Maybe my last report from a PhUSE event: Beerse Single Day Event 2017

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Last month I talked about the presentation “The Art of Defensive Programming – Coping with Unseen Data” I was doing at the PhUSE Single Day Event (SDE) in Beerse, Belgium. The event was held yesterday on 28 November 2017 at the Janssen EMEA site, where I’d started my SAS contracting activities 25 years earlier. This was the 6th SDE I’d presented at in Belgium, and the 3rd on this site, so I was fairly familiar with the venue and knew many of the attendees too.

As at recent conference events I included a free draw for a copy of my latest book “SAS Programming and Data Visualization Techniques“. The attendance at the SDE was around 80 and not just coming from Belgium, with 21 of those entered the draw, and the winner was Lieke Gijsbers from OCS Consulting in the Netherlands (see me presenting her with my book in the photo).

You are probably now asking why this will be my last report from a PhUSE event? Over the last year or so I have reviewed the benefits I get from presenting at conferences and how much it costs me to attend them. Consultants spend a lot of time doing Cost-Benefit analyses and PhUSE events seemed to be moving lower down the list. The larger companies can easily afford to send multiple delegates, but a small percentage of their staff, to PhUSE events because of economies of scale. Unfortunately, Holland Numerics is not a large company, so we have to send 100% of our staff (me!). By presenting we get a 33% reduction on the full conference fee, but we lose 100% of our income during the conference and SDE days, and the same is true for every other independent consultant attending PhUSE. Next year I was hoping to combine some of my training courses with PhUSE SDE and PhUSE Connect (the new name for the annual conference!) events, but none had come to fruition.

I am extremely happy with the records I have created as a mere SAS programmer (and not a Statistical Programmer!) during my membership of PhUSE:

  1. I have attended 13 consecutive PhUSE annual conferences since the first was held in Heidelberg in 2005.
  2. I have presented at least 1 paper in every PhUSE annual conference I have attended, including several papers I had brought with me “just in case” to fill in for short-notice withdrawals.
  3. I have presented in 18 SDEs since they started in 2008, including 6 in Belgium, 4 in the UK, 3 in Germany, 2 in Switzerland and Denmark, and 1 in the Netherlands.
  4. Since the PhUSE annual conference was held in Basel in 2009, I have held a beer-tasting evening near to the conference. That is a total of 9 beer-tasting evenings! It started because I wanted to taste the local beers, I preferred to drink beer with friends, and it seemed to work out just fine, because I had no complaints, and I added many new beers to my beer-tasting database. In fact I had to stop Yvonne Moores, the 2011 Brighton conference chair, from putting a note in the daily conference news, and it was still over-subscribed using just word-of-mouth! The largest evening attendance was actually 24 in Budapest, when, unable to find a Hungarian beer establishment, I opted instead for the “Belgian Abbey Restaurant”!
  5. Last, but not least, no-one has enjoyed PhUSE events more than me!

I would like to thank PhUSE for allowing me to present my SAS-related papers at their conferences and SDEs, but I will not be renewing my membership of the PhUSE Society as usual in January.

Are you going to the PhUSE Belgium SDE (Single Day Event) in Beerse? I’m presenting there!

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The PhUSE Belgium SDE is being held at Janssen Pharmaceutica near Beerse again on Tuesday 28th November 2017, where I’ll be presenting “The Art of Defensive Programming – Coping with Unseen Data” at 1600hr.

I hoping to be able to run a free prize draw there for you to win a copy of my recent book “SAS Programming and Data Visualization Techniques: A Power User’s Guide“. Just drop in a business card or fill out a blank card at the event to get a chance to win a copy.

I’m looking forward to revisiting the site where I worked on my very first SAS contract in 1992, and maybe tasting some interesting Belgian beers too!

Hope to see you there.

What happened in Edinburgh?

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This year the PhUSE Conference was held at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre, and in Scotland for the first time. This was my 13th PhUSE Conference, and I’d presented papers at all 13, which was more than anyone else! There were 695 attendees and 40 exhibitors at this PhUSE conference, more than at any previous PhUSE conference too!

I presented “Making Graphs Easier to Validate – The Benefits of ODS Graphics” in the Data Visualisation stream on the 1st afternoon, and the room was nearly full, which I found to be true for most of the other papers I attended during the rest of the conference too. It is always good to present to a full room, because you are more likely to get an audience response to what you are trying to explain.

CK Clinical had one of the exhibitors stands and ran a Connect4 knock-out competition over the 3 days, with the champion Kriss Harris winning Afternoon Tea for two at the Ritz (or equivalent), and runner-up Gareth Parry (see photo on right) winning a copy of my latest book “SAS Programming and Data Visualisation Techniques“.

In 2018 the European PhUSE Conference will be held in Frankfurt, the 3rd time in Germany, but in November, rather than the traditional October, because a new US PhUSE Conference will be taking place in Raleigh NC in June.

Are you going to PhUSE in Edinburgh? I’m presenting there!

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PhUSE is being held in the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) in Edinburgh this year from Sunday 8th to Wednesday 11th October 2017, and I’ll be presenting “Making Graphs Easier to Validate – The Benefits of ODS Graphics” in the Data Visualization stream on the Monday afternoon at 1500hr.

PhUSE is now a global conference for the pharmaceutical software community, and there will be 600+ attendees in the following streams:
– Analytics & Statistics
– Application Development
– Coding Tips & Tricks
– Data Standards & Governance
– Data Handling
– Data Visualisation
– Industry Starters
– Management
– Professional Development & Training
– Posters
– Regulatory
– Real-world Evidence
– Software Demonstrations
– Standards Implementation
– Trends & Technology
– Hands-on Workshops
– University Day

CK Clinical will be running a competition (I think it will be Connect4), and one of the prizes will be a copy of my recent book “SAS Programming and Data Visualization Techniques: A Power User’s Guide”. Visit Stand 37 in the Exhibitors Area to get a chance to win a copy.

I’m also planning my annual beer-tasting evening on the Tuesday during the conference at a local venue. Unfortunately attendance will be limited to the first 20 attendees to confirm interest with me at the conference itself, so talk to me early if you’d like to attend!

Hope to see you there.

2 new prize draw winners of my most recent SAS book!

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There were 2 new prize draw winners of my most recent SAS book in the last few weeks, with the 2 prize draws held at the SAS Forum UK in Birmingham at the end of September 2016, and at the PhUSE Conference in Barcelona this month.

Congratulations to Charlotte King who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the SAS Forum UK in Birmingham
September 2016: Congratulations to Charlotte King who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the SAS Forum UK in Birmingham

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October 2016: Congratulations to Cathal Gallagher who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the PhUSE Conference in Barcelona

Free draw for my book at PhUSE in Barcelona

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Would you like to win a copy of my latest book “SAS Programming and Data Visualization Techniques”?

Are you attending the 2016 PhUSE Conference in Barcelona between 9 and 12 October?

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If the answer to both these questions is Yes, then visit the CK Clinical stand in the Exhibitors Area at the conference and take your business card, or write your name and email address on the cards provided, and drop it into the box. The draw will be made towards the end of the conference and you could win a sealed copy of my book. I’ll sign it for you too, if you want!

There will also be a copy for you to read at the stand, so you’ll be able to see whether it is worth the risk!  😉

PhUSE SDE (Single Day Event) in Utrecht, Netherlands

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This will be the first PhUSE SDE to be held in the Netherlands since the first SDE was held in Switzerland in 2008, and will focus on Data Visualization. I will be presenting a paper on my favourite SAS-related topic of ODS Graphics entitled “Converting Plots from SAS/GRAPH to ODS Graphics”.

To celebrate the publication of my latest book “SAS Programming and Data Visualization Techniques: A Power User’s Guide”, you will be able to win a copy in a free prize draw to be held on the day.

Full details will be made available before the event at http://www.phuse.eu/Netherlands2016.aspx

Book Promotion Photo Gallery

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June 2018: Congratulations to Igor Khorlo who won my new book in the Prize Draw at SAS Forum UK in Birmingham
April 2018: Congratulations to Chris Smith who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the SUGUKI meeting in London
September 2017: Congratulations to Peter Lowes who won my new book in the Prize Draw at SAS Forum UK in Birmingham
April 2017: Congratulations to Matthew Hoolsema who won my new book in the Prize Draw at SAS Global Forum in Orlando
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October 2016: Congratulations to Cathal Gallagher who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the PhUSE Conference in Barcelona
Congratulations to Charlotte King who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the SAS Forum UK in Birmingham
September 2016: Congratulations to Charlotte King who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the SAS Forum UK in Birmingham
Congratulations to Olivier Goethals who won my new book in the Prize Draw at SAS Global Forum in Las Vegas
April 2016: Congratulations to Olivier Goethals who won my new book in the Prize Draw at SAS Global Forum in Las Vegas
Congratulations to Angelo Tinazzi who won my new book in the Prize Draw at PhUSE in Vienna
October 2015: Congratulations to Angelo Tinazzi, who won my new book in the Prize Draw at the PhUSE Conference in Vienna. Thanks go to Ian Marlow from the CK Group for running the competition.
Happiness: my new book, a beer and my advertising shirt at the book launch in Cambridge
September 2015: Happiness = my new book, a beer and my advertising shirt at the book launch in Cambridge