or to anything else that can be modeled by this distribution. This excludes Pareto distributions in which€0€<€€€ƒ€1, which, as noted above, have infinite expected value, and so cannot reasonably model income distribution.

Pareto distribution


Pareto, Lorenz, and Gini
The Lorenz curve is often used to characterize income and wealth distributions. For any distribution, the Lorenz curve L(F) is written in terms of the PDF ‹ or the CDF F as

Lorenz curves for a number of Pareto distributions. The case €€=€• corresponds to perfectly equal distribution (G€=€0) and the €€=€1 line corresponds to complete inequality (G€=€1)

where x(F) is the inverse of the CDF. For the Pareto distribution,

and the Lorenz curve is calculated to be

where € must be greater than or equal to unity, since the denominator in the expression for L(F) is just the mean value of€x. Examples of the Lorenz curve for a number of Pareto distributions are shown in the graph on the right. The Gini coefficient is a measure of the deviation of the Lorenz curve from the equidistribution line which is a line connecting [0,€0] and [1,€1], which is shown in black (€€=€•) in the Lorenz plot on the right. Specifically, the Gini coefficient is twice the area between the Lorenz curve and the equidistribution line. The Gini coefficient for the Pareto distribution is then calculated to be

(see Aaberge 2005).

Pareto distribution


Parameter estimation
The likelihood function for the Pareto distribution parameters € and xm, given a sample x =€(x1,€x2,€...,€xn), is

Therefore, the logarithmic likelihood function is

It can be seen that

is monotonically increasing with

, that is, the greater the value of

, the greater

the value of the likelihood function. Hence, since

, we conclude that

To find the estimator for €, we compute the corresponding partial derivative and determine where it is zero:

Thus the maximum likelihood estimator for € is:

The expected statistical error is:

Graphical representation
The characteristic curved 'long tail' distribution when plotted on a linear scale, masks the underlying simplicity of the function when plotted on a log-log graph, which then takes the form of a straight line with negative gradient.

Generating a random sample from Pareto distribution
Random samples can be generated using inverse transform sampling. Given a random variate U drawn from the uniform distribution on the unit interval (0,€1), the variate

is Pareto-distributed.

Bounded Pareto distribution

Pareto distribution
Bounded Pareto parameters: location (real) location (real) shape (real)


support: pdf:




mode: variance:

skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

The bounded Pareto distribution has three parameters €, L and H. As in the standard Pareto distribution € determines the shape. L denotes the minimal value, and H denotes the maximal value. (The Variance in the table on the right should be interpreted as 2nd Moment). The probability density function is

where L€ƒ€x€ƒ€H, and €€>€0.

Generating bounded Pareto random variables
If U is uniformly distributed on (0,€1), then

is bounded Pareto-distributed[6]

Generalized Pareto distribution

Pareto distribution
Generalized Pareto parameters: (real) scale (real) shape (real) support: pdf: where cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: location


The family of generalized Pareto distributions (GPD) has three parameters The cumulative distribution function is




, and


, where

is the location parameter,

the scale .

parameter and the shape parameter. Note that some references give the "shape parameter" as The probability density function is:


again, for

, and



Pareto distribution


Generating generalized Pareto random variables
If U is uniformly distributed on (0,€1], then

In Matlab Statistics Toolbox, you can easily use "gprnd" command to generate generalized Pareto random numbers.

See also
• • • • • • Pareto analysis Pareto efficiency Pareto interpolation Pareto principle The Long Tail Traffic generation model

[1] Pareto, Vilfredo, Cours d†˜conomie Politique: Nouvelle •dition par G.-H. Bousquet et G. Busino, Librairie Droz, Geneva, 1964, pages 299‚345. [2] For a two-quantile population, where 18% of the population owns 82% of the wealth, the Theil index takes the value 1. [3] Schroeder, Bianca; Damouras, Sotirios; Gill, Phillipa (2010-02-24), "Understanding latent sector error and how to protect against them" (http:/ / www. usenix. org/ event/ fast10/ tech/ full_papers/ schroeder. pdf), 8th Usenix Conference on File and Storage Technologies (FAST 2010), , retrieved 2010-09-10, "We experimented with 5 different distributions (Geometric,Weibull, Rayleigh, Pareto, and Lognormal), that are commonly used in the context of system reliability, and evaluated their žt through the total squared differences between the actual and hypothesized frequencies (•ˆ statistic). We found consistently across all models that the geometric distribution is a poor žt, while the Pareto distribution provides the best žt." [4] Michael Hardy (2010) "Pareto's Law", Mathematical Intelligencer, 32 (3), 38‚43. doi: 10.1007/s00283-010-9159-2 [5] (http:/ / arxiv. org/ abs/ cond-mat/ 0412004v3) [6] (http:/ / www. csee. usf. edu/ ~christen/ tools/ syntraf1. c)

• Lorenz, M. O. (1905). Methods of measuring the concentration of wealth. Publications of the American Statistical Association. 9: 209‚219.

External links
• The Pareto, Zipf and other power laws / William J. Reed ‚ PDF ( reed01_el.pdf) • Gini's Nuclear Family / Rolf Aaberg„. ‚ In: International Conference to Honor Two Eminent Social Scientists (, May, 2005 ‚ PDF ( 25 may paper/PAPER_Aaberge.pdf)

Student's t-distribution


Student's t-distribution
Student's t Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf:

degrees of freedom (real)


where 2F1 is the hypergeometric function mean: median: mode: variance: undefined skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy:
• •

, otherwise undefined



, otherwise

: digamma function, : beta function

Student's t-distribution

mgf: cf:

(Not defined)

: Bessel function


In probability and statistics, Student's t-distribution (or simply the t-distribution) is a continuous probability distribution that arises in the problem of estimating the mean of a normally distributed population when the sample size is small. It is the basis of the popular Student's t-tests for the statistical significance of the difference between two sample means, and for confidence intervals for the difference between two population means. The Student's t-distribution also arises in the Bayesian analysis of data from a normal family. The Student's t-distribution is a special case of the generalised hyperbolic distribution. In statistics, the t-distribution was first derived as a posterior distribution by Helmert and LŸroth.[2] [3] [4] In the English literature, a derivation of the t-distribution was published in 1908 by William Sealy Gosset[5] while he worked at the Guinness Brewery in Dublin. Due to proprietary issues, the paper was written under the pseudonym Student. The t-test and the associated theory became well-known through the work of R.A. Fisher, who called the distribution "Student's distribution".[6] Student's distribution arises when (as in nearly all practical statistical work) the population standard deviation is unknown and has to be estimated from the data. Quite often, however, textbook problems will treat the population standard deviation as if it were known and thereby avoid the need to use the Student's t-test. These problems are generally of two kinds: (1) those in which the sample size is so large that one may treat a data-based estimate of the variance as if it were certain, and (2) those that illustrate mathematical reasoning, in which the problem of estimating the standard deviation is temporarily ignored because that is not the point that the author or instructor is then explaining.

The "Student's" distribution was actually published in 1908 by William Sealy Gosset. Gosset, however, was employed at a brewery that forbade members of its staff publishing scientific papers due to an earlier paper containing trade secrets. To circumvent this restriction, Gosset used the name "Student", and consequently the distribution was named "Student's t-distribution".[7]

Student's t-distribution is the probability distribution of the ratio[8]

where • Z is normally distributed with expected value€0 and variance€1; • V has a chi-square distribution with degrees of freedom; • Z and V are independent. While, for any given constant€„, parameter€„. is a random variable of noncentral t-distribution with noncentrality

Student's t-distribution


Probability density function
Student's t-distribution has the probability density function

where For

is the number of degrees of freedom and even,

is the Gamma function.



The overall shape of the probability density function of the t-distribution resembles the bell shape of a normally distributed variable with mean 0 and variance 1, except that it is a bit lower and wider. As the number of degrees of freedom grows, the t-distribution approaches the normal distribution with mean 0 and variance 1. The following images show the density of the t-distribution for increasing values of . The normal distribution is shown as a blue line for comparison. Note that the t-distribution (red line) becomes closer to the normal distribution as increases.

Density of the t-distribution (red) for 1, 2, 3, 5, 10, and 30 df compared to normal distribution (blue). Previous plots shown in green.

1 degree of freedom

2 degrees of freedom

3 degrees of freedom

Student's t-distribution


5 degrees of freedom

10 degrees of freedom

30 degrees of freedom

Derivation Suppose X1, ..., Xn are independent values that are normally distributed with expected value • and variance Ž2. Let be the sample mean, and

be the sample variance. It can be shown that the random variable

has a chi-square distribution with n€€€1 degrees of freedom (by Cochran's theorem). It is readily shown that the quantity

is normally distributed with mean 0 and variance 1, since the sample mean and standard error

is normally distributed with mean

. Moreover, it is possible to show that these two random variables„the normally

distributed one and the chi-square-distributed one„are independent. Consequently the pivotal quantity,

which differs from Z in that the exact standard deviation is replaced by the random variable , has a Student's 2 t-distribution as defined above. Notice that the unknown population variance ˆ does not appear in T, since it was in both the numerator and the denominators, so it canceled. Gosset's work showed that T has the probability density function


equal to n€€€1.

This may also be written as

Student's t-distribution


where B is the Beta function. The distribution of T is now called the t-distribution. The parameter is called the number of degrees of freedom. The distribution depends on , but not • or Ž; the lack of dependence on • and Ž is what makes the t-distribution important in both theory and practice. Gosset's result can be stated more generally. (See, for example, Hogg and Craig, Sections 4.4 and 4.8.) Let Z have a normal distribution with mean 0 and variance 1. Let V have a chi-square distribution with degrees of freedom. Further suppose that Z and V are independent (see Cochran's theorem). Then the ratio

has a t-distribution with

degrees of freedom.

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function is given by the regularized incomplete beta function,


The moments of the t-distribution are

It should be noted that the term for 0€<€k€<€ function to

, k€even, may be simplified using the properties of the Gamma

For a t-distribution with degrees of freedom, the expected value is€0, and its variance is The skewness is 0 if €>€3 and the excess kurtosis is 6/( €€€4) if €>€4.


€€€2) if


Student's t-distribution


Confidence intervals
Suppose the number A is so chosen that

when T has a t-distribution with n€€€1 degrees of freedom. By symmetry, this is the same as saying that A satisfies

so A is the "95th percentile" of this probability distribution, or

. Then

and this is equivalent to

Therefore the interval whose endpoints are

is a 90-percent confidence interval for •. Therefore, if we find the mean of a set of observations that we can reasonably expect to have a normal distribution, we can use the t-distribution to examine whether the confidence limits on that mean include some theoretically predicted value - such as the value predicted on a null hypothesis. It is this result that is used in the Student's t-tests: since the difference between the means of samples from two normal distributions is itself distributed normally, the t-distribution can be used to examine whether that difference can reasonably be supposed to be zero. If the data are normally distributed, the one-sided (1€€€a)-upper confidence limit (UCL) of the mean, can be calculated using the following equation:

The resulting UCL will be the greatest average value that will occur for a given confidence interval and population size. In other words, being the mean of the set of observations, the probability that the mean of the distribution is inferior to UCL1€a is equal to the confidence level 1€€€a. A number of other statistics can be shown to have t-distributions for samples of moderate size under null hypotheses that are of interest, so that the t-distribution forms the basis for significance tests in other situations as well as when examining the differences between means. For example, the distribution of Spearman's rank correlation coefficient ™, in the null case (zero correlation) is well approximated by the t distribution for sample sizes above about€20.

Prediction interval
The t-distribution can be used to construct a prediction interval for an unobserved sample from a normal distribution with unknown mean and variance.

Monte Carlo sampling
There are various approaches to constructing random samples from the Student distribution. The matter depends on whether the samples are required on a stand-alone basis, or are to be constructed by application of a quantile function to uniform samples, e.g. in multi-dimensional applications basis on copula-dependency. In the case of stand-alone sampling, Bailey's 1994 extension of the Box-Muller method and its polar variation are easily deployed. It has the merit that it applies equally well to all real positive and negative degrees of freedom.

Student's t-distribution


Integral of Student's probability density function and p-value
The function is the integral of Student's probability density function, (t) between €t and t. It thus gives the probability that a value of t less than that calculated from observed data would occur by chance. Therefore, the function can be used when testing whether the difference between the means of two sets of data is statistically significant, by calculating the corresponding value of t and the probability of its occurrence if the two sets of data were drawn from the same population. This is used in a variety of situations, particularly in t-tests. For the statistic t, with degrees of freedom, is the probability that t would be less than the observed value if the two means were the same (provided that the smaller mean is subtracted from the larger, so that t€>€0). It is defined for real t by the following formula: where B is the Beta function. For t€>€0, there is a relation to the regularized incomplete beta function Ix(a,€b) as follows:

For statistical hypothesis testing this function is used to construct the p-value.

Three-parameter version
A generalization of the one-parameter Student's t distribution described above, also known as the "Student's t distribution", is a three-parameter version that introduces a location parameter and an inverse scale parameter (i.e. precision) , and has a density defined by Other properties of this version of the distribution are:

This distribution results from compounding a Gaussian distribution with mean reciprical of the variance), with a gamma distribution with parameters and then this is marginalized over the gamma distribution. and

and unknown precision (the . In other words,

the random variable X is assumed to have a normal distribution with an unknown precision distributed as gamma,

Related distributions
• • • • has a t-distribution if has a normal distribution. has an F-distribution if has a normal distribution as has a Cauchy distribution if and where . has a Student's t-distribution. . has a scaled inverse-†2 distribution and

Student's t-distribution


Special cases
Certain values of give an especially simple form.

Distribution function:

Density function:

See Cauchy distribution

Distribution function:

Density function:

Hypothesis testing
Confidence intervals and hypothesis tests rely on Student's t-distribution to cope with uncertainty resulting from estimating the standard deviation from a sample, whereas if the population standard deviation were known, a normal distribution would be used.

Robust parametric modeling
The t-distribution is often used as an alternative to the normal distribution as a model for data.[9] It is frequently the case that real data have heavier tails than the normal distribution allows for. The classical approach was to identify outliers and exclude or downweight them in some way. However, it is not always easy to identify outliers (especially in high dimensions), and the t-distribution is a natural choice of model for such data and provides a parametric approach to robust statistics. Lange et al. explored the use of the t-distribution for robust modeling of heavy tailed data in a variety of contexts. A Bayesian account can be found in Gelman et al. The degrees of freedom parameter controls the kurtosis of the distribution and is correlated with the scale parameter. The likelihood can have multiple local maxima and, as such, it is often necessary to fix the degrees of freedom at a fairly low value and estimate the other parameters taking this as given. Some authors report that values between 3 and 9 are often good choices. Venables and Ripley suggest that a value of 5 is often a good choice.

Student's t-distribution


Table of selected values
Most statistical textbooks list t distribution tables. Nowadays, the better way to a fully precise critical t value or a cumulative probability is the statistical function implemented in spreadsheets (Office Excel, OpenOffice Calc, etc.), or an interactive calculating web page. The relevant spreadsheet functions are TDIST and TINV, while online calculating pages save troubles like positions of parameters or names of functions. For example, a Mediawiki page supported by R extension can easily give the interactive result [10] of critical values or cumulative probability, even for noncentral t-distribution. The following table lists a few selected values for t-distributions with degrees of freedom for a range of one-sided or two-sided critical regions. For an example of how to read this table, take the fourth row, which begins with 4; that means , the number of degrees of freedom, is 4 (and if we are dealing, as above, with n values with a fixed sum, n =€5). Take the fifth entry, in the column headed 95% for one-sided (90% for two-sided). The value of that entry is "2.132". Then the probability that T is less than 2.132 is 95% or Pr(€•€<€T€<€2.132)€=€0.95; or mean that Pr(€2.132€<€T€<€2.132)€=€0.9. This can be calculated by the symmetry of the distribution, Pr(T€<€€2.132)€=€1€€€Pr(T€>€€2.132) = 1€€€0.95 = 0.05, and so Pr(€2.132€<€T€<€2.132) = 1€€€2(0.05) = 0.9. Note that the last row also gives critical points: a t-distribution with infinitely-many degrees of freedom is a normal distribution. (See above: Related distributions).
One Sided 75% Two Sided 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 50% 80% 60% 85% 70% 90% 80% 95% 97.5% 99% 99.5% 99.75% 99.9% 99.95% 90% 95% 98% 99% 99.5% 99.8% 99.9%

1.000 1.376 1.963 3.078 6.314 12.71 0.816 1.061 1.386 1.886 2.920 4.303 0.765 0.978 1.250 1.638 2.353 3.182 0.741 0.941 1.190 1.533 2.132 2.776 0.727 0.920 1.156 1.476 2.015 2.571 0.718 0.906 1.134 1.440 1.943 2.447 0.711 0.896 1.119 1.415 1.895 2.365 0.706 0.889 1.108 1.397 1.860 2.306 0.703 0.883 1.100 1.383 1.833 2.262 0.700 0.879 1.093 1.372 1.812 2.228 0.697 0.876 1.088 1.363 1.796 2.201 0.695 0.873 1.083 1.356 1.782 2.179 0.694 0.870 1.079 1.350 1.771 2.160 0.692 0.868 1.076 1.345 1.761 2.145 0.691 0.866 1.074 1.341 1.753 2.131 0.690 0.865 1.071 1.337 1.746 2.120 0.689 0.863 1.069 1.333 1.740 2.110 0.688 0.862 1.067 1.330 1.734 2.101 0.688 0.861 1.066 1.328 1.729 2.093

31.82 63.66 6.965 9.925 4.541 5.841 3.747 4.604 3.365 4.032 3.143 3.707 2.998 3.499 2.896 3.355 2.821 3.250 2.764 3.169 2.718 3.106 2.681 3.055 2.650 3.012 2.624 2.977 2.602 2.947 2.583 2.921 2.567 2.898 2.552 2.878 2.539 2.861

127.3 14.09 7.453 5.598 4.773 4.317 4.029 3.833 3.690 3.581 3.497 3.428 3.372 3.326 3.286 3.252 3.222 3.197 3.174

318.3 22.33 10.21 7.173 5.893 5.208 4.785 4.501 4.297 4.144 4.025 3.930 3.852 3.787 3.733 3.686 3.646 3.610 3.579

636.6 31.60 12.92 8.610 6.869 5.959 5.408 5.041 4.781 4.587 4.437 4.318 4.221 4.140 4.073 4.015 3.965 3.922 3.883

Student's t-distribution

20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 40 50 60 80 100 120 0.687 0.860 1.064 1.325 1.725 2.086 0.686 0.859 1.063 1.323 1.721 2.080 0.686 0.858 1.061 1.321 1.717 2.074 0.685 0.858 1.060 1.319 1.714 2.069 0.685 0.857 1.059 1.318 1.711 2.064 0.684 0.856 1.058 1.316 1.708 2.060 0.684 0.856 1.058 1.315 1.706 2.056 0.684 0.855 1.057 1.314 1.703 2.052 0.683 0.855 1.056 1.313 1.701 2.048 0.683 0.854 1.055 1.311 1.699 2.045 0.683 0.854 1.055 1.310 1.697 2.042 0.681 0.851 1.050 1.303 1.684 2.021 0.679 0.849 1.047 1.299 1.676 2.009 0.679 0.848 1.045 1.296 1.671 2.000 0.678 0.846 1.043 1.292 1.664 1.990 0.677 0.845 1.042 1.290 1.660 1.984 0.677 0.845 1.041 1.289 1.658 1.980 0.674 0.842 1.036 1.282 1.645 1.960 2.528 2.845 2.518 2.831 2.508 2.819 2.500 2.807 2.492 2.797 2.485 2.787 2.479 2.779 2.473 2.771 2.467 2.763 2.462 2.756 2.457 2.750 2.423 2.704 2.403 2.678 2.390 2.660 2.374 2.639 2.364 2.626 2.358 2.617 2.326 2.576 3.153 3.135 3.119 3.104 3.091 3.078 3.067 3.057 3.047 3.038 3.030 2.971 2.937 2.915 2.887 2.871 2.860 2.807 3.552 3.527 3.505 3.485 3.467 3.450 3.435 3.421 3.408 3.396 3.385 3.307 3.261 3.232 3.195 3.174 3.160 3.090 3.850 3.819 3.792 3.767 3.745 3.725 3.707 3.690 3.674 3.659 3.646 3.551 3.496 3.460 3.416 3.390 3.373 3.291

The number at the beginning of each row in the table above is which has been defined above as n€€€1. The percentage along the top is 100%(1€€€‚). The numbers in the main body of the table are t‚, . If a quantity T is distributed as a Student's t distribution with degrees of freedom, then there is a probability 1€€€‚ that T will be less than t‚, .(Calculated as for a one-tailed or one-sided test as opposed to a two-tailed test.) For example, given a sample with a sample variance 2 and sample mean of 10, taken from a sample set of 11 (10 degrees of freedom), using the formula

We can determine that at 90% confidence, we have a true mean lying below

(In other words, on average, 90% of the times that an upper threshold is calculated by this method, the true mean lies below this upper threshold.) And, still at 90% confidence, we have a true mean lying over

(In other words, on average, 90% of the times that a lower threshold is calculated by this method, the true mean lies above this lower threshold.) So that at 80% confidence, we have a true mean lying within the interval This is generally expressed in interval notation, e.g., for this case, at 80% confidence the true mean is within the interval [9.41490,€10.58510]. (In other words, on average, 80% of the times that upper and lower thresholds are calculated by this method, the true mean is both below the upper threshold and above the lower threshold. This is not the same thing as saying that there is an 80% probability that the true mean lies between a particular pair of upper and lower thresholds that have been calculated by this method„see confidence interval and prosecutor's fallacy.)

Student's t-distribution For information on the inverse cumulative distribution function see Quantile function.


See also
• • • • • • • • Student's t-statistic F-distribution Gamma function Hotelling's T-square distribution Noncentral t-distribution Multivariate Student distribution Confidence interval Variance

[1] Hurst, Simon, The Characteristic Function of the Student-t Distribution (http:/ / wwwmaths. anu. edu. au/ research. reports/ srr/ 95/ 044/ ), Financial Mathematics Research Report No. FMRR006-95, Statistics Research Report No. SRR044-95 [2] LŸroth, J (1876). "Vergleichung von zwei Werten des wahrscheinlichen Fehlers". Astron. Nachr. 87: 209‚20. doi:10.1002/asna.18760871402. [3] Pfanzagl, J.; Sheynin, O. (1996). "A forerunner of the t-distribution (Studies in the history of probability and statistics XLIV)" (http:/ / biomet. oxfordjournals. org/ cgi/ content/ abstract/ 83/ 4/ 891). Biometrika 83 (4): 891‚898. doi:10.1093/biomet/83.4.891. MR1766040. . [4] Sheynin, O (1995). "Helmert's work in the theory of errors". Arch. Hist. Ex. Sci. 49: 73‚104. doi:10.1007/BF00374700. [5] Student [William Sealy Gosset] (March 1908). "The probable error of a mean" (http:/ / www. york. ac. uk/ depts/ maths/ histstat/ student. pdf). Biometrika 6 (1): 1‚25. doi:10.1093/biomet/6.1.1. . [6] Fisher, R. A. (1925). "Applications of "Student's" distribution" (http:/ / digital. library. adelaide. edu. au/ coll/ special/ fisher/ 43. pdf). Metron 5: 90‚104. . [7] Walpole, Ronald; Myers, Raymond; Ye, Keying. Probability and Statistics for Engineers and Scientists. Pearson Education, 2002, 7th edition, pg. 237 [8] Johnson, N.L., Kotz, S., Balakrishnan, N. (1995) Continuous Univariate Distributions, Volume 2, 2nd Edition. Wiley, ISBN 0-471-58494-0 (Chapter 28) [9] Lange, Kenneth L.; Little, Roderick J.A.; Taylor, Jeremy M.G. (1989). "Robust statistical modeling using the t-distribution" (http:/ / www. jstor. org/ stable/ 2290063). JASA 84 (408): 881‚896. . [10] http:/ / mars. wiwi. hu-berlin. de/ mediawiki/ slides/ index. php/ Comparison_of_noncentral_and_central_distributions

• Helmert, F. R. (1875). ¡ber die Bestimmung des wahrscheinlichen Fehlers aus einer endlichen Anzahl wahrer Beobachtungsfehler. Z. Math. Phys. 20, 300-3. • Helmert, F. R. (1876a). ¡ber die Wahrscheinlichkeit der Potenzsummen der Beobachtungsfehler und uber einige damit in Zusammenhang stehende Fragen. Z. Math. Phys. 21, 192-218. • Helmert, F. R. (1876b). Die Genauigkeit der Formel von Peters zur Berechnung des wahrscheinlichen Beobachtungsfehlers directer Beobachtungen gleicher Genauigkeit Astron. Nachr. 88, 113-32. • Senn, S. & Richardson, W. (1994). The first t-test. Statist. Med. 13, 785-803. • Abramowitz, Milton; Stegun, Irene A., eds. (1965), "Chapter 26" ( page_948.htm), Handbook of Mathematical Functions with Formulas, Graphs, and Mathematical Tables, New York: Dover, pp.€948, MR0167642, ISBN€978-0486612720. • R.V. Hogg and A.T. Craig (1978). Introduction to Mathematical Statistics. New York: Macmillan. • Press, William H.; Saul A. Teukolsky, William T. Vetterling, Brian P. Flannery (1992). Numerical Recipes in C: The Art of Scientific Computing ( Cambridge University Press. pp.€ pp. 228‚229 (http://¢4.pdf). ISBN€0-521-43108-5. • Bailey, R. W. (1994). Polar generation of random variates with the t-distribution. Mathematics of Computation 62(206), 779‚781.

Student's t-distribution • W.N. Venables and B.D. Ripley, Modern Applied Statistics with S (Fourth Edition), Springer, 2002 • Gelman, Andrew; John B. Carlin, Hal S. Stern, Donald B. Rubin (2003). Bayesian Data Analysis (Second Edition) ( CRC/Chapman & Hall. ISBN€1-584-88388-X.


External links
• Earliest Known Uses of Some of the Words of Mathematics (S) ( (Remarks on the history of the term "Student's distribution")

Uniform distribution (continuous)


Uniform distribution (continuous)
Uniform Probability density function

Using maximum convention Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf:


mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: 0 any value in

In probability theory and statistics, the continuous uniform distribution is a family of probability distributions such that for each member of the family, all intervals of the same length on the distribution's support are equally probable. The support is defined by the two parameters, a and b, which are its minimum and maximum values. The distribution is often abbreviated U(a,b).

Uniform distribution (continuous)


Probability density function
The probability density function of the continuous uniform distribution is:

The values at the two boundaries a and b are usually unimportant because they do not alter the values of the integrals of f(x)€dx over any interval, nor of x€f(x)€dx or any higher moment. Sometimes they are chosen to be zero, and sometimes chosen to be 1/(b€€€a). The latter is appropriate in the context of estimation by the method of maximum likelihood. In the context of Fourier analysis, one may take the value of f(a) or f(b) to be 1/(2(b€€€a)), since then the inverse transform of many integral transforms of this uniform function will yield back the function itself, rather than a function which is equal "almost everywhere", i.e. except on a set of points with zero measure. Also, it is consistent with the sign function which has no such ambiguity. In terms of mean „ and variance ˆ2, the probability density may be written as:

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function is:

Its inverse is:

In mean and variance notation, the cumulative distribution function is:

and the inverse is:

Generating functions
Moment-generating function The moment-generating function is

from which we may calculate the raw moments m k

Uniform distribution (continuous)


For a random variable following this distribution, the expected value is then m1 = (a€+€b)/2 and the variance is m2€€€m12 = (b€€€a)2/12. Cumulant-generating function For n€Ž€2, the nth cumulant of the uniform distribution on the interval [0,€1] is bn/n, where bn is the nth Bernoulli number.

Generalization to Borel sets
This distribution can be generalized to more complicated sets than intervals. If S is a Borel set of positive, finite measure, the uniform probability distribution on S can be specified by defining the pdf to be zero outside S and constantly equal to 1/K on S, where K is the Lebesgue measure of S.

Order statistics
Let X1, ..., Xn be an i.i.d. sample from U(0,1). Let X(k) be the kth order statistic from this sample. Then the probability distribution of X(k) is a Beta distribution with parameters k and n€€€k€+€1. The expected value is

This fact is useful when making Q-Q plots. The variances are

The probability that a uniformly distributed random variable falls within any interval of fixed length is independent of the location of the interval itself (but it is dependent on the interval size), so long as the interval is contained in the distribution's support. To see this, if X — U(0,b) and [x, x+d] is a subinterval of [0,b] with fixed d > 0, then

which is independent of x. This fact motivates the distribution's name.

Uniform distribution (continuous)


Standard uniform
Restricting and , the resulting distribution U(0,1) is called a standard uniform distribution. One interesting property of the standard uniform distribution is that if u1 has a standard uniform distribution, then so does 1-u1. This property can be used for generating antithetic variates, among other things.

Related distributions
• If X has a standard uniform distribution, then by the inverse transform sampling method, Y = € ln(X) / Œ has an exponential distribution with (rate) parameter Œ. • Y = 1 € X1/n has a beta distribution with parameters 1 and n. (Note this implies that the standard uniform distribution is a special case of the beta distribution, with parameters 1 and 1.) • The Irwin‚Hall distribution is the sum of n i.i.d. U(0,1) distributions. • The sum of two independent, equally distributed, uniform distributions yields a symmetric triangular distribution.

Relationship to other functions
As long as the same conventions are followed at the transition points, the probability density function may also be expressed in terms of the Heaviside step function:

or in terms of the rectangle function

There is no ambiguity at the transition point of the sign function. Using the half-maximum convention at the transition points, the uniform distribution may be expressed in terms of the sign function as:

In statistics, when a p-value is used as a test statistic for a simple null hypothesis, and the distribution of the test statistic is continuous, then the test statistic (p-value) is uniformly distributed between 0 and 1 if the null hypothesis is true.

Sampling from a uniform distribution
There are many applications in which it is useful to run simulation experiments. Many programming languages have the ability to generate pseudo-random numbers which are effectively distributed according to the standard uniform distribution. If u is a value sampled from the standard uniform distribution, then the value a + (b € a)u follows the uniform distribution parametrised by a and b, as described above.

Uniform distribution (continuous)


Sampling from an arbitrary distribution
The uniform distribution is useful for sampling from arbitrary distributions. A general method is the inverse transform sampling method, which uses the cumulative distribution function (CDF) of the target random variable. This method is very useful in theoretical work. Since simulations using this method require inverting the CDF of the target variable, alternative methods have been devised for the cases where the cdf is not known in closed form. One such method is rejection sampling. The normal distribution is an important example where the inverse transform method is not efficient. However, there is an exact method, the Box-Muller transformation, which uses the inverse transform to convert two independent uniform random variables into two independent normally distributed random variables.

Estimation of maximum
Given a uniform distribution on [0,€N] with unknown N, the UMVU estimator for the maximum is given by

where m is the sample maximum and k is the sample size, sampling without replacement (though this distinction almost surely makes no difference for a continuous distribution). This follows for the same reasons as estimation for the discrete distribution, and can be seen as a very simple case of maximum spacing estimation. This problem is commonly known as the German tank problem, due to application of maximum estimation to estimates of German tank production during World War II.

Estimation of midpoint
The midpoint of the distribution (a€+€b)€/€2 is both the mean and the median of the uniform distribution. Although both the sample mean and the sample median are unbiased estimators of the midpoint, neither is as efficient as the sample mid-range, i.e. the arithmetic mean of the sample maximum and the sample minimum, which is the UMVU estimator of the midpoint (and also the maximum likelihood estimate).

See also
• • • • • • Beta distribution Box-Muller transform Probability plot Q-Q plot Random number Uniform distribution (discrete)

Weibull distribution


Weibull distribution
Weibull (2-Parameter) Probability density function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: support: pdf:

scale (real) shape (real)

cdf: mean: median: mode: if

variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: (see text)

Weibull distribution


In probability theory and statistics, the Weibull distribution is a continuous probability distribution. It is named after Waloddi Weibull who described it in detail in 1951, although it was first identified by Fr„chet (1927) and first applied by Rosin & Rammler (1933) to describe the size distribution of particles.

The probability density function of a Weibull random variable X is[1] :

where k > 0 is the shape parameter and Œ >0 is the scale parameter of the distribution. Its complementary cumulative distribution function is a stretched exponential function. The Weibull distribution is related to a number of other probability distributions; in particular, it interpolates between the exponential distribution (k = 1) and the Rayleigh distribution (k = 2). If the quantity X is a "time-to-failure", the Weibull distribution gives a distribution for which the failure rate is proportional to a power of time. The shape parameter, k, is that power plus one, and so this parameter can be interpreted directly as follows: • A value of k<1 indicates that the failure rate decreases over time. This happens if there is significant "infant mortality", or defective items failing early and the failure rate decreasing over time as the defective items are weeded out of the population. • A value of k=1 indicates that the failure rate is constant over time. This might suggest random external events are causing mortality, or failure. • A value of k>1 indicates that the failure rate increases with time. This happens if there is an "aging" process, or parts that are more likely to fail as time goes on. In the field of materials science, the shape parameter k of a distribution of strengths is known as the Weibull modulus.

The cumulative distribution function for the Weibull distribution is

for x Ž 0, and F(x; k; Œ) = 0 for x < 0. The failure rate h (or hazard rate) is given by

Moments The moment generating function of the logarithm of a Weibull distributed random variable is given by[2]

where † is the gamma function. Similarly, the characteristic function of log X is given by

In particular, the nth raw moment of X is given by:

Weibull distribution The mean and variance of a Weibull random variable can be expressed as:



The skewness is given by:

The excess kurtosis is given by:


. The kurtosis excess may also be written as :

Moment generating function A variety of expressions are available for the moment generating function of X itself. As a power series, since the raw moments are already known, one has

Alternatively, one can attempt to deal directly with the integral

If the parameter k is assumed to be a rational number, expressed as k = p/q where p and q are integers, then this integral can be evaluated analytically.[3] With t replaced by €t, one finds where G is the Meijer G-function. The characteristic function has also been obtained by Muraleedharan et al. (2007). Information entropy The information entropy is given by


is the Euler‚Mascheroni constant.

Weibull distribution


Related distributions
The translated Weibull distribution contains an additional parameter, and is also often found in the literature.[2] It has the probability density function


and f(x; k, Œ, Š) = 0 for x < Š, where

is the shape parameter,

is the scale parameter and

is the location parameter of the distribution. When Š=0, this reduces to the 2-parameter distribution. The Weibull distribution can be characterized as the distribution of a random variable X such that the random variable

is the standard exponential distribution with intensity 1.[2] The Weibull distribution interpolates between the exponential distribution with intensity 1/Œ when k = 1 and a Rayleigh distribution of mode when k = 2. The density function of the Weibull distribution changes character radically as k varies between 0 and 3, particularly in terms of its behaviour near x=0. For k < 1 the density approaches • as x nears zero and the density is J-shaped. For k = 1 the density has a finite positive value at x=0. For 1<k<2 the density is zero nears zero,has an infinite slope at x=0 and is unimodal. For k=2 the density has a finite positive slope at x=0. For k>2 the density is zero and has a zero slope at x=0 and the density is unimodal. As k goes to infinity, the Weibull distribution converges to a Dirac delta distribution centred at x=Œ. The Weibull distribution can also be characterized in terms of a uniform distribution: if X is uniformly distributed on (0,1), then the random variable Weibull distributed with parameters k and Œ. This leads to an easily implemented numerical scheme for simulating a Weibull distribution. The Weibull distribution (usually sufficient in reliability engineering) is a special case of the three parameter Exponentiated Weibull distribution where the additional exponent equals 1. The Exponentiated Weibull distribution accommodates unimodal, bathtub shaped*[4] and monotone failure rates. The Weibull distribution is a special case of the generalized extreme value distribution. It was in this connection that the distribution was first identified by Maurice Fr„chet in 1927. The closely related Fr„chet distribution, named for this work, has the probability density function

The Weibull distribution can also be generalized to the 3 parameter exponentiated Weibull distribution. This models the situation when the failure rate of a system is due to a combination of factors, and may increase for some times and decrease for other times (see bathtub curve).

The Weibull distribution is used • • • • • In survival analysis In reliability engineering and failure analysis In industrial engineering to represent manufacturing and delivery times In extreme value theory In weather forecasting

• To describe wind speed distributions, as the natural distribution often matches the Weibull shape • In communications systems engineering

Weibull distribution • In radar systems to model the dispersion of the received signals level produced by some types of clutters • To model fading channels in wireless communications, as the Weibull fading model seems to exhibit good fit to experimental fading channel measurements • In General insurance to model the size of Reinsurance claims, and the cumulative development of Asbestosis losses • In forecasting technological change (also known as the Sharif-Islam model) The 2-Parameter Weibull distribution is used to describe the particle size distribution of particles generated by grinding, milling and crushing operations. The Rosin-Rammler distribution predicts fewer fine particles than the Log-normal distribution. It is generally most accurate for narrow PSDs. Using the cumulative distribution function: • F(x; k; Š) is the mass fraction of particles with diameter < x • Š is the mean particle size • k is a measure of particle size spread


[1] Papoulis, Pillai, "Probability, Random Variables, and Stochastic Processes, 4th Edition [2] Johnson, Kotz & Balakrishnan 1994 [3] See (Cheng, Tellambura & Beaulieu 2004) for the case when k is an integer, and (Sagias & Karagiannidis 2005) for the rational case. [4] "System evolution and reliability of systems" (http:/ / www. sys-ev. com/ reliability01. htm). Sysev (Belgium). 2010-01-01. .

• Fr„chet, Maurice (1927), "Sur la loi de probabilit„ de l'„cart maximum", Annales de la Soci•t• Polonaise de Mathematique, Cracovie 6: 93‚116. • Johnson, Norman L.; Kotz, Samuel; Balakrishnan, N. (1994), Continuous univariate distributions. Vol. 1, Wiley Series in Probability and Mathematical Statistics: Applied Probability and Statistics (2nd ed.), New York: John Wiley & Sons, MR1299979, ISBN€978-0-471-58495-7 • Muraleedharan, G.; Rao, A.G.; Kurup, P.G.; Nair, N. Unnikrishnan; Sinha, Mourani (2007), "Coastal Engineering", Coastal Engineering 54 (8): 630‚638, doi:10.1016/j.coastaleng.2007.05.001 • Rosin, P.; Rammler, E. (1933), "The Laws Governing the Fineness of Powdered Coal", Journal of the Institute of Fuel 7: 29‚36. • Sagias, Nikos C.; Karagiannidis, George K. (2005), "Gaussian class multivariate Weibull distributions: theory and applications in fading channels", Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. Transactions on Information Theory 51 (10): 3608‚3619, doi:10.1109/TIT.2005.855598, MR2237527, ISSN€0018-9448 • Weibull, W. (1951), "A statistical distribution function of wide applicability", J. Appl. Mech.-Trans. ASME 18 (3): 293‚297. • "Engineering statistics handbook" ( National Institute of Standards and Technology. 2008. • Nelson, Jr, Ralph (2008-02-05). "Dispersing Powders in Liquids, Part 1, Chap 6: Particle Volume Distribution" ( Retrieved 2008-02-05.

Weibull distribution


External links
• The Weibull plot. ( • Mathpages - Weibull Analysis (


Discrete distributions
Bernoulli distribution
Bernoulli parameters: support: pmf: cdf:

mean: median: mode: N/A

variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

In probability theory and statistics, the Bernoulli distribution, named after Swiss scientist Jacob Bernoulli, is a discrete probability distribution, which takes value 1 with success probability and value 0 with failure probability . So if X is a random variable with this distribution, we have: € €

The probability mass function f of this distribution is

This can also be expressed as . The expected value of a Bernoulli random variable X is , and its variance is

The kurtosis goes to infinity for high and low values of p, but for kurtosis than any other probability distribution, namely -2.

the Bernoulli distribution has a lower

Bernoulli distribution The Bernoulli distribution is a member of the exponential family.


Related distributions
• If are independent, identically distributed (i.i.d.) random variables, all Bernoulli distributed with (binomial distribution). The Bernoulli success probability p, then

distribution is simply . • The Categorical distribution is the generalization of the Bernoulli distribution for variables with any constant number of discrete values. • The Beta distribution is the conjugate prior of the Bernoulli distribution. • The Geometric distribution is the number of Bernoulli trials needed to get one success.

• Weisstein, Eric W., "Bernoulli Distribution [1]" from MathWorld.

See also
• • • • • Bernoulli trial Bernoulli process Bernoulli sampling Binary entropy function Sample size

[1] http:/ / mathworld. wolfram. com/ BernoulliDistribution. html

Beta-binomial distribution


Beta-binomial distribution
Probability mass function

Cumulative distribution function

parameters: n ‰ N0 „ number of trials (real) (real) support: pmf: cdf: where 3F2(a,b,k) is the Generalized Hypergeometric Function =3F2(1,‚+k+1,-n+k+1;k+2,-ƒ-n+k+2;1) mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: See text k ‰ { 0, ‡, n }

Beta-binomial distribution In probability theory and statistics, the beta-binomial distribution is a family of discrete probability distributions arising when the probability of success in each of a fixed or known number of Bernoulli trials is either unknown or random. It is frequently used in Bayesian statistics, empirical Bayes methods and classical statistics as an overdispersed binomial distribution. It reduces to the Bernoulli distribution as a special case when n€=€1. For €€=€‚€=€1, it is the discrete uniform distribution from 0 to€n. It also approximates the binomial distribution arbitrarily well for large € and€‚. The beta-binomial is a two-dimensional multivariate Polya distribution, as the binomial and beta distributions are special cases of the multinomial and Dirichlet distributions, respectively.


Motivation and derivation
Beta-binomial distribution as a compound distribution
The Beta distribution is a conjugate distribution of the binomial distribution. This fact leads to an analytically tractable compound distribution where one can think of the parameter in the binomial distribution as being randomly drawn from a beta distribution. Namely, if

is the binomial distribution where p is a random variable with a beta distribution

then the compound distribution is given by

Using the properties of the beta function, this can alternatively be written It is within this context that the beta-binomial distribution appears often in Bayesian statistics: the beta-binomial is the predictive distribution of a binomial random variable with a beta distribution prior on the success probability.

Beta-binomial as an urn model
The beta-binomial distribution can also be motivated via an urn model for positive integer values of ‚ and ƒ. Specifically, imagine an urn containing ‚ red balls and ƒ black balls, where random draws are made. If a red ball is observed, then two red balls are returned to the urn. Likewise, if a black ball is drawn, it is replaced and another black ball is added to the urn. If this is repeated n times, then the probability of observing k red balls follows a beta-binomial distribution with parameters n,‚ and ƒ. Note that if the random draws are with simple replacement (no balls over and above the observed ball are added to the urn), then the distribution follows a binomial distribution and if the random draws are made without replacement, the distribution follows a hypergeometric distribution.

Beta-binomial distribution


Moments and properties
The first three raw moments are

and the kurtosis is Letting we note, suggestively, that the mean can be written as

and the variance as where is the correlation between the n Bernoulli draws and is called the over-dispersion parameter.

Point estimates
Method of moments
The method of moments estimates can be gained by noting the first and second moments of the beta-binomial namely

and setting these raw moments equal to the sample moments

and solving for € and ‚ we get

Note that these estimates can be non-sensically negative which is evidence that the data is either undispersed or underdispersed relative to the binomial distribution. In this case, the binomial distribution and the hypergeometric distribution are alternative candidates respectively.

Maximum likelihood estimation
While closed-form maximum likelihood estimates are impractical, given that the pdf consists of common functions (gamma function and/or Beta functions), they can be easily found via direct numerical optimization. Maximum likelihood estimates from empirical data can be computed using general methods for fitting multinomial Polya distributions, methods for which are described in (Minka 2003). The R package VGAM through the function vglm, via maximimum likelihood, facilitates the fitting of glm type models with responses distributed according to the beta-binomial distribution. Note also that there is no requirement that n is fixed throughout the observations.

Beta-binomial distribution


The following data gives the number of male children among the first 12 children of family size 13 in 6115 families taken from hospital records in 19th century Saxony (Sokal and Rohlf, p.€59 from Lindsey). The 13th child is ignored to assuage the effect of families non-randomly stopping when a desired gender is reached.
Males 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

Families 3 24 104 286 670 1033 1343 1112 829 478 181 45 7

We note the first two sample moments are

and therefore the method of moments estimates are

The maximum likelihood estimates can be found numerically

and the maximized log-liklihood is

from which we find the AIC

The AIC for the competing Binomial model is AIC=25070.34 and thus we see that the beta-binomial model provides a superior fit to the data i.e. there is evidence for overdispersion. Trivers and Willard posit a theoretical justification for heterogeneity in gender-proneness among families (i.e. overdispersion). The superior fit is evident especially among the tails
Males Observed Families Predicted (Beta-Binomial) Predicted (Binomial p = 0.519215) 0 3 1 24 2 104 3 286 4 670 5 1033 6 1343 7 1112 8 829 9 478 10 181 11 45 12 7

2.3 22.6 104.8 310.9 655.7 1036.2 1257.9 1182.1 853.6 461.9 177.9 43.8 5.2 0.9 12.1 71.8 258.5 628.1 1085.2 1367.3 1265.6 854.2 410.0 132.8 26.1 2.3

Further Bayesian considerations
It is convenient to reparameterize the distributions so that the expected mean of the prior is a single parameter: Let


so that

Beta-binomial distribution


The posterior distribution £(Š|k) is also a beta distribution: And

while the marginal distribution m(k|•, M) is given by Because the marginal is a complex, non-linear function of Gamma and Digamma functions, it is quite difficult to obtain a marginal maximum likelihood estimate (MMLE) for the mean and variance. Instead, we use the method of iterated expectations to find the expected value of the marginal moments. Let us write our model as a two-stage compound sampling model. Let ki be the number of success out of ni trials for event i:

We can find iterated moment estimates for the mean and variance using the moments for the distributions in the two-stage model:

(Here we have used the law of total expectation and the law of total variance.) We want point estimates for and . The estimated mean is calculated from the sample

The estimate of the hyperparameter M is obtained using the moment estimates for the variance of the two-stage model:



Beta-binomial distribution Since we now have parameter point estimates, point estimate estimate and and , for the underlying distribution, we would like to find a


for the probability of success for event i. This is the weighted average of the event . Given our point estimates for the prior, we may now plug in these values to find a point

estimate for the posterior

Shrinkage factors
We may write the posterior estimate as a weighted average:


is called the shrinkage factor.

See also
• multivariate Polya distribution

* Minka, Thomas P. (2003). Estimating a Dirichlet distribution [1]. Microsoft Technical Report.

External links
• Empirical Bayes for Beta-Binomial model [2] • Using the Beta-binomial distribution to assess performance of a biometric identification device [3] • Extended Beta-Binomial Model for Demand Forecasting of Multiple Slow-Moving Items with Low Consumption and Short Request History [4] • Fastfit [5] contains Matlab code for fitting Beta-Binomial distributions (in the form of two-dimensional Polya distributions) to data.

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] http:/ / research. microsoft. com/ ~minka/ papers/ dirichlet/ http:/ / www. cs. ubc. ca/ ~murphyk/ Teaching/ Stat406-Spring07/ reading/ ebHandout. pdf http:/ / it. stlawu. edu/ ~msch/ biometrics/ papers. htm http:/ / www. emse. fr/ g2i/ publications/ rapports/ RR_2005-500-012. pdf http:/ / research. microsoft. com/ ~minka/ software/ fastfit/

Binomial distribution


Binomial distribution
Probability mass function

Cumulative distribution function


B(n, p)

parameters: n ‰ N0 „ number of trials p ‰ [0,1] „ success probability in each trial support: pmf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: np ˜np™ or šnp› ˜(n + 1)p™ or ˜(n + 1)p™ € 1 np(1€€€p) k ‰ { 0, ‡, n }

In probability theory and statistics, the binomial distribution is the discrete probability distribution of the number of successes in a sequence of n independent yes/no experiments, each of which yields success with probability p. Such a success/failure experiment is also called a Bernoulli experiment or Bernoulli trial. In fact, when n = 1, the binomial distribution is a Bernoulli distribution. The binomial distribution is the basis for the popular binomial test of statistical significance.

Binomial distribution It is frequently used to model number of successes in a sample of size n from a population of size N. Since the samples are not independent (this is sampling without replacement), the resulting distribution is a hypergeometric distribution, not a binomial one. However, for N much larger than n, the binomial distribution is a good approximation, and widely used.


An elementary example is this: roll a standard die ten times and count the number of fours. The distribution of this random number is a binomial distribution with n€=€10 and p€=€1/6. As another example, flip a coin three times and count the number of heads. The distribution of this random number is a binomial distribution with n€=€3 and p€=€1/2.

Probability mass function
In general, if the random variable K follows the binomial distribution with parameters n and p, we write K€~€B(n,€p). The probability of getting exactly k successes in n trials is given by the probability mass function:

for k€=€0,€1,€2,€...,€n, where

is the binomial coefficient (hence the name of the distribution) "n€choose€k", also denoted C(n,€k),€€nCk, or nCk. The formula can be understood as follows: we want k successes (pk) and n€€€k failures (1€€€p)n€€€k. However, the k successes can occur anywhere among the n trials, and there are C(n,€k) different ways of distributing k successes in a sequence of n trials. In creating reference tables for binomial distribution probability, usually the table is filled in up to n/2 values. This is because for k€>€n/2, the probability can be calculated by its complement as

So, one must look to a different k and a different p (the binomial is not symmetrical in general). However, its behavior is not arbitrary. There is always an integer m that satisfies

As a function of k, the expression ‹(k;€n,€p) is monotone increasing for k€<€m and monotone decreasing for k€>€m, with the exception of one case where (n€+€1)p is an integer. In this case, there are two maximum values for m€=€(n€+€1)p and m€€€1. m is known as the most probable (most likely) outcome of Bernoulli trials. Note that the probability of it occurring can be fairly small.

Binomial distribution


Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function can be expressed as:


is the "floor" under x, i.e. the greatest integer less than or equal to x.

It can also be represented in terms of the regularized incomplete beta function, as follows:

For k ƒ np, upper bounds for the lower tail of the distribution function can be derived. In particular, Hoeffding's inequality yields the bound

and Chernoff's inequality can be used to derive the bound

Moreover, these bounds are reasonably tight when p = 1/2, since the following expression holds for all k Ž 3n/8[1]

Mean and variance
If X ~ B(n, p) (that is, X is a binomially distributed random variable), then the expected value of X is

and the variance is

This fact is easily proven as follows. Suppose first that we have a single Bernoulli trial. There are two possible outcomes: 1 and 0, the first occurring with probability p and the second having probability 1€€€p. The expected value in this trial will be equal to „ = 1 ‘ p + 0 ‘ (1€p) = p. The variance in this trial is calculated similarly: ˆ2 = (1€p)2‘p + (0€p)2‘(1€p) = p(1 € p). The generic binomial distribution is a sum of n independent Bernoulli trials. The mean and the variance of such distributions are equal to the sums of means and variances of each individual trial:

Binomial distribution


Mode and median
Usually the mode of a binomial B(n, p) distribution is equal to ˜(n€+€1)p™, where ˜€™€is the floor function. However when (n€+€1)p is an integer and p is neither 0 nor 1, then the distribution has two modes: (n€+€1)p and (n€+€1)p€€€1. When p is equal to 0 or 1, the mode will be 0 and n correspondingly. These cases can be summarized as follows: In general, there is no single formula to find the median for a binomial distribution, and it may even be non-unique. However several special results have been established: If np is an integer, then the mean, median, and mode coincide.[2] Any median m must lie within the interval ˜np™€ƒ€m€ƒ€šnp›.[3] A median m cannot lie too far away from the mean: |m € np| ƒ min{ ln 2, max{p, 1 € p} }.[4] The median is unique and equal to m€=€round(np) in cases when either p ƒ 1 € ln 2 or p Ž ln 2 or |m€€€np|€ƒ€min{p,€1€€€p} (except for the case when p€=€… and n is odd).[3] [4] • When p€=€1/2 and n is odd, any number m in the interval …(n€€€1)€ƒ€m€ƒ€…(n€+€1) is a median of the binomial distribution. If p€=€1/2 and n is even, then m€=€n/2 is the unique median. • • • •

Covariance between two binomials
If two binomially distributed random variables X and Y are observed together, estimating their covariance can be useful. Using the definition of covariance, in the case n€=€1 we have

The first term is non-zero only when both X and Y are one, and „X and „Y are equal to the two probabilities. Defining pB as the probability of both happening at the same time, this gives and for n such trials again due to independence

If X and Y are the same variable, this reduces to the variance formula given above.

Algebraic derivations of mean and variance
We derive these quantities from first principles. Certain particular sums occur in these two derivations. We rearrange the sums and terms so that sums solely over complete binomial probability mass functions (pmf) arise, which are always unity

We apply the definition of the expected value of a discrete random variable to the binomial distribution The first term of the series (with index k = 0) has value 0 since the first factor, k, is zero. It may thus be discarded, i.e. we can change the lower limit to: k = 1 We've pulled factors of n and k out of the factorials, and one power of p has been split off. We are preparing to redefine the indices.

We rename m€=€n€€€1 and s€=€k€€€1. The value of the sum is not changed by this, but it now becomes readily recognizable The ensuing sum is a sum over a complete binomial pmf (of one order lower than the initial sum, as it happens). Thus

Binomial distribution



It can be shown that the variance is equal to (see: Computational formula for the variance): In using this formula we see that we now also need the expected value of X€2:

We can use our experience gained above in deriving the mean. We know how to process one factor of k. This gets us as far as (again, with m = n€€€1 and s = k€€€1). We split the sum into two separate sums and we recognize each one The first sum is identical in form to the one we calculated in the Mean (above). It sums to mp. The second sum is unity. Using this result in the expression for the variance, along with the Mean (E(X) = np), we get

Using falling factorials to find E(X2)
We have


So Thus

Relationship to other distributions
Sums of binomials
If X€~€B(n,€p) and Y€~€B(m,€p) are independent binomial variables, then X€+€Y is again a binomial variable; its distribution is

Bernoulli distribution
The Bernoulli distribution is a special case of the binomial distribution, where n€=€1. Symbolically, X€~€B(1,€p) has the same meaning as X€~€Bern(p). Conversely, any binomial distribution, B(n,€p), is the sum of n independent Bernoulli trials, Bern(p), each with the same probability p.

Binomial distribution


Poisson binomial distribution
The binomial distribution is a special case of the Poisson binomial distribution, which is a sum of n independent non-identical Bernoulli trials Bern(pi). If X has the Poisson binomial distribution with p1€=€‡€=€pn€=p then X€~€B(n,€p).

Normal approximation
If n is large enough, then the skew of the distribution is not too great. In this case, if a suitable continuity correction is used, then an excellent approximation to B(n,€p) is given by the normal distribution

Binomial PDF and normal approximation for n€=€6 and p€=€0.5

The approximation generally improves as n increases (at least 20) and is better when p is not near to 0 or 1.[6] Various rules of thumb may be used to decide whether n is large enough, and p is far enough from the extremes of zero or unity: • One rule is that both x=np and n(1€€€p) must be greater than€5. However, the specific number varies from source to source, and depends on how good an approximation one wants; some sources give 10 which gives virtually the same results as the following rule for large n until n is very large (ex: x=11, n=7752). • That rule[6] is that for n > 5 the normal approximation is adequate if

• Another commonly used rule holds that the normal approximation is appropriate only if everything within 3 standard deviations of its mean is within the range of possible values, that is if

• Also as the approximation generally improves, it can be shown that the inflection points occur at

The following is an example of applying a continuity correction: Suppose one wishes to calculate Pr(X€ƒ€8) for a binomial random variable X. If Y has a distribution given by the normal approximation, then Pr(X€ƒ€8) is approximated by Pr(Y€ƒ€8.5). The addition of 0.5 is the continuity correction; the uncorrected normal approximation gives considerably less accurate results. This approximation, known as de Moivre‚Laplace theorem, is a huge time-saver (exact calculations with large n are very onerous); historically, it was the first use of the normal distribution, introduced in Abraham de Moivre's book

Binomial distribution The Doctrine of Chances in 1738. Nowadays, it can be seen as a consequence of the central limit theorem since B(n,€p) is a sum of n independent, identically distributed Bernoulli variables with parameter€p. This fact is the basis of a hypothesis test, a "proportion z-test," for the value of p using x/n, the sample proportion and estimator of p, in a common test statistic.[7] For example, suppose you randomly sample n people out of a large population and ask them whether they agree with a certain statement. The proportion of people who agree will of course depend on the sample. If you sampled groups of n people repeatedly and truly randomly, the proportions would follow an approximate normal distribution with mean equal to the true proportion p of agreement in the population and with standard deviation Ž€=€(p(1€€€p)/n)1/2. Large sample sizes n are good because the standard deviation, as a proportion of the expected value, gets smaller, which allows a more precise estimate of the unknown parameter€p.


Poisson approximation
The binomial distribution converges towards the Poisson distribution as the number of trials goes to infinity while the product np remains fixed. Therefore the Poisson distribution with parameter Š = np can be used as an approximation to B(n, p) of the binomial distribution if n is sufficiently large and p is sufficiently small. According to two rules of thumb, this approximation is good if n€Ž€20 and p€ƒ€0.05, or if n€Ž€100 and np€ƒ€10.[8]

• As n approaches • and p approaches 0 while np remains fixed at Œ€>€0 or at least np approaches Œ€>€0, then the Binomial(n,€p) distribution approaches the Poisson distribution with expected value Œ. • As n approaches • while p remains fixed, the distribution of

approaches the normal distribution with expected value€0 and variance€1. This result is sometimes loosely stated by saying that the distribution of X approaches the normal distribution with expected value€np and variance€np(1€€€p). That loose statement cannot be taken literally because the thing asserted to be approached actually depends on the value of€n, and n is approaching infinity. This result is a specific case of the Central Limit Theorem).

Generating binomial random variates
• Luc Devroye, Non-Uniform Random Variate Generation, New York: Springer-Verlag, 1986. See especially Chapter X, Discrete Univariate Distributions [9]. • Kachitvichyanukul, V.; Schmeiser, B. W. (1988). "Binomial random variate generation". Communications of the ACM 31: 216‚222. doi:10.1145/42372.42381.

See also
• • • • • • Bean machine / Galton box Beta distribution Binomial proportion confidence interval Hypergeometric distribution Logistic regression Multinomial distribution

• Negative binomial distribution • Beta-binomial distribution

Binomial distribution • • • • Normal distribution Poisson distribution Sample_size#Estimating_proportions SOCR


[1] Matousek, J, Vondrak, J: The Probabilistic Method (lecture notes) (http:/ / kam. mff. cuni. cz/ ~matousek/ prob-ln. ps. gz). [2] Neumann, P. (1966). "¡ber den Median der Binomial- and Poissonverteilung" (in German). Wissenschaftliche Zeitschrift der Technischen Universitšt Dresden 19: 29‚33. [3] Kaas, R.; Buhrman, J.M. (1980). "Mean, Median and Mode in Binomial Distributions". Statistica Neerlandica 34 (1): 13‚18. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9574.1980.tb00681.x. [4] Hamza, K. (1995). "The smallest uniform upper bound on the distance between the mean and the median of the binomial and Poisson distributions". Statistics & Probability Letters 23: 21‚21. doi:10.1016/0167-7152(94)00090-U. [5] Morse, Philip (1969). Thermal Physics. New York: W. A. Benjamin. ISBN€0805372024. [6] Box, Hunter and Hunter (1978). Statistics for experimenters. Wiley. p.€130. [7] NIST/SEMATECH, "7.2.4. Does the proportion of defectives meet requirements?" (http:/ / www. itl. nist. gov/ div898/ handbook/ prc/ section2/ prc24. htm) e-Handbook of Statistical Methods. [8] NIST/SEMATECH, " Counts Control Charts" (http:/ / www. itl. nist. gov/ div898/ handbook/ pmc/ section3/ pmc331. htm), e-Handbook of Statistical Methods. [9] http:/ / cg. scs. carleton. ca/ ~luc/ chapter_ten. pdf

External links
• Binomial Probabilities Simple Explanation ( • SOCR Binomial Distribution Applet ( • ( Many resources for teaching Statistics including Binomial Distribution • "Binomial Distribution" ( by Chris Boucher, Wolfram Demonstrations Project, 2007. • Binomial Distribution ( Properties and Java simulation from cut-the-knot • Statistics Tutorial: Binomial Distribution (

Uniform distribution (discrete)


Uniform distribution (discrete)
discrete uniform Probability mass function

n = 5 where n = b€€€a€+€1 Cumulative distribution function


support: pmf: cdf:

mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: N/A

Uniform distribution (discrete) In probability theory and statistics, the discrete uniform distribution is a probability distribution whereby a finite number of equally spaced values are equally likely to be observed; every one of n values has equal probability 1/n. Another way of saying "discrete uniform distribution" would be "a known, finite number of equally spaced outcomes equally likely to happen." If a random variable has any of possible values that are equally spaced and equally probable, € is . A simple example of the are 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6; and each time the die


then it has a discrete uniform distribution. The probability of any outcome discrete uniform distribution is throwing a fair die. The possible values of

is thrown, the probability of a given score is 1/6. If two dice are thrown and their values added, the uniform distribution no longer fits since the values from 2 to 12 do not have equal probabilities. The cumulative distribution function (CDF) can be expressed in terms of a degenerate distribution as

where the Heaviside step function convention that

is the CDF of the degenerate distribution centered at

, using the

Estimation of maximum
This example is described by saying that a sample of k observations are obtained from a uniform distribution on the integers , with the problem being to estimate the unknown maximum N. This problem is commonly known as the German tank problem, following the application of maximum estimation to estimates of German tank production during World War II. The UMVU estimator for the maximum is given by

where m is the sample maximum and k is the sample size, sampling without replacement.[1] [2] This can be seen as a very simple case of maximum spacing estimation. The formula may be understood intuitively as: "The sample maximum plus the average gap between observations in the sample", the gap being added to compensate for the negative bias of the sample maximum as an estimator for the population maximum.[3] This has a variance of[1]

so a standard deviation of approximately above.

, the (population) average size of a gap between samples; compare

The sample maximum is the maximum likelihood estimator for the population maximum, but, as discussed above, it is biased. If samples are not numbered but are recognizable or markable, one can instead estimate population size via the capture-recapture method.

Uniform distribution (discrete)


Random permutation
See rencontres numbers for an account of the probability distribution of the number of fixed points of a uniformly distributed random permutation.

See also
• Delta distribution • Uniform distribution (continuous)

[1] Johnson, Roger (1994), "Estimating the Size of a Population", Teaching Statistics (http:/ / www. rsscse. org. uk/ ts/ index. htm) 16 (2 (Summer)): 50, doi:10.1111/j.1467-9639.1994.tb00688.x [2] Johnson, Roger (2006), "Estimating the Size of a Population" (http:/ / www. rsscse. org. uk/ ts/ gtb/ johnson. pdf), Getting the Best from Teaching Statistics (http:/ / www. rsscse. org. uk/ ts/ gtb/ contents. html), [3] The sample maximum is never more than the population maximum, but can be less, hence it is a biased estimator: it will tend to underestimate the population maximum.


Geometric distribution
In probability theory and statistics, the geometric distribution is either of two discrete probability distributions: • The probability distribution of the number X of Bernoulli trials needed to get one success, supported on the set€{€1,€2,€3,€...} • The probability distribution of the number Y€=€X€€€1 of failures before the first success, supported on the set€{€0,€1,€2,€3,€...€} Which of these one calls "the" geometric distribution is a matter of convention and convenience.
Geometric Probability mass function

Geometric distribution

Cumulative distribution function

Parameters Support Probability mass function (pmf) Cumulative distribution function (cdf) Mean Median an integer) Mode Variance Skewness Excess kurtosis Entropy Moment-generating function (mgf) Characteristic function 1

success probability (real) (real)

success probability

(not unique if



These two different geometric distributions should not be confused with each other. Often, the name shifted geometric distribution is adopted for the former one (distribution of the number X); however, to avoid ambiguity, it is considered wise to indicate which is intended, by mentioning the range explicitly. If the probability of success on each trial is p, then the probability that the kth trial (out of k trials) is the first success is

for k = 1, 2, 3, ....

Geometric distribution Equivalently, if the probability of success on each trial is p, then the probability that there are k failures before the first success is


for€k€=€0,€1,€2,€3,€.... In either case, the sequence of probabilities is a geometric sequence. For example, suppose an ordinary die is thrown repeatedly until the first time a "1" appears. The probability distribution of the number of times it is thrown is supported on the infinite set {€1,€2,€3,€...€} and is a geometric distribution with p€=€1/6.

Moments and cumulants
The expected value of a geometrically distributed random variable X is 1/p and the variance is (1€€€p)/p2:

Similarly, the expected value of the geometrically distributed random variable Y is (1€€€p)/p, and its variance is (1€€€p)/p2:

Let „ = (1€€€p)/p be the expected value of Y. Then the cumulants recursion

of the probability distribution of Y satisfy the

Outline of proof: That the expected value is (1€€€p)/p can be shown in the following way. Let Y be as above. Then

(The interchange of summation and differentiation is justified by the fact that convergent power series converge uniformly on compact subsets of the set of points where they converge.)

Geometric distribution


Parameter estimation
For both variants of the geometric distribution, the parameter p can be estimated by equating the expected value with the sample mean. This is the method of moments, which in this case happens to yield maximum likelihood estimates of p. Specifically, for the first variant let k€=€k1,€...,€kn be a sample where ki€Ž€1 for i€=€1,€...,€n. Then p can be estimated as

In Bayesian inference, the Beta distribution is the conjugate prior distribution for the parameter p. If this parameter is given a Beta(€,€‚) prior, then the posterior distribution is

The posterior mean E[p] approaches the maximum likelihood estimate

as € and ‚ approach zero.

In the alternative case, let k1,€...,€kn be a sample where ki€Ž€0 for i€=€1,€...,€n. Then p can be estimated as

The posterior distribution of p given a Beta(€,€‚) prior is

Again the posterior mean E[p] approaches the maximum likelihood estimate

as € and ‚ approach zero.

Other properties
• The probability-generating functions of X and Y are, respectively,

• Like its continuous analogue (the exponential distribution), the geometric distribution is memoryless. That means that if you intend to repeat an experiment until the first success, then, given that the first success has not yet occurred, the conditional probability distribution of the number of additional trials does not depend on how many failures have been observed. The die one throws or the coin one tosses does not have a "memory" of these failures. The geometric distribution is in fact the only memoryless discrete distribution. • Among all discrete probability distributions supported on {1,€2,€3,€...€} with given expected value€•, the geometric distribution X with parameter p€=€1/• is the one with the largest entropy. • The geometric distribution of the number Y of failures before the first success is infinitely divisible, i.e., for any positive integer n, there exist independent identically distributed random variables Y1,€...,€Yn whose sum has the same distribution that Y has. These will not be geometrically distributed unless n€=€1; they follow a negative binomial distribution. • The decimal digits of the geometrically distributed random variable Y are a sequence of independent (and not identically distributed) random variables. For example, the hundreds digit D has this probability distribution:

Geometric distribution where q€=€1€€€p, and similarly for the other digits, and, more generally, similarly for numeral systems with other bases than 10. When the base is 2, this shows that a geometrically distributed random variable can be written as a sum of independent random variables whose probability distributions are indecomposable. • Golomb coding is the optimal prefix code for the geometric discrete distribution.


Related distributions
• The geometric distribution Y is a special case of the negative binomial distribution, with r€=€1. More generally, if Y1,€...,€Yr are independent geometrically distributed variables with parameter€p, then the sum

follows a negative binomial distribution with parameters r€and€p. • If Y1,€...,€Yr are independent geometrically distributed variables (with possibly different success parameters p(m)), then their minimum

is also geometrically distributed, with parameter

• Suppose 0€<€r€<€1, and for k€=€1,€2,€3,€... the random variable Xk has a Poisson distribution with expected value r€k/k. Then

has a geometric distribution taking values in the set {0,€1,€2,€...}, with expected value r/(1€€€r). • The exponential distribution is the continuous analogue of the geometric distribution. If X is an exponentially distributed random variable with parameter€Œ, then


is the floor (or greatest integer) function)

is a geometrically distributed random variable with parameter p€=€1€€€e€Š (thus Š€=€€ln(1€€€p)[1] ) and taking values in the set€{0,€1,€2,€...}. This can be used to generate geometrically distributed pseudorandom numbers by first generating exponentially distributed pseudorandom numbers from a uniform pseudorandom number generator: then is geometrically distributed with parameter , if is uniformly distributed in [0,1].

Geometric distribution


See also
• Hypergeometric distribution • Coupon collector's problem

External links
• Geometric distribution [2] on PlanetMath • Geometric distribution [3] on MathWorld.

[1] http:/ / www. wolframalpha. com/ input/ ?i=inverse+ p+ %3D+ 1+ -+ e^-l [2] http:/ / planetmath. org/ ?op=getobj& amp;from=objects& amp;id=3456 [3] http:/ / mathworld. wolfram. com/ GeometricDistribution. html

Hypergeometric distribution
Hypergeometric parameters:

support: pmf:

cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf:


In probability theory and statistics, the hypergeometric distribution is a discrete probability distribution that describes the number of successes in a sequence of n draws from a finite population without replacement, just as the

Hypergeometric distribution binomial distribution describes the number of successes for draws with replacement. The notation is illustrated by this contingency table:
drawn not drawn total


white black

k n€k

m€k N+k•n•m

m N• m N




Perhaps the easiest way to understand this distribution is in terms of urn models. Suppose you are to draw "n" marbles without replacement from an urn containing "N" marbles in total, "m" of which are white. The hypergeometric distribution describes the distribution of the number of white marbles drawn from the urn. A random variable X follows the hypergeometric distribution with parameters N, m and n if the probability is given by

where the binomial coefficient

is defined to be the coefficient of xb in the polynomial expansion of (1€+€x)a.

The probability is positive when max(0,€n€+€m€€€N) ƒ k ƒ min(m,€n). The formula can be understood as follows: There are ways to obtain k white marbles and there are possible samples (without replacement). There are

ways to fill out the rest of the sample with black marbles.

The sum of the probabilities for all possible values of k is equal to 1 as one would expect intuitively; this is essentially Vandermonde's identity from combinatorics. Also note that the following identity holds:

This follows clearly from the symmetry of the problem, but it can also be shown easily by expressing the binomial coefficients in terms of factorials, and rearranging the latter.

Application and example
The classical application of the hypergeometric distribution is sampling without replacement. Think of an urn with two types of marbles, black ones and white ones. Define drawing a white marble as a success and drawing a black marble as a failure (analogous to the binomial distribution). If the variable N describes the number of all marbles in the urn (see contingency table above) and m describes the number of white marbles, then N€€€m corresponds to the number of black marbles. Now, assume that there are 5 white and 45 black marbles in the urn. Standing next to the urn, you close your eyes and draw 10 marbles without replacement. What is the probability that exactly 4 of the 10 are white? Note that although we are looking at success/failure, the data cannot be modeled under the binomial distribution, because the probability of success on each trial is not the same, as the size of the remaining population changes as we remove each marble. This problem is summarized by the following contingency table:

Hypergeometric distribution


drawn white marbles black marbles total k=4 n€k= 6 n = 10

not drawn m€k=1

total m=5

N + k • n • m = 39 N • m = 45

N • n = 40

N = 50

The probability of drawing exactly k white marbles can be calculated by the formula

Hence, in this example calculate Intuitively we would expect it to be even more unlikely for all 5 marbles to be white. As expected, the probability of drawing 5 white marbles is much lower than that of drawing 4.

Swapping the roles of black and white marbles:

Swapping the roles of drawn and not drawn marbles:

Swapping the roles of white and drawn marbles:

Symmetry application
The metaphor of defective and drawn objects depicts an application of the hypergeometric distribution in which the interchange symmetry between n and m is not of foremost concern. Here is an alternate metaphor which brings this symmetry into sharper focus, as there are also applications where it serves no purpose to distinguish n from m. Suppose you have a set of N children who have been identified with an unusual bone marrow antigen. The doctor wishes to conduct a heredity study to determine the inheritance pattern of this antigen. For the purposes of this study, the doctor wishes to draw tissue from the bone marrow from the biological mother and biological father of each child. This is an uncomfortable procedure, and not all the mothers and fathers will agree to participate. Of the mothers, m participate and N-m decline. Of the fathers, n participate and N-n decline. We assume here that the decisions made by the mothers is independent of the decisions made by the fathers. Under this assumption, the doctor, who is given n and m, wishes to estimate k, the number of children where both parents have agreed to participate. The hypergeometric distribution can be used to determine this distribution over k. It's not straightforward why the doctor would know n and m, but not k. Perhaps n and m are dictated by the experimental design, while the experimenter is left blind to the true value of k. It is important to recognize that for given N, n and m a single degree of freedom partitions N into four sub-populations: 1. 2. 3. 4. Children where both parents participate Children where only the mother participates Children where only the father participates and Children where neither parent participates.

Hypergeometric distribution Knowing any one of these four values determines the other three by simple arithmetic relations. For this reason, each of these quadrants is governed by an equivalent hypergeometric distribution. The mean, mode, and values of k contained within the support differ from one quadrant to another, but the size of the support, the variance, and other high order statistics do not. For the purpose of this study, it might make no difference to the doctor whether the mother participates or the father participates. If this happens to be true, the doctor will view the result as a three-way partition: children where both parents participate, children where one parent participates, children where neither parent participates. Under this view, the last remaining distinction between n and m has been eliminated. The distribution where one parent participates is the sum of the distributions where either parent alone participates.


Symmetry and sampling
To express how the symmetry of the clinical metaphor degenerates to the asymmetry of the sampling language used in the drawn/defective metaphor, we will restate the clinical metaphor in the abstract language of decks and cards. We begin with a dealer who holds two prepared decks of N cards. The decks are labelled left and right. The left deck was prepared to hold n red cards, and N-n black cards; the right deck was prepared to hold m red cards, and N-m black cards. These two decks are dealt out face down to form N hands. Each hand contains one card from the left deck and one card from the right deck. If we determine the number of hands that contain two red cards, by symmetry relations we will necessarily also know the hypergeometric distributions governing the other three quadrants: hand counts for red/black, black/red, and black/black. How many cards must be turned over to learn the total number of red/red hands? Which cards do we need to turn over to accomplish this? These are questions about possible sampling methods. One approach is to begin by turning over the left card of each hand. For each hand showing a red card on the left, we then also turn over the right card in that hand. For any hand showing a black card on the left, we do not need to reveal the right card, as we already know this hand does not count toward the total of red/red hands. Our treatment of the left and right decks no longer appears symmetric: one deck was fully revealed while the other deck was partially revealed. However, we could just as easily have begun by revealing all cards dealt from the right deck, and partially revealed cards from the left deck. In fact, the sampling procedure need not prioritize one deck over the other in the first place. Instead, we could flip a coin for each hand, turning over the left card on heads, and the right card on tails, leaving each hand with one card exposed. For every hand with a red card exposed, we reveal the companion card. This will suffice to allow us to count the red/red hands, even though under this sampling procedure neither the left nor right deck is fully revealed. By another symmetry, we could also have elected to determine the number of black/black hands rather than the number of red/red hands, and discovered the same distributions by that method. The symmetries of the hypergeometric distribution provide many options in how to conduct the sampling procedure to isolate the degree of freedom governed by the hypergeometric distribution. Even if the sampling procedure appears to treat the left deck differently from the right deck, or governs choices by red cards rather than black cards, it is important to recognize that the end result is essentially the same.

Hypergeometric distribution


Relationship to Fisher's exact test
The test (see above) based on the hypergeometric distribution (hypergeometric test) is identical to the corresponding one-tailed version of Fisher's exact test. Reciprocally, the p-value of a two-sided Fisher's exact test can be calculated as the sum of two appropriate hypergeometric tests (for more information see [1] ).

Order of draws
The probability of drawing any sequence of white and black marbles (the hypergeometric distribution) depends only on the number of white and black marbles, not on the order in which they appear; i.e., it is an exchangeable distribution. As a result, the probability of drawing a white marble in the draw is

This can be shown by induction. First, it is certainly true for the first draw that: . Also, we can show that , which makes it true for every draw. by writing:

Related distributions
Let X ~ Hypergeometric( • If • Let then , , ) and . . and is not close to 0 or and and ; this models the number of successes in the are large compared to . and is not close to 0 or 1, then has a Bernoulli distribution with parameter

have a binomial distribution with parameters and have similar distributions, i.e., and are large compared to

analogous sampling problem with replacement. If 1, then • If is large,


is the standard normal distribution function has

• If the probabilities to draw a white or black marble are not equal (e.g. because their size is different) then a Noncentral hypergeometric distribution

Multivariate hypergeometric distribution

Hypergeometric distribution
Multivariate Hypergeometric Distribution parameters:




cdf: mean: median: mode: variance:

skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

The model of an urn with black and white marbles can be extended to the case where there are more than two colors of marbles. If there are mi marbles of color i in the urn and you take n marbles at random without replacement, then the number of marbles of each color in the sample (k1,k2,...,kc) has the multivariate hypergeometric distribution. This has the same relationship to the multinomial distribution that the hypergeometric distribution has to the binomial distribution--the multinomial distribution is the "with-replacement" distribution and the multivariate hypergeometric is the "without-replacement" distribution. The properties of this distribution are given in the adjacent table, where c is the number of different colors and is the total number of marbles.

Suppose there are 5 black, 10 white, and 15 red marbles in an urn. You reach in and randomly select six marbles without replacement. What is the probability that you pick exactly two of each color? Note: When picking the six marbles without replacement, the expected number of black marbles is 6*(5/30) = 1, the expected number of white marbles is 6*(10/30) = 2, and the expected number of red marbles is 6*(15/30) = 3.

See also
• Binomial distribution • Multinomial distribution • Fisher's exact test

Hypergeometric distribution • • • • • Noncentral hypergeometric distributions Sampling (statistics) Coupon collector's problem Geometric distribution Keno


[1] K. Preacher and N. Briggs. "Calculation for Fisher's Exact Test: An interactive calculation tool for Fisher's exact probability test for 2 x 2 tables (interactive page)" (http:/ / www. people. ku. edu/ ~preacher/ fisher/ fisher. htm). . Retrieved 2008-04-08.

External links
• Hypergeometric Distribution Calculator ( • Hypergeometric Distribution Calculator with source (Ruby, C++) ( hypergeometric/) • The Hypergeometric Distribution ( and Binomial Approximation to a Hypergeometric Random Variable ( BinomialApproximationToAHypergeometricRandomVariable/) by Chris Boucher, Wolfram Demonstrations Project. • Weisstein, Eric W., " Hypergeometric Distribution ( HypergeometricDistribution.html)" from MathWorld. • Hypergeometric distribution online calculator (.XBAP) ( HypergeometricCalculator.xbap) • Hypergeometric tail inequalities: ending the insanity ( pdf) by Matthew Skala. • Survey Analysis Tool ( using discrete hypergeometric distribution based on A. Berkopec, HyperQuick algorithm for discrete hypergeometric distribution, Journal of Discrete Algorithms, Elsevier, 2006 (

Negative binomial distribution


Negative binomial distribution
Probability mass function

The orange line represents the mean, which is equal to 10 in each of these plots; the green line shows the standard deviation. notation: parameters: r > 0 „ number of failures until the experiment is stopped (integer, but the definition can also be extended to reals) p ‰ (0,1) „ success probability in each experiment (real) k ‰ { 0, 1, 2, 3, ‡ }

support: pmf: cdf: mean: median: mode:

, the regularized incomplete beta function

variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

In probability theory and statistics, the negative binomial distribution is a discrete probability distribution of the number of successes in a sequence of Bernoulli trials before a specified (non-random) number r of failures occurs. For example, if one throws a die repeatedly until the third time ‹1Œ appears, then the probability distribution of the number of non-‹1Œs that had appeared will be negative binomial. The Pascal distribution (after Blaise Pascal) and Polya distribution (for George P”lya) are special cases of the negative binomial. There is a convention among engineers, climatologists, and others to reserve ‹negative binomialŒ in a strict sense or ‹PascalŒ for the case of an integer-valued stopping-time parameter r, and use ‹PolyaŒ for the real-valued case. The Polya distribution more accurately models occurrences of ‹contagiousŒ discrete events, like tornado outbreaks, than does the Poisson distribution.

Negative binomial distribution


Suppose there is a sequence of independent Bernoulli trials, each trial having two potential outcomes called ‹successŒ and ‹failureŒ. In each trial the probability of success is p and of failure is 1 € p. We are observing this sequence until a predefined number r of failures has occurred. Then the random number of successes we have seen, X, will have the negative binomial (or Pascal) distribution:

When applied to real-world situations, the words success and failure need not necessarily be associated with outcomes which we see as good or bad. Say in one case we may use negative binomial distribution to model the number of days a certain machine works before it breaks down. In such a case the ‹failureŒ would mean the machine breaking down, whereas ‹successŒ will be it working properly. In another case we can use negative binomial distribution to model the number of hits needed for a sportsman to score a goal. Then the ‹failureŒ will be his/her scoring the goal, whereas ‹successesŒ are misses. The probability mass function of the negative binomial distribution is Here the quantity in parentheses is called the binomial coefficient, and is equal to This quantity can alternatively be written in the following manner, explaining the name ‹negative binomialŒ:

Extension to real-valued r
It is possible to extend the definition of the negative binomial distribution to the case of real-valued r†s. Although it is impossible to visualize a non-integer number of ‹failuresŒ, we can still formally define the distribution through its probability mass function. As before, we say that X has a negative binomial (or P•lya) distribution if it has a probability mass function: Here r is a real, positive number, and the binomial coefficient can be interpreted through the gamma function:

Alternative formulations
Some textbooks may define the negative binomial distribution slightly differently than it is done here. The most common variations are: • The definition where X is the total number of trials needed to get r failures, not simply the number of successes. Since the total number of trials is equal to the number of successes plus the number of failures, this definition differs from ours by adding constant r. In order to convert formulas written with this definition into the one used in the article, replace everywhere ‹kŒ with ‹k + rŒ, and also subtract r from the mean, the median, and the mode. In order to convert formulas of this article into this alternative definition, replace ‹kŒ with ‹k • rŒ and add r to the mean, the median and the mode. • The definition where p denotes the probability of a failure, not of a success. This may also be formulated as ‹X is the number of failures before r successesŒ, in which case p will be the probability of a success, but the words ‹failureŒ and ‹successŒ have been swapped around. In order to convert formulas between this definition and the one used in the article, replace ‹pŒ with ‹1 € pŒ everywhere. • The two alterations above may be applied simultaneously.

Negative binomial distribution


Waiting time in a Bernoulli process
For the special case where r is an integer, the negative binomial distribution is known as the Pascal distribution. It is the probability distribution of a certain number of failures and successes in a series of independent and identically distributed Bernoulli trials. For k€+€r Bernoulli trials with success probability p, the negative binomial gives the probability of k successes and r failures, with a failure on the last trial. In other words, the negative binomial distribution is the probability distribution of the number of successes before the rth failure in a Bernoulli process, with probability p of successes on each trial. A Bernoulli process is a discrete time process, and so the number of trials, failures, and successes are integers. Consider the following example. Suppose we repeatedly throw a die, and consider a ‹1Œ to be a ‹failureŒ. The probability of failure on each trial is 1/6. The number of successes before the third failure belongs to the infinite set { 0,€1,€2,€3,€... }. That number of successes is a negative-binomially distributed random variable. When r = 1 we get the probability distribution of number of successes before the first failure (i.e. the probability of the first failure occurring on the (k€+€1)st trial), which is a geometric distribution:

Overdispersed Poisson
The negative binomial distribution, especially in its alternative parameterization described above, can be used as an alternative to the Poisson distribution. It is especially useful for discrete data over an unbounded positive range whose sample variance exceeds the sample mean. If a Poisson distribution is used to model such data, the model mean and variance are equal. In that case, the observations are overdispersed with respect to the Poisson model. Since the negative binomial distribution has one more parameter than the Poisson, the second parameter can be used to adjust the variance independently of the mean. See Cumulants of some discrete probability distributions. In the case of modest overdispersion, this may produce substantially similar results to an overdispersed Poisson distribution.[1]

Related distributions
• The geometric distribution is a special case of the negative binomial distribution, with

• The negative binomial distribution is a special case of the discrete phase-type distribution.

Poisson distribution
Consider a sequence of negative binomial distributions where the stopping parameter r goes to infinity, whereas the probability of success in each trial, p, goes to zero in such a way as to keep the mean of the distribution constant. Denoting this mean Š, the parameter p will have to be

Under this parametrization the probability mass function will be

Now if we consider the limit as r ‘ •, the second factor will converge to one, and the third to the exponent function:

Negative binomial distribution


which is the mass function of a Poisson-distributed random variable with expected value€Š. In other words, the alternatively parameterized negative binomial distribution converges to the Poisson distribution and r controls the deviation from the Poisson. This makes the negative binomial distribution suitable as a robust alternative to the Poisson, which approaches the Poisson for large r, but which has larger variance than the Poisson for small r.

Gamma€Poisson mixture
The negative binomial distribution also arises as a continuous mixture of Poisson distributions where the mixing distribution of the Poisson rate is a gamma distribution. That is, we can view the negative binomial as a Poisson(Š) distribution, where Š is itself a random variable, distributed according to Gamma(r, p/(1 € p)). Formally, this means that the mass function of the negative binomial distribution can be written as

Because of this, the negative binomial distribution is known as the gamma€Poisson (mixture) distribution.

Sum of geometric distributions
If Yr is a random variable following the negative binomial distribution with parameters r and p, and support {0,€1,€2,€...}, then Yr is a sum of r independent variables following the geometric distribution with parameter p. As a result of the central limit theorem, Yr (properly scaled and shifted) is therefore approximately normal for sufficiently large€r. Furthermore, if Bs+r is a random variable following the binomial distribution with parameters s€+€r and€p, then In this sense, the negative binomial distribution is the "inverse" of the binomial distribution. The sum of independent negative-binomially distributed random variables with the same value of the parameter p but the "r-values" r1 and r2 is negative-binomially distributed with the same p but with "r-value"€r1€+€r2. The negative binomial distribution is infinitely divisible, i.e., if Y has a negative binomial distribution, then for any positive integer n, there exist independent identically distributed random variables Y1,€...,€Yn whose sum has the same distribution that Y has. These will not be negative-binomially distributed in the sense defined above unless n is a divisor of r (more on this below).

Negative binomial distribution


Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function can be expressed in terms of the regularized incomplete beta function:

Sampling and point estimation of p
Suppose p is unknown and an experiment is conducted where it is decided ahead of time that sampling will continue until r successes are found. A sufficient statistic for the experiment is k, the number of failures. In estimating p, the minimum variance unbiased estimator is

The maximum likelihood estimate of p is

but this is a biased estimate. Its inverse (r€+€k)/r, is an unbiased estimate of 1/p, however.[2] .

Relation to the binomial theorem
Suppose K is a random variable with a negative binomial distribution with parameters r and p. The statement that the sum from k = 0 to infinity, of the probability Pr[K = k], is equal to 1, can be shown algebraically to be equivalent to the statement that (1 € p)€ r is what Newton's binomial theorem says it should be. Suppose Y is a random variable with a binomial distribution with parameters n and p. The statement that the sum from y = 0 to n, of the probability Pr[Y = y], is equal to 1, says that 1 = (p + (1 € p))n is what the strictly finitary binomial theorem of rudimentary algebra says it should be. Thus the negative binomial distribution bears the same relationship to the negative-integer-exponent case of the binomial theorem that the binomial distribution bears to the positive-integer-exponent case. Assume p + q = 1. Then the binomial theorem of elementary algebra implies that

This can be written in a way that may at first appear to some to be incorrect, and perhaps perverse even if correct:

in which the upper bound of summation is infinite. The binomial coefficient

is defined even when n is negative or is not an integer. But in our case of the binomial distribution it is zero when k > n. So why would we write the result in that form, with a seemingly needless sum of infinitely many zeros? The answer comes when we generalize the binomial theorem of elementary algebra to Newton's binomial theorem. Then we can say, for example

Now suppose r > 0 and we use a negative exponent:

Negative binomial distribution


Then all of the terms are positive, and the term

is just the probability that the number of failures before the rth success is equal to k, provided r is an integer. (If r is a negative non-integer, so that the exponent is a positive non-integer, then some of the terms in the sum above are negative, so we do not have a probability distribution on the set of all nonnegative integers.) Now we also allow non-integer values of r. Then we have a proper negative binomial distribution, which is a generalization of the Pascal distribution, which coincides with the Pascal distribution when r happens to be a positive integer. Recall from above that The sum of independent negative-binomially distributed random variables with the same value of the parameter p but the "r-values" r1 and r2 is negative-binomially distributed with the same p but with "r-value" r1€+€r2. This property persists when the definition is thus generalized, and affords a quick way to see that the negative binomial distribution is infinitely divisible.

(After a problem by Dr. Diane Evans, professor of mathematics at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology) Pat is required to sell candy bars to raise money for the 6th grade field trip. There are thirty houses in the neighborhood, and Pat is not supposed to return home until five candy bars have been sold. So the child goes door to door, selling candy bars. At each house, there is a 0.4 probability of selling one candy bar and a 0.6 probability of selling nothing. What's the probability mass function for selling the last candy bar at the nth house? Recall that the NegBin(r, p) distribution describes the probability of k failures and r successes in k+r Bernoulli(p) trials with success on the last trial. Selling five candy bars means getting five successes. The number of trials (i.e. houses) this takes is therefore k+5 = n. The random variable we are interested in is the number of houses, so we substitute k = n € 5 into a NegBin(5, 0.4) mass function and obtain the following mass function of the distribution of houses (for n Ž 5):

What's the probability that Pat finishes on the tenth house?

What's the probability that Pat finishes on or before reaching the eighth house? To finish on or before the eighth house, Pat must finish at the fifth, sixth, seventh, or eighth house. Sum those probabilities:

Negative binomial distribution


What's the probability that Pat exhausts all 30 houses in the neighborhood? This can be expressed as the probability that Pat does not finish on the fifth through the thirtieth house:

See also
• Coupon collector's problem • Negative multinomial distribution

[1] McCullagh, Peter; Nelder, John (1989). Generalized Linear Models, Second Edition. Boca Raton: Chapman and Hall/CRC. ISBN€0-412-31760-5. [2] J. B. S. Haldane, "On a Method of Estimating Frequencies", Biometrika, Vol. 33, No. 3 (Nov., 1945), pp. 222‚225. JSTOR€2332299

Further reading
• Hilbe, Joseph M., Negative Binomial Regression, Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press (2007) Negative Binomial Regression - Cambridge University Press ( asp?isbn=9780521857727)

Yule‚Simon distribution


Yule€Simon distribution
Yule€Simon Probability mass function

Yule‚Simon PMF on a log-log scale. (Note that the function is only defined at integer values of k. The connecting lines do not indicate continuity.) Cumulative distribution function

Yule‚Simon CMF. (Note that the function is only defined at integer values of k. The connecting lines do not indicate continuity.) parameters: support: pmf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: for for for shape (real)

Yule‚Simon distribution


ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:


In probability and statistics, the Yule€Simon distribution is a discrete probability distribution named after Udny Yule and Herbert Simon. Simon originally called it the Yule distribution[1] . The probability mass function of the Yule‚Simon (™) distribution is

for integer

and real

, where

is the beta function. Equivalently the pmf can be written in terms of

the falling factorial as


is the gamma function. Thus, if

is an integer,

The probability mass function f has the property that for sufficiently large k we have

This means that the tail of the Yule‚Simon distribution is a realization of Zipf's law: for example, the relative frequency of the Zipf's law is inversely proportional to a (typically small) power of .

can be used to model,

th most frequent word in a large collection of text, which according to

The Yule‚Simon distribution arose originally as the limiting distribution of a particular stochastic process studied by Yule as a model for the distribution of biological taxa and subtaxa[2] . Simon dubbed this process the "Yule process" but it is more commonly known today as a preferential attachment process. The preferential attachment process is an urn process in which balls are added to a growing number of urns, each ball being allocated to an urn with probability linear in the number the urn already contains. The distribution also arises as a continuous mixture of geometric distributions. Specifically, assume that an exponential distribution with scale or rate : follows

Then a Yule‚Simon distributed variable

has the following geometric distribution:

The pmf of a geometric distribution is


. The Yule‚Simon pmf is then the following exponential-geometric mixture distribution:

Yule‚Simon distribution


The two-parameter generalization of the original Yule distribution replaces the beta function with an incomplete beta function. The probability mass function of the generalized Yule‚Simon(™, €) distribution is defined as


. For

the ordinary Yule‚Simon(™) distribution is obtained as a special case. The use of the

incomplete beta function has the effect of introducing an exponential cutoff in the upper tail.

See also
• Beta function • Preferential attachment

• Colin Rose and Murray D. Smith, Mathematical Statistics with Mathematica. New York: Springer, 2002, ISBN 0-387-95234-9. (See page 107, where it is called the "Yule distribution".)

[1] Simon, H. A. (1955). "On a class of skew distribution functions". Biometrika 42: 425‚440. doi:10.1093/biomet/42.3-4.425. [2] Yule, G. U. (1925). "A Mathematical Theory of Evolution, based on the Conclusions of Dr. J. C. Willis, F.R.S.". Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, Ser. B 213: 21‚87. doi:10.1098/rstb.1925.0002.

Zipf's law


Zipf's law
Zipf's law Probability mass function

Zipf PMF for N = 10 on a log-log scale. The horizontal axis is the index k€. (Note that the function is only defined at integer values of k. The connecting lines do not indicate continuity.) Cumulative distribution function

Zipf CMF for N = 10. The horizontal axis is the index k€. (Note that the function is only defined at integer values of k. The connecting lines do not indicate continuity.) parameters: support: pmf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: (real) (integer)

Zipf's law


ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

Zipf's law, an empirical law formulated using mathematical statistics, refers to the fact that many types of data studied in the physical and social sciences can be approximated with a Zipfian distribution, one of a family of related discrete power law probability distributions. The law is named after the linguist George Kingsley Zipf (pronounced /œz•f/) who first proposed it (Zipf 1935, 1949), though J.B. Estoup appears to have noticed the regularity before Zipf.[1]

Zipf's law states that given some corpus of natural language utterances, the frequency of any word is inversely proportional to its rank in the frequency table. Thus the most frequent word will occur approximately twice as often as the second most frequent word, three times as often as the third most frequent word, etc. For example, in the Brown Corpus "the" is the most frequently occurring word, and by itself accounts for nearly 7% of all word occurrences (69,971 out of slightly over 1 million). True to Zipf's Law, the second-place word "of" accounts for slightly over 3.5% of words (36,411 occurrences), followed by "and" (28,852). Only 135 vocabulary items are needed to account for half the Brown Corpus. The same relationship occurs in many other rankings, unrelated to language, such as the population ranks of cities in various countries, corporation sizes, income rankings, etc. The appearance of the distribution in rankings of cities by population was first noticed by Felix Auerbach in 1913.[2] Empirically a data set can be tested to see if Zipf's law applies by running the regression log R = a - b log n where R is the rank of the datum, n is its value and a and b are constants. For Zipf's law to apply the constant b = 1. When this regression is applied to cities a better fit has been found with b = 1.07.

Theoretical review
Zipf's law is most easily observed by plotting the data on a log-log graph, with the axes being log(rank order) and log(frequency). For example, the word "the" (as described above) would appear at x = log(1), y = log(69971). The data conform to Zipf's law to the extent that the plot is linear. Formally, let: • N be the number of elements; • k be their rank; • s be the value of the exponent characterizing the distribution. Zipf's law then predicts that out of a population of N elements, the frequency of elements of rank k, f(k;s,N), is:

Zipf's law holds if the number of occurrences of each element are independent and identically distributed random variables with power law distribution

In the example of the frequency of words in the English language, N is the number of words in the English language and, if we use the classic version of Zipf's law, the exponent s is 1. f(k;€s,N) will then be the fraction of the time the kth most common word occurs.

Zipf's law The law may also be written:


where HN,s is the Nth generalized harmonic number. The simplest case of Zipf's law is a "1“f function". Given a set of Zipfian distributed frequencies, sorted from most common to least common, the second most common frequency will occur … as often as the first. The third most common frequency will occur ž as often as the first. The nth most common frequency will occur 1“n as often as the first. However, this cannot hold exactly, because items must occur an integer number of times; there cannot be 2.5 occurrences of a word. Nevertheless, over fairly wide ranges, and to a fairly good approximation, many natural phenomena obey Zipf's law. Mathematically, it is impossible for the classic version of Zipf's law to hold exactly if there are infinitely many words in a language, since the sum of all relative frequencies in the denominator above is equal to the harmonic series and therefore:

In English, the word frequencies have a very heavy-tailed distribution, and can therefore be modeled reasonably well by a Zipf distribution with an s close to 1. As long as the exponent s exceeds 1, it is possible for such a law to hold with infinitely many words, since if s€>€1 then

where ¤ is Riemann's zeta function.

Statistical explanation
It is not known why Zipf's law holds for most languages.[4] However, it may be partially explained by the statistical analysis of randomly-generated texts. Wentian Li has shown that if you create a document where each character is chosen randomly from a uniform distribution of all letters (plus a space character), then the "words" in this document also follow the general trend of Zipf's law (appearing approximately linear on log-log plot).[5] This suggests a partial explanation for why Zipf's law might hold for most natural languages (although the law holds much more strongly to natural language than to random texts). An alternate explanation is that Zipf's Law arises necessarily from features of natural language. It is proposed that this occurs because neither speakers nor hearers using a given language want to work any harder than necessary to reach understanding, and the process that results in approximately equal distribution of effort leads to the observed Zipf distribution.[6]

Zipf's law


Related laws
Zipf's law now refers more generally to frequency distributions of "rank data," in which the relative frequency of the nth-ranked item is given by the Zeta distribution, 1/(ns¤(s)), where the parameter s€>€1 indexes the members of this family of probability distributions. Indeed, Zipf's law is sometimes synonymous with "zeta distribution," since probability distributions are sometimes called "laws". This distribution is sometimes called the Zipfian or Yule distribution. A generalization of Zipf's law is the Zipf‚Mandelbrot law, proposed by Beno™t Mandelbrot, whose frequencies are:

A plot of word frequency in Wikipedia (November 27, 2006). The plot is in log-log coordinates. x€ is rank of a word in the frequency table; y€ is the total number of the word†s occurrences. Most popular words are ‹theŒ, ‹ofŒ and ‹andŒ, as expected. Zipf's law corresponds to the upper linear portion of the curve, roughly following the green (1/x)€ line.

The "constant" is the reciprocal of the Hurwitz zeta function evaluated at s. Zipfian distributions can be obtained from Pareto distributions by an exchange of variables.[7] The tail frequencies of the Yule‚Simon distribution are approximately

for any choice of ™ > 0. If the natural log of some data are normally distributed, the data follow the log-normal distribution. This distribution is useful when random influences have an effect that is multiplicative rather than additive. In the parabolic fractal distribution, the logarithm of the frequency is a quadratic polynomial of the logarithm of the rank. This can markedly improve the fit over a simple power-law relationship.[7] Like fractal dimension, it is possible to calculate Zipf dimension, which is a useful parameter in the analysis of texts.[8] It has been argued that Benford's law is a special case of Zipf's law.[7] This special connection between these two laws can be explained by the fact that they both originate from the same scale invariant functional relation from statistical physics and critical phenomena.[9]

Zipf's law


See also
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Benford's law Bradford's law Demographic gravitation Heaps' law Hapax legomenon Jean-Baptiste Estoup Lorenz curve Lotka's law Moore's law Pareto distribution Pareto principle aka the "80-20 rule" Power law Principle of least effort Rank-size distribution Zipf‚Mandelbrot law

[1] Christopher D. Manning, Hinrich SchŸtze Foundations of Statistical Natural Language Processing, MIT Press (1999), ISBN 978-0262133609, p. 24 [2] Auerbach F. (1913) Das Gesetz der Bev¥lkerungskonzentration. Petermann†s Geographische Mitteilungen 59, 74‚76 [3] Adamic, Lada A. "Zipf, Power-laws, and Pareto - a ranking tutorial" (http:/ / www. hpl. hp. com/ research/ idl/ papers/ ranking/ ranking. html) [4] L„on Brillouin, La science et la th•orie de l'information, 1959, r„„dit„ en 1988, traduction anglaise r„„dit„e en 2004 [5] Wentian Li (1992). "Random Texts Exhibit Zipf's-Law-Like Word Frequency Distribution" (http:/ / www. nslij-genetics. org/ wli/ pub/ ieee92_pre. pdf). IEEE Transactions on Information Theory 38 (6): 1842‚1845. doi:10.1109/18.165464. . [6] Ramon Ferrer i Cancho and Ricard V. Sole (2003). "Least effort and the origins of scaling in human language" (http:/ / www. pnas. org/ content/ 100/ 3/ 788. abstract?sid=cc7fae18-87c9-4b67-863a-4195bb47c1d1). Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 100 (3): 788‚791. doi:10.1073/pnas.0335980100. PMID€12540826. PMC€298679. . [7] Johan Gerard van der Galien (2003-11-08). "Factorial randomness: the Laws of Benford and Zipf with respect to the first digit distribution of the factor sequence from the natural numbers" (http:/ / home. zonnet. nl/ galien8/ factor/ factor. html). . [8] Ali Eftekhari (2006) Fractal geometry of texts. Journal of Quantitative Linguistic 13(2-3): 177 ‚ 193. [9] L. Pietronero, E. Tosatti, V. Tosatti, A. Vespignani (2001) Explaining the uneven distribution of numbers in nature: The laws of Benford and Zipf. Physica A 293: 297 ‚ 304.

Further reading
Primary: • George K. Zipf (1949) Human Behavior and the Principle of Least Effort. Addison-Wesley. • George K. Zipf (1935) The Psychobiology of Language. Houghton-Mifflin. (see citations at ) Secondary: • Gelbukh, Alexander, and Sidorov, Grigori (2001) "Zipf and Heaps Laws† Coefficients Depend on Language" ( Proc. CICLing-2001, Conference on Intelligent Text Processing and Computational Linguistics, February 18‚24, 2001, Mexico City. Lecture Notes in Computer Science N 2004, ISSN 0302-9743, ISBN 3-540-41687-0, Springer-Verlag: 332‚335. • Dami¦n H. Zanette (2006) " Zipf's law and the creation of musical context, ( 0406015)" Musicae Scientiae 10: 3-18. • Kali R. (2003) "The city as a giant component: a random graph approach to Zipf's law," Applied Economics Letters 10: 717-720(4)

Zipf's law • Gabaix, Xavier (August 1999). "Zipf's Law for Cities: An Explanation" ( papers/zipf.pdf). Quarterly Journal of Economics 114 (3): 739‚67. doi:10.1162/003355399556133. ISSN€0033-5533.


External links
• Steven, Strogatz (2009-05-29). "Guest Column: Math and the City" ( 05/19/math-and-the-city/). Retrieved 2009-05-29 -- An article on Zipf's law applied to city populations • Comprehensive bibliography of Zipf's law ( • Seeing Around Corners (Artificial societies turn up Zipf's law) ( rauch.htm) • PlanetMath article on Zipf's law ( • Distributions de type ‹fractal paraboliqueŒ dans la Nature (French, with English summary) (http://www. • An analysis of income distribution ( • Zipf List of French words ( • Zipf list English words (extracted from , jane16 engine) ( • Zipf list for English, French, Spanish, Italian, Swedish, Icelandic, Latin, Portugese and Finnish from Gutenberg Project and online calculator to rank words in texts ( • Citations and the Zipf-Mandelbrot's law ( • Zipf's Law for U.S. Cities ( by Fiona Maclachlan, Wolfram Demonstrations Project. • Weisstein, Eric W., " Zipf's Law (" from MathWorld. • Zipf's Law examples and modelling (1985) (


Multivariate distributions
Multinomial distribution
Multinomial parameters: support: pmf: cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf: number of trials (integer) event probabilities (


In probability theory, the multinomial distribution is a generalization of the binomial distribution. The binomial distribution is the probability distribution of the number of "successes" in n independent Bernoulli trials, with the same probability of "success" on each trial. In a multinomial distribution, the analog of the Bernoulli distribution is the categorical distribution, where each trial results in exactly one of some fixed finite number k of possible outcomes, with probabilities p1, ..., pk (so that pi€Ž€0 for i€=€1,€...,€k and ), and there are n

independent trials. Then let the random variables Xi indicate the number of times outcome number i was observed over the n trials. The vector X€=€(X1,€...,€Xk) follows a multinomial distribution with parameters n and p, where p€=€(p1,€...,€pk). Note that, in some fields, such as natural language processing, the categorical and multinomial distributions are conflated, and it is common to speak of a "multinomial distribution" when a categorical distribution is actually meant. This stems from the fact that it is sometimes convenient to express the outcome of a categorical distribution as a "1-of-K" vector (a vector with one element containing a 1 and all other elements containing a 0) rather than as an integer in the range ; in this form, a categorical distribution is equivalent to a multinomial distribution over a single observation.

Multinomial distribution


Probability mass function
The probability mass function of the multinomial distribution is: for non-negative integers x1, ..., xk.

The expected number of times the outcome i was observed over n trials is

The covariance matrix is as follows. Each diagonal entry is the variance of a binomially distributed random variable, and is therefore

The off-diagonal entries are the covariances:

for i, j distinct. All covariances are negative because for fixed n, an increase in one component of a multinomial vector requires a decrease in another component. This is a k § k positive-semidefinite matrix of rank k€€€1. The off-diagonal entries of the corresponding correlation matrix are

Note that the sample size drops out of this expression. Each of the k components separately has a binomial distribution with parameters n and pi, for the appropriate value of the subscript i. The support of the multinomial distribution is the set

Its number of elements is

the number of n-combinations of a multiset with k types, or multiset coefficient.

In a recent three-way election for a large country, candidate A received 20% of the votes, candidate B received 30% of the votes, and candidate C received 50% of the votes. If six voters are selected randomly, what is the probability that there will be exactly one supporter for candidate A, two supporters for candidate B and three supporters for candidate C in the sample? Note: Since we†re assuming that the voting population is large, it is reasonable and permissible to think of the probabilities as unchanging once a voter is selected for the sample. Technically speaking this is sampling without replacement, so the correct distribution is the multivariate hypergeometric distribution, but the distributions converge as the population grows large.

Multinomial distribution


Sampling from a multinomial distribution
First, reorder the parameters such that they are sorted in descending order (this is only to speed up computation and not strictly necessary). Now, for each trial, draw an auxiliary variable X from a uniform (0,€1) distribution. The resulting outcome is the component

This is a sample for the multinomial distribution with n€=€1. A sum of independent repetitions of this experiment is a sample from a multinomial distribution with n equal to the number of such repetitions.

Related distributions
• • • • • When k = 2, the multinomial distribution is the binomial distribution. The continuous analogue is Multivariate normal distribution Categorical distribution, the distribution of each trial; for k = 2, this is the Bernoulli distribution The Dirichlet distribution is the conjugate prior of the multinomial in Bayesian statistics. Multivariate Polya distribution

• Beta-binomial model

See also
• Multinomial theorem • Negative multinomial distribution

Evans, Merran; Nicholas Hastings, Brian Peacock (2000). Statistical Distributions. New York: Wiley. pp.€134‚136. 3rd ed.. ISBN€0-471-37124-6.

Multivariate normal distribution


Multivariate normal distribution
Probability density function

Multivariate (bivariate) Gaussian distribution centered at (1,3) with a standard deviation of 3 in roughly the (0.878, 0.478) direction and of 1 in the orthogonal direction. parameters: „ ‰ Rk „ location ‰ ‰ Rk‡k „ covariance (nonnegative-definite matrix) x ‰ span(‰) Ÿ Rk

support: pdf:

(pdf exists only for positive-definite ‰) cdf: mean: mode: variance: entropy: mgf: cf: (no analytic expression) „ „ ‰

In probability theory and statistics, the multivariate normal distribution or multivariate Gaussian distribution, is a generalization of the one-dimensional (univariate) normal distribution to higher dimensions. A random vector is said to be multivariate normally distributed if every linear combination of its components has a univariate normal distribution.

Notation and parametrization
The multivariate normal distribution of a k-dimensional random vector X = [X1, X2, ‡, Xk] can be written in the following notation:

or to make it explicitly known that X is k-dimensional,

with k-dimensional mean vector

and k x k covariance matrix

Multivariate normal distribution


A random vector X = (X1, ‡, Xk)ˆ is said to have the multivariate normal distribution if it satisfies the following equivalent conditions [1] : • Every linear combination of its components Y€=€a1X1 + ‡ + akXk is normally distributed. That is, for any constant vector a ‰ Rk, the random variable Y = a€X has a univariate normal distribution. • There exists a random ƒ-vector Z, whose components are independent normal random variables, a k-vector „, and a k‡ƒ matrix A, such that X = AZ + „. Here ƒ is the rank of the covariance matrix ‰ = AA€. • There is a k-vector „ and a symmetric, nonnegative-definite k‡k matrix ‰, such that the characteristic function of X is

• (Only in case when the support of X is the entire space Rk). There exists a k-vector „ and a symmetric positive-definite k‡k matrix ‰, such that the probability density function of X can be expressed as

where |‰| is the determinant of ‰, and where (2¨)k/2|‰|1/2 could instead be written as |2¨‰|1/2. This expression reduces to the density of the univariate normal distribution if ‰ is a scalar (i.e., a 1§1€matrix). The covariance matrix is allowed to be singular (in which case the corresponding distribution has no density). This case arises frequently in statistics; for example, in the distribution of the vector of residuals in the ordinary least squares regression. Note also that the Xi are in general not independent; they can be seen as the result of applying the matrix A to a collection of independent Gaussian variables Z.

Bivariate case
In the 2-dimensional nonsingular case (k = rank(‰) = 2), the probability density function of a vector [X Y]ˆ is where ™ is the correlation between X and Y. In this case,

In the bivariate case, we also have a theorem that makes the first equivalent condition for multivariate normality less restrictive: it is sufficient to verify that countably many distinct linear combinations of X and Y are normal in order to conclude that the vector [X Y]ˆ is bivariate normal.[2]

Cumulative distribution function
The cumulative distribution function (cdf) F(x) of a random vector X is defined as the probability that all components of X are less than or equal to the corresponding values in the vector€x. Though there is no closed form for F(x), there are a number of algorithms that estimate it numerically. For example, see MVNDST under [3] (includes FORTRAN code) or [4] (includes MATLAB code).

Normally distributed and independent
If X and Y are normally distributed and independent, this implies they are "jointly normally distributed", i.e., the pair (X,€Y) must have bivariate normal distribution. However, a pair of jointly normally distributed variables need not be independent.

Multivariate normal distribution


Two normally distributed random variables need not be jointly bivariate normal
The fact that two random variables X and Y both have a normal distribution does not imply that the pair (X,€Y) has a joint normal distribution. A simple example is one in which X has a normal distribution with expected value 0 and variance 1, and Y€=€X if |X|€>€c and Y€=€€X if |X|€<€c, where c is about 1.54. There are similar counterexamples for more than two random variables.

Conditional distributions
If „ and ‰ are partitioned as follows with sizes with sizes then the distribution of x1 conditional on x2 = a is multivariate normal (X1|X2 = a) • N(„, ‰) where and covariance matrix

This matrix is the Schur complement of …22 in …. This means that to calculate the conditional covariance matrix, one inverts the overall covariance matrix, drops the rows and columns corresponding to the variables being conditioned upon, and then inverts back to get the conditional covariance matrix. Note that knowing that x2 = a alters the variance, though the new variance does not depend on the specific value of a; perhaps more surprisingly, the mean is shifted by ; compare this with the situation of not knowing the value of a, in which case x1 would have distribution The matrix ‰12‰22


is known as the matrix of regression coefficients.

In the bivariate case the conditional distribution of Y given X is

Bivariate conditional expectation
In the case


where this latter ratio is often called the inverse Mills ratio.

Multivariate normal distribution


Marginal distributions
To obtain the marginal distribution over a subset of multivariate normal random variables, one only needs to drop the irrelevant variables (the variables that one wants to marginalize out) from the mean vector and the covariance matrix. The proof for this follows from the definitions of multivariate normal distributions and some advanced linear algebra [5] . Example Let X = [X1, X2, X3] be multivariate normal random variables with mean vector „ = [„1„2„3] and covariance matrix ‰ (Standard parametrization for multivariate normal distribution). Then the joint distribution of X€ = [X1X3] is multivariate normal with mean vector „€ = [„1„3] and covariance matrix

Affine transformation
If Y = c + BX is an affine transformation of constant B‰B i.e.,

where c is an

vector of constants and B is a

matrix, then Y has a multivariate normal distribution with expected value c + B„ and variance . In particular, any subset of the Xi has a marginal distribution that is also

multivariate normal. To see this, consider the following example: to extract the subset (X1, X2, X4)T, use

which extracts the desired elements directly. Another corollary is that the distribution of Z = b ‘ X, where b is a constant vector of the same length as X and the dot indicates a vector product, is univariate Gaussian with . This result follows by using

and considering only the first component of the product (the first row of B is the vector b). Observe how the positive-definiteness of ‰ implies that the variance of the dot product must be positive. An affine transformation of X such as 2X is not the same as the sum of two independent realisations of X.

Geometric interpretation
The equidensity contours of a non-singular multivariate normal distribution are ellipsoids (i.e. linear transformations of hyperspheres) centered at the mean[6] . The directions of the principal axes of the ellipsoids are given by the eigenvectors of the covariance matrix ‰. The squared relative lengths of the principal axes are given by the corresponding eigenvalues. If ‰ = U©UT = U©1/2(U©1/2)T is an eigendecomposition where the columns of U are unit eigenvectors and © is a diagonal matrix of the eigenvalues, then we have Moreover, U can be chosen to be a rotation matrix, as inverting an axis does not have any effect on N(0, ©), but inverting a column changes the sign of U's determinant. The distribution N(„, ‰) is in effect N(0, I) scaled by ©1/2, rotated by U and translated by „. Conversely, any choice of „, full rank matrix U, and positive diagonal entries ©i yields a non-singular multivariate normal distribution. If any ©i is zero and U is square, the resulting covariance matrix U©UT is singular. Geometrically this means that every contour ellipsoid is infinitely thin and has zero volume in n-dimensional space,

Multivariate normal distribution as at least one of the principal axes has length of zero.


Correlations and independence
In general, random variables may be uncorrelated but highly dependent. But if a random vector has a multivariate normal distribution then any two or more of its components that are uncorrelated are independent. This implies that any two or more of its components that are pairwise independent are independent. But it is not true that two random variables that are (separately, marginally) normally distributed and uncorrelated are independent. Two random variables that are normally distributed may fail to be jointly normally distributed, i.e., the vector whose components they are may fail to have a multivariate normal distribution. For an example of two normally distributed random variables that are uncorrelated but not independent, see normally distributed and uncorrelated does not imply independent.

Higher moments
The kth-order moments of X are defined by

where r1 + r2 + Š + rN = k. The central k-order central moments are given as follows (a) If k is odd, „1, ‡, N(X • „) = 0. (b) If k is even with k = 2Š, then

where the sum is taken over all allocations of the set dropped in the interests of parsimony): This yields

into Š (unordered) pairs. That is, if you have a

kth ( = 2Š = 6) central moment, you will be summing the products of Š = 3 covariances (the -„ notation has been terms in the sum (15 in the above case), each being the product of Š (in

this case 3) covariances. For fourth order moments (four variables) there are three terms. For sixth-order moments there are 3€§€5 = 15 terms, and for eighth-order moments there are 3€§€5€§€7 = 105 terms. The covariances are then determined by replacing the terms of the list by the corresponding terms of the list consisting of r1 ones, then r2 twos, etc... To illustrate this, examine the following 4th-order central moment case:

where ˆij is the covariance of Xi and Xj. The idea with the above method is you first find the general case for a kth moment where you have k different X variables and then you can simplify this accordingly. Say, you have then you simply let Xi = Xj and realise that ˆii = ˆi2.

Multivariate normal distribution


Kullback€Leibler divergence
The Kullback‚Leibler divergence from


, for non-singular matrices ‰0 and ‰1, is:

The logarithm must be taken to base e since the two terms following the logarithm are themselves base-e logarithms of expressions that are either factors of the density function or otherwise arise naturally. The equation therefore gives a result measured in nats. Dividing the entire expression above by loge€2 yields the divergence in bits.

Estimation of parameters
The derivation of the maximum-likelihood estimator of the covariance matrix of a multivariate normal distribution is perhaps surprisingly subtle and elegant. See estimation of covariance matrices. In short, the probability density function (pdf) of an N-dimensional multivariate normal is

and the ML estimator of the covariance matrix from a sample of n observations is

which is simply the sample covariance matrix. This is a biased estimator whose expectation is

An unbiased sample covariance is

The Fisher information matrix for estimating the parameters of a multivariate normal distribution has a closed form expression. This can be used, for example, to compute the Cramer-Rao bound for parameter estimation in this setting. See Fisher information#Multivariate normal distribution for more details.

The differential entropy of the multivariate normal distribution is [8]


is the determinant of the covariance matrix ‰.

Multivariate normal distribution


Multivariate normality tests
Multivariate normality tests check a given set of data for similarity to the multivariate normal distribution. The null hypothesis is that the data set is similar to the normal distribution, therefore a sufficiently small p-value indicates non-normal data. Multivariate normality tests include the Cox-Small test [9] and Smith and Jain's adaptation [10] of the Friedman-Rafsky test.[11]

Drawing values from the distribution
A widely used method for drawing a random vector X from the N-dimensional multivariate normal distribution with mean vector „ and covariance matrix ‰ (required to be symmetric and positive-definite) works as follows: 1. Find any matrix A such that A AT = ‰. Often this is a Cholesky decomposition, though a square root of ‰ would also suffice. 2. Let Z = (z1, ‡, zN)T be a vector whose components are N independent standard normal variates (which can be generated, for example, by using the Box-Muller transform). 3. Let X be „ + AZ. This has the desired distribution due to the affine transformation property.

See also
• Chi distribution, the pdf of the 2-norm (or Euclidean norm) of a multivariate normally-distributed vector.

[1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] Gut, Allan: An Intermediate Course in Probability, 2009, chapter 5 Hamedani & Tata (1975) http:/ / www. math. wsu. edu/ faculty/ genz/ software/ software. html http:/ / alex. strashny. org/ a/ Multivariate-normal-cumulative-distribution-function-(cdf)-in-MATLAB. html The formal proof for marginal distribution is shown here http:/ / fourier. eng. hmc. edu/ e161/ lectures/ gaussianprocess/ node7. html Nikolaus Hansen. "The CMA Evolution Strategy: A Tutorial" (http:/ / www. bionik. tu-berlin. de/ user/ niko/ cmatutorial. pdf) (PDF). . Penny & Roberts, PARG-00-12, (2000) (http:/ / www. allisons. org/ ll/ MML/ KL/ Normal). pp. 18 Gokhale, DV; NA Ahmed, BC Res, NJ Piscataway (May 1989). "Entropy Expressions and Their Estimators for Multivariate Distributions". Information Theory, IEEE Transactions on 35 (3): 688‚692. doi:10.1109/18.30996. [9] Cox, D. R.; N. J. H. Small (August 1978). "Testing multivariate normality". Biometrika 65 (2): 263‚272. doi:10.1093/biomet/65.2.263. [10] Smith, Stephen P.; Anil K. Jain (September 1988). "A test to determine the multivariate normality of a dataset". IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence 10 (5): 757‚761. doi:10.1109/34.6789. [11] Friedman, J. H. and Rafsky, L. C. (1979) "Multivariate generalizations of the Wald-Wolfowitz and Smirnov two sample tests". Annals of Statistics, 7, 697‚717.

Hamedani, G. G.; Tata, M. N. (1975). "On the determination of the bivariate normal distribution from distributions of linear combinations of the variables" (http:/ / jstor. org/ stable/ 2318494). The American Mathematical Monthly (The American Mathematical Monthly, Vol. 82, No. 9) 82 (9): 913‚915. doi:10.2307/2318494. JSTOR€2318494.

Wishart distribution


Wishart distribution
Wishart parameters: support: pdf: deg. of freedom (real) scale matrix ( pos. def) positive definite matrices

cdf: mean: median: mode: variance: skewness: ex.kurtosis: entropy: mgf: cf:

In statistics, the Wishart distribution is a generalization to multiple dimensions of the chi-square distribution, or, in the case of non-integer degrees of freedom, of the gamma distribution. It is named in honor of John Wishart, who first formulated the distribution in 1928.[1] It is any of a family of probability distributions defined over symmetric, nonnegative-definite matrix-valued random variables ("random matrices"). These distributions are of great importance in the estimation of covariance matrices in multivariate statistics. In Bayesian inference, the Wishart distribution is of particular importance, as it is the conjugate prior of the inverse of the covariance matrix (the precision matrix) of a multivariate normal distribution.

Suppose X is an n § p matrix, each row of which is independently drawn from p-variate normal distribution with zero mean:

Then the Wishart distribution is the probability distribution of the p§p random matrix

known as the scatter matrix. One indicates that S has that probability distribution by writing

The positive integer n is the number of degrees of freedom. Sometimes this is written W(V,€p,€n). For n€Ž€p the matrix S is invertible with probability 1 if V is invertible. If p = 1 and V = 1 then this distribution is a chi-square distribution with n degrees of freedom.

Wishart distribution


The Wishart distribution arises as the distribution of the sample covariance matrix for a sample from a multivariate normal distribution. It occurs frequently in likelihood-ratio tests in multivariate statistical analysis. It also arises in the spectral theory of random matrices{{cn} and in multidimensional Bayesian analysis.

Probability density function
The Wishart distribution can be characterized by its probability density function, as follows. Let W be a p€§€p symmetric matrix of random variables that is positive definite. Let V be a (fixed) positive definite matrix of size p€§€p. Then, if n Ž p, W has a Wishart distribution with n degrees of freedom if it has a probability density function given by

where †p(‘) is the multivariate gamma function defined as In fact the above definition can be extended to any real n€>€p€€€1. If n ƒ p€€€2, then the Wishart no longer has a density„instead it represents a singular distribution. [2]

Characteristic function
The characteristic function of the Wishart distribution is

In other words,


denotes expectation. (Here

and are matrices the same size as

( is the identity matrix); and

is the square root of€€1).

If has a Wishart distribution with m degrees of freedom and variance matrix „write „and is a q€§€p matrix of rank q, then

Corollary 1
If is a nonzero constant vector, then is the chi-square distribution and . (note that is a constant; it is positive because In this case,

is positive definite).

Wishart distribution


Corollary 2
Consider the case where corollary 1 above shows that gives the marginal distribution of each of the elements on the matrix's diagonal. Noted statistician George Seber points out that the Wishart distribution is not called the "multivariate chi-square distribution" because the marginal distribution of the off-diagonal elements is not chi-square. Seber prefers to reserve the term multivariate for the case when all univariate marginals belong to the same family. (that is, the jth element is one and all others zero). Then

Estimator of the multivariate normal distribution
The Wishart distribution is the sampling distribution of the maximum-likelihood estimator (MLE) of the covariance matrix of a multivariate normal distribution. The derivation of the MLE is perhaps surprisingly subtle and elegant. It involves the spectral theorem and the reason why it can be better to view a scalar as the trace of a 1§1 matrix than as a mere scalar. See estimation of covariance matrices.

Bartlett decomposition
The Bartlett decomposition of a matrix W from a p-variate Wishart distribution with scale matrix V and n degrees of freedom is the factorization:

where L is the Cholesky decomposition of V, and:



independently. This provides a useful method for obtaining random

samples from a Wishart distribution.

The possible range of the shape parameter
It can be shown that the Wishart distribution can be defined for all shape parameters p in

This set is named after Gindikin, who introduced it in the sixties in the context of gamma distributions on homogeneous cones. However, for the new parameters in the discrete spectrum of the Gindikin ensemble, the corresponding Wishart distribution has no Lebesgue density.

Wishart distribution


See also
• Hotelling's T-square distribution • Inverse-Wishart distribution

[1] Wishart, J. (1928). "The generalised product moment distribution in samples from a normal multivariate population". Biometrika 20A (1-2): 32‚52. doi:10.1093/biomet/20A.1-2.32. JFM€54.0565.02. [2] "On singular Wishart and singular multivariate beta distributions" by Harald Uhling, The Annals of Statistics, 1994, 395-405 projecteuclid (http:/ / projecteuclid. org/ DPubS?service=UI& version=1. 0& verb=Display& handle=euclid. aos/ 1176325375) [3] Smith, W. B.; Hocking, R. R. (1972). "Algorithm AS 53: Wishart Variate Generator". Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. Series C (Applied Statistics) 21 (3): 341‚345. JSTOR€2346290.

Article Sources and Contributors


Article Sources and Contributors
Probability distribution €Source: €Contributors: (:Julien:),, 3mta3, A.M.R., A5, Abhinav316, AbsolutDan, Adrokin, Alansohn, Alexius08, Ap, Applepiein, Avenue, AxelBoldt, BD2412, Baccyak4H, Benwing, Bfigura's puppy, Bhoola Pakistani, Bkkbrad, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Calvin 1998, Caramdir, Cburnett, Chirlu, Chris the speller, Classical geographer, Closedmouth, Conversion script, Courcelles, Damian Yerrick, Davhorn, David Eppstein, David Vose, DavidCBryant, Dcljr, Delldot, Den fjªttrade ankan, Dick Beldin, Digisus, Dino, Domminico, Dysprosia, Eliezg, Emijrp, Epbr123, Eric Kvaalen, Fintor, Firelog, Fnielsen, G716, Gaius Cornelius, Gala.martin, Gandalf61, Gate2quality, Giftlite, Gjnyasa, GoodDamon, Graham87, Hu12, ImperfectlyInformed, It Is Me Here, Iwaterpolo, J.delanoy, JRSpriggs, Jan eissfeldt, JayJasper, Jclemens, Jipumarino, Jitse Niesen, Jon Awbrey, Josuechan, Jsd115, Jsnx, Jtkiefer, Knutux, Larryisgood, LiDaobing, Lilac Soul, Lollerskates, Lotje, Loupeter, MGriebe, MarkSweep, Markhebner, Marner, Megaloxantha, Melcombe, Mental Blank, Michael Hardy, Miguel, MisterSheik, Morton.lin, MrOllie, Napzilla, Nbarth, Noodle snacks, NuclearWarfare, O18, OdedSchramm, Ojigiri, OverInsured, Oxymoron83, PAR, Pabristow, Patrick, Paul August, Pax:Vobiscum, Pgan002, Phys, Ponnu, Poor Yorick, Populus, Ptrf, Quietbritishjim, Qwfp, Riceplaytexas, Rich Farmbrough, Richard D. LeCour, Rinconsoleao, Roger.simmons, Rursus, Salgueiro, Salix alba, Samois98, Sandym, Schmock, Seglea, Serguei S. Dukachev, ShaunES, Shizhao, Silly rabbit, SiobhanHansa, Sky Attacker, Statlearn, Stpasha, TNARasslin, TakuyaMurata, Tarotcards, Tayste, Techman224, Thamelry, The Anome, The Thing That Should Not Be, TheCoffee, Tomi, Topology Expert, Tordek ar, Tsirel, Ttony21, Unyoyega, Uvainio, VictorAnyakin, Whosasking, Whosyourjudas, X-Bert, Zundark, 218 anonymous edits Beta distribution €Source: €Contributors: Adamace123, AnRtist, Art2SpiderXL, Baccyak4H, Betadistribution, BlaiseFEgan, Bootstoots, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Cburnett, Crasshopper, Cronholm144, DFRussia, Dean P Foster, Dshutin, Eric Kvaalen, FilipeS, Fintor, Fnielsen, Giftlite, Gill110951, GregorB, G¥khan, Henrygb, Hilgerdenaar, J04n,, Janlo, Jhapk, Jheald, Josang, Ketiltrout, Kts, Ladislav Mecir, Linas, Livius3, MarkSweep, Mcld, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Mochan Shrestha, MrOllie, Nbarth, O18, Oberobic, Ohanian, Oleg Alexandrov, Ott2, PAR, PBH, Pleasantville, Pnrj, Qwfp, Robbyjo, Robinh, Rodrigo braz, Rumping, SJP, ST47, Schmock, SharkD, Steve8675309, Stoni, Sukisuki, Tomi, Urhixidur, Wile E. Heresiarch, 102 anonymous edits Burr distribution €Source: €Contributors: Melcombe, PoochieR, Qwfp, Selket, Yoctobarryc, 2 anonymous edits Cauchy distribution €Source: €Contributors: 1diot, Abdullah Chougle, Albmont, Arthur Rubin, AxelBoldt, Baccyak4H, Beaumont, Bfigura's puppy, BoH, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Cl«odhna-2, Conversion script, Cretog8, DJIndica, Dicklyon, Emilpohl, Fjhickernell, Fnielsen, FrankH, Gareth Owen, Giftlite, HEL, Hannes Eder, Headbomb, Henrygb, Heron, Hidaspal, Hxu, Igny, Jitse Niesen, K.F., KSmrq, Kribbeh, Kurykh, LOL, Lambiam, Leendert, Lightst, MarkSweep, Melchoir, Melcombe, Metacomet, Michael Hardy, Miguel, MisterSheik, MrOllie, Nbarth, Nichtich, O18, Oleg Alexandrov, Ott2, PAR, PBH, Paul August, PeterC, PhilipHeller55, Pizzadeliveryboy, Quietbritishjim, Qwfp, Rlendog, Rogerbrent, Romanm, Skbkekas, Snoyes, Sterrys, Stpasha, S¬awomir Bia¬y, The Anome, Thesilverbail, Tkuvho, Tomeasy, Tomi, Weialawaga, Wikid77, ZeroOne, Zeycus, Zundark, Zvika, 89 anonymous edits Chi-square distribution €Source: €Contributors: A.R., AaronSw, AdamSmithee, Afa86, Alvin-cs, Animeronin, Ap, AstroWiki, AxelBoldt, Blaisorblade, Bluemaster, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, CBM, Cburnett, Chaldor, Chris53516, Constructive editor, DanSoper, Dbachmann, Dbenbenn, Den fjªttrade ankan, Digisus, EOBarnett, Eliel Jimenez, Eliezg, Emilpohl, Etoombs, Ettrig, Fergikush, Fibonacci, Fieldday-sunday, Fintor, G716, Gaara144, Gauss, Giftlite, Gperjim, Henrygb, Herbee, Hgamboa, HyDeckar, Iav, Icseaturtles, Isopropyl, It Is Me Here, Iwaterpolo, J-stan, Jackzhp, Jaekrystyn, Jason Goldstick, Jdgilbey, Jitse Niesen, Johnlemartirao, Jspacemen01-wiki, Knetlalala, KnightRider, Kotasik, LeilaniLad, Leotolstoy, LilHelpa, Lixiaoxu, Loodog, Loren.wilton, Lovibond, MATThematical, MER-C, MarkSweep, Markg0803, Master of Puppets, Mcorazao, Mdebets, Melcombe, Mgiganteus1, Michael Hardy, Microball, Mikael Hªggstr¥m, Mindmatrix, MisterSheik, MrOllie, MtBell, Nbarth, Neon white, Nm420, Notatoad, O18, Oleg Alexandrov, PAR, Pabristow, Pahan, Paul August, Paulginz, Pstevens, Qiuxing, Quantling, Quietbritishjim, Qwfp, Rflrob, Rich Farmbrough, Robinh, Ronz, Saippuakauppias, Sam Blacketer, SamuelTheGhost, Sander123, Schmock, Schwnj, Seglea, Shoefly, Silly rabbit, Sligocki, Stephen C. Carlson, Steve8675309, Stpasha, Tarkashastri, The Anome, TheProject, TimBentley, Tombomp, Tomi, TomyDuby, Tony1, User A1, Volkan.cevher, Voyagerfan5761, Wasell, Wassermann7, Weialawaga, Willem, Zero0000, Zfr, Zvika, 245 anonymous edits Dirichlet distribution €Source: €Contributors: A5, Adfernandes, BSVulturis, Barak, Benwing, Btyner, Charles Matthews, Cretog8, Daf, Dlwhall, Erikerhardt, Finnancier, Franktuyl, Frigyik, Giftlite, Herve1729, Ipeirotis, Ivan.Savov, J04n, Josang, Kzollman, M0nkey, MarkSweep, Mathknightapprentice, Mcld, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Mitch3, Nbarth, Prasenjitmukherjee, Qwfp, Robinh, Rvencio, Salgueiro, Schmock, Slxu.public, Tomi, Tomixdf, Whosasking, Wolfman, Zvika, 47 anonymous edits F-distribution €Source: €Contributors: Albmont, Art2SpiderXL, Bluemaster, Brenda Hmong, Jr, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Cburnett, DanSoper, Dysprosia, Elmer Clark, Emilpohl, Fnielsen, Ged.R, Giftlite, Gperjim, Hectorlamadrid, Henrygb, Jan eissfeldt, Jitse Niesen, JokeySmurf, MarkSweep, Markjoseph125, Mdebets, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MrOllie, Nehalem, O18, Oscar, PBH, Quietbritishjim, Qwfp, Robinh, Salix alba, Seglea, TedE, The Squicks, Tomi, Unyoyega, Zorgkang, 24 anonymous edits Gamma distribution €Source: €Contributors: A5, Aastrup, Abtweed98, Adam Clark, Adfernandes, Albmont, Aple123, Apocralyptic, Arg, Asteadman, Autopilot, Baccyak4H, Barak, Bdmy, Berland, Bo Jacoby, Bobo192, Brenton, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Cburnett, Cerberus0, ClaudeLo, Complex01, Darin, David Haslam, Dobromila, Donmegapoppadoc, Dshutin, Erik144, Eug, Fangz, Fnielsen, Frau K, Frobnitzem, Gandalf61, Gauss, Giftlite, Gjnyasa, Henrygb, Hgkamath, Iwaterpolo, Jason Goldstick, Jlc46, JonathanWilliford, Jshadias, Linas, Lovibond, LukeSurl, Luqmanskye, MarkSweep, Mcld, Mebden, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, MrOllie, MuesLee, Mundhenk, Narc813, O18, PAR, PBH, Patrke, Paul Pogonyshev, Paulginz, Pichote, Popnose, Qiuxing, Quietbritishjim, Qwfp, RSchlicht, Robbyjo, Robinh, Samsara, Schmock, Smmurphy, Stephreg, Stevvers, Supergrane, Tayste, TestUser001, Thomas stieltjes, Thric3, Tomi, Tommyjs, True rover, Umpi77, User A1, Wiki me, Wiki5d, Wikid77, Wile E. Heresiarch, Zvika, 208 anonymous edits Exponential distribution €Source: €Contributors: A.M.R., A3r0, ActivExpression, Aiden Fisher, Avabait, Avraham, AxelBoldt, Bdmy, Beaumont, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Butchbrody, CYD, Calmer Waters, CapitalR, Cazort, Cburnett, Closedmouth, Coffee2theorems, Cyp, Dcljr, Dcoetzee, Decrypt3, Den fjªttrade ankan, Dudubur, Duoduoduo, Enchanter, Fvw, Gauss, Giftlite, GorillaWarfare, Grinofadrunkwoman, Henrygb, Hsne, IanOsgood, Igny, Ilmari Karonen, Isis, Iwaterpolo, Jason Goldstick, Jester7777, Kan8eDie, Kappa, Karl-Henner, Kyng, LOL, MStraw, MarkSweep, Markjoseph125, Mattroberts, Mdf, MekaD, Melcombe, Memming, Michael Hardy, Mindmatrix, MisterSheik, Mwanner, Nothlit, Oysindi, PAR, Paul August, Qwfp, Remohammadi, Rich Farmbrough, Rp, Sergey Suslov, Shaile, Shingkei, Skbkekas, Skittleys, Smack, Spartanfox86, Stpasha, Taral, Taw, The Thing That Should Not Be, Thegeneralguy, TimBentley, Tomi, Ularevalo98, User A1, Vsmith, WDavis1911, Wilke, Woohookitty, Wyatts, Yoyod, Z.E.R.O., Zeno of Elea, Zeycus, Zvika, Zzxterry, 179 anonymous edits Erlang distribution €Source: €Contributors: Acuster, Afa86, Aranel, Autopilot, Avatar, Basten, Bobo192, Bryan Derksen, Bullmoose953, Calltech, Cnmirose, CraigNYC, Derisavi, Donmegapoppadoc, DudMc3, Giftlite, Gustavf, Ian Geoffrey Kennedy, Iwaterpolo, Jbfung, Jim.henderson, Joshdick, Jrdioko, Jwortman, Kitsonk, Luckyz, Mange01, MarkSweep, McKay, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Myleslong, PAR, Pichote, Qwfp, RHaworth, Salsa Shark, TedPavlic, User A1, Welsh, Zvika, 79 anonymous edits Kumaraswamy distribution €Source: €Contributors: Apankrat, Baccyak4H, Btyner, CanadianLinuxUser, Charles Matthews, Cronholm144, Ganeshk, Giftlite, John Vandenberg, KSmrq, MarkSweep, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Oleg Alexandrov, PAR, Pejman47, Ponnu, Qwfp, Ricky81682, Tomi, WikHead, 20 anonymous edits Inverse Gaussian distribution €Source: €Contributors: Aastrup, Abtweed98, Baccyak4H, Batman50, Btyner, David Haslam, Deavik, Dima373, Felipehsantos, Giftlite, Iwaterpolo, LachlanA, LandruBek, Memming, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, NickMulgan, Oleg Alexandrov, Qwfp, Rhfeng, Sterrys, The real moloch57, Tomi, User A1, Vana Seshadri, Wikid77, 44 anonymous edits Laplace distribution €Source: €Contributors: Alektzin, Btyner, CRGreathouse, Cburnett, Charles Matthews, Comfortably Paranoid, Dcljr, Dcoetzee, Fasten, Fnielsen, Foobarhoge, Giftlite, Henrygb, Igny, Iwaterpolo, Jurgen, Kabla002, Ludovic89, M.A.Dabbah, MarkSweep, Mashiah Davidson, Melcombe, Memming, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Mohammad Al-Aggan, PAR, Qwfp, Rlendog, Sterrys, User A1, Vovchyck, Wastle, Wolf87, Zundark, Zvika, 40 anonymous edits L‚vy distribution €Source: €Contributors: 84user, Badger Drink, Btyner, Caviare, DBrane, Digfarenough, Dysmorodrepanis, Eric Kvaalen, Gaius Cornelius, Gbellocchi, Gene Nygaard, Giftlite, Kloveland, Lovibond, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Nbarth, Night Gyr, PAR, Ptrf, PyonDude, Qwfp, Rlendog, Saihtam, SebastianHelm, Tsirel, Wainson, Xcentaur, Ynhockey, 17 anonymous edits Log-logistic distribution €Source: €Contributors: Alexenderius, DonAndre, Fetchcomms, John Vandenberg, Melcombe, PeterSymonds, Qwfp, Rjwilmsi, Sevilledade, 3 anonymous edits Log-normal distribution €Source: €Contributors: 2D, A. Pichler, Acct4, Albmont, Alue, Autopilot, AxelBoldt, Baccyak4H, BenB4, Berland, Biochem67, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Cburnett, Ciberelm, Ciemo, Cleared as filed, ColinGillespie, Constructive editor, Encyclops, Evil Monkey, Fredrik, Gausseliminering, Giftlite, Humanengr, Hxu, IanOsgood, Iwaterpolo, Jackzhp, Jeff3000, Jitse Niesen, Khukri, Letsgoexploring, Lojikl, Lunch, Mange01, Martinp23, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, NonDucor, Ocatecir, Occawen, Osbornd, Oxymoron83, PAR, PBH, Paul Pogonyshev, Philip Trueman, Philtime, Phoxhat, Pichote, Pontus, Qwfp, Rgbcmy, Rhowell77, Ricardogpn, Rlendog, Rmaus, Safdarmarwat, Sairvinexx, Schutz, Seriousme, Skunkboy74, SqueakBox, Sterrys, Stigin, Stpasha, Ta bu shi da yu, Techman224, The Siktath, Till Riffert, Tkinias, Tomi, Umpi, Unyoyega, Urhixidur, User A1, Weialawaga, Wikomidia, Wile E. Heresiarch, ZeroOne, ^demon, -®¯°, 164 anonymous edits

Article Sources and Contributors
Logistic distribution €Source: €Contributors: Abdel Hameed Nawar, Ahoerstemeier, Army1987, Betacommand, Br77rino, Bubba73, Carbonate, Cazort, ChrisCork, Coachaxis, Dicklyon, Draco flavus, Eric Kvaalen, Fnielsen, Giftlite, Home Row Keysplurge, Hongooi, Iwaterpolo, Leonard G., LokiClock, MarkSweep, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Mwbaxter, PAR, Quicksilvre, Qwfp, Radon210, Rlendog, Shoessss, SimonP, Stpasha, Tmh, Tomi, Trevor.tombe, 32 anonymous edits Normal distribution €Source: €Contributors: 0, 119,,, 5:40, A. Pichler, A.M.R., AaronSw, Abecedare, Abtweed98, Alektzin, Ali Obeid, AllanBz, Alpharigel, Amanjain, AndrewHowse, Anna Lincoln, Appoose, Aude, Aurimus, Awickert, AxelBoldt, Aydee, Aylex, Baccyak4H, Beetstra, BenFrantzDale, Bhockey10, Bidabadi, Bluemaster, Bo Jacoby, Boreas231, Boxplot, Br43402, Brock, Bryan Derksen, Bsilverthorn, Btyner, Bubba73, Burn, CBM, CRGreathouse, Calvin 1998, Can't sleep, clown will eat me, CapitalR, Cburnett, Cenarium, Charles Matthews, Charles Wolf, Chill doubt, Chris53516, ChrisHodgesUK, Christopher Parham, Ciphergoth, Coffee2theorems, ComputerPsych, Conversion script, Coolhandscot, Coppertwig, Coubure, Courcelles, Crescentnebula, Cruise, Cwkmail, Cybercobra, DFRussia, Damian Yerrick, DanSoper, Dannya222, Darwinek, David Haslam, DavidCBryant, Den fjªttrade ankan, Denis.arnaud, Dima373, Dj thegreat, Doood1, Drilnoth, Drostie, Dudzcom, Dzordzm, EOBarnett, Eclecticos, Ed Poor, Edin1, EelkeSpaak, Egorre, Elektron, Elockid, Enochlau, Epbr123, Eric Kvaalen, Ericd, Evan Manning, Fang Aili, Fangz, Fergusq, Fgnievinski, Fibonacci, Fintor, Firelog, Fledylids, Fnielsen, Fresheneesz, G716, GB fan, Galastril, Gandrusz, Gary King, Gauravm1312, Gauss, Geekinajeep, Gex999, GibboEFC, Giftlite, Gil Gamesh, Gioto, GordontheGorgon, Gperjim, Graft, Graham87, Gunnar Larsson, Gzornenplatz, G¥khan, Habbie, Heimstern, Henrygb, HereToHelp, Heron, Hiihammuk, Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii, Hu12, Hugo gasca aragon, Ian Pitchford, It Is Me Here, Ivan ±tambuk, Iwaterpolo, J heisenberg, JaGa, JahJah, JanSuchy, Jason.yosinski, Jeff560, Jim.belk, Jitse Niesen, Jmlk17, Joebeone, Jorgenumata, Joris Gillis, Josephus78, Josuechan, Jpk, Jpsauro, Junkinbomb, KMcD, KP-Adhikari, Karl-Henner, Kaslanidi, Kay Dekker, Keilana, KipKnight, Kjtobo, Knutux, LOL, Lansey, Laurifer, Lee Daniel Crocker, Leon7, Lilac Soul, Livius3, Lixy, Loadmaster, Lpele, Lscharen, Lself, MATThematical, MIT Trekkie, Manticore, MarkSweep, Markus Kr¥tzsch, Marlasdad, Mateoee, Mcorazao, Mdebets, Mebden, Meelar, Melcombe, Message From Xenu, Michael Hardy, Michael Zimmermann, Miguel, Millerdl, Mindmatrix, MisterSheik, Mkch, Mm 202, Morqueozwald, Mr Minchin, Mr. okinawa, MrOllie, MrZeebo, Mundhenk, Mwtoews, Mysteronald, Naddy, Nbarth, Nicholasink, Nicolas1981, Nilmerg, NoahDawg, Noe, Nolanbard, O18, Ohnoitsjamie, Ojigiri, Oleg Alexandrov, Oliphaunt, Olivier, Orderud, Ossiemanners, Owenozier, PAR, PGScooter, Pablomme, Pabristow, Paclopes, Patrick, Paul August, Paulpeeling, Pcody, Pdumon, Personman, Petri Krohn, Pfeldman, Pgan002, Pinethicket, Piotrus, Plantsurfer, Policron, Prodego, Prumpf, Ptrf, Qonnec, Quietbritishjim, Qwfp, R3m0t, RDBury, RHaworth, RSStockdale, Rabarberski, Rajah, Rajasekaran Deepak, Randomblue, Rbrwr, RexNL, Rich Farmbrough, Richwales, Rjwilmsi, Rmrfstar, Robbyjo, Romanski, Ronz, RxS, Ryguasu, SGBailey, SJP, Saintrain, SamuelTheGhost, Samwb123, Sander123, Schmock, Schwnj, Scohoust, Seidenstud, Seliopou, Seraphim, Sergey Suslov, SergioBruno66, Shabbychef, Shaww, Siddiganas, Sirex98, Snoyes, Somebody9973, Stan Lioubomoudrov, Stephenb, Stpasha, StradivariusTV, Sullivan.t.j, SusanLarson, Sverdrup, Svick, Taxman, Tdunning, TeaDrinker, The Anome, The Tetrast, TheSeven, Thekilluminati, TimBentley, Tomeasy, Tomi, Tommy2010, Trewin, Tristanreid, Trollderella, Troutinthemilk, Tryggvi bt, Tschwertner, Tstrobaugh, Unyoyega, Vakulgupta, Velocidex, Vhlafuente, Vijayarya, Vinodmp, Vrkaul, Waagh, Wakamex, Wavelength, Why Not A Duck, Wile E. Heresiarch, Wilke, Will Thimbleby, Willking1979, Wissons, Wwoods, XJamRastafire, Yoshigev, Zero0000, Zhurov, Zrenneh, Zundark, Zvika, 588 anonymous edits Pareto distribution €Source: €Contributors: A. B., Alexxandros, Am rods, Antandrus, Avraham, AxelBoldt, Beland, Boxplot, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Bubbleboys, Carrionluggage, ChemGardener, Clark Kent, Courcelles, Cyberyder, DaveApter, David Haslam, Doobliebop, Dreftymac, Edward, Enigmaman, Fenice, Fpoursafaei, Giftlite, Gruzd, Henrygb, Heron, Ida Shaw, Iwaterpolo, JavOs, Jive Dadson, Joseph Solis in Australia, Lendu, LunaDeFerrari, Mack2, Mange01, MarkSweep, Mcld, Melchoir, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Mindmatrix, MisterSheik, Msghani, Nbarth, Noe, O18, Olaf, P3^1$Problems, PAR, PBH, Paintitblack ft, Paul Pogonyshev, PhysPhD, Qwfp, Reedy, Rock soup, Rror, SanderSpek, Sergey Suslov, Shell Kinney, Shomoita, Stpasha, Tatrgel, The Anome, Tomi, User A1, Vivacissamamente, Vyznev Xnebara, 117 anonymous edits Student's t-distribution €Source: €Contributors: 3mta3, A bit iffy, A.M.R., Addone, Afluent Rider, Albmont, AlexAlex, Alvin-cs, Arsenikk, Arthur Rubin, Asperal, Avraham, AxelBoldt, B k, Beetstra, Benwing, Bless sins, Bobo192, BradBeattie, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, CBM, Cburnett, Chris53516, Chriscf, Classical geographer, Coppertwig, Count Iblis, Crouchy7, Daige, DanSoper, Danko Georgiev, Daveswahl, Dchristle, Ddxc, Dejo, Dkf11, Dmcalist, Dmcg026, Duncharris, EPadmirateur, EdJohnston, Eric Kvaalen, Ethan, F.morett, Finnancier, Fnielsen,, Furrykef, G716, Gabrielhanzon, Giftlite, Gperjim, Hadleywickham, Hemanshu, Hirak 99, Icairns, Ichbin-dcw, Ichoran, Ilhanli, Iwaterpolo, JMiall, Jitse Niesen, Johnson Lau, Kiefer.Wolfowitz, Kotar, Kroffe, Kummi, Kyosuke Aoki, Lifeartist, Linas, Lvzon, MATThematical, Madcoverboy, Maelgwn, MarkSweep, Mdebets, Melcombe, Michael C Price, Michael Hardy, Mig267, Millerdl, MisterSheik, MrOllie, Muzzamo, Nbarth, Ngwt, O18, Ocorrigan, Oliphaunt, PBH, Pegasus1457, Petter Strandmark, Phb, Piotrus, Pmanderson, Quietbritishjim, Qwfp, R'n'B, R.e.b., Rich Farmbrough, Rjwilmsi, Robert Ham, Robinh, Salgueiro, Sam Derbyshire, Sander123, Secretlondon, Seglea, Serdagger, Sgb 85, Shaww, Shoefly, Skbkekas, Sonett72, Sougandh, Sprocketoreo, Srbislav Nesic, Stasyuha, Steve8675309, TJ0513, Techman224, The Anome, Theodork, Thermochap, ThorinMuglindir, Tjfarrar, Tolstoy the Little Black Cat, TomCerul, Tomi, Tutor dave, Uncle G, Unknown, User A1, Valravn, Wastle, Wikid77, Wile E. Heresiarch, Xenonice, ZantTrang, 250 anonymous edits Uniform distribution (continuous) €Source: €Contributors: A.M.R., Abdullah Chougle, Aegis Maelstrom, Albmont, AlekseyP, Algebraist, Amatulic, ArnoldReinhold, B k, Baccyak4H, Brianga, Brumski, Btyner, Capricorn42, Cburnett, Ceancata, DaBler, DixonD, Euchiasmus, Fasten, FilipeS, Gala.martin, Gareth Owen, Giftlite, Gilliam, Gritzko, Henrygb, Iwaterpolo, Jamelan, Jitse Niesen, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Nbarth, Nsaa, Oleg Alexandrov, Ossska, PAR, Qwfp, Ray Chason, Robbyjo, Sl, Stpasha, Stwalkerster, Tpb, User A1, Warriorman21, Wikomidia, Zundark, 70 anonymous edits Weibull distribution €Source: €Contributors: Agriculture, Alfpooh, Argyriou, Avraham, AxelBoldt, Bender235, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Calimo, Cburnett, Corecode, Corfuman, Craigy144, Darrel francis, David Haslam, Dhatfield, Diegotorquemada, Dmh, Doradus, Eliezg, Emilpohl, Felipehsantos, Gausseliminering, Gcm, Giftlite, Gobeirne, GuidoGer, Iwaterpolo, J6w5, Janlo, Jason A Johnson, Jfcorbett, Joanmg, KenT, Kghose, Lachambre, LachlanA, MH, Mack2, Mebden, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Noodle snacks, O18, Olaf, Oznickr, PAR, Pleitch, Policron, Prof. Frink, Qwfp, RekishiEJ, Robertmbaldwin, Saad31, Sam Blacketer, Samikrc, Sandeep4tech, Slawekb, Smalljim, Stern, S¬awomir Bia¬y, TDogg310, Tassedethe, Tom harrison, Tomi, Uppland, WalNi, Wiki5d, Yanyanjun, Zundark, 122 anonymous edits Bernoulli distribution €Source: €Contributors: Albmont, AlekseyP, Aquae, Aziz1005, Bando26, Bgeelhoed, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Camkego, Cburnett, Charles Matthews, Complex01, El C, Eric Kvaalen, FilipeS, Flatland1, Giftlite, ILikeHowMuch, Iwaterpolo, Jitse Niesen, Jpk, Kyng, Lilac Soul, MarkSweep, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Miguel, MrOllie, Olivier, Ozob, PAR, Pabristow, Poor Yorick, Qwfp, RDBury, Rdsmith4, TakuyaMurata, Tomash, Tomi, Typofier, Urhixidur, Weialawaga, Whkoh, Wikid77, Wtanaka, Zven, 39 anonymous edits Beta-binomial distribution €Source: €Contributors: Auntof6, Baccyak4H, Benwing, Charlesmartin14, Domminico, Giftlite, GoingBatty, Massbless, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Nschuma, PigFlu Oink, Qwfp, Rjwilmsi, Thouis.r.jones, Thtanner, Tomixdf, Willy.feng, 27 anonymous edits Binomial distribution €Source: €Contributors: -- April, Aarond10, AchatesAVC, AdamRetchless, Ahoerstemeier, Ajs072,, Alexius08, Atemperman, Atlant, AxelBoldt, Ayla, BPets, Baccyak4H, BenFrantzDale, Bill Malloy, Blue520, Br43402, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Can't sleep, clown will eat me, Cburnett, Cdang, Cflm001, Charles Matthews, Conversion script, Coppertwig, Crackerbelly, David Martland, DavidFHoughton, Daytona2, Deville, Dick Beldin, Eesnyder, Elipongo, Eric Kvaalen, Falk Lieder, Fisherjs, G716, Gary King, Gauravm1312, Gauss, Gerald Tros, Giftlite, GorillaWarfare, Gperjim, Graham87, Hede2000, Henrygb, Hirak 99, Ian.Shannon, Ilmari Karonen, Intelligentsium, Iwaterpolo, J04n, JB82, JEH, Janlo, Johnstjohn, Kakofonous, Knutux, Koczy, LOL, Larry_Sanger, LiDaobing, Linas, Logan, MER-C, ML5, MSGJ, Madkaugh, MarkSweep, Marvinrulesmars, Materialscientist, Mboverload, McKay, Meisterkoch, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MichaelGensheimer, Miguel, MisterSheik, Mmustafa, Moseschinyama, Mr Ape, MrOllie, Musiphil, N6ne, NatusRoma, Nbarth, Neshatian, New Thought, Nguyenngaviet, Nschuma, Oleg Alexandrov, PAR, Paul August, Ph.eyes, PhotoBox, Phr, Pleasantville, Postrach, PsyberS, Pt, Pufferfish101, Qonnec, Quietbritishjim, Qwertyus, Qwfp, Redtryfan77, Rgclegg, Rich Farmbrough, Rjmorris, Rlendog, Ruber chiken, Seglea, Smachet, SoSaysChappy, Spellcast, Stebulus, Steven J. Anderson, Stigin, Stpasha, Supergroupiejoy, TakuyaMurata, Tayste, The Thing That Should Not Be, Tim1357, Timwi, Tomi, VectorPosse, Wikid77, WillKitch, Xiao Fei, Youandme, ZantTrang, Zmoboros, 327 anonymous edits Uniform distribution (discrete) €Source: €Contributors: Alansohn, Alstublieft, Bob.warfield, Btyner, DaBler, Dec1707, DixonD, Duoduoduo, Fangz, Fasten, FilipeS, Furby100, Giftlite, Gvstorm, Henrygb, Iwaterpolo, Jamelan, Klausness, LimoWreck, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Mike74dk, Nbarth, O18, P64, PAR, Postrach, Qwfp, Stannered, Taylorluker, The Wordsmith, User A1, 53 anonymous edits Geometric distribution €Source: €Contributors: AdamSmithee, Alexf, Apocralyptic, Bjcairns, Bo Jacoby, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Calbaer, Capricorn42, Cburnett, Classicalecon, Count ludwig, Damian Yerrick, Deineka, Digfarenough, El C, Eraserhead1, Felipehsantos, Gauss, Giftlite, Gogobera, Gsimard, G¥khan, Iwaterpolo, Juergik, K.F., LOL, MarkSweep, MathKnight, Mav, Michael Hardy, MichaelRutter, Mikez, Mr.gondolier, NeonMerlin, Nov ialiste, PhotoBox, Qwfp, Ricklethickets, Rumping, Ryguasu, Serdagger, Skbkekas, Squizzz, Steve8675309, SyedAshrafulla, TakuyaMurata, Tomi, Wafulz, Wikid77, Wrogiest, Wtruttschel, Youandme, 86 anonymous edits Hypergeometric distribution €Source: €Contributors: Alexius08, Arnold90, Baccyak4H, Bo Jacoby, Booyabazooka, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Burn, Cburnett, ChevyC, Commander Keane, David Shay, DavidLDill, Drcrnc, Eidolon232, El C, Eug, FedeLebron, Felipehsantos, Gauss, Giftlite, Herr blaschke, It Is Me Here, Iwaterpolo, Jack joff, Johnlv12, Josh Cherry, Kamrik, Kingboyk, LOL, Linas, MSGJ, MaxEnt, Maximilianh, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Nbarth, Nerdmaster, Ott2, PAR, PBH, Peteraandrews, Pleasantville, Pol098, Qwfp, Randomactsofkindness2, Reb42, Rgclegg, Schutz, Screech1941, SkatingNerd, TakuyaMurata, Tomi, User A1, Veryhuman, Wtmitchell, Wtruttschel, Yvswan, Zigger, €•‚ƒ, 144 anonymous edits Negative binomial distribution €Source: €Contributors: Alexius08, Asc¦nder, Asymmetric, AxelBoldt, Bo Jacoby, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Burn, CALR, Cburnett, Charles Matthews, Chocrates, Damian Yerrick, Dcljr, DutchCanadian, Econstatgeek, Eggstone, Evra83, Facorread, Felipehsantos, Formivore, Gabbe, Gauss, Giftlite, Henrygb, Iowawindow, Iwaterpolo, Jahredtobin, Keltus, Kevinhsun, Linas, Ludovic89, MarkSweep, McKay, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Moldi, Nov ialiste, O18, Odysseuscalypso, Oxymoron83, Phantomofthesea, Pmokeefe, Qwfp, Rar, Rje, Rumping, Salgueiro, Sapphic, Shreevatsa, Sleempaster21229, Sleepmaster21229, Statone, Steve8675309, Stpasha, TGS, Taraborn, Tomi, Trevor.maynard, User A1, Waltpohl, Wikid77, Wile E. Heresiarch, Zvika, 122 anonymous edits


Article Sources and Contributors
Yule€Simon distribution €Source: €Contributors: Btyner, Calbaer, Cburnett, Dfg13, Duncharris, Henrygb, MarkSweep, Michael Hardy, Nog33, PAR, Paresnah, 2 anonymous edits Zipf's law €Source: €Contributors:, AaronSw, Agl, Almacantar, Andycjp, Aparajit,, AxelBoldt, Beland, Belg4mit, BestKH, Bjs (usurped), Btyner, Buckyboy314, Burschik, Cacycle, Calypso, Chowbok, Cnilep, Concerned cynic, Conversion script, DIG, Dave420, DavidLevinson, Den fjªttrade ankan, Dhzanette, Donarreiskoffer, DrMicro, EdJohnston, Eequor, Elwikipedista, Farmanesh, Flamholz, Flammifer, Fran²ois-Dominique, Fredbauder, Futurebird, G7valera, Gandalf61, Gareth Jones, Geekdiva, Gelbukh, Gene Nygaard, Geoffhasher, Giftlite, Graham87, Gritzko, Gunnar.Kaestle, Henrygb, Hu12, Ilmari Karonen, Iridescent, Ithink07, Jlittlet, Jnc, Jogloran, Johan van der Galien, Jon Harald S“by, Joshuagay, Kainaw, Karada, Kelisi, KellyCoinGuy, Kelson, Kessler, Klparrot, Kordas, Kvng, Kwamikagami, Levin, Lexor, Linas, Lunch, Lupo, Lussmu, MSGJ, Malcolmdean, MarkSweep, Mathmania, Matt Casey, Matthew Treder, Mav, Medieval evil666, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Mike Storm, Molinari, Monomium, Nbarth, Neptuner, Nichtich, Noe, Oleg Alexandrov, Orz, PAR, Paintitblack ft, Paranoid, Paul August, Peter jackson, Peterl, Pi zero, Pleasantville, Populus, Pruess, Qwertyus, Qwfp, RandomP, Rd232, Reesvalley, Returnthis, Rich Farmbrough, Rjwilmsi, Ross Burgess, Sam Spade, Sam Tobar, Scentoni, Sderose, SkyWalker, Sl, Sligocki, Snoyes, Stemonitis, SwenChef, Tagishsimon, Tarotcards, Taw, TechPurism, Tenwiki, The Anome, The wub, Thoreaulylazy, Timwi, Tom harrison, Tomi, Twas Now, Tyrenius, Ulterior19802005, Vicarious, Wavelength, XJamRastafire, Xinoph, 102 anonymous edits Multinomial distribution €Source: €Contributors: A5, Albmont, Baccyak4H, Benwing, Btyner, CaAl, Charles Matthews, ChevyC, Dysprosia, Giftlite, Gjnyasa, Icairns, Iwaterpolo, J04n, Jamelan, Jamie King, Karlpearson, Killerandy, Linas, McKay, Mebden, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, MisterSheik, Nbarth, O18, Qwfp, Robinh, Sohale, Squidonius, Stephan sand, Steve8675309, Tomi, Tomixdf, Wolfman, Zvika, 33 anonymous edits Multivariate normal distribution €Source: €Contributors: Alanb, Anthony5429, Arvinder.virk, AussieLegend, AxelBoldt, BenFrantzDale, BernardH, Breno, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, Cburnett, Cfp, Chromaticity, Ciphergoth, Coffee2theorems, Colin Rowat, Delirium, Delldot, Derfugu, Giftlite, Hongooi, HyDeckar, J heisenberg, Jondude11, Jorgenumata, Josuechan, KHamsun, Kaal, KipKnight, KrodMandooon, KurtSchwitters, Lambiam, Lockeownzj00, MER-C, MarkSweep, Mauryaan, MaxSem, Mcld, Mct mht, Mdf, Mebden, Meduz, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, Miguel, Mjdslob, Moriel, Mrwojo, Nabla, O18, Ogo, Oli Filth, Omrit, Opabinia regalis, Orderud, Paul August, Peni, PhysPhD, Picapica, Pycoucou, Quantling, Qwfp, Riancon, RickK, Rjwilmsi, Robinh, Rumping, SebastianHelm, Selket, SgtThroat, Steve8675309, Stpasha, Strashny, Tabletop, TedPavlic, Tommyjs, Ulner, Waldir, Wikomidia, Winterstein, Yoderj, Zelda, Zero0000, Zvika, 146 anonymous edits Wishart distribution €Source: €Contributors: 3mta3, Aetheling, Aleenf1, AtroX Worf, Baccyak4H, Benwing, Bryan Derksen, Btyner, David Eppstein, Deacon of Pndapetzim, Dean P Foster, Entropeneur, Erki der Loony, Gammalgubbe, Giftlite, Ixfd64, Joriki, Jrennie, Kurtitski, Lockeownzj00, MDSchneider, Melcombe, Michael Hardy, P omega sigma, P.wirapati, Perturbationist, PhysPhD, Qwfp, Robbyjo, Robinh, Ryker, Shae, Srbauer, TNeloms, Tomi, WhiteHatLurker, Zvika, 42 anonymous edits


Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors


Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors
File:Standard deviation diagram.svg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: Chesnok, Juiced lemon, Krinkle, Manuelt15, Mwtoews, Petter Strandmark, Revolus, Tom.Reding, Wknight94, 17 anonymous edits Image:Beta distribution pdf.png €Source: €License: GNU General Public License €Contributors: Cburnett, It Is Me Here, LeaW, MarkSweep, WikipediaMaster, 1 anonymous edits Image:Beta distribution cdf.png €Source: €License: GNU General Public License €Contributors: MarkSweep, WikipediaMaster, 1 anonymous edits Image:Burr pdf.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5 €Contributors: User:Selket Image:Burr cdf.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5 €Contributors: User:Selket Image:cauchy_pdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas Image:cauchy_cdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas File:Chi-square distributionPDF-English.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Mikael Hªggstr¥m File:chi-square distributionCDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, PAR, WikipediaMaster Image:Dirichlet distributions.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: Bender235, Euku, Kilom691, Mdd, Timeshifter Image:Dirichlet_example.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Mitch3 Image:F_distributionPDF.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Lovibond, Olaf Image:F_distributionCDF.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Olaf Image:Gamma distribution pdf.svg €Source: €License: GNU General Public License €Contributors: User:Autopilot Image:Gamma distribution cdf.svg €Source: €License: GNU General Public License €Contributors: User:Autopilot Image:Gamma-PDF-3D.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Mundhenk Image:Gamma-KL-3D.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Mundhenk Image:exponential pdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas Image:exponential cdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas Image:KumaraswamyT pdf.jpg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: Lovibond, MarkSweep, PAR, Ponnu, Ricky81682 Image:Kumaraswamy cdf.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5 €Contributors: User:Anarkman Image:PDF invGauss.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5 €Contributors: Thomas Steiner Image:Laplace distribution pdf.png €Source: €License: GNU General Public License €Contributors: It Is Me Here, MarkSweep Image:Laplace distribution cdf.png €Source: €License: GNU General Public License €Contributors: Bender235, MarkSweep Image:Levy0 distributionPDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: PAR, Tano4595, 1 anonymous edits Image:Levy0 distributionCDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: PAR, Tano4595, 1 anonymous edits Image:Levy0 LdistributionPDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: PAR, Tano4595, 1 anonymous edits Image:Loglogisticpdf.svg €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Qwfp (talk) Original uploader was Qwfp at en.wikipedia Image:Loglogisticcdf.svg €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Qwfp (talk) Original uploader was Qwfp at en.wikipedia Image:Loglogistichaz.svg €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Qwfp (talk) Original uploader was Qwfp at en.wikipedia Image:Shiftedloglogisticpdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Qwfp Image:Shiftedloglogisticcdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Qwfp Image:Lognormal distribution PDF.svg €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: User:Autopilot, User:Par Image:Lognormal distribution CDF.svg €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: User:Autopilot, User:PAR Image:Logisticpdfunction.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Anarkman, Pfctdayelise, RandomP, WikipediaMaster Image:Logistic cdf.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2.5 €Contributors: Anarkman Image:Normal Distribution PDF.svg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Inductiveload Image:Normal Distribution CDF.svg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Inductiveload Image:standard deviation diagram.svg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: Chesnok, Juiced lemon, Krinkle, Manuelt15, Mwtoews, Petter Strandmark, Revolus, Tom.Reding, Wknight94, 17 anonymous edits Image:De moivre-laplace.gif €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Stpasha Image:QHarmonicOscillator.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Inductiveload, Maksim, Pieter Kuiper Image:Fisher iris versicolor sepalwidth.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Pbroks13 Image:Planche de Galton.jpg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Antoinetav Image:Carl Friedrich Gauss.jpg €Source: €License: unknown €Contributors: Bcrowell, Bl¥s¥f, Conscious, Gabor, Joanjoc, Kaganer, Kilom691, Luestling, Mattes, Rovnet, Schaengel89, Ufudu, 4 anonymous edits Image:Pierre-Simon Laplace.jpg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: Ashill, Ecummenic, Elcobbola, Gene.arboit, Jimmy44, Olivier2, •‚ƒ„

Image Sources, Licenses and Contributors
Image:Pareto distributionPDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, G.dallorto, It Is Me Here, Juiced lemon, PAR, 1 anonymous edits Image:Pareto distributionCDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, G.dallorto, Juiced lemon, PAR, 2 anonymous edits Image:Pareto distributionLorenz.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: G.dallorto, Grafite, Juiced lemon, Magister Mathematicae, PAR, 1 anonymous edits Image:student t pdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas Image:student t cdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas Image:T distribution 1df.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Juiced lemon, Maksim, 1 anonymous edits Image:T distribution 2df.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Juiced lemon, Maksim, 1 anonymous edits Image:T distribution 3df.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Juiced lemon, Maksim, 1 anonymous edits Image:T distribution 5df.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Juiced lemon, Maksim, 1 anonymous edits Image:T distribution 10df.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Juiced lemon, Maksim, 1 anonymous edits Image:T distribution 30df.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: Juiced lemon, Maksim, 1 anonymous edits image:Uniform distribution PDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, It Is Me Here, PAR image:Uniform distribution CDF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, PAR Image:Weibull PDF.svg €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: User:Calimo Image:Weibull CDF.svg €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: User:Calimo Image:Beta-binomial distribution pmf.png €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Nschuma Image:Beta-binomial cdf.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: User:Nschuma Image:Binomial distribution pmf.svg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Tayste Image:Binomial distribution cdf.svg €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Tayste Image:Binomial Distribution.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 3.0 €Contributors: User:Cflm001 Image:DUniform_distribution_PDF.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, PAR, WikipediaMaster Image:Dis_Uniform_distribution_CDF.svg €Source: €License: GNU General Public License €Contributors: User:Stannered Image:geometric_pmf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas Image:geometric_cdf.svg €Source: €License: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 €Contributors: User:Skbkekas File:Negbinomial.gif €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: User:Stpasha Image:Yule-Simon_distribution_PMF.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, PAR Image:Yule-Simon_distribution_CMF.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, PAR Image:Zipf distribution PMF.png €Source: €License: Public Domain €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, PAR Image:Zipf distribution CMF.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: EugeneZelenko, PAR Image:Wikipedia-n-zipf.png €Source: €License: GNU Lesser General Public License €Contributors: Victor Grishchenko Image:GaussianScatterPCA.png €Source: €License: GNU Free Documentation License €Contributors: User:BenFrantzDale




Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported http:/ / creativecommons. org/ licenses/ by-sa/ 3. 0/