Futz around with the numbers

person in brown blazer using laptop

You begin to pore through the data. Because you weren’t there while the data was being collected, you have no idea what half of the columns mean. Across the vast sea of meta data, four columns pique your scientific interest. Normalizing the improvement by Ska music has to have something to do with one of these! You’ve tried a dozen or so factors that would maybe make sense and now you’re down to those four more that don’t make sense, but look interesting. Each one is still too intriguing to not use.

Mothers Height

In the expanse of meta data, each chimpanzee’s mom’s height was recorded. What piqued your interest was that there was absolutely no information on the father’s height. Why was this? Is there something about their mom’s height you don’t know about that Dr. Smyth knows? This might be interesting. Or totally Irrelevant. You don’t know why having a taller or shorter mom may affect your results but it only takes a few seconds to check.

Toe Touch Reach

It was always the worst part of the presidential fitness test. How they were able to test the toe touch reach and none of the other events baffled you. Though, such flexibility in the Chimps, may be that normalization factor you’re looking for. Ska’s pretty poppy, maybe if a chimp can’t stretch well, they can’t really jive to that heavy bass island beat.

“It” Factor

There is absolutely no documentation on this column. It just appears that each chimp was rated on a 0 to 100 rating scale called “It” Factor. Who knows? If “It” turns out to be significant, maybe Dr. Smyth will let you know what it means and how each chimp is judged for “It” factor.


At first this column seemed silly, but then after poking around the shared folder, you found a 2018 unpublished paper on the chimp danceability rating scale. It looks like a lot of work went into this particular metric judging by the math in it you don’t understand and you bet there may be some correlation between danceability and response to music.

You’re a wild intern with no idea what you’re doing. What do you pick?

Normalize by Mothers Height

Normalize by Toe Touch Reach

Normalize by “It” Factor

Normalize by each Chimpanzee’s ability to dance on a scale from 1-10

Published by B McGraw

B McGraw has lived a long and successful professional life as a software developer and researcher. After completing his BS in spaghetti coding at the department of the dark arts at Cranberry Lemon in 2005 he wasted no time in getting a masters in debugging by print statement in 2008 and obtaining his PhD with research in screwing up repos on Github in 2014. That's when he could finally get paid. In 2018 B McGraw finally made the big step of defaulting on his student loans and began advancing his career by adding his name on other people's research papers after finding one grammatical mistake in the Peer Review process.

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