1. Not finding help here? Sign up for a free 30min tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Least Squares Method

  1. Oct 7, 2007 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    why did you use the least squares method for finding m, rather than the standard slope formula?

    2. Relevant equations

    3. The attempt at a solution

    I am totally confused about why you have to use the least squares method
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 7, 2007 #2


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    In the real world the measured values don't line on a perfect stright line - due to experimental and measurement errors.
    The least squares fit gives the best 'average' fit to the data.
  4. Oct 7, 2007 #3


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    In addition to mgb's post, you may well have more then 2 points to fit your line to. Since you are attempting to find the line which best approximates ALL of your data you need method which uses information from all of your data points. The normal methods for determining the parameters of a line use information from only 2 points.
  5. Oct 8, 2007 #4
    ok thanks a lot! i think i understand it now
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?