Tuesday, December 23, 2014

What's in Your (SAS) Wallet?

SAS Programming Professionals,

With tip of the hat to Capital One's famous ad campaign, I want to ask you:  What's in your SAS installation?

That is an important question because it is the key to knowing which SAS sub-products you can bring to bear on your organization's many business problems and analysis tasks.  Besides Base (Core) SAS, do you have SAS/GRAPH, or SAS/STAT, or SAS/OR, or SAS/IML, or SAS/Access Interface to PC File Formats installed on your workstation?  Do you have SAS products in addition to the aforementioned which you could exploit in certain circumstances to characterize corporate data and create result sets for your clients--be they internal or external clients?

Many SAS professionals think the best way to determine which SAS products are installed is to simply run PROC SETINIT, like this:


Well, that is certainly a good start, but it does not give them the entire picture.  PROC SETINIT reveals all of the SAS products licensed for the platform it is running on.  It is possible that the SAS administrator did not actually install all of the products that are in the license on the computer.  If you did the SAS installation yourself, it is possible that you did not check off all of the available products when performing the install.  So, there may be a disparity between the number of products licensed and the number of products actually installed.

A better way to get this information is to run PROC PRODUCT_STATUS, like this:


PROC PRODUCT_STATUS creates a very nifty report which specifies the SAS products installed on your computer as well as the maintenance level of each product.  The products listed in the log as a result of running this procedure are the only products that you can run with SAS on your computer.

If you are curious as to whether you have additional SAS products available on your license than are installed, run both PROC SETINIT and PROC PRODUCT_STATUS and then compare the two reports.  If you are not happy with what you see, have that long, serious talk with your SAS administrator and ask that the additional products you need be installed. 

Armed with PROC PRODUCT_STATUS, you will never come up short when somebody stops you in the hall and asks you: What's in your SAS installation?

Best  of luck in all your SAS endeavors!

(aka Michael A. Raithel)
Author page: http://www.amazon.com/Michael-A.-Raithel/e/B001K8GG90/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Was My Book One of the Top 5 SAS Books of 2014?

SAS Programming Professionals,

The final SAS Training & Book Report e-newsletter of 2014 arrived yesterday evening with a list of the top five SAS books of 2014. I was eager to see if my own SAS Press book, How To Become A Top SAS Programmer, was among the top five. Alas and alack, it was not.

However, I pleased to see that several books I regularly recommend to SAS programmers was on the list. The list is:

Top Five Books
  1. The Little SAS Book: A Primer, Fifth Edition
  2. Big Data Analytics: Turning Big Data Into Big Money
  3. SAS Certification Prep Guide: Base Programming for SAS®9, Third Edition
  4. SAS for Dummies, Second Edition
  5. Learning SAS by Example: A Programmer's Guide
Not having practical experience with crunching BIG DATA, I recommend that SAS professionals looking to build a comprehensive SAS documentation library seriously consider having books 1, 3, 4, and 5 on their bookshelves. You cannot go wrong with any or all of those publications.

Oh, and if you are serious about steering your SAS programming career towards better professional and financial growth, you cannot go wrong with my own book: How To Become A Top SAS Programmer.

Best of luck in all your SAS endeavors!

(aka Michael A. Raithel)


Monday, December 15, 2014

Use This SAS Program to Measure the Benefits of Purchasing SAS Books

SAS Programming Professionals,

Did you know that you can objectively measure the worth of any SAS book you are considering purchasing by using a simple program that I developed?

After writing the print edition of my book, Did You Know That?  Essential Hacks for Clever SAS Programmers, I was inspired to share a program that SAS professionals can use to objectivey measure the worth of my book of SAS hacks.  The program uses US dollar$ as the unit of measure and weighs the monetary benefits of the hacks against the cost of the book against the income of the SAS programming professional.

The SAS program that follows is set up to evaluate the print edition of my book.  Change the SALARY, GOODTIPS, and TIMESAVED macro variables to evaluate whether Did You Know That?  Essential Hacks for SAS Programmers is right for y-o-u.

And, just as importantly, save this program so that you can modify the cost of the book and the book's title when evaluating any other book on SAS programming.

/*Michael A. Raithel's SAS Book Evaluation Program*/

%let SALARY=50000; /* Your yearly salary */
%let GOODTIPS=2;   /* Number of good tips that will save you time at work*/
%let TIMESAVED=15; /* Estimated number of mintes each tip will save you  */

Data tipworth;

length bigline $130;
label bigline = "Here are the points to consider:";

/* Perform complicated calculations */

Hourly_Salary = round(&SALARY/2080,.01);

Minute_Salary = round((Hourly_Salary / 60),.01);

Tot_Time_Saved = &GOODTIPS * &TIMESAVED;

Cost_Per_Tip = 9.95 / &GOODTIPS;

Total_Salary_Saved = Tot_Time_Saved * Minute_Salary;

Total_Net_Salary_Saved = (Tot_Time_Saved * Minute_Salary) - 9.95;

/* Generate a Spiffy Report */

bigline = "You found &GOODTIPS tips in the book to be useful for your job.";
bigline = "You estimated that the useful tips in the book saved you &TIMESAVED minutes per tip.";
bigline = "You make a handsome salary of $ &SALARY per year.";
bigline = "So, your hourly salary is $" || Hourly_Salary || ".";
bigline = "Which means you make $" || Minute_Salary || " per minute.";
bigline = "Your cost per useful tip in the book was $" || Cost_Per_Tip || ".";
bigline = "The total amount of salary you saved from using the tips was $" || Total_Salary_Saved || ".";
bigline = "But, you must subtract the cost of the book ($9.95) to realize your true savings of $" || Total_Net_Salary_Saved || ".";



proc print data = tipworth noobs label;
var bigline;

Title1 "Analyzing the Merits of Purchasing";
Title2 "Michael A. Raithel's";
Title3 "New e-book:";
Title4 "Did You Know That?  Essential Hacks for Clever SAS Programmers";

Footnote1 "Amazon Print Edition:  https://tinyurl.com/y83aleb4";

Footnote2 "Other books by Michael A. Raithel: www.amazon.com";

Best of luck in all of your SAS endeavors!

(aka Michael A. Raithel)
Amazon Author page:  https://www.amazon.com/Michael-A.-Raithel/e/B001K8GG90/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Read SAS e-Books with Free Amazon Reader

SAS Programming Professionals,

Did you know that...

You do not have to actually own an Amazon Kindle to read SAS e-books purchased from the Amazon Kindle store?

The Kindle Store at www.amazon.com hosts 98 SAS e-books which you can surface by:

1. Selecting the Kindle Store in the search bar,

2. Typing "SAS Programming" in the search window, and

3. Clicking on "Go". 

So, there is a SAS e-book for most every interest. 

(Of course, I hope that you will be the most interested in my new book:  Did You Know That?  Essential Hacks for Clever SAS Programmers).

If you want one or more SAS e-books and either do not own a Kindle or find it too expensive, no worries!  You can download the free Kindle reading app to your PC, iPad, or mobile device.  Here is a link for downloading the Kindle reading app:  http://tinyurl.com/njehayz

When you download the reader, you are rewarded by complimentary copies of Treasure Island, Pride & Prejudice, and Aesop's Fables; all of which you can finally read without the pressure of having to do a high school book report on their main themes, the authors' use of symbolism, how they handle irony, and the motivations of the main characters.

The Kindle website boasts over 2-million e-books, but I am sure that you will be the most interested in the 98 books devoted to SAS programming.  So, save a tree or two and consider acquiring e-books instead of paper-based books.

Best of luck in all of your SAS endeavors!

(aka Michael A. Raithel)

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Michael-A.-Raithel/e/B001K8GG90/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Barnes & Noble Author Page: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/michael-raithel

Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/MichaelRaithelAuthor

SAS Press Author Page: http://support.sas.com/publishing/authors/raithel.html

sasCommunity.org Page:  http://www.sascommunity.org/wiki/User:MMMMIIIIKKKKEEEE

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/MichaelRaithel