Monday 11 April 2011

NOTE: Loading Data Set Variables Into Macro Variables (%SYSCALL SET)

SAS Global Forum still offers plenty of learning opportunities for the hard-core coder. Quite apart from presenting my paper in Coders' Corner, I took the opportunity of spending some time in some of the sessions. I leaned plenty of new-old stuff, i.e. stuff that was new to me but had been part of SAS for many tears. One such example is using %syscall set to quickly and elegantly load data set variables into macro variables.

William C Murphy mentioned it briefly in his paper entitled "Who Do You Have? Where Are They?". Having done some research, I see he featured it in his 2007 paper "Changing data Set Variables Into Macro Variables".

The paper tells you all you need to know, but if (like me) you're an old SAS/AF dinosaur, you'll recognise the techniques involved - using OPEN, SET and FETCHOBS.