Who discovered regression analysis?

The legendary mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss considered his alleged discovery of statistical regression “trivial.”

The method seemed so obvious to Gauss that he figured he must not have been the first to use it. He was sure enough it must have been discovered that he did not publicly state his finding until many years later, after his contemporary Adrien-Marie Legendre had published on the method. When Gauss suggested he had used it before Legendre it set off “one of the most famous priority disputes in the history of science…” Gauss would eventually be given most of the credit as the founder of regression, but not without a fight.

Gauss’s “trivial” invention is now at the center of modern statistics and data science. 

I like Gauss:

Carl Friedrich Gauss was one of history’s greatest mathematicians and maybe kind of a jerk.


Stephen By Stephen

About me


Professor and quant guy. Libertarian turned populist Republican. Trying to learn Japanese and play Spanish Baroque music on the ukulele.

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