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A discussion of several studies to determine the major factors contributing to coding errors, the biggest problem in any information system. The studies employ various codes--numeric, alpha, alphanumerc, and mnemonic--and use as subjects Air Force maintenance personnel whose coding routine is similar to the method of recording real-world maintenance data. Their coded information is keypunched and the resulting decks analyzed to determine which factors led to the highest and lowest error rates. The twelve major findings are given in detail, and appear sufficient to serve as testable hypotheses for further experimentation.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Research memorandum series. The Research Memorandum was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1973 that represented working papers meant to report current results of RAND research to appropriate audiences.

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