Call them tricks or call them nuggets of information. With a language as complex and versatile as SAS there are any number of small bits of knowledge that we accumulate and use – sometimes without even thinking about them. Often we discover a gem of information, but what gems have we missed? What is yet to be learned? Since someone almost certainly has at one time discovered that thing that you need to know now, how can you find that person or that bit of information?
Fortunately there are a number of information sources that you can use to learn new tips. One of the best is known as the “Tip of the Day” project. On the main page of sasCommunity.org, a wiki created and run by SAS users, there is new tip each day. Have it tweeted to you. Hundreds of tips have been written and they are available for you to browse. Take a look. Share one of your own tips.
You can also read the SAS Community forums. These SAS sponsored question and answer forums bring together top SAS programmers from around the world. Often their techniques are new and innovative. Take a look and find out how others solve their problems.
I personally love to read Coders Corner papers presented at SAS Global Forum and other regional conferences. Usually these short single topic papers go right to the heart of the problem and are a great source of insight into problem solving.
If you want to learn by being challenged take a look at the “Stump the Programmer” problems hosted by the San Diego SAS Users Group. In each newsletter they include a new problem that addresses some (often obscure) aspect of the SAS language. Solving the problem will generally teach you something new.
There are many other sources of gems. Look around and find your own favorites.