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exploratory data analysis

exploratory data analysis (EDA) A term invented by J. W. Tukey to denote techniques for looking at numerical data with a view to discerning pattern. Exploratory data analysis is open-ended and makes few prior assumptions about the nature of any pattern that may be found. Graphical techniques are freely used. It can be contrasted with model-fitting techniques, which make highly specific prior assumptions. Statistical methods contain aspects of both these processes.

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