I haven’t been seen presenting for ages, but I’ll definitely be presenting in April and May 2021!


The pandemic has impacted us all in many ways, and my presenting has definitely been severely curtailed. However, even though the pandemic has not yet been defeated, I was determined to make my voice heard and my face seen, so I’ve accepted 2 presentation opportunities in the next 2 months:

  • 01Apr2021: SUGUKI have asked me to present “Writing Reusable Macros: Managing SAS Data Sets” at a lunchtime webinar from 1215-1245 (British Summer Time = GMT+1). More details can be found at https://www.meetup.com/SUGUKI, and the Zoom call is limited to 100, so early registration is recommended.
  • 20May2021: Virtual SAS Global Forum 2021 will be including a Premium Session video presentation of “How Many Shades of Guide: SAS Enterprise Guide to 8.3 and SAS Studio to 3.81 with SAS 9.4: Part 1 – SAS Enterprise Guide”. The paper includes the history of both EG and SAS Studio, but time limits necessitated the paper be split into 2 presentations, and this one will be Part 1 only. Look out for Peedy!
    I’m not certain when the video presentation will be made public yet, but I’ll be having a live Q&A chat on 20May2021. Keep an eye on the SAS Global Forum web site for more details about when and how to join me.
  • I’m hoping to publish the Part 2 video later this year, probably on my blog site, which will look at the history of SAS Studio and a comparison with EG.

Just a reminder that all of my SAS conference papers are FREE to download!


Over the last few weeks I’ve noticed potential customers for my SAS conference papers NEARLY download them from here, and then give up at the last moment. I want to assure you all that:

  1. You will be required to register on this site for free, if you are not already a registered member
  2. You will have to complete a form to say where you live
  3. You will also be sent to a Checkout page
  4. However, you will be charged nothing, as every conference paper download has a price of £0.00!

To quote “The Hitchhiker’s Guide” by Douglas Adams: DON’T PANIC. This is written in large friendly letters!

All of my conference papers are now available for free from the Store


I’ve just uploaded all of my SAS-related conference papers to my blog store, and will eventually be removing them from http://www.hollandnumerics.com/SASPAPER.HTM. This will mean that only those registered for the blog will be able to access and download them. They will, of course, be free to download for registered members.

Skills needed by a good SAS programmer apart from programming


You have a certificate from SAS saying you can program, and you have been offered a job as a SAS programmer. Well done! So what happens now?

Hopefully your new employer will arrange for SAS training for you, and then you’ll be given a computer to run your SAS programs on. If you are lucky you’ll be in a team of SAS programmers where some are experienced enough to assist you. However, your team may only include inexperienced programmers like yourself, so how do you get answers to your questions?

(1) Research: Search Google for possible answers to your questions. This may produce links to http://support.sas.com or http://www.lexjansen.com, so try these links first.
(2) Experiment: Try out these suggestions to see which work for your situation.
(3) Discuss: Talk about these solutions with your colleagues.

Do not:
(1) Delegate: Post vague questions on forums in the hope that someone will write your program for you. You will never improve your skills by using someone else to do it for you.
(2) Break copyright: Post any company data on the web or in external emails.
(3) Reveal: Ask questions on the web which may reveal confidential information about your employers or clients. It is also recommended that you never post your email address or phone number either, because they could be used to spam you, or even to spam others looking as if you are doing it.

Once you have a working SAS program, and this may take a while to achieve, remember to re-visit it regularly with a view to improving it using knowledge you’ve gained over time. No program is ever perfect, but your aim should be to approach perfection with each amendment.

So how do you gain SAS knowledge? The SAS certification questions and answers cover only a tiny fraction of what SAS can do. The temptation is to stick to what you know, but this will never allow you to improve your SAS programming, so read the SAS blogs, SAS-related forums and SAS conference papers regularly, and then try out the new techniques to learn new stuff all the time. This should never end. I’ve been using SAS since 1981 and I’m still learning new stuff about SAS every day!