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de Bruijne, J, de Jong, J and De Ridder, J (2019)

Benfords' Law: Gaia parallaxes and distances

Poster presented at 53rd ESLAB Symposium: The Gaia Universe, held 8-12 April in at ESTEC/ESA, Noordwijk, The Netherlands.

ISSN/ISBN: Not available at this time. DOI: 10.5281/zenodo.2643075

Abstract: Benford's Law states that the frequency distribution of significant digits of data sets representing natural phenomena covering a large dynamic range such as terrestrial river lengths and mountain heights is non-uniform, with a strong preference for small numbers. As an example, Benford's Law states that 1 appears as the leading significant digit 30.1% of the time while 9 occurs as first significant digit for only 4.6% of the data points. Alexopoulos & Leontsinis (2014) demonstrated that the 100,000 Hipparcos parallaxes, converted to distances by naive inversion, follow Benford's Law. We present an investigation into the intriguing question whether also the 1.3 billion Gaia DR2 parallaxes, and the associated Bayesian-inferred distances, follow Benford's Law.

@INPROCEEDINGS{, author = {{de Bruijne}, Jos and {de Jong}, Jurjen and {De Ridder}, Joris}, title = "{Benfords' Law: Gaia parallaxes and distances}", booktitle = {The Gaia Universe}, year = 2019, month = apr, eid = {24}, pages = {24}, doi = {10.5281/zenodo.2643075}, }

Reference Type: Conference Paper

Subject Area(s): Natural Sciences, Physics