To all you long-time users of SAS out there, why are you continuing to write the arcane code required to make graphs with SAS programming? I remember the pain of scanning the nearly 1,000 pages of GRAPH manuals to locate just the right options to tweak my graphs for business presentations. Many days, I wanted to ditch it all and just fall back to Harvard Graphics for all of my graphs (yes, this was quite some time ago!) Consider using SAS Enterprise Guide and save yourself many sleepless nights and get the easy ability to export to Office seamlessly.
A recent post on SAS-L asks about using EG in a group that has used SAS for quite some time. Here are my thoughts, if you have others feel free to post them as comments!
SAS Enterprise Guide is hard to describe, difficult to pigeonhole, a very powerful tool that is the "Excel" of SAS, and the closest thing there is to an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) for SAS. Since the release of SAS 9, Enterprise Guide is the new face of SAS for general purpose use in a variety of situations. Enterprise Guide is now included with desktop SAS for Windows, sold with almost every BI Server sale, bundled with many of the SAS Solutions, and loved by users at many companies I have visited. It does have shortcomings, but it is capable of a breadth of work that no other tool is capable of performing (at least that I have ever seen!) Simply stated, it leverages many of the old and new strengths of SAS in an easy to use desktop application.
In my many visits to a wide array of companies, I have noticed a common theme amongst fellow programmers, analysts, and statisticians. After years of lengthy study and practice to become expert at their area, they often express frustration and consternation for those who are less focused on the effective and proper use of data in decision-making. Your potential customers in the various areas of the business often appear to make decisions with minimal use of analysis or even data points, sometimes appearing to ignore or misunderstand your work available to them. Many of these "gut" people in the business are managers, entrepreneurs, or MBA's. They are frequently much more willing to take on the risk of using a very simple analysis to make big decisions. This doesn't mean they like it that way, they are often forced to face the fact that time is money and lack of prompt action can be very costly versus staying the current course. This is where you can come in with just a few more skills and really become a star...
SAS is the 2nd largest BI vendor in the world, just behind Business Objects, according to this report posted at http://www.sas.com/news/analysts/idc_bi_0607.pdf
It's interesting to note that Business Objects growth rate slowed by half this past year (down from 14% to 7% growth/year.) SAS's rate accelerated (up from 13 to 17%) and Microsoft (up from 25 to 28%) are the few large vendors seeing acceleration in growth rates. It's possible SAS could take the number one spot in the next year or two
Question: from a reader in Sweden
Just saw on Amazon that this new book is available. I know the examples in it are from using Enterprise Guide 4.1, but I have the Learning edition 2.0 which includes Enterprise Guide 2.1. Can I still use the book, or are these versions of Enterprise Guide very different?
Answer: from Stephen
SAS for Dummies is being used at Duke University Medical School as one of two texts for a course on Introduction to Statistical Methods. See http://crtp.mc.duke.edu/content.asp?page=courseinfo. The program the book is being used in is described as:
"... provides academic training in the quantitative and methodological principles of clinical research. Designed primarily for clinical fellows who are training for academic careers, the program offers formal courses in research design, research management, medical genomics, and statistical analysis."
I have to say this is somewhat of a surprise at first
This book is a well written and succinct introduction to SAS programming and basic statistical analysis. Using just PC SAS with BASE and STAT, you can pick up the basics of programming with SAS for data access, data manipulation with the DATA step and functions, basic SAS PROCs, controlling output appearance, leveraging MACRO capabilities of SAS, basic statistical analysis, and program debugging. With SAS Learning Edition and this book you can quickly master the basics of the SAS language.
Writing this book has been exciting, tiring, fascinating, challenging, and ultimately a very gratifying task. We worked hard to ensure that it provides a very broad but practical look at SAS 9. Here is an outline of the chapters that are planned (pending final reviews, tweaks, and page constraints):
Chapter 1: Touring the Wonderful World SAS
Chapter 2: Connecting with SAS: Enterprise Guide
Chapter 3: Six-Minute Abs: Getting Miraculous Results with SAS
Part I: Welcome to SAS!
Chapter 1: Touring the Wonderful World SAS
SAS--Isn’t That for Gurus?
Data, Data Everywhere, Just Not Where I Need It!
Summarizing and Reporting
The Secret Sauce: Analytics
Optimizing the Present