Two minutes in, I knew the 2017 SAS Global Forum Technology Connection would be anything but typical or average. Maybe that’s because SAS’ Chief Technology Officer Oliver Schabenberger was running the show, and nothing he does is ever typical or average. His first surprise of the morning was his entrance. [...]
Unable to attend SAS Global Forum 2017 happening now in Orlando? We’ve got you covered! You can view live stream video from the conference, and check back here for important news from the conference, starting with the highlights from last night’s Opening Session.
While the location and record attendance made for a full house this year, CEO Jim Goodnight explained that there couldn’t be a more perfect setting to celebrate innovation than the world of Walt Disney. “Walt was a master innovator, combining art and science to create an entirely new way to make intelligent connections,” said Goodnight. “SAS is busy making another kind of intelligent connection – the kind made possible by data and analytics.”
It’s SAS’ mission to bring analytics everywhere and to make it ambient. That was exactly the motivation that drove SAS nearly four years ago when embarking on a massive undertaking known as SAS® Viya™. But SAS Viya – announced last year in Las Vegas – is more than just a fast, powerful, modernized analytics platform. Goodnight said it’s really the perfect marriage of science and art.
“Consider what would be possible if analytics could be brought into every moment and every place that data exists,” said Goodnight. “The opportunities are enormous, and like Walt Disney, it’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”
Driving an analytics economy
Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Randy Guard took the stage to update attendees on new releases available on SAS Viya and why SAS is so excited about it. And he explained the reason for SAS Viya comes from the changes being driven in the analytics marketplace. It’s what Guard referred to as an analytics economy – where the maturity of algorithms and techniques progress rapidly. “This is a place where disruption is normal, a place where you want to be the disruptor; you want to be the innovator,” said Guard. That’s exactly what you can achieve with SAS Viya.
As if SAS Viya didn’t leave enough of an impression, Guard took it one step further by inviting Goodnight back on stage to give users a preview into the newest innovation SAS has been cooking up. Using the Amazon Echo Dot – better known as Alexa – Goodnight put cognitive computing into action as he called up annual sales, forecasts and customer satisfaction reports in SAS® Visual Analytics.
Though still in its infant stages of development, the demo was just another reminder that when it comes to analytics, SAS never stops thinking of the next great thing.
AI: The illusion of intelligence
With his Segway Mini, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Oliver Schabenberger rolled on stage, fully trusting that his “smart legs” wouldn’t drive him off and into the audience. “I’ve accepted that algorithms and software have intelligence; I’ve accepted that they make decisions for us, but we still have choices,” said Schabenberger.
Diving into artificial intelligence, he explained that today’s algorithms operate with super-human abilities – they are reliable, repeatable and work around the clock without fatigue – yet they don’t behave like humans. And while the “AI” label is becoming trendy, true systems deserving of the AI title have two distinct things in common: they belong to the class of weak AI systems and they tend to be based on deep learning.
So, why are those distinctions important? Schabenberger explained that a weak AI system is trained to do one task only – the system driving an autonomous vehicle cannot operate the lighting in your home.
“SAS is very much engaged in weak AI, building cognitive systems into our software,” he said. “We are embedding learning and gamification into solutions and you can apply deep learning to text, images and time series.” Those cognitive systems are built into SAS Viya. And while they are powerful and great when they work, Schabenberger begged the question of whether or not they are truly intelligent.
Think about it. True intelligence requires some form of creativity, innovation and independent problem solving. The reality is, that today’s algorithms and software, no matter how smart, are being used as decision support systems to augment our own capabilities and make us better.
But it’s uncomfortable to think about fully trusting technology to make decisions on our behalf. “We make decisions based on reason, we use gut feeling and make split-second judgment calls based on incomplete information,” said Schabenberger. “How well do we expect machines to perform [in our place]when we let them loose and how quickly do we expect them to learn on the job?”
It’s those kinds of questions that prove that all we can handle today is the illusion of intelligence. “We want to get tricked by the machine in a clever way,” said Schabenberger. “The rest is just hype.”
Creating tomorrow‘s analytics leaders
With a room full of analytics leaders, Vice President of Sales Emily Baranello asked attendees to consider where the future leaders of analytics will come from. If you ask SAS, talent will be pulled from universities globally that have partnered with SAS to create 200 types of programs that teach today’s students how to work in SAS software. The commitment level to train up future leaders is evident and can be seen in SAS certifications, joint certificate programs and SAS’ track toward nearly 1 million downloads of SAS® Analytics U.
“SAS talent is continuing to building in the marketplace,” said Baranello. “Our goal is to bring analytics everywhere and we will continue to partner with universities to ready those students to be your successful employees.”
Using data for good
More than just analytics and technology, SAS’ brand is a representation of people who make the world a better place. Knowing that, SAS announced the development of GatherIQ – a customized crowdsourcing app that will begin with two International Organization for Migration (IMO) projects. One project will specifically focus on global migration, using data to keep migrants safe as they search for a better life. With GatherIQ, changing the world might be as easy as opening an app.
There's much more to come, so stay tuned to SAS blogs this week for the latest updates from SAS Global Forum!
SAS Viya, AI star at SAS Global Forum Opening Session was published on SAS Users.
What is SAS Global Forum if it isn't a conference that celebrates the ways that individuals can make a difference with data and analytics? Indeed, one of my favorite tweets from last night's opening session said: If the keynote sessions were just video biographies about how data people matter I would [...]
Data-for-good takes center stage at SAS Global Forum was published on SAS Voices by Alison Bolen
SAS® users have an easy and convenient way to quickly obtain useful information (referred to as metadata) about their SAS session with a number of read-only SAS DICTIONARY tables or SASHELP views. At any time during a SAS session, information about currently defined system options, libnames, tables, columns and their [...]
The post Exploring the content of the DICTIONARIES table and VSVIEW SASHELP view appeared first on SAS Learning Post.
Editor's note: The following post is from Scott Leslie, PhD, Manager of Advanced Analytics for MedImpact Healthcare Systems, Inc. Scott will be one of the Code Doctors at SAS Global Forum 2017.
Learn more about Scott.
VISIT THE CODE CLINIC AT SASGF 2017
$0 copay, no deductible. No waiting rooms, no outdated magazines. What kind of doctor’s office is this? While we might not be able to help with that nasty cough, SAS Code Doctors are here to help – when it comes to your SAS code, that is.
Yes, the Code Doctors return to SAS Global Forum 2017! This year the Code Clinic will have over 20 SAS experts on-call to answer your questions on syntax, SAS Solutions, best practices and concepts across a broad range of SAS topics/applications, including Base SAS, macros, report writing, ODS, SQL, SAS Enterprise Guide, statistics, and more. It’s a fantastic opportunity to review code, ask questions, develop and brainstorm with peers who have decades of experience using SAS. Bring your code on paper, a flash drive, or a laptop. We’ll have 3-4 laptops with several versions of SAS software installed: 9.1.3 to 9.4 and EG 4.1 to 7.1. And if we can’t answer your coding question at the clinic, we can easily refer you to a specialist, namely the SAS R&D section of the Quad.
So, take advantage of this personalized learning experience in the Lower Quad area of the conference. Clinic office hours are:
- Monday 4/3, 10:00 am - 3:30 pm
- Tuesday 4/3, 9:30 am – 2:00 pm and 3:30 pm – 6:00 pm
Here’s the detailed schedule of our all-star code doctor lineup. If you haven’t heard of these names yet, you have now...
/*Just by reading this blog…*/.
About Scott Leslie
Scott Leslie, PhD, is Manager of Advanced Analytics for MedImpact Healthcare Systems, Inc. with over15 years of SAS® experience in the pharmacy benefits and medical management field. His SAS knowledge areas include SAS/STAT, Enterprise Guide, and Visual Analytics. Scott presents at local, regional and international SAS user group conferences as well at various clinical and scientific conferences. He is a former executive committee member of the Western Users of SAS Software (WUSS) and contributes to the San Diego SAS Users’ Group (SANDS).
As a SAS instructor, I’m often on the road, but, in April, my work travel path is going to take me to a place I haven’t visited since I was 12 years old. The occasion? SAS Global Forum 2017. The location? Walt Disney World® in Orlando. While the main conference [...]
Word on the proverbial technology street is that online learning is ideal for modern learners, and, at SAS, we wholeheartedly agree. In 2016, more the 80,000 SAS users trained in an online or blending learning format. In 2017, we kicked off the year with the announcement of our new SAS [...]
The post Modern learners meet modern training at SAS Global Forum 2017 appeared first on SAS Learning Post.
Editor's note: The following post is from Emma Warrillow, Chief DiGGer at Data Insight Group Inc. (DiG). Emma is a featured speaker at SAS Global Forum 2017 and recently named as one of the Top Women in Direct Marketing by Direct Marketing News. Learn more about Emma. “I need [...]
SAS Global Forum 2017 is just a month away and, if you’re a SAS administrator, it’s a great place to meet your peers, share your experiences and attend presentations on SAS administration tips and tricks.
SAS Global Forum 2017 takes place in Orlando FL, April 2-5. You can find more information at https://www.sas.com/en_us/events/sas-global-forum/sas-global-forum-2017.html. This schedule is for the entire conference and include pre and post conference events.
If you’re an administrator, though, I wanted to highlight a few events that would be of particular interest to you:
On Sunday, April 2nd from 2-4 pm there is a “Helping the SAS Administrator Succeed” event. More details can be found here.
On Monday, April 3rd from 6:30-8:00 pm the SAS Users Group for Administrators (SUGA) will be hosting a Community Linkup, with panelists on hand to help answer questions from SAS administrators. Location will be in the Dolphin Level – Asia 4.
There are two post-conference tutorials for the SAS Administrators:
Introduction to SAS Grid Manager, Wednesday, April 5th from 2:30-6:30pm
SAS Metadata Security, Thursday, April 6th from 8:00am-noon
More details can be found here.
For a list of the papers on the topic of SAS Administration, you can visit this link. You will see that SAS Administration has been broken down to Architecture, Deployment, SAS Administration and Security subtopic areas.
Some of the key papers under each sub-topic area are:
Twelve Cluster Technologies Available in SAS 9.4
Deploying SAS on Software-Defined and Virtual Storage Systems
Shared File Systems: Determining the Best Choice for your Distributed SAS Foundation Applications
Do You have a Disaster Recovery Plan for Your SAS Infrastructure
Pillars of a Successful SAS Implementation with Lessons from Boston Scientific
Getting the Latest and Greatest from SAS 9.4: Best Practices for Upgrades and Migrations
Migrating Large, Complex SAS Environments: In-Place versus New Build
SAS Metadata Security 201: Security Basics for a New Administrator
SAS Environment Manager: Advanced Topics
The Top Ten SAS Studio Tips for SAS Grid Manager Administrators
Implementing Capacity Management Policies on a SASLASR Analytic Server Platform: Can You Afford Not To?
Auditing in SAS Visual Analytics
SAS Viya: What it Means for SAS Administration
Guidelines for Protecting Your Computer, Network, and Data from Malware Threats
Getting Started with Designing and Implementing a SAS® 9.4 Metadata and File System Security Design
SAS® Metadata Security 301: Auditing your SAS Environment
SAS® Users Audit: An Automated Approach to Metadata Reporting
SAS® Metadata Security
In addition to the breakout sessions, there is an Administration Super Demo station where short presentations will be given. The schedule for these presentations is:
Sunday, April 2nd:
17:00 Shared File Systems for SAS Grid Manager
18:00 Where to Place SAS WORK in your SAS Grid Infrastructure
Monday, April 3rd:
11:00 Hands-on Secure Socket Layer Configuration for SAS 9.4 Environment Manager
12:00 Introduction to Configuring SAS Metadata Security for Mutlitenancy
13:00 SAS Viya Overview
14:00 Accelerate your SAS Programs with GPUs
15:00 Authentication and Identity Management with SAS Viya
Tuesday, April 4th:
11:00 Accelerate your SAS Programs with GPUs
12:00 Accelerating your Analytics Adoption with the Analytics Fast Track
13:00 New Deployment Experience for SAS
14:00 Managing Authorization in SAS Viya
15:00 Clustering in SAS Viya
16:00 A Docker Container Toolbox for the Data Scientist
As you can see, there is lots for SAS Administrators to learn and opportunities for SAS Administrators to socialize with fellow SAS Administrators.
Here’s to seeing you in sunny Florida next month.
P.S. SAS administrators don’t have to go to SAS Global Forum to get help administering their environment. In addition to SAS Global Forum and the SUGA group mentioned above, you can find out more information on resources for administrators in this blog. You can also visit our new webpage devoted just to users who administer their organization’s SAS environment. You can find that page here.
Whether you are just getting started with SAS or an experienced user there are a slew of free resources you should know about. First, you can download and learn SAS for free. SAS University Edition is available for anyone who wants to learn SAS. Additionally, SAS offers many free online [...]
The post Free SAS resources that every SAS user should know about appeared first on SAS Learning Post.