Statistics for eDiscovery: Random Sample Generation and eDiscovery
How do I generate a random sample?
In election polling, it is quite a challenge to generate a truly unbiased random sample. Not everyone who will vote has a telephone, not everyone is willing to answer, not everyone is truthful. Sampling documents is a little easier, because they don’t have a choice in whether they respond or not. The most practical way to generate a random sample is to use a random number generator. Spreadsheet programs, such as Excel, have random number generators built in. If you have, say ten thousand documents, from which you want a sample of 400, then you could generate 400 random numbers in the interval of 1 to 10,000. You need to be careful to prevent the same number appearing twice. Technically, the numbers generated by a random number generator are pseudo- random numbers, but for our purposes, they are good enough. They are pseudo-random in that eventually they will repeat, but unless you are dealing with extremely large samples, the repetition is unlikely to be encountered. These pseudo-random number generators are used in practically all slot machines, for example.
Source: Statistics For eDiscovery (PDF) - Used by Permission of Herbert L. Roitblat, Ph.D.
Series: Statistics for eDiscovery – Blog Posts – Orange Legal Technologies.
Orange Legal Technologies helps corporate legal departments and their outside counsel conduct the critical electronic discovery task of document review by providing advanced predictive coding technologies and expert reviewer assistance to accelerate the electronic discovery process. To learn more about our automated predictive review services, click here.
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