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Re: multiple outputs from a function

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg52802] Re: [mg52753] multiple outputs from a function
  • From: "David Annetts" <davidannetts at>
  • Date: Mon, 13 Dec 2004 04:23:23 -0500 (EST)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

Hi Ben,

> I feel I must be missing something fundamental...
> How do you write a function (or ?) in Mathematica which 
> produces more than one output?
> Let's say I have some data and I want a single function to 
> calculate the mean, variance, std, etc, more than one thing 
> and return those? I know that there are builtin functions for 
> those parameters, but the point is I want to define functions 
> with more than one output.
> The only examples I can find are along the lines of:
> f[x_,y_]:=x^2+y^2;
> which have only a single result.
> Is there a different structure altogether, such as a 
> Subroutine, which allows multiple results from a single subunit?

Why not define your function

Needs["Statistics`"] (* to be safe ...*)
stats[x_List] := Module[
{local variables},

(* function body *)

Return[{mean, variance, std}];

Ie. A function that accepts a list and returns another list.  The return
list has three elements, mean variance & std deviation of the original list.
Rephrasing this

mean = First[stats[yourList]];
var = stats[yourList][[2]];
std = Last[stats[yourList]];



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