Tuesday 2 March 2010

NOTE: Data Set Reader and Log Analyser from Oceanview

UK-based Oceanview Consultancy have a couple of neat SAS utilities that just might meet your SAS team's needs. DSREAD reads a SAS data set and provides information about it without requiring SA software; and Elvis(!) is a log analyser par excellence.

Back in May 2006 when NOTE: was an email newsletter and boasted 3,700 subscribers worldwide, issue 17 featured the Elvis log analyser (and some awful usage of some of The King's record titles). Well, Chris Long wrote to me recently to tell me of his latest creation - DSREAD.

Chris describes DSREAD as a simple Windows command-line utility for working with data sets (SAS7BDAT ). The current version of DSREAD allows you to:

  • List the summary details of datasets
  • List the contents (the variable names and other attributes*) of datasets
  • Convert a dataset to CSV format for import into Excel and other software

The latter functionality could be useful in an automated system that uses a variety of technologies.

Chris lists a few limitations that you should read before downloading and using it. However, in a development environment it could prove useful.

It's good to see continued activity from Oceanview in the area of third-party SAS utilities (supported or otherwise). There are not many third-party SAS-related products available (the excellent Futrix being the notable exception).

With regard to Elvis, as issue 17 of the NOTE: email  newsletter told us, it provides a novel and powerful environment for exploring your SAS logs. See the Elvis microsite for further detail.

Finally, if you like quizzes, you might like Chris's pet project: QuizBang. Visit the QuizBang web site, and see for yourself.