Format your data like a social media superstar

In my industry of data and computer science, precision is typically regarded as a virtue. The more exact that you can be, the better. Many of my colleagues are passionate about the idea, which isn't surprising for a statistical software company. But in social media, precision is a stigma -- […]

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Adding Harvey Balls to your SAS reports

I'm currently working on a large project for a SAS customer. The project comprises many activities and phases, so there is a need to track progress on many different levels. During a recent meeting the project manager announced, "I'm putting together a status deck, and I'll include some Harvey Balls […]

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New and improved: Importing SPSS data files in SAS Enterprise Guide

It's been almost 5 years since I posted one of the first custom tasks for SAS Enterprise Guide. It was a task that made it easier to convert SPSS data files into SAS data sets. Like many projects that begin as custom tasks, this one later became a feature in […]

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Numbers great and small: the problem of Big Datum

About once a month, a customer approaches SAS and asks a question of significance. By "significance", I don't necessarily mean "of great importance", but instead I mean "of how SAS handles large numbers, or floating-point values with many significant digits". In response, we always first ask why they asked. This […]

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Just-in-time data prep in SAS Enterprise Guide

On this blog, I've delivered a few tips about using SAS formats to stratify your data values "in place" without having to actually change your data. The most recent example addressed date and datetime variables. My previous examples included simple SAS programs that you can run in SAS display manager […]

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Do you mind if we dance with your DATEs (or DATETIMEs)?

I've been working with date-time data on a recent project, and I've come across a few SAS programs that have "opportunity for improvement" when it comes time to create reports. (Or maybe I haven't, and I contrived this entire blog post so that I could reference one of my favorite […]

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Calculating the UTC offset in your SAS session

Update 25Nov2010: I've updated this example to correct the code so that it works correctly for positive UTC offsets. Thanks to Bruno Müller, my colleague at SAS, for finding my mistakes. One of my SAS colleagues was recently working on a project where she had to create reports that include […]

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Creating a SAS format from a data set

Recoding values is one of the most common data prep tasks that folks need to do before they can analyze and report on data. In SAS, the most elegant way to handle this is by applying a SAS format. A SAS format allows you to "bucket" a bunch of raw […]

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Lengths and formats: the long and short of it

A reader from Bejing commented on a recent post with a question about data lengths and formats. While that wasn't really related to my post, I thought I'd attempt to answer in a new entry, here. The question is basically this: when I combine two data sets with a common-named […]

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