# Why use Bonferroni approximation for experiment-wise alpha?

It seems the Bonferroni method (dividing experimentwise alpha by # of comparisons) for choosing the p level to fix the experimentwise alpha (when doing many pairwise comparisons) is more conservative than just solving $1 - (1 - p)^k = .05$ to get the alpha to use for each of the $k$ pairwise comparisons. Why not just solve the equation?

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 Also note that Bonferroni $\beta$ approaches Šidák one quite fast for large $k$ and small $p$ -- for $p$=1% both methods produce practically the same value. – mbq♦ May 14 '12 at 19:03 @mbq, how did you get the accents on Sidak? Is that because you have a special keyboard? I didn't find any $\LaTeX$ when I right-clicked. – gung May 14 '12 at 21:29 @gung Ctrl-C Ctrl-V -- the rest is an Unicode magic. You can also use appropriate keyboard layout or just some app showing special character palettes. – mbq♦ May 15 '12 at 11:55