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THE DESCRIPTION OP STATISTICAL TABLES: A PROBLEM IN DATA DOCUMENTATION
Reference to and direct storage of primary data is of growing
importance. This explains the interest in the description of statistical tables.
The brute-force approach to give each stratifier (that is, the list of all row
captions or the list of all column captions) in full has its economical limits.
A method is described which makes the description of a large number of large
tables economically feasible. The basic idea is to replace the full listing of a
stratifier (e.g. US counties) by a reference to a "prefabricated" stratifier
available in a classification scheme (e.g. US geographical division) taking into
account the hierarchical structure of such a scheme. Modification of
prefabricated stratifiers is also possible in order to adapt to small variations
occurring in actual tables. The method has also applications in thesaurus
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