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Date:         Wed, 19 Sep 2001 14:29:23 -0400
Reply-To:     Mike Rhoads <RHOADSM1@WESTAT.COM>
Sender:       "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From:         Mike Rhoads <RHOADSM1@WESTAT.COM>
Subject:      Re: SAS Comments
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"

Unfortunately, I don't think there is any method of commenting that is completely goof-proof. One thing that I don't think has been mentioned yet is that the * ... ; style of comment can have particularly invidious results when a harried programmer (could be you, could be me) forgets the semicolon at the end. Several years ago, I was working with a programmer trying to figure out why her DATA step logic wasn't working. She had an IF-condition that was certainly true at least some of the time, but the desired action never seemed to be taking place. Eventually we spotted the problem:

DATA whatever; (stuff) * Only do this for the current round IF ... THEN ... ;

Yep, the following statement gets "eaten". At least when you make a mistake nesting /* ... */ style comments, the mischief is usually pretty obvious, since the extra */ will almost always result in a syntax error.

Mike Rhoads Westat

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