Houston Users Group - SAS

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HUGS has been linking together members of the SAS User Community in the Houston area for over two decades albeit with a couple of dry spells. We sponsor meetings to review topics of general interest to the local users, and offer a forum for sharing information between companies and people in the local network.


Meetings are held roughly three times a year, whenever we get up the energy and resources to put together a program. Our greatest difficulty is finding willing and able speakers to prepare a presentation for our group. If you have a subject which is near and dear to your heart, and are willing to spend some time preparing and presenting - please contact Laudemer.Vigilla@Times.UH.edu. We will put you on the agenda for a meeting in the near future.

Next Meeting

Friday, August 4th, 2017.

1-3 PM

Meeting Agenda:
Speaker: Kirk Paul Lafler, Software Intelligence Corporation
Kirk Paul Lafler is an entrepreneur, consultant and founder of Software Intelligence Corporation and has been a SAS user since 1979. Kirk is a professor at UCSD Extension, application developer, data analyst, SAS Certified Professional, emeritus sasCommunity advisory board member, mentor, and provider of IT consulting services and education to SAS users around the world. As the author of six books including Google Search Complete! (Odyssey Press. 2014) and PROC SQL: Beyond the Basics Using SAS, Second Edition (SAS Institute. 2013), Kirk has written hundreds of papers and articles; been an Invited speaker at hundreds of SAS International, regional, special-interest, local, and in-house user group conferences/meetings; and is the recipient of 25 “Best” contributed paper, hands-on workshop (HOW), and poster awards. His popular SAS Tips column, “Kirk’s Korner of Quick and Simple Tips”, appears regularly in several SAS User Group newsletters and Websites, and his fun-filled SASword Puzzles are featured in SAScommunity.org and many SAS Newsletters.

Talk #1:
Five Little Known, But Highly Valuable and Widely Usable, PROC SQL Programming Techniques
The SQL Procedure contains a number of powerful and elegant language features for SQL users. This presentation highlights five little known, but highly valuable and widely usable, topics that will help users harness the power of the SQL procedure. Topics include using PROC SQL to identify FIRST.row, LAST.row and Between.rows in BY-group processing; constructing and searching the contents of a value-list macro variable for a specific value; data validation operations; data summary operations to process down rows and across columns; and using the MSGLEVEL= system option and _METHOD SQL option to capture information into the processes during query evaluation, the algorithm selected and used by the optimizer when processing a query, testing and debugging operations, and other processes. Intended Audience: All SAS, Database, and SQL users

Talk #2:
Exploring the World of Fuzzy Matching Programming Techniques Using SAS® Software
Data comes in all forms, shapes, sizes and complexities. Stored in files and datasets, SAS® users across industries know all too well that data can be, and often is, problematic and plagued with a variety of issues. One issue, in particular, stems from the complexities associated with linking, or matching, records from two or more datasets where a common unique identifier, referred to as the key, is not reliable or does not exist. Because users routinely match records from two or more datasets using merge, join, and/or hash programming techniques, a unique, and reliable, identifier is essential for matching purposes. But, what happens when a unique identifier such as a subscriber name, mailing address, and/or email address is misspelled, has one or more characters transposed, or is partially and/or incorrectly recorded? This presentation introduces what fuzzy matching is, the variety of data issues users have to deal with, popular data cleaning and organization techniques, functions such as SUBSTR, SCAN, INDEX, COMPRESS, COMPBL, COMPARE, TRANSLATE, CAT, COMPGED, and SOUNDEX (for phonetic matching), and an assortment of programming techniques used to resolve key identifier issues and to successfully merge, join and match less than perfect or messy data.


University of Houston Campus
Health and Biomedical Sciences Building
Room #315 (3rd floor)
4849 Calhoun Rd.
(Google Maps or MapQuest: Search 4811 Calhoun Rd.)
Houston, TX 77204
4811 Calhoun Road
Houston, TX 77204

RSVP: Please send a quick e-mail to Laudemer Vigilla at Laudemer.Vigilla@times.uh.edu if you plan on attending.

Driving Directions

Here is a mapquest link to the building: MapQuest link to Health and Biomedical Sciences Building

Parking: The best place to park is across the street on the west side of Calhoun in the Welcome Center & Garage. This link shows the Health and Medical Sciences building and the Welcome Center and Garage.

The cost for parking is $3 per hour with a $12 maximum per day.

Lost?: If you need assistance, please call 832-842-7023.

Last Meeting

Friday, December 9, 2016.

1:00-3 PM

Meeting Agenda:
Speaker: Shannon Moore, Senior Systems Engineer, has been with SAS since 1997 and is a charter member of the SAS’ Customer Loyalty organization. His areas of emphasis include: Enterprise Business Intelligence, Office Analytics, ODS Statistical Graphics and he is a SAS Certified Visual Business Analyst. He has experience in many industries including Health and Life Sciences, Financial Services and Government. Shannon graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Talk #1:
Data Preparation Techniques for Analytics in SAS® Enterprise Guide®
In this session, we will cover the data structures required for different types of analytics, including descriptive statistics, modeling, multivariate analysis, forecasting and quality control. Using SAS Enterprise Guide, we will look at examples on how to create these data structures from raw or transactional data.

Talk #2:
What’s New in SAS® ODS Graphics This session explores the new graphical capabilities available directly from many existing SAS procedures and the new SG procedures. Also, learn more about What’s New in ODS Graphics, including the ODS Graphics Designer, the ODS Graphics Editor and the Graph Template Language. Updated to include SAS 9.4 changes.

HUGS Board

If you need to contact someone regarding HUGS:

Kevin.Davidson@times.uh.edu (General issues)

Laudemer.Vigilla@times.uh.edu (to join list, RSVP for a meeting, or interested in presenting)