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The computer program SPSS (originally, Statistical Package for the Social Sciences'') was released in its first version in the 1960s and is probably the most widely used program for statistical analysis in social science, and is also used by market researchers, health researchers, survey companies, government, education researchers, and others.

The program SPSS is sold by a company, also called SPSS. This is a little confusing, since the company SPSS sells a wide range of software for statistical analysis - including, but not limited to, SPSS the program. SPSS no longer stands for "Statistical Package for the Social Sciences" - it doesn't stand for anything any more.

The SPSS Data Editor is useful for performing statistical tests, such as testing for correlation, multicollinearity, and hypotheses; it can also provide a researcher with frequency counts, sort data, rearrange data, and serve as a useful data-entry device, with labels for brief entries. (For example, one can label an entry as "Richard", while just typing, say, the letter R into one of the cells.)

The SPSS Data Editor has two major "views", the Data View (where data entry occurs) and the Variable View, where you can select the name, type, maximum number of letters per cell ("width"), number of decimal points, label, width of cell ("columns"), alignment within the cell ("align"), and whether or not the variable is nominal, ordinal, or "scale" ("measure"). In the Variable View, one can also categorize entries into labels (this is where the usage of a couple of letters can stand for larger words, in the "Values" column) and mark entries as invalid (in the "Missing" column).

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