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SUGI 76 - SUGI 21 Conference Proceedings Online
Since 1976, SAS users and SAS developers have gathered together in conference, annually, both to share the unique ways they use SAS in their diverse work environments and to reveal new functionality. At the end of each annual conference, the SAS Users Group International (SUGI) and later as SAS Global Forum has collected all the individual papers (and posters) which were presented that year and published these in a volume of proceedings.
The conference proceedings have been published in various methods over the years ranging from paper only, paper and CD, CD only and, most recently, via web only. These historical proceedings contain a vast number of papers which contain methods and techniques that are not available anywhere else to the SAS User Community. With the work of SAS Support and other SAS users such as Lex Jansen, the conference proceedings from SUGI 21 through SAS Global Forum 2010 have been available on line as either images or searchable pdfs. However, the conference proceedings before SUGI 21 have not been accessible on-line - they were available only in bound paper volumes.
To address this, the SAS Global Users Group Executive Board began a project in May 2010 to digitally capture SUGI 76 through SUGI 21 proceedings and make them available to the global SAS Community.
- Each paper was transferred from paper to a digital image (thanks to SAS Publishing).
- The scanned files were converted by OCR into searchable digital files.
- An index was created cross-referencing each paper submitted during those first 21 years by Conference year or number, by title, author, award won, and conference section it was assigned to.
This was done to be consistent with the existing archive processes existing such as Lex Jansen’s SUGI/SAS Global Forum repository. The papers from SAS 76 through SUGI 21 are now available on both sasCommunity.org and Lex Jansen’s SUGI/SAS Global Forum site. The early proceedings are a work in progress and will continue to evolve over the next few months but we wanted to take the opportunity to announce its existence:
The concept behind this page on sasCommunity.org is a virtual bookshelf of the Proceedings where the contents of each of the conference proceedings are available to be viewed. It is hoped that eventually it can be used similar to the ones that might be on your bookshelf at home with the ability to use improved search capability previously unavailable for this corpus of conference papers.
Initially, the information will be available to the key word search capability with in the sasCommunity.org so that authors and titles can be easily retrieved. Hopefully, as more work is done, this access can be improved to include all the current aspects of the master index but other areas such a any paper which has a particular proc or type of product. Due to the inaccuracies of any OCR process, the various different fonts used, the paper quality, there is a lot of errors still in the text which was created by the OCR process. The images are high quality and key word search works quite well to get access to much of the content in these SUGI papers. These additional papers combined with the previously available SUGI and SAS Global Forum papers create an excellent archive of how our users have used and continue to use SAS. Many of the techniques which started from users papers are now key elements of the SAS product suite.
A word of caution should be noted. Many of the techniques shown in these early papers have been superseded by better methods and techniques of subsequent releases of SAS. The papers do provide an excellent historical archive of how particular aspects of SAS products have evolved over time and how SAS has been attentive to the needs of their users.
We look forward to hearing about possible ideas to enhance this sasCommunity.org contribution from others and how to maximize its utility to us. If you are interested in some of the approaches that might be possible, come to see Paper 162 at SAS Global Forum 2011 or read about it in the proceedings after the conference. Alternatively, please comment on the talk/discussion page. There will be a display at the SAS Global Users Group booth in the demo area to explain more of the details and we hope to talk to other users at the booth so if you are interested, please stop by and see us.
We look forward to hearing what others believe can be done with this effort.