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Naming Conventions

File and Directory Names

Our directory tree stripped down looks something like:

statsmodels/
    __init__.py
    api.py
    discrete/
        __init__.py
        discrete_model.py
        tests/
            results/
    tsa/
        __init__.py
        api.py
        tsatools.py
        stattools.py
        arima_model.py
        arima_process.py
        vector_ar/
            __init__.py
            var_model.py
            tests/
                results/
        tests/
            results/
    stats/
        __init__.py
        api.py
        stattools.py
        tests/
    tools/
        __init__.py
        tools.py
        decorators.py
        tests/

The submodules are arranged by topic, discrete for discrete choice models, or tsa for time series analysis. The submodules that can be import heavy contain an empty __init__.py, except for some testing code for running tests for the submodules. The namespace to be imported in in api.py. That way, we can import selectively and not have to import a lot of code that we don’t need. Helper functions are usually put in files named tools.py and statistical functions, such as statistical tests are placed in stattools.py. Everything has directories for tests.

endog & exog

Our working definition of a statistical model is an object that has both endogenous and exogenous data defined as well as a statistical relationship. In place of endogenous and exogenous one can often substitute the terms left hand side (LHS) and right hand side (RHS), dependent and independent variables, regressand and regressors, outcome and design, response variable and explanatory variable, respectively. The usage is quite often domain specific; however, we have chosen to use endog and exog almost exclusively, since the principal developers of statsmodels have a background in econometrics, and this feels most natural. This means that all of the models are objects with endog and exog defined, though in some cases exog is None for convenience (for instance, with an autoregressive process). Each object also defines a fit (or similar) method that returns a model-specific results object. In addition there are some functions, e.g. for statistical tests or convenience functions.

See also the related explanation in endog, exog, what’s that?.

Variable Names

All of our models assume that data is arranged with variables in columns. Thus, internally the data is all 2d arrays. By convention, we will prepend a k_ to variable names that indicate moving over axis 1 (columns), and n_ to variables that indicate moving over axis 0 (rows). The main exception to the underscore is that nobs should indicate the number of observations. For example, in the time-series ARMA model we have:

`k_ar` - The number of AR lags included in the RHS variables
`k_ma` - The number of MA lags included in the RHS variables
`k_trend` - The number of trend variables included in the RHS variables
`k_exog` - The number of exogenous variables included in the RHS variables excluding the trend terms
`n_totobs` - The total number of observations for the LHS variables including the pre-sample values

Options

We are using similar options in many classes, methods and functions. They should follow a standardized pattern if they recurr frequently.

`missing` ['none', 'drop', 'raise'] define whether inputs are checked for
    nans, and how they are treated
`alpha` (float in (0, 1)) significance level for hypothesis tests and
    confidence intervals, e.g. `alpha=0.05`

patterns

`return_xxx` : boolean to indicate optional or different returns
    (not `ret_xxx`)

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