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XLISP-STAT is a statistical environment built on top of the XLISP programming language. This document is intended to be a tutorial introduction to the basics of XLISP-STAT. It is written primarily for the Apple Macintosh version, but most of the material applies to other versions as well; some points where other versions differ are outlined in an appendix. The first three sections contain the information you will need to do elementary statistical calculations and plotting. The fourth section introduces some additional methods for generating and modifying data. The fifth section describes some additional features of the Macintosh user interface that may be helpful. The remaining sections deal with more advanced topics, such as interactive plots, regression models, and writing your own functions. All sections are organized around examples, and most contain some suggested exercises for the reader.

This document is not intended to be a complete manual. However, documentation for many of the commands that are available is given in the appendix. Brief help messages for these and other commands are also available through the interactive help facility described in Section 5.1 below.

XLISP itself is a high-level programming language developed by David Betz and made available for unrestricted, non-commercial use. It is a dialect of Lisp, most closely related to the Common Lisp dialect. XLISP also contains some extensions to Lisp to support object-oriented programming. These facilities have been modified in XLISP-STAT to implement the screen menus, plots and regression models. Several excellent books on Common Lisp are available. One example is Winston and Horn [22]. A book on XLISP itself has recently been published. Unfortunately it is based on XLISP 1.7, which differs significantly from XLISP 2.0, the basis of XLISP-STAT 2.0.

XLISP-STAT was originally developed for the Apple Macintosh. It is now also available for UNIX systems using the X11 window system, for Sun workstations under the SunView window system, and, with only rudimentary graphics, for generic 4.[23]BSD UNIX systems. The Macintosh version of XLISP-STAT was developed and compiled using the Lightspeed C compiler from Think Technologies, Inc. The Macintosh user interface is based on Paul DuBois' TransSkel and TransEdit libraries. Some of the linear algebra and probability functions are based on code given in Press, Flannery, Teukolsky and Vetterling [14]. Regression computations are carried out using the sweep algorithm as described in Weisberg [21].

This tutorial has borrowed several ideas from Gary Oehlert's MacAnova User's Guide [13]. Many of the on-line help entries have been adopted directly or with minor modifications from the Kyoto Common Lisp System. Most of the examples used in this tutorial have been taken from Devore and Peck [11]. Many of the functions added to XLISP-STAT were motivated by similar functions in the S statistical environment [2,3].

The present version of XLISP-STAT, Version 2.0, seems to run fairly comfortably on a Mac II or Mac Plus with 2MB of memory, but is a bit cramped with only 1MB. It will not run in less than 1Mb of memory. The program will occasionally bomb with an ID=28 if it gets into a recursion that is too deep for the Macintosh stack to handle. On a 1MB Mac it may also bomb with an ID=15 if too much memory has been used for the segment loader to be able to bring in a required code segment.

Development of XLISP-STAT was supported in part by grants of an Apple Macintosh Plus computer and hard disk and a Macintosh II computer from the MinneMac Project at the University of Minnesota, by a single quarter leave granted to the author by the University of Minnesota, by grant DMS-8705646 from the National Science Foundation, and by a research contract with Bell Communications Research.

next up previous contents index
Next: Using this Tutorial Up: XLISP-STAT A Statistical Previous: Contents

Luke Tierney
Tue Jan 21 15:04:48 CST 1997