Tech

6月 082018
 

Who doesn’t love a good makeover story? We know we do at BNL Consulting—and so do our customers. That’s why we’re thrilled with SAS Visual Analytics sophisticated new look and feel as well as its expanded functionality. SAS Visual Analytics takes advantage of the performance and scalability of the SAS Viya platform, providing a Business Intelligence framework that can work with massive amounts of data, bringing forward the powerful analytics that has made SAS the market leader in this space.

With SAS Viya, we get an even more unified platform with a consistent look and feel across applications which have been rewritten as zero client HTML5 web applications. The visualizations that are available in SAS Visual Analytics are embedded within the other tools as well. Now customers—from analysts to business executives—can point and click all from their web browser to get the information they need to make better business decisions right out of the box.

The newest version of SAS Visual Analytics provides direct access to an in-memory set of data as well. The process of loading data that can be made available to SAS Visual Analytics has been streamlined to give users fast access to information to create dashboards, reports and perform ad-hoc analysis. And because the application is so intuitive, users can be up and running in a matter of hours, not days.

In what has become a highly competitive market for business analytics—with BI tools being ubiquitous—SAS Visual Analytics running on SAS Viya provides a formidable means to analyze data, helping organizations tell a story—simply and easily. With SAS Visual Analytics on their side, customers will no longer need to reach outside the platform and make additional purchases. The unified platform is extremely compelling.

New features and benefits

SAS Visual Analytics customers will also benefit from a number of new features, including:

  • A new look and feel that provides drag and drop layout controls to size dashboard objects. New graph, chart, and map objects offer greater control of the properties to make them presentation-ready.
  • Objects on the screen can “talk” to each other, listening in on object events to filter accordingly in unison.
  • With no more LASR server, the process of loading and accessing data is much faster, with even better performance than the previous in-memory LASR server architecture.
  • There is now the ability to create custom HTML5/JavaScript objects, which can be hooked up to the data loaded in memory (data-driven content). HTML/JavaScript/D3 has become the standard in web development, opening up almost countless options for SAS to visualize data and turn it into useful information. Before, custom development was sometimes needed, but SAS Visual Analytics can handle a customer’s needs, all with point and click, drag and drop.

Next steps

When organizations use BI tools, they expect appealing visuals on top of rich data that can tell a story. SAS Visual Analytics on SAS Viya delivers in a big way, ushering in a new era for SAS BI users. We encourage customers to try out SAS Visual Analytics and see for themselves. We have found that a successful path is to start with small-scale proof of concepts, designed to satisfy a few critical uses. As you become more comfortable, expand to include more users and different types of projects.

With all the software options out there—both COTS and Open Source—we want customers to feel confident that SAS Visual Analytics for SAS Viya is the right choice. For more details, you can contact BNL at BNLConsulting.com.

SAS Visual Analytics on the new SAS platform was published on SAS Users.

6月 062018
 

Log Management in SAS ViyaLogs. They can be an administrator’s best friend or a thorn in their side. Who among us hasn’t seen a system choked to death by logs overtaking a filesystem? Thankfully, the chances of that happening with your SAS Viya 3.3 deployment is greatly reduced due to the automatic management of log files by the SAS Operations Infrastructure, which archives log files every day.

With a default installation of SAS Viya 3.3, log files older than three days will be automatically zipped up, deleted, and stored in /opt/sas/viya/config/var/log. This process is managed by the sas-ops-agent process on each machine in your deployment. According to SAS R&D, this results in up to a 95% compression rate on the overall log file requirements.

The task that archives log files is managed by the sas-ops-agent on each machine.  Running ./sas-ops tasks shows that the LogFileArchive process runs daily at 0400:

 {
 "version": 1,
 "taskName": "LogfileArchive",
 "description": "Archive daily",
 "hostType": "linux",
 "runType": "time",
 "frequency": "0000-01-01T04:00:00-05:00",
 "maxRunTime": "2h0m0s",
 "timeOutAction": "restart",
 "errorAction": "cancel",
 "command": "sas-archive",
 "commandType": "sas",
 "publisherType": "none"
 },

While the logs are zipped to reduce size, the zip files are stored locally so additional maintenance may be required to move the zipped files to another location. For example, my test system illustrates that the zip files are retained once created.

[sas@intviya01 log]$ ll
total 928
drwxr-xr-x. 3 sas sas 20 Jan 24 14:19 alert-track
drwxrwxr-x. 3 sas sas 20 Jan 24 16:13 all-services
drwxr-xr-x. 3 sas sas 20 Jan 24 14:23 appregistry
...
drwxr-xr-x. 4 sas sas 31 Jan 24 14:20 evmsvrops
drwxr-xr-x. 3 sas sas 20 Jan 24 14:27 home
drwxr-xr-x. 3 root sas 20 Jan 24 14:18 httpproxy
drwxr-xr-x. 3 sas sas 20 Jan 24 14:35 importvaspk
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 22 Jan 26 04:00 log-20180123090001Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 22 Jan 27 04:00 log-20180124090000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 22 Jan 28 04:00 log-20180125090000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 10036 Jan 29 04:00 log-20180126090000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 366303 Mar 6 04:00 log-20180303090000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 432464 Apr 3 04:00 log-20180331080000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 22 Apr 4 04:00 log-20180401080000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 22 Apr 5 04:00 log-20180402080000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 15333 Apr 6 04:00 log-20180403080000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 21173 Apr 7 04:00 log-20180404080000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 22191 Apr 8 04:00 log-20180405080000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 21185 Apr 9 04:00 log-20180406080000Z.zip
-rw-r--r--. 1 sas sas 21405 Apr 10 04:00 log-20180407080000Z.zip
drwxr-xr-x. 3 sas sas 20 Jan 24 14:33 monitoring

If three days is too short of a time to retain logs, you can adjust the default timeframe for archiving logs by modifying the default task list for the sas-ops-agent on each machine.

Edit the tasks.json file to suit your needs and then issue a command to modify the task template for sas-ops-agent processes. For example, this will modify the log archive process to retain seven days of information:

...  
{
 "version": 1,
 "taskName": "LogfileArchive",
 "description": "Archive daily",
 "hostType": "linux",
 "runType": "time",
 "frequency": "0000-01-01T04:00:00-05:00",
 "maxRunTime": "2h0m0s",
 "timeOutAction": "restart",
 "errorAction": "cancel",
 "command": "sas-archive -age 7",
 "commandType": "sas",
 "publisherType": "none"
 },
...
 
$ ./sas-ops-agent import -tasks tasks.jason

Restart the sas-ops-agent processes on each of your machines and you will be good to go.

I hope you found this post helpful.

Additional Resources for Administrators

SAS Administrators Home Page
How-to Videos for Administrators
SAS Administration Community
SAS Administrators Blogs
SAS Administrator Training
SAS Administrator Certification

Log Management in SAS Viya 3.3 was published on SAS Users.

6月 022018
 

The SAS PlatformFor software users and SAS administrators, the question often becomes how to streamline their approach into the easiest to use system that most effectively completes the task at hand. At SAS Global Forum 2018, the topic of a “Big Red Button” was an idea that got audience members asking – is there a way to have just a few clicks complete all the stages of the software administration lifecycle? In this article, we review Sergey Iglov’s SAS Global Forum paper A ‘Big Red Button’ for SAS Administrators: Myth or Reality?” to get a better understanding of what this could look like, and how it could change administrators’ jobs for the better. Iglov is a director at SASIT Limited.

What is a “Big Red Button?”

With the many different ways the SAS Platform can be utilized, there is a question as to whether there is a single process that can control “infrastructure provisioning, software installation and configuration, maintenance, and decommissioning.” It has been believed that each of these steps has a different process; however, as Iglov concluded, there may be a way to integrate these steps together with the “Big Red Button.”

This mystery “button” that Iglov talked about would allow administrators to easily add or delete parts of the system and automate changes throughout; thus, the entire program could adapt to the administrator’s needs with a simple click.

Software as a System –SAS Viya and cloud based technologies

Right now, SAS Viya is compatible with the automation of software deployment processes through a centralized management. Right now, SAS Viya is compatible with a centralized automated deployment process. Through insights easily created and shared on the cloud, SAS Viya stands out, as users can access a centrally hosted control panel instead of needing individual installations.

Using CloudFormation by Amazon Web Services

At this point, the “Big Red Button” points toward systems such as CloudFormation. CloudFormation allows users of Amazon Web Services to lay out the infrastructure needed for their product visually, and easily make changes that will affect the software. As Iglov said, “Once a template is deployed using CloudFormation it can be used as a stack to simplify resources management. For example, when a stack is deleted all related resources are deleted automatically as well.”

Conclusion

Connecting to SAS Viya, CloudFormation can install and configure the system, and make changes. This would help SAS administrators adapt the product to their needs, in order to derive intelligence from data. While the future potential to use a one-click button is out there for many different platforms, using cloud based software and programs such as CloudFormation enable users to go through each step of SAS Platform’s administration lifecycle efficiently and effectively.

Additional Resources

SAS Viya Brochure
Sergey Iglov: "A 'Big Red Button' for SAS administrators: Myth or Reality?"

Additional SAS Global Forum 2018 talks of interest for SAS Administrators

A Programming Approach to Implementing SAS® Metadata-Bound Libraries for SAS® Data Set Encryption Deepali Rai, SAS Institute Inc.

Command-Line Administration in SAS® Viya®
Danny Hamrick, SAS

External Databases: Tools for the SAS® Administrator
Mathieu Gaouette, Prospective MG inc.

SAS® Environment Manager – A SAS® Viya® Administrator’s Swiss Army Knife
Michelle Ryals, Trevor Nightingale, SAS Institute Inc.

Troubleshooting your SAS® Grid Environment
Jason Hawkins, Amadeus Software Limited

Multi-Factor Authentication with SAS® and Symantec VIP
Jody Steadman, Mike Roda, SAS Institute Inc.

OpenID Connect Opens the Door to SAS® Viya® APIs
Mike Roda, SAS Institute Inc.

Understanding Security for SAS® Visual Analytics 8.2 on SAS® Viya®
Antonio Gianni, Faisal Qamar, SAS Institute Inc.

Latest and Greatest: Best Practices for Migrating to SAS® 9.4
Alec Fernandez, Leigh Fernandez, SAS Institute Inc.

Planning for Migration from SAS® 9.4 to SAS® Viya®
Don B. Hayes, DLL Consulting Inc.; Spencer Hayes, Cached Consulting LLC; Michael Shealy, Cached Consulting LLC; Rebecca Hayes, Green Peach Consulting Inc.

SAS® Viya®: Architect for High Availability Now and Users Will Thank You Later
Jerry Read, SAS Institute Inc.

Taming Change: Bulk Upgrading SAS® 9.4 Environments to a New Maintenance Release
Javor Evstatiev, Andrey Turlov

Is there a “Big Red Button” to use The SAS Platform? was published on SAS Users.

6月 012018
 

You will not find an object in SAS Visual Analytics named Dynamic Text. Instead, you will find a Text object that allows you to insert dynamically driven data items. By using the Text object’s dynamic capabilities you can build custom report titles, object titles, emphasize measures and even supply the last modified time of the data source in your SAS Visual Analytics Report. In this post, I will outline the ways how you can leverage the Text object’s dynamic capabilities.

In this example report below, I have used a red font color to indicate the dynamically driven text.
Dynamic Text in a SAS Visual Analytics Report

Let’s take a look the available dynamic roles in the Text object. You can see from the Objects pane that the Text object is grouped under Other.

From the Data pane we have the ability to add both Measure and Parameter data items. From the interactive editor of the Text object shown below, we also have the ability to insert the Table Modified Time and Interactive Filters.

The following sections will demonstrate how to configure each of these dynamically driven elements of the Text object.

Interactive Filters

The out of the box display for Interactive Filters includes the selected values for control objects added to either the Report or Page Prompt areas.

To edit, be sure you are in Edit mode of Explore and Visualize. Click on the Text object to make it the active window and double click inside, then the interactive editor will open. Next, click on the Interactive Filters button. Use your cursor to position where you would like to add static text. In this case, I added the qualifier Default filter information:.

Multiple control object values are separated by a comma and also accommodates multi-value control objects.

Parameters

While the Interactive Filter functionality is extremely useful, you may want to use prompt values more granularly to create custom report titles or even object titles. To do this, you must first create a parameter to hold the value selected in the control object, then use that parameter in the Text object.

In my example report, I have two prompts and two custom object titles leveraging parameters. Let’s look at each one individually.

First is the Report Prompt, which prompts for year.

1.     Create your prompt by using the Control object of your choice and assigning the desired data role.
2.     Create a parameter that corresponds to the data type and assign it to the Control object’s Parameter Role.
3.     For the Text object, assign the same parameter to the Text object’s Parameter Role.
4.     Double click on the Text object, use your cursor to add static text as you like.

The steps are similar for the Page Prompt, which prompts for region.

1.     Create your prompt by using the Control object of your choice and assigning the desired data role.
2.     Create a parameter that corresponds to the data type and assign it to the Control object’s Parameter Role.
3.     For the Text object, assign the same parameter to the Text object’s Parameter Role.
4.     Double click on the Text object, use your cursor to add static text as you like.

Even though I demonstrate how to do this for both Report and Page Prompts, this same technique can be used for report canvas prompts. You just have to be sure you store the selected value(s) in a parameter that you can then use in the Text object’s Parameter Role.

Measures

Very much the same way the Text object’s Roles are used to assign the Parameter values, we can do the same thing with a measure. This measure will be affected by any Report or Page Prompts automatically, but if you want to use a report canvas prompt you will need to create the Actions to the Text object appropriately.

Here you can see we are using the measure TotalExpense which is an aggregated measure of Expenses. Like in the previous examples, be sure to assign the measure to the Text object then double click to open the editor and use your cursor to add the static text.

The only applied filters for this aggregated measure are the selected year and region, therefore this Sum _ByGroup_ will return the Total Expenses for that Year and Region.

Table Modified Time

The last capability of dynamic text available in the Text object is the Table Modified Time.

The out of the box display uses the fully qualified datetime stamp and cannot be altered to a different format. To edit, double click inside the Text object and the editor will open. Then click on the Table Modified Time button. Next, use your cursor to position where you would like to add static text. In this case, I added the qualifier Data last updated:.

Conclusion

There are two main takeaways from this blog post. First is that you can easily build dynamic customizable titles, emphasize measures or parameter values.

Second, look to use the Text object for your dynamic text needs.

Here is a quick mapping as a review of what was detailed in the steps above.

 

Using Dynamic Text in a SAS Visual Analytics Report was published on SAS Users.

5月 312018
 

If you’re considering upgrading to SAS Visual Analytics 8.2 or adding the product to the list of SAS products you’re currently using, you now have any easy way to see what SAS Visual Analytics (VA) 8.2 is all about. SAS Visual Analytics Interactive Demos allow you to access the interface and product instantly. Simply choose a report to navigate and explore in our SAS Visual Analytics 8.2 viewer.

Check out the following reports:

Warranty Analysis

Warranty costs are a huge expense for global manufacturers, and high-profile product recalls are in the headlines regularly. Product quality has become an important differentiator, and that makes it more critical than ever to communicate accurate warranty information throughout the organization.

Interactive reports with SAS Visual Analytics

This interactive demo allows you to see how SAS Visual Analytics can enable you to:

  • Analyze warranty claims to identify potential issues – and their underlying causes – fast.
  • Use that valuable information to address issues proactively, before they become costly problems.

Retail Insights

With competition at an all-time high, retailers everywhere seek stronger customer relationships, more profitable growth and a unique competitive advantage. Better understanding performance and making data-driven decisions have become essential.

This interactive demo illustrates how SAS Visual Analytics can provide valuable retail insights by enabling you to:

  • Analyze store performance on a regional basis.
  • Use what-if scenario building to make decisions on store locations and modifications.
  • Ensure the success of promotions by comparing actual revenue to forecast and baseline revenue.

Water Consumption and Quality

To effectively manage the consumption and monitor the quality of our most precious natural resource, utilities need to view water consumption patterns in different ways and drill into the details of that analysis. To ensure water quality, specific metrics must be monitored at regular intervals.

This interactive demo shows how SAS Visual Analytics enables you to:

  • Analyze water consumption data to reveal usage patterns so you can identify properties with potential water leaks or candidates for water reduction initiatives.
  • Visualize data from various water quality sensors, and apply statistical correlation to identify relationships between different quality metrics, which takes the guesswork out of your analysis.

Banking and Risk Insights

Financial institutions of all sizes often struggle to make sense of complex relationships within their portfolios and across holding companies, and to manage associated risks effectively. To better manage exposures, make well-informed decisions, and comply with regulatory mandates, banks need a way to quickly understand their risk – and the potential impacts of changing market conditions – across holding companies, subsidiaries and lines of business.

This interactive demo illustrates how SAS Visual Analytics provides a holistic view of bank performance across regions, down to an individual counterparty level, enabling you to:

  • View and analyze returns by industry and geography.
  • Analyze and explore the capital exposure of different banks.
  • View concentration risk across banks and counterparties, and drill down to view a counterparty's economic capital, returns and expected loss.
  • Compare RAROC and exposure over time for each line of business and industry, and assess the bank's capacity to handle stress and operate profitably.

Network Performance

Not all cell towers or handsets are created equal. And customer consumption patterns are as individual as the customers themselves. Yet all these factors have a direct impact on network service performance. Finding the right mix of traffic to optimize an individual customer’s experience is essential to a carrier’s brand – but it’s not easy to do.

This interactive demo shows how SAS Visual Analytics lets you:

  • Analyze network usage from both a customer and network perspective.
  • Simultaneously monitor both a customer’s experience and an individual cell tower's performance so you can take prompt action to ensure that your brand’s reputation and customer loyalty remain high.

If you want to dive further into the software and learn how to build your own interactive reports, dashboards or simply evaluate self-service analytics capabilities using your own data, then you can sign up for a 14-day trial here.

Don’t forget to download or upgrade our SAS Mobile BI apps (iOS and Android), so you can view these SAS Visual Analytics 8.2 reports on the go wherever you are!

Exploring interactive reports with SAS Visual Analytics was published on SAS Users.

5月 302018
 

developing foolproof solutionsAs oil and water, hardware and software don't mix, but rather work hand-in-hand together to deliver value to us, their creators. But sometimes, we make mistakes, behave erratically, or deal with others who might make mistakes, behave erratically, or even take advantage of our technologies.

Therefore, it is imperative for developers, whether hardware or software engineers, to foresee unintended (probable or improbable) system usages and implement features that will make their creations foolproof, that is protected from misuse.

In this post I won’t lecture you about various techniques of developing foolproof solutions, nor will I present even a single snippet of code. Its purpose is to stimulate your multidimensional view of problems, to unleash your creativity and to empower you to become better at solving problems, whether you develop or test software or hardware, market or sell it, write about it, or just use it.

You May Also Like: Are you solving the wrong problem?

The anecdote I’m about to tell you originated in Russia, but since there was no way to translate this fictitious story exactly without losing its meaning, I attempted to preserve its essence while adapting it to the “English ear” with some help from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Well, sort of. Here goes.

The Art of Deduction

Mr. Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson were traveling in an automobile in northern Russia. After many miles alone on the road, they saw a truck behind them. Soon enough, the truck pulled ahead, and after making some coughing noises, suddenly stopped right in front of them. Sherlock Holmes stopped their car as well.

Dr. Watson: What happened? Has it broken?

Holmes: I don’t think so. Obviously, it ran out of gas.

The truck driver got out of his cabin, grabbed a bucket hanging under the back of the truck and ran towards a ditch on the road shoulder. He filled the bucket with standing water from the ditch and ran back to his truck. Then, without hesitation, he carefully poured the bucketful of water into the gas tank. Obviously in full confidence of what he’s doing, he returned to the truck, started the engine, and drove away.

Dr. Watson (in astonishment): What just happened? Are Russian ditches filled with gasoline?

Holmes: Relax, dear Watson, it was ordinary ditch water. But I wouldn’t suggest drinking it.

Dr. Watson (still in disbelief): What, do their truck engines work on water, then?

Holmes: Of course not, it’s a regular Diesel engine.

Dr. Watson: Then how is that possible? If the truck was out of gas, how was it able to start back up after water was added to the tank?!

Who knew Sherlock Holmes had such engineering acumen!

Holmes: “Elementary, my dear Watson. The fuel intake pipe is raised a couple inches above the bottom of the gas tank. That produces the effect of seemingly running out of gas when the fuel falls below the pipe, even though there is still some gas left in the tank. Remember, oil and water don't mix.  When the truck driver poured a bucketful of water into the gas tank, that water – having a higher density than the Diesel fuel – settled in the bottom, pushing the fuel above the intake opening thus making it possible to pump it to the engine.”

After a long pause – longer than it usually takes to come to grips with reality – Dr. Watson whispered in bewilderment.

Dr. Watson: Я не понимаю, I don’t understand!

Then, still shaken, he asked the only logical question a normal person could possibly ask under the circumstances.

Dr. Watson: Why would they raise the fuel intake pipe from the tank bottom in the first place?

Holmes: Ah, Watson, it must be to make it foolproof. What if some fool decides to pour a bucket of water in the gas tank!

You May Also Like: Are you solving the wrong problem?

Are you developing foolproof solutions? was published on SAS Users.

5月 302018
 

SAS Enterprise Miner has been a leader in data mining and modeling for over 20 years. The system offers over 80 different nodes that help users analyze, score and model their data. With a wide range of functionalities, there can be a number of different ways to produce the results you want.

At SAS® Global Forum 2018, Principal Systems Engineer Melodie Rush spoke about her experience with SAS® Enterprise Miner™, and compiled a list of hints that she believe will help users of all levels. This article previews her full presentation, Top 10 Tips for SAS Enterprise Miner Based on 20 Years’ Experience. The paper includes images and further details of each of the tips noted below; I’d encourage you to check it out to learn more.

Top Ten Tips for Enterprise Miner

Tip 1: How to find the node you’re looking for

If you struggle finding the node that best fits what you need, there’s a system that can simplify it.

Nodes are organized by Sample, Explore, Modify, Model, and Assess. Find which of these best describes what you are trying to do, and scroll across each node alphabetically for a description.

Tip 2: Add node from diagram workspace

Double click any node on the toolbar to see its properties. An example of the results this presents are shown below:

Top Ten Tips for Enterprise Miner

Tip 3: Clone a process flow

Highlight process flow by dragging your mouse across, right-click or CTRL+C, and Paste or CTRL+V where you want to insert process flow.

Tip 4: New features

  • There’s a new tab, HPDM (High-Performance Data Mining), which contains several new nodes that cover data mining and machine learning algorithms.
  • There are two new nodes under Utility that incorporate Open Source and SAS Viya.
  • The Open Source Integration node allows you to use R language code in SAS Enterprise Miner diagrams.
  • A SAS Viya Code node now incorporates code that will be used in SAS Viya and CAS, and algorithms from SAS Visual Data Mining and Machine Learning.
  • To save and share your results, there are now the Register Model and Save Data nodes under Utility.
  • You can now register models to the SAS Metadata Server to score or compare easily.
  • A Save Data node lets you save training, validation, test, score, or transaction data as SAS, JMP, Excel, CSV or tab-delimited files.

Tip 5: The unknown node

The reporter node under Utility allows you to easily document your Enterprise Miner process flow diagrams. A .pdf or .rtf is created with an image of the process flow.

Tip 6: The node that changes everything

The Metadata node, on the Utility tab, allows you to change metadata information and values in your diagram. You also can capture settings to then apply to data in another diagram.

Tip 7: How to generate a scorecard

A scorecard emphasizes what variables and values from your model are important. Values are reported on a 0 to 1,000 scale, with the higher being more likely the event you’re measuring occurs. To do this, have the Reporter node follow a Score node, and then change the Nodes property to Summary under Reporter node properties.

Tip 8: How to override the 512 level limit

If faced with the error message, “Maximum target levels of 512 exceeded,” your input is resulting in more than 512 distinct results. To get around this, you need to change EM_TRAIN_MAXLEVELS to another value. To do so, either change the macro value in properties

or change the macro value in project start code.

Tip 9: Which variable selection method should I use?

Instead of choosing just one variable selection method, you can combine different ones such as Decision Trees, Forward, Chi-Square, and others. The results can be combined using different selection properties, such as None (no changes made from original metadata), Any (reject a variable if any previous variable selection nodes reject it), All (reject a variable if all of the previous variable selection nodes reject it), and Majority (reject a variable if the majority of the variable selection nodes reject it).

Tip 10: Interpreting neural network

Decision trees can be produced to interpret networks, by changing the Prediction variable to be your Target and the Target variable to be rejected.

Conclusion

With so many options to create models that best suit your preferences, these tips will help sharpen your focus and allow you to use SAS Enterprise Miner more efficiently and effectively. This presentation was one in a series of talks on Enterprise Miner tool presented at SAS® Global Forum 2018.

Additional Resources

SAS Enterprise Miner
SAS Enterprise Learning Tutorials
Getting Started With SAS Enterprise Miner Tutorial Videos

Additional SAS Enterprise Miner talks from Global Forum 2018

A Case Study of Mining Social Media Data for Disaster Relief: Hurricane Irma
Bogdan Gadidov, Linh Le, Analytics and Data Science Institute, Kennesaw State University

A Study of Modelling Approaches for Predicting Dropout in a Business College
Xuan Wang, Helmut Schneider, Louisiana State University

Analysis of Nokia Customer Tweets with SAS® Enterprise Miner™ and SAS® Sentiment Analysis Studio
Vaibhav Vanamala MS in Business Analytics, Oklahoma State University

Analysis of Unstructured Data: Topic Mining & Predictive Modeling using Text
Ravi Teja Allaparthi

Association Rule Mining of Polypharmacy Drug Utilization Patterns in Health Care Administrative Data Using SAS® Enterprise Miner™
Dingwei Dai, Chris Feudtner, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

Bayesian Networks for Causal Analysis
Fei Wang and John Amrhein, McDougall Scientific Ltd.

Classifying and Predicting Spam Messages Using Text Mining in SAS® Enterprise Miner™
Mounika Kondamudi, Oklahoma State University

Image Classification Using SAS® Enterprise Miner 14.1

Model-Based Fiber Network Expansion Using SAS® Enterprise Miner™ and SAS® Visual Analytics
Nishant Sharma, Charter Communications

Monte Carlo K-Means Clustering SAS Enterprise Miner
Donald K. Wedding, PhD Director of Data Science Sprint Corporation

Retail Product Bundling – A new approach
Bruno Nogueira Carlos, Youman Mind Over Data

Using Market Basket Analysis in SAS® Enterprise MinerTM to Make Student Course Enrollment Recommendations
Shawn Hall, Aaron Osei, and Jeremiah McKinley, The University of Oklahoma

Using SAS® Enterprise Miner for Categorization of Customer Comments to Improve Services at USPS
Olayemi Olatunji, United States Postal Service Office of Inspector General

Top 10 tips for SAS Enterprise Miner based on 20 years’ experience was published on SAS Users.

5月 302018
 

SAS Enterprise Miner has been a leader in data mining and modeling for over 20 years. The system offers over 80 different nodes that help users analyze, score and model their data. With a wide range of functionalities, there can be a number of different ways to produce the results you want.

At SAS® Global Forum 2018, Principal Systems Engineer Melodie Rush spoke about her experience with SAS® Enterprise Miner™, and compiled a list of hints that she believe will help users of all levels. This article previews her full presentation, Top 10 Tips for SAS Enterprise Miner Based on 20 Years’ Experience. The paper includes images and further details of each of the tips noted below; I’d encourage you to check it out to learn more.

Top Ten Tips for Enterprise Miner

Tip 1: How to find the node you’re looking for

If you struggle finding the node that best fits what you need, there’s a system that can simplify it.

Nodes are organized by Sample, Explore, Modify, Model, and Assess. Find which of these best describes what you are trying to do, and scroll across each node alphabetically for a description.

Tip 2: Add node from diagram workspace

Double click any node on the toolbar to see its properties. An example of the results this presents are shown below:

Top Ten Tips for Enterprise Miner

Tip 3: Clone a process flow

Highlight process flow by dragging your mouse across, right-click or CTRL+C, and Paste or CTRL+V where you want to insert process flow.

Tip 4: New features

  • There’s a new tab, HPDM (High-Performance Data Mining), which contains several new nodes that cover data mining and machine learning algorithms.
  • There are two new nodes under Utility that incorporate Open Source and SAS Viya.
  • The Open Source Integration node allows you to use R language code in SAS Enterprise Miner diagrams.
  • A SAS Viya Code node now incorporates code that will be used in SAS Viya and CAS, and algorithms from SAS Visual Data Mining and Machine Learning.
  • To save and share your results, there are now the Register Model and Save Data nodes under Utility.
  • You can now register models to the SAS Metadata Server to score or compare easily.
  • A Save Data node lets you save training, validation, test, score, or transaction data as SAS, JMP, Excel, CSV or tab-delimited files.

Tip 5: The unknown node

The reporter node under Utility allows you to easily document your Enterprise Miner process flow diagrams. A .pdf or .rtf is created with an image of the process flow.

Tip 6: The node that changes everything

The Metadata node, on the Utility tab, allows you to change metadata information and values in your diagram. You also can capture settings to then apply to data in another diagram.

Tip 7: How to generate a scorecard

A scorecard emphasizes what variables and values from your model are important. Values are reported on a 0 to 1,000 scale, with the higher being more likely the event you’re measuring occurs. To do this, have the Reporter node follow a Score node, and then change the Nodes property to Summary under Reporter node properties.

Tip 8: How to override the 512 level limit

If faced with the error message, “Maximum target levels of 512 exceeded,” your input is resulting in more than 512 distinct results. To get around this, you need to change EM_TRAIN_MAXLEVELS to another value. To do so, either change the macro value in properties

or change the macro value in project start code.

Tip 9: Which variable selection method should I use?

Instead of choosing just one variable selection method, you can combine different ones such as Decision Trees, Forward, Chi-Square, and others. The results can be combined using different selection properties, such as None (no changes made from original metadata), Any (reject a variable if any previous variable selection nodes reject it), All (reject a variable if all of the previous variable selection nodes reject it), and Majority (reject a variable if the majority of the variable selection nodes reject it).

Tip 10: Interpreting neural network

Decision trees can be produced to interpret networks, by changing the Prediction variable to be your Target and the Target variable to be rejected.

Conclusion

With so many options to create models that best suit your preferences, these tips will help sharpen your focus and allow you to use SAS Enterprise Miner more efficiently and effectively. This presentation was one in a series of talks on Enterprise Miner tool presented at SAS® Global Forum 2018.

Additional Resources

SAS Enterprise Miner
SAS Enterprise Learning Tutorials
Getting Started With SAS Enterprise Miner Tutorial Videos

Additional SAS Enterprise Miner talks from Global Forum 2018

A Case Study of Mining Social Media Data for Disaster Relief: Hurricane Irma
Bogdan Gadidov, Linh Le, Analytics and Data Science Institute, Kennesaw State University

A Study of Modelling Approaches for Predicting Dropout in a Business College
Xuan Wang, Helmut Schneider, Louisiana State University

Analysis of Nokia Customer Tweets with SAS® Enterprise Miner™ and SAS® Sentiment Analysis Studio
Vaibhav Vanamala MS in Business Analytics, Oklahoma State University

Analysis of Unstructured Data: Topic Mining & Predictive Modeling using Text
Ravi Teja Allaparthi

Association Rule Mining of Polypharmacy Drug Utilization Patterns in Health Care Administrative Data Using SAS® Enterprise Miner™
Dingwei Dai, Chris Feudtner, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

Bayesian Networks for Causal Analysis
Fei Wang and John Amrhein, McDougall Scientific Ltd.

Classifying and Predicting Spam Messages Using Text Mining in SAS® Enterprise Miner™
Mounika Kondamudi, Oklahoma State University

Image Classification Using SAS® Enterprise Miner 14.1

Model-Based Fiber Network Expansion Using SAS® Enterprise Miner™ and SAS® Visual Analytics
Nishant Sharma, Charter Communications

Monte Carlo K-Means Clustering SAS Enterprise Miner
Donald K. Wedding, PhD Director of Data Science Sprint Corporation

Retail Product Bundling – A new approach
Bruno Nogueira Carlos, Youman Mind Over Data

Using Market Basket Analysis in SAS® Enterprise MinerTM to Make Student Course Enrollment Recommendations
Shawn Hall, Aaron Osei, and Jeremiah McKinley, The University of Oklahoma

Using SAS® Enterprise Miner for Categorization of Customer Comments to Improve Services at USPS
Olayemi Olatunji, United States Postal Service Office of Inspector General

Top 10 tips for SAS Enterprise Miner based on 20 years’ experience was published on SAS Users.

5月 222018
 

SAS ViyaSAS Viya Presentations is our latest extension of the SAS Platform and interoperable with SAS® 9.4. Designed to enable analytics to the enterprise, it seamlessly scales for data of any size, type, speed and complexity. It was also a star at this year’s SAS Global Forum 2018. In this series of articles, we will review several of the most interesting SAS Viya talks from the event. Our first installment reviews Hadley Christoffels’ talk, A Need For Speed: Loading Data via the Cloud.

You can read all the articles in this series or check out the individual interviews by clicking on the titles below:
Part 1: Technology that gets the most from the Cloud.


Technology that gets the most from the Cloud

Few would argue about the value the effective use of data can bring an organization. Advancements in analytics, particularly in areas like artificial intelligence and machine learning, allow organizations to analyze more complex data and deliver faster, more accurate results.

However, in his SAS Global Forum 2018 paper, A Need For Speed: Loading Data via the Cloud, Hadley Christoffels, CEO of Boemska, reminded the audience that 80% of an analyst’s time is still spent on the data. Getting insight from your data is where the magic happens, but the real value of powerful analytical methods like artificial intelligence and machine learning can only be realized when “you shorten the load cycle the quicker you get to value.”

Data Management is critical and still the most common area of investment in analytical software, making data management a primary responsibility of today’s data scientist. “Before you can get to any value the data has to be collected, has to be transformed, has to be enriched, has to be cleansed and has to be loaded before it can be consumed.”

Benefits of cloud adoption

The cloud can help, to a degree. According to Christoffels, “cloud adoption has become a strategic imperative for enterprises.” The advantages of moving to a cloud architecture are many, but the two greatest are elasticity and scalability.

Elasticity, defined by Christoffels, allows you to dynamically provision or remove virtual machines (VM), while scalability refers to increasing or decreasing capacity within existing infrastructure by scaling vertically, moving the workload to a bigger or smaller VM, or horizontally, by provisioning additional VM’s and distributing the application load between them.

“I can stand up VMs in a matter of seconds, I can add more servers when I need it, I can get a bigger one when I need it and a smaller one when I don’t, but, especially when it comes to horizontal scaling, you need technology that can make the most of it.” Cloud-readiness and multi-threaded processing make SAS® Viya® the perfect tool to take advantage of the benefits of “clouding up.”

SAS® Viya® can addresses complex analytical challenges and speed up data management processes. “If you have software that can only run on a single instance, then scaling horizontally means nothing to you because you can’t make use of that multi-threaded, parallel environment. SAS Viya is one of those technologies,” Christoffels said.

Challenges you need to consider

According to Christoffels, it’s important, when moving your processing to the cloud, that you understand and address existing performance challenges and whether it will meet your business needs in an agile manner. Inefficiencies on-premise are annoying; inefficiencies in the cloud are annoying and costly, since you pay for that resource.

It’s not the best use of the architecture to take what you have on premise and just shift it. “Finding and improving and eliminating inefficiencies is a massive part in cutting down the time data takes to load.”

Boemska, Christoffels’ company, has tools to help businesses find inefficiencies and understand the impact users have on the environment, including:

  1. Real-time diagnostics looking at CPU Usage, Memory Usage, SAS Workload, etc.
  2. Insight and comparison provides a historic view in a certain timeframe, essential when trying to optimize and shave off costly time when working in cloud.
  3. Utilization reports to better understand how the platform is used.

Optimizing inefficiencies with SAS Viya

But scaling vertically and horizontally from cloud-based infrastructure to speed the loading and data management process solves only part of the problem. Christoffels said SAS Viya capabilities completes the picture. SAS Viya offers a number of benefits in a Cloud infrastructure, Christoffels said. Code amendments that make use of the new techniques and benefits now available in SAS Viya, such as the multi-threaded DATA step or CAS Action Sets, can be extremely powerful.

One simple example of the benefits of SAS Viya, Christoffels said, is that with in-memory processing, PROC SORT is a procedure that’s no longer needed; SAS Viya does “grouping on the fly,” meaning you can remove sort routines from existing programs, which of itself, can cut down processing time significantly.

As a SAS Programmer, just the fact that SAS Viya can run multithreaded, the fact that you don’t have to do these sorts, the way it handles grouping on the fly, the fact that multithreaded nature and capability is built into how you deal with tables are all “significant,” according to Christoffels.

Conclusion

Data preparation and load processes have a direct impact on how applications can begin and subsequently complete. Many organizations are using the Cloud platform to speed up the process, but to take full advantage of the infrastructure you have to apply the right software technology. SAS Viya enables the full realization of Cloud benefits through performance improvements, such as the transposing of data and the transformation of data using the DATA step or CAS Action Sets.

Additional Resources

SAS Global Forum Video: A Need For Speed: Loading Data via the Cloud
SAS Global Forum 2018 Paper: A Need For Speed: Loading Data via the Cloud
SAS Viya
SAS Viya Products


Read all the posts in this series.

Part 1: Technology that gets the most from the Cloud

Technology that gets the most from the Cloud was published on SAS Users.

5月 192018
 

How to change your working directory for SASRegardless of the environment in which you run SAS (whether it is SAS® Foundation, SAS® Studio, or SAS® Enterprise Guide®), SAS uses a default location on your host system as a working directory. When you do not specify the use of a different directory within your code, the default location is where SAS stores output.

Beginning with SAS® 9.4 TS1M4, you can use a new DATA step function, DLGCDIR, to change the location for your working directory. You can use this function in Microsoft Windows or UNIX/Linux environments.

Make sure that any directory that you specify with the DLGCDIR function is an existing directory that you have Write or Update access to.

Finding Out What Your Current Directory Is

To determine what your current working directory in SAS is, submit the following code:

   data _null_;
      rc=dlgcdir();
      put rc=;
   run;

Changing Your Windows Directory

The following sample code for Windows sets the working directory in SAS as the TEMP folder on your C: drive:

   data _null_; 
      rc=dlgcdir("c:\temp");
      put rc=;
   run;

Changing Your Linux Directory

This sample code (for a Linux environment) changes the working directory in SAS to /u/your/linux/directory:

   data _null_;
      rc=dlgcdir("/u/your/linux/directory");
      put rc=;
   run;

Changing Your Directory: Other Tips

The DLGCDIR function temporarily changes the working directory for the current SAS or client session. However, you can create an autoexec file that contains the DATA step code that uses the DLGCDIR function. The autoexec file then executes the code each time you invoke SAS.

In most situations, it is still recommended that you specify the intended target directory for the Output Delivery System (ODS) and in other SAS statements. For example, when you use the ODS HTML statement, you should specify the target directory with the PATH option, as shown here:

   ods html path="c:\temp" (url=none) file="sasoutput.html";

Similarly, with the ODS PDF statement, you should specify the target directory with the FILE option, as shown here:

   ods pdf file="c:\temp\sasoutput.pdf";

I hope you've found this post helpful.

How to change your working directory for SAS® with the DLGCDIR DATA step function was published on SAS Users.