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Subject: RE: [office-formula] frequency

1. For more fun, take a look at "frequency" in 5.18.29 FREQUENCY and 5.18.50


   2.1 What I would do for this is move the parameter identifications up to
where I suggested and in the summary statement for frequency, refer to the
table.  That is, 

       frequency    the number of coupon payments per year (Table 11)

and leave it at that.

   2.2 I would not say anything about interest because interest is not
involved in this calculation and we have no idea how coupon value is
determined and what the amount associated with a coupon is.  We are
concerned only with a calendar question.

   2.3 I do note, however, that the summary and the semantics are
contradictory, and I am not sure that settlement date is the correct term
here.  In particular, the role of the maturity parameter's value is
completely unspecified, and we need more details on what the function is

   2.4 In any case, I refuse to look at the test cases to find out what this
function really is.  

   2.5 Since a table of values consisting of some subset of the plausible
numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 12 is used fairly regularly, it might be useful
to consolidate the few flavors actually used into named tables at the
beginning of the Financial Functions.  (There are at most 3 I think.)  Then
we can refer to the specific one from the description of each
frequency-named parameter that requires such a selection of values.  This
does not lesson the need to add something about "frequency of what" however.

   2.6 I don't believe one definition of frequency can be used everywhere.
I do believe that the values for the frequency parameter need only be
specified once for any function having such a parameter.  I believe it would
be sufficient to do so in the enumeration of the parameters.  Several
functions will have the same descriptive text.  Not all of them.


   3.1 We could definitely use some consistency here.

   3.2 Change the parameter names to be in lower case.

   3.3 Move the identification of parameters as I have already proposed.

   3.4 Use the same layout for the list of parameter names with their
summary descriptions as elsewhere, including italic names.

   3.5 I think we will find all sorts of difficulties in the weeds for this
function.  For example, the test-case results are given as %-ages, but the
result type is Number.  So is the actual result of the first test case
(independent of how it might be formatted for presentation) .049977.. or
4.9977.. ?  I can ask similar questions about the rate parameter.

   3.6 I have a feeling that settlement and maturity here correspond to
issue and settlement of ACCRINT, and ACCRINT uses coupon where rate is used
in ODDLYIELD.  There is other slop to figure out in order to achieve

   3.7 I think these can be cleaned up better, but it involves more about
the semantics of the function, something we are given too little of to be
able to determine how it can be calculated and what the appropriate
descriptive concepts are.  Some subject-matter expertise is needed.  Do we
not have the results of Rob's investigations into these functions?

 - Dennis

-----Original Message-----
From: Patrick Durusau [mailto:patrick@durusau.net] 
Sent: Tuesday, December 22, 2009 16:14
To: dennis.hamilton@acm.org
Cc: office-formula@lists.oasis-open.org
Subject: Re: [office-formula] frequency


Look at COUPDAYBS for example.

Guess what? We define frequency twice on the same page:

> /frequency/ is one of the following values:
followed by a table, then a listing of "parameters" which says:

> The number of coupon payments per year.
Is one more specific than the other? Certainly. Should there be two? 
Certainly not.

Moreover, look at: ODDLYIELD which says:

>    *
>       Frequency: the number of interest payments per year. 1=annual;
>       2=half-yearly; 4=quarterly.
Note, not coupon payments but interest payments and different style of 

I suspect that we could have *one* definition of frequency that could be 
referenced when needed.

What surprised me was that I had simply "skipped over "the frequency is 
one of the following values," even though I knew it was duplication but 
did not see it as yet another parameter report.



Dennis E. Hamilton wrote:
> Patrick, I just did a search for all occurrences of "frequency" in the
> document and I find none of them out of wack.  There are a few different
> kinds of frequency (as when talking about certain statistical operations
> versus talking about the periodicity of interest payments per 12-month
> interval).  These are all expressed clearly in pretty ordinary language.
> And the parameter named frequency in the financial functions is used
> consistently as well, although not all frequencies are expected to be
> supported for every one of the functions.  
> I am sure this could be tidied up a bit, but I don't see a very big
> Can you point to a few exemplary instances that demonstrate the
> variation that concerns you?  We could be more slavish (maybe always using
> table for the interest-payment frequency numbers) but I don't think there
> a significant problem for these.
>  - Dennis
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Patrick Durusau [mailto:patrick@durusau.net] 
> http://lists.oasis-open.org/archives/office-formula/200912/msg00123.html
> Sent: Tuesday, December 22, 2009 13:30
> To: office-formula@lists.oasis-open.org
> Subject: [office-formula] frequency
> Greetings!
> A bit shame faced, one of the largest inconsistencies was sitting right 
> in front of me, frequency. Defined quite differently from all the other 
> parameters, over and over again. Just looked right past it.
> Don't know about its variability. Will add to the spreadsheet but 
> without reproduction of the entire table. That wouldn't be all that 
> informative.
> Hope everyone is having a great day!
> Patrick
> PS: If anyone is interested in other function sets, feel free to do 
> something similar for those sets. This sort of extreme proofing is what 
> results in standards that people *use* and *cite,* which is the goal of 
> any standard.

Patrick Durusau
Chair, V1 - US TAG to JTC 1/SC 34
Convener, JTC 1/SC 34/WG 3 (Topic Maps)
Editor, OpenDocument Format TC (OASIS), Project Editor ISO/IEC 26300
Co-Editor, ISO/IEC 13250-1, 13250-5 (Topic Maps)

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