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Analytics Roadblocks: Tech Isn't the Problem
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Re: R or SAS or Both
  • 4/14/2014 10:14:07 PM
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@kq4ym, following along your cynical perspective, one could add that that is why the street wise among us learn to cheat --- either because that is a sure-fire way to "solve" their own problems, or trick the guillable into believing the cheats can solve the guillable's problem.

Re: R or SAS or Both
  • 4/14/2014 6:47:34 PM
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An interesting observation that the social problem is that people generally don't want to make decisions based on data. We all are victims of irrational thinking in attempts to solve problems with our minds. We don't want to lose, for example and will continue betting or investing until we've gained back our losses. Statistical sampling would show us our error of course, but even then, we'll often override the advice and contine ahead anyway.

Re: R but...
  • 4/14/2014 12:11:26 PM
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Thanks for the historical perspective, Pierre. It still seems as though R has a strong community at the moment, although its scoring on Burtch Works' poll would indicate that SAS still has the edge. 

Re: R but...
  • 4/14/2014 12:05:39 PM
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I think R is gaining documentation over the last few years, Michael, but it is not cohesive in some key ways. Part of it lies in its history - In a presentation for a R programming course, Roger Peng noted a number of changed corporate ownership of the licensing for developing S, the precursor language of R.  Bell Labs had it first, working to Insightful, which had it since 2004, but was acquired in 2008.

That change could be a limiting factor in spreading the best practices around R. Despite being open source, users need a stable support that can influence developmental direction for programmers and help spur a community around the platform.  Mozilla was able to build a solid community around its browser, which is open source.  If the R licensing changed hands frequently, that stability to let a community grow would be limited. Acquitions in general can play havoc on deciding which tech will be the most strategic to a company's future. 

Re: R but...
  • 4/14/2014 11:43:23 AM
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I stand corrected, also did not mean to connect SAS in the manner described.  I meant more as a general comment, and should have realized I inadvertently made associations in the process.

Re: R but...
  • 4/14/2014 11:36:28 AM
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Do you think that paradigm will change as more companies embrace SaaS and bring-your-own apps, Pierre?

Re: R but...
  • 4/14/2014 11:20:06 AM
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Well, there's no question you'll get support, documentation, advice, help with SAS, but I imagine R is well-documented by now, too. The problem is that it has hundreds of add-ons and components and modules, which creates a barrier to entry, I imagine. Are there any R enthusiasts who can chime in?

Re: R but...
  • 4/14/2014 9:12:21 AM
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Hi Pierre, I'm excited for the upcoming radio show, "How to Become a Top SAS Programmer," too. But please note  that our guest is not with SAS and that this is an All Analytics-initiated program, not a SAS-initiated program (so not SAS training but independent). Our guest is Michael Raithel, a senior systems analyst for Westat, a research and statistical survey organization. Michael's authored a book on SAS programming tips, published in 2013. I think he's going to have some great advice!

Re: R or SAS or Both
  • 4/14/2014 8:00:55 AM
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What is money spinning?  Anyone ever hear of the software is like quicksand analogy where you have to keep building a ladder up and up while the quicksand rises.  Seems apt here.  Where SAS and Microsoft are the ladder builders and R and linus etc. are the sand.  Too heavy for Monday morning?

R or SAS or Both
  • 4/14/2014 2:05:41 AM
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Agree !  with you Pierre. But look at this way open source drives the world to be more democratic, hence R is teaching all others SAS and others tools to be more effective , not just money spinning ...

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