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- Cox, N. J. and J. Weesie. 2001. dm88: Renaming variables, multiply and systematically.

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- One way such inconsistencies may arise is that datasets may be formed by putting together the efforts of one person at many times, or of several people: in fact, discrepancies of naming are quite likely to occur even with careful workers. Such problems can easily be managed with a renaming tool such as renvars;see
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- Cox and Weesie(2001)
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- .10 append, merge, reshape There are many commands for more-or-less drastic restructuring of datasets. The appendcommand joins datasets by adding observations andmergejoins them by adding variables.reshapeallows moving back and forth between long and wide structures.

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- Steichen, T. J. and N. J. Cox. 1998. dm53: Detection and deletion of duplicate observations.Stata Technical Bulletin41: 2–4. InStata Technical Bulletin Reprints, vol. 7, 52–55. College Station, TX: Stata Press. About the Author

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- Not surprisingly, problems with duplicates are sufficiently common and important that several user-written commands have been written to detect and (if necessary) drop such observations. For one such effort, see
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- Steichen and Cox (1998)
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- Indeed, there has been, almost inevitably, a certain duplication of effort on this problem. But for our purpose, the example shows vividly how thebyconstruct yields a remarkably simple and direct solution. 3.8 for, foreach, and forvalues These commands look a little tricky at first, but grow on users with experience.

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- Nicholas J. Cox is a statistically-minded geographer at the University of Durham. He contributes talks, postings, FAQs, and programs to the Stata user community. He has also coauthored seven commands in official Stata. He was an author of several inserts in theStata

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- TheStataJournal Editor H. Joseph Newton Department of Statistics Texas A & M University College Station, Texas 77843 979-845-3142 979-845-3144 FAX jnewton@stata-journal.com Executive Editor
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- Nicholas J. Cox Department of Geography Universit
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- y of Durham South Road Durham City DH1 3LE United Kingdom n.j.cox@stata-journal.com Associate Editors Christopher Baum Boston College Rino Bellocco Karolinska Institutet David Clayton Cambridge Inst. for Medical Research Charles Franklin University of Wisconsin, Madison Joanne M.

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- The Stata Journal, electronic version (ISSN 1536-8734) is a publication of Stata Press, and Stata is a registered trademark of Stata Corporation. The Stata Journal (2001) 1, Number 1, pp. 86–97 Speaking Stata: How to repeat yourself without going mad
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- Nicholas J. Cox University of Durham, UK n.j.cox@
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- durham.ac.uk Abstract.This column will focus on how to improve your fluency in Stata. Over the next issues we will look at Stata problems of intermediate size which turn out to be soluble with a few command lines.

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