I've been very fortunate to meet a lot of SAS users during my scant 3 year tour at SAS. I've met them while attending SAS Global Forum 2009, 2010, and 2011; NESUG 2009, 2010 and 2011; and SESUG 2010. Of course, like you, I want to go to all of the users events. But that's not possible, so I try to do the next best thing - live vicariously through my SAS colleagues and friends, of course!
To get the most from WUSS 2011, I've been reading the blog posts by Anne-Lindsay Beall. (She's an Editor with SAS External Communications, who lives right here in Cary and works a few doors down from me. ALB is the Editor-in-Chief of sascom Magazine and Editor of the Business Analytics Knowledge Exchange.) Her posts are fantastic. Look for more of her posts over the coming days when the WUSS papers & presentations are published online.
For MWSUG 2011, I looked to my fellow Editor Barry Gay. Gay normally writes stories about how SAS customers use the software - the stories are called Customer Success Stories. He's written or edited hundreds of customer successes, but I'll bet you'd be more interested in a MWSUG post he wrote called, Top 10 sites for SAS programmers.
It's easy to find SAS colleagues who are writing about these events, but I wanted to find out what you - SAS users - were saying. So, I started looking in the blogosphere. I admit it:
- it's not so easy to find SAS users
- who are bloggers
- who went to WUSS
- who wrote a post about their experiences
I found two: Sy Truong and Annmaria De Mars. Truong alerted me to his posts, and I've highlighted them in this post. In the July 2009 edition of the SAS Tech Report, I introduced readers to a blogger that I'd just found through Twitter. I told readers that I liked reading her posts even when I didn't understand the statistical terms or programs that she was writing about because I love her humor and opinions. I still love reading De Mars' posts, so her blog was the natural first place for me to start looking for WUSS information. (I knew she'd attended because her Twitter chatter told her followers how much she was enjoying the conference.)
De Mars has published two posts - so far - that are a result of attending WUSS - Making a Difference: Different views from WUSS, My Reading Week Schedule, thanks to WUSS - and two posts prompted because of her conference planning - Why chi-square is expecting the expected value, What does everybody already know about categorical data? I had a hard time deciding which post to discuss here because I want you to read them all. I finally decided that you must read My Reading Week Schedule if you read none other.
In that post, De Mars says what every SAS user says at a conference, "I didn’t have time to do everything I wanted." One thing that she wrote that was unusual though, was that she didn't learn anything that she could use immediately when she returned to work on Monday. I think that was the line that kept me reading - I was amazed! She went on to say, though, that often she learns something at a conference and finds that she needs it 3-6 months later. In this case, she's talking about the fact that she heard from a Maura Stokes presentation that ODS Graphics ON is default in SAS 9.3. She also learned about PROC GLMSELECT and PROC VARCLUS, both procedures that she could see herself needing in the future.
I don't want to steal her thunder; she's already written a fabulous post that I'm sure you will want to read. I also think you should consider subscribing to her blog. You can find directions for subscribing to an RSS feed at the bottom of this page.