Date: Thu, 27 Apr 2000 12:53:43 +0200
Reply-To: MCPalmer <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sender: "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From: MCPalmer <mcpalmer@ZBI.NET>
Organization: Zurich Biostatistics, Inc.
Subject: Next-Gen ODS and HTML (Was: Query - looking at doing a simple
> There is some good news. It is only now (in SAS version 8) that output from
> procedures can easily be done in HTML (due to the very-good ODS system that
> SAS has). HTML output should be possible relatively early on in an
> open-source "pseudo-SAS" .
ODS is a definitely good news and a tremendous enhancement to SAS reporting capabilities, but it is very much an *output* delivery system. ODS output objects look like the legacy printed output.
A slightly different tack to take, that might have a place in SAS-to-come or pseudo-SAS, is a *content* delivery system. Like ODS, a content delivery system makes all of the statistical results from procs available. Unlike ODS, it places them into uniformly structured datasets with keys that correspond to the statistical nature of a result. So, if I compute a mean for a given by-group in proc means, proc univariate, proc ttest, proc glm, and proc summary, I'd get a content delivery dataset from each proc that had exactly the same variables and I could write a program to use the mean without worrying about which proc produced it and how that proc output the mean. At ZBI, we've found the content delivery approach to, not surprisingly, greatly facilitate automating a SAS-based system.
For HTML, or some other file format, delivering output in ODS of the future, or pseudo-ODS, I think that it makes sense to think about using an underlying table model that could work with a variety of markup languages. There will be many. We've found the OASIS table model to be useful. The spec is available at www.oasis-open.org/html/tm9901.htm .
Zurich Biostatistics, Inc.