What's In A Name? Statistica Wasn't Always Statistica

The headliner in the latest Statistica e-newsletter was hard to miss, announcing the official release of Statistica 12.7. Thirty-one years in the making and our analytics platform just keeps getting better! There were no trumpets or parades, but that doesn't mean there is not some really cool stuff in there. I won’t go into details about 12.7 here —that's what the newsletter is for! (Yes, you can subscribe for free.)

But this occasion reminds me that, although Statistica's parent company, StatSoft, was formed the same year as Dell, the product line was not always called Statistica. Rather, the company's first product release was delightfully named PsychoStat, designed mainly for natural and social scientists. It featured menu-driven libraries of flexible statistical procedures integrated with data management, and it could run on a mere 64K of memory! PsychoStat was followed by the successful introduction of a product called Statistical Supplement for Lotus 1-2-3, as well as another called StatFast that was designed for use on the newly introduced Apple Macintosh.

By late 1987, StatSoft had expanded and integrated all its lines of software into one large statistical package called CSS (Complete Statistical System). CSS included prototypes of many of the unique input, output, and analysis control features that would later become trademarks of StatSoft’s software technology.

As CSS (and MacSS for the Macintosh) became popular, StatSoft was already devoting all R&D resources to the development of a new, advanced line of statistics software: STATISTICA, which was to offer entirely new levels of functionality not available in any other data analysis software at the time.

And yes, in case you were wondering, the trademarked product name was always presented in italicized capital letters, even in body copy.

The first (DOS) version of STATISTICA was released in March 1991, followed by STATISTICA/Mac in January 1992. Finally, STATISTICA for Windows (aka STATISTICA 4.0) was pre-released in 1993, representing the crowning achievement of StatSoft’s R&D efforts. The platform’s graphics technology and numerical integration, the flawlessness of its user interface, and the capacity and speed of its computational modules all set new standards for numerical and graphical analysis software.

The rest, as they say, is history. Subsequent releases of STATISTICA continued to address enterprise, connectivity, and scalability needs in the world economy, and the platform continued to set new performance, quality, capacity, and comprehensiveness standards for statistics, graphics, and analytic data management software. No wonder it eventually caught Dell’s attention.

StatSoft had steadily worked the software up to version 12 before the Dell acquisition in March 2014, after which the Statistica name itself got a makeover: no more italicized caps. Now the latest release this year is Statistica 12.7. And next…? Stay tuned.