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An optimum empirical classification is defined as one in which there is exactly one category for each group of samples separated from other groups by discontinuities in the ranges of their observed properties. A statistical scheme for identifying discrete sample groupings (if they exist) in a set of data is developed which gives equal weight to any number of properties, and treats nonhomogeneous properties simultaneously. Essential features of the scheme are (1) representation of each sample as a vector in an n-coordinate system, where n is the number of attributes considered, (2) use of the angle of separation...

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