Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2006 13:35:26 -0700
Reply-To: David L Cassell <davidlcassell@MSN.COM>
Sender: "SAS(r) Discussion" <SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
From: David L Cassell <davidlcassell@MSN.COM>
Subject: Re: SASuser versus SAS programmer
Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed
>I don't see much of a distinction between a SAS programmer and a SAS user
>if the user is creating a data/proc step-type of program. There certainly
>may be a distinction in terms of style, methods, and understanding but the
>end result is largely the same.
>The distinction between EG vs SAS DM is, in my mind, more one of process
>than of function. A SAS "programmer" can create a data/proc program the old
>fashioned way be typing the program in either tool. So what does EG provide
>that SAS DM does not? The answer is interaction with metadata. That is
>where the true power of EG comes to the front - or at least its potential
>From: SAS(r) Discussion [mailto:SAS-L@LISTSERV.UGA.EDU]On Behalf Of
>Sent: Tuesday, September 05, 2006 10:19 AM
>Subject: Re: SASuser versus SAS programmer
>on the topic considering the strategies of SAS Enterprise Guide
>over SAS Display Manager, Ron Fehd posted
>(or avoiding linewrap, try http://tinyurl.com/gvzj7 )
>raising this topic (SAS)User versus (SAS)Programmer
>This issue is interesting as a new topic, so I'm using a more
>SAS Enterprise Guide is a suitable strategy for for the SAS User.
>Is it also a suitable strategy for the SAS programmer?
>I propose distinctions for (SAS)User versus (SAS)Programmer :
> 1 motivation
> better results vs effective methods
> 2 professional development
> business vs technicalities
> 3 career
> in business vs in skill-set
> 4 activities
> generate results vs generate processes
>hit me with your contrary viewpoints
>I think the strategy for SAS programmers encompasses SAS
>Enterprise Guide *without* excluding SAS Display Manager.
>SAS EG is the best way to create stored processes. Even
>those who are in the center of SAS don't see the end of
>SAS Display Manager relevance .... see the posting on the
>EG community discussion forum at
>(in short form http://tinyurl.com/ma7h3 )
>The gap between the capabilities of EG and DM in the SAS-L
>thread from which this posting grew, refers to performance. The
>big picture should not compare just performance, but look more
>into the difference between people - business-SAS-user versus
>SAS-Programmer - and what interaction each needs from their
>SAS system platforms.
>I think the SAS Business Intelligence platform provides a better
>comparison/equivalent for SAS Display Manager, than just SAS
>Enterprise Guide. It certainly provides a significant leap
>forward. I wish it were not such a big challenge to implement ;-)
> So I think the strategy for SAS_programmers is not EG, but
> the whole of BI !
IMNSHO, I would say that SAS is finally thinking about this issue.
I think that SAS EG needs to be for *both* the 'user' and the
'programmer', but someone has to differentiate between user
and programmer first.
If the processes are already available for the user, then EG is a
lot more convenient than teaching a lot of people a lot of SAS
so that they can run seven programs with minor tweaks over
and over and over again.
But the processes have to be available. That's where the
SAS programmer comes in. In most business settings, I would
think that EG needs some carefully constructed stored processes
in place for the people who are the users. And the programmers
have to understand how SAS works, and how EG uses SAS,
and how to develop for EG. Otherwise, you end up with the
sorts of problems we see on SAS-L. EG doesn't do what the
poster needs, or it runs too slowly as it does.
So I think this comes down to a 'business case' decision. For
each company using EG, someone (let's say it's Dogbert The
Consultant) needs to differentiate between programmers who
will be allowed to program and/or develop stored processes,
and users, who don't have to go to SAS training, just EG
workshops. One set needs trainings and RUGs and SUGI papers.
One set needs a short course using Lora Delwiche and Susan
Slaughter's Little EG Book.
A harder problem arises when EG is used for complex statistical
needs. Do we have stat consultants build the necessary stat
processes for use by company analysts? Do company analysts
have the training to build the statistical processes correctly?
Do we integrate EG with expensive vertical apps like SAS EM?
Do the users get to wave their wand and ignore all statistical
issues like diagnostics and plots, or does the stored process force
this upon the users?
David L. Cassell
3115 NW Norwood Pl.
Corvallis OR 97330
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