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Date:         Wed, 18 Jun 2008 16:19:20 -0400
Reply-To:     Phil Rack <PhilRack@MINEQUEST.COM>
Sender:       "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From:         Phil Rack <PhilRack@MINEQUEST.COM>
Subject:      Re: SAS's Future
Comments: To: "Swank, Paul R" <Paul.R.Swank@UTH.TMC.EDU>
In-Reply-To:  <>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"


This is the first time I ever saw these procedures mentioned anywhere. IMO they are a rarity. The point I guess that I was trying to make is that the Institute doesn't embrace user contributions like they used to.

Philip Rack MineQuest, LLC SAS & WPS Consulting and Software Development Tel: (614) 457-3714

-----Original Message----- From: SAS(r) Discussion [mailto:SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Swank, Paul R Sent: 06/18/2008 4:14 PM To: SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU Subject: Re: SAS's Future

What about Proc LCA and LTA?

Paul R. Swank, Ph.D. Professor and Director of Research Children's Learning Institute University of Texas Health Science Center - Houston

-----Original Message----- From: SAS(r) Discussion [mailto:SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Phil Rack Sent: Wednesday, June 18, 2008 6:04 AM To: SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU Subject: Re: SAS's Future

I've been reading all the comments in this thread with a lot of interest. My take is that SAS will not open up on anything because they want to control the system 100% from top to bottom. Allowing for 3rd parties to do any coding without using SAS products is and will continue to be verboten. Btw, whatever happened to user contributed procs that we used to see back in the 80's and 90's? Why did SAS stop encouraging their development and stop distributing then? I never understood why they fell to the wayside?

Which brings up another point. What happens when SAS doesn't control the language of the data step anymore? If a vendor (say WPS) continues to produce compatible data step code but decides that the language is too restrictive and introduces extensions, does SAS still control the language? Just some thoughts...

Philip Rack MineQuest, LLC SAS & WPS Consulting and Software Development Tel: (614) 457-3714

-----Original Message----- From: SAS(r) Discussion [mailto:SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of Alan Churchill Sent: 06/18/2008 2:42 AM To: SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU Subject: Re: SAS's Future

Ok, I can see some of the points here Roland but GWT is behind the times. MySQL, sure, Java, sure, but JavaScript is really dated at this stage and GWT is very dependent on JS.

Google is struggling to catch up and they still don't have an effective strategy for next gen web apps. The battle is really between Flex and Silverlight. SAS is going with the former, fine, but the latter has a lot of momentum. If you needed to build a next gen web app today, Silverlight is a solid choice. Don Henderson and I demo'd it working against SAS data at SGF and it ran like a champ.

Rumor has it that Google may buy Adobe to try and catch up but, for now, Google is behind. AJAX is a fancy name for a hack and is an absolute bear to code. JavaScript likewise.

If someone chooses Flex or Silverlight, fine. But to go and create AJAX apps with JS behind the scenes? Ughhhh! Google needs to figure out what to do and fast because Microsoft and Adobe have them over the barrel right now.


Alan Churchill Savian

-----Original Message----- From: SAS(r) Discussion [mailto:SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of RolandRB Sent: Wednesday, June 18, 2008 12:05 AM To: SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU Subject: Re: SAS's Future

On Jun 17, 8:32 pm, (Mary) wrote: > Actually, I think SAS has more basic things it should be doing; its = > interface to Microsoft Excel isn't very good, in that it doesn't allow = > specification of variable type and lets its import guess based on the = > first 5 rows. Also it is not currently supporting Office 2007, which = > it needs to be doing. The ability to import all spreadsheets within a = > workbook at once would also be a great help.=20 > > I also notice that there are many areas in the SAS display manager that = > do not behave the way Microsoft products behave. One example would be = > "find and replace" when viewing a SAS data set, and just the general = > "look and feel" of SAS compared to Microsoft products. Many of the = > functions in the display manager just feel very clunky. And then there = > is the idea of following Microsoft's trend of ribbons rather than = > menus.... > > Perhaps SAS is trying to compete on too many platforms; and may just = > want to focus on Microsoft, Unix, and IBM mainframe platforms, and just = > not worry about Linux; the vast majority of users now have been trained = > on Microsoft products and operating systems.=20 > > Also having SAS be "free" to those teaching it would help- the reason = > Java got into computer science in Universities was that it was available = > free, and then it had an edge coming out of colleges in that many = > students were trained in it. The next generation of computer science = > students will be trained in .NET with C#, so I think that they will be = > more Microsoft oriented. Actually, the interest in JAVA on college = > campuses seems to be dying out.=20 > > SAS still has tremendous capabilities to merge and manipulate data, and = > although I don't know R, I would anticipate that it has nothing like the = > capability yet of Proc SQL. That SAS can do this, and then use that = > data in its statistical procedures is its strong suit. Also, SAS seems = > not to understand that it is the ability to write programs in SAS that = > makes it different from interactive packages; and ODS makes the ability = > to capture pieces of output to save in data sets for later use or to = > summarize results that makes it very powerful. =20 > > Thus if SAS took the steps necessary to improve its display manager to = > behave more like Microsoft Office, if it gave it away free to college = > students, and developed its editor in ways that Excel has, such as = > fill-in functions, I think it could have a long future.=20 > > Excel is a long way from becoming a data mining tool; in that it still = > cannot merge at all and its statistical functions are crude and = > elementary, plus its VB Excel programming language leaves much to be = > desired. Thus, I don't think it competes with SAS Base and SAS Stat, = > though certainly does in terms of graphics. =20 > > If SAS could be more compatible with Excel, and have a similar interface = > to Excel, then I think it can withstand the tide.=20 > > -Mary

I think it depends on the industry. I work in clinical reporting and the problem I see with sas in the future is the cost of multi-user licensing when many people want to access it through the web. It gets too expensive and therefore alternatives look better unless what sas produces is static and not interactive. I can see sas becoming a behind-the-scenes application creating data sets which then get exported out to MySQL or the native Java database and then people accessing the data through the Google Web Toolkit compiling Java applications. No doubt other more convenient technologies are out there or will come along. SAS are pricing themselves out of their own future. I might be writing such a system to do interactive graphical patient profiling instead of using the static system (all written in sas) that I currently have.

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