I am using the random sequence generator to take a 15% sample of the archaeological potsherds I am studying. More specifically, I am studying the ceramic vessels and fragments collected, over the course of eight years, from an early Spanish colonial town in Central America. The town was occupied for only a generation, so there was minimal change through time in ceramic style. For each excavation unit and level, I analyze all potsherds that include handles, rims, painted decoration, unusual clay characteristics, and the like. These are my diagnostic sherds. The remainder do not provide enough information to make analyzing and recording each one individually worthwhile, but I don't want to neglect them entirely, as in certain contexts they make up a high percentage of what we have. So, I use your random sequence generator to help me select 15% of this non-diagnostic remainder for study. Thank you for the help.
—Jeb J. Card, Department of Anthropology, Tulane University
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