Publication Date



Technical Report: UTEP-CS-19-87


The 80/20 rule and the 7 plus minus 2 law are examples of difficult to explain empirical facts. According to the 80/20 rule, in each activity, 20% of the people contribute to the 80% of the results. The 7 plus minus 2 law means that we divide objects into 7 plus minus 2 groups -- i.e., into 5 to 9 groups. In this paper, we show that there is a relation between these two facts: namely, we show that, because of the 80/20 rule, the number of classes cannot be smaller than 5. Thus, the 80/20 rule explains the lower bound (5) on the 7 plus minus 2 law.