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I must admit, this is my first log and the only reason I'm doing this is because I noticed something interesting today that I felt the need to tell someone so I'm releasing this knowledge into the wilds of the Internet.

A little while ago I watched a video about Zipf's Law on the Vsauce Youtube channel. What I took away from it was that if you have a sampling of data, about 20% of that data is going to have something going on with it all the time and while the rest of it doesn't have much going on with it at all. It was an interesting tidbit that I filed away in my little box of facts and I didn't think about it after that...not until today at least.

While I was at work today I realized, completely out of the blue, that the distribution of vendors and the volume of invoices per vendor of our invoices to be paid (I work in the Accounts Payable department for a large company) demonstrates Zipf's Law!

I had been disscussing with my coworker that the half of the alphabet I deal with when we cut checks for  payment always seems to have a high volume of invoices, my half is A through K, but the latter half of the alphabet doesn't have as many payments with that have a high volume of invoices per vendor, only one really.  It was then that I realized that not only does the law apply to the volume of invoices since most of my high volume payments, chunky monkies as I like to call them, occur between A and G but this portion of the alphabet also contains the majority of our vendors. I know that this is mainly due to the fact that most companies want to be a close to the front of the phone book or the top of a list of companies so they pick names with letters near or at the beginning of the alphabet but it's still neat.

In fact, I was geeking out about this revelation so much, I'm pretty sure my coworker was worried for my sanity. She was also probably confused because I don't think I did a very good job of organizing my train of thought when I explained why I was so excited. In my defense though this is one of the rare times I have been able to make a connection between the science-y things I watch on Youtube in my free time and real life examples without someone else pointing it out to me first.

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