Booth Duty: More than Just Demos


Last week I was a SAS consultant.

Oh, not a real consultant, but for two hours in the Support and Demo room I stood under the "Analytics" sign and in front of rollshades about SAS/STAT, SAS/QC, and SAS/IML.

Customers can walk up and ask any question they want. And ask they did!

Can you compute control charts in SAS? Check! Use the SHEWHART procedure in SAS/QC.

Can you recommend a good reference for learning the fundamentals of the bootstrap algorithm? Check! I recommend Efron and Tibshirani (1993), An Introduction to the Bootstrap. And, by the way, here's a link to a paper I wrote that shows how to bootstrap in SAS.

Can you call R code from SAS? Check! Use the SUBMIT statement in PROC IML.

Can you demonstrate variable selection in SAS/STAT? Check and double check! Here's some code that uses the GLMSELECT procedure and here's a link to a SAS Global Forum paper on the topic.

For two hours I answered coding questions, statistical questions, and technical support questions. And, yes, I threw in a demo or two as well.

And lest you think I'm unique, this scenario was replayed at every demo station in the hall over and over again last week.

SAS customers demand a lot from our software, and expect a lot from our conferences. Looking up and down the aisles of demo stations, I saw SAS employees deliver. In the demo room, every SAS employee is a consultant.

Attendees, who were your favorite consultants this year? What questions did you enjoy having answered?


About Author

Rick Wicklin

Distinguished Researcher in Computational Statistics

Rick Wicklin, PhD, is a distinguished researcher in computational statistics at SAS and is a principal developer of SAS/IML software. His areas of expertise include computational statistics, simulation, statistical graphics, and modern methods in statistical data analysis. Rick is author of the books Statistical Programming with SAS/IML Software and Simulating Data with SAS.

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