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What's New in SAS Software for Release 8.2

SAS is the industry leader in business analytics and strategic information-delivery software. Built on a solid foundation of award-winning technology, SAS 8e Release 2 (8.2) delivers an infrastructure that is flexible, versatile and scalable, with an open component-based architecture that integrates application development, data access, warehousing and thin-client access. An acknowledged innovator and leader in decision support and data warehousing, SAS helps organizations make quicker, smarter, better decisions -- providing the best strategies for business growth and delivering The Power to Know™.

Key Features of Release 8.2

Linux support. In response to customer feedback, SAS delivers a production system for Linux, the open-source UNIX environment. SAS customers have indicated a significant and growing interest in Linux and many users are impressed with the operating system's stability and performance, especially as a Web server. Making SAS available on Linux empowers customers to combine the stability and performance of Linux with SAS business intelligence and analytical solutions to create applications for e-business and other vital decision support areas. SAS can be licensed on Red Hat Linux 6. Releases for SuSE Linux 7.1 and other Linux distributions will be available soon.

Support for Microsoft's Windows 2000 Datacenter Server platform. Windows Datacenter Server extends the Windows operating system to support up to 32-CPUs and provides increased reliability, availability and scalability.

New 64-bit platform support for Sun's Solaris 7, IBM's AIX 4.3 and HP-UX 11.0. These platforms join SAS' existing offering on Compaq Tru64 UNIX.

Extended ERP access and relational database integration. One of SAS' core strengths is the ability to access virtually any data source. This release extends SAS' reach to ERP data with a new SAS/ACCESS Interface to PeopleSoft. It enables users to extract, browse and search PeopleSoft metadata, generate views of the data and save the data within SAS for further exploitation. SAS 8e features dynamic access engines that vastly improve integration with relational database products. For instance, Version 8 transparency features, such as support for long file names, simplify data retrieval. Accessing large amounts of data faster is also key to successful warehousing and for quickly delivering enterprise information. Under OS/390, bulk loading for large DB2 tables is now supported. SAS/ACCESS also now passes many processing functions directly to the DBMS for enhanced performance.

New data quality framework. This release introduces a powerful suite of integrated data quality tools that enables both data quality analysts (stewards) and IT professionals to analyze, cleanse and standardize data. The framework is built on a new product, SAS Data Quality - Cleanse, which enables SAS to clean and standardize data in its native location, and the award-winning desktop product, DataFlux's DfPower Studio/Match, which enables quality stewards to interactively cleanse their corporate or line-of-business data. The framework also includes industry-leading SAS/Warehouse Administrator software, enabling IT professionals to design custom processes that ensure the enterprise warehouse consists of only quality data.

Unsurpassed data warehousing and analytics. Globally recognized as the industry leader in analytics and data warehousing, SAS ensures that you have the most accurate, consistent and reliable analyses of all business information. Our warehousing solution has been updated to include data quality tools and an improved API that enables you to build a metadata-driven or business rule-driven process for transforming your data into data warehouse tables. Once your data is properly warehoused, you can use our cutting-edge statistical capabilities to gain knowledge from that data. Enhanced analytics include new capabilities for multiple time series forecasting and demand planning, new procedures for dealing with missing data, and tools for nonparametric modeling.

Globalization and National Language Support. With this release, SAS provides the only software with support for national languages on all platforms -- from the mainframe to the PC. This applies to data as well as to code, and is especially important to international customers who are running applications in client/server, cross-platform environment. The FILE, FILENAME and INFILE statements support the new ENCODING= option that enables users to dynamically change the character set encoding for processing external data. Support for Unicode character encoding formats and informats has also been improved. This release also provides production support for the Euro and offers easy conversion for all major European currencies.

Versatile and customizable output. The Version 8 Output Delivery System marks a milestone in delivering visually appealing, Web-ready, highly customizable analytical output. Release 8.2 includes output destinations such as RTF (enhanced), PDF (now production) and XML (enhanced experimental). ODS PRINTER and RTF statements also have been improved and allow more control of page breaks and image placement. In addition, new ActiveX/Java-enabled interactive graphs enhance data visualization across your enterprise.

Enhanced multitiered applications development environments. Choose from a wide variety of development tools from the SAS/AF component language to Java and CGI/HTML environments of AppDev Studio. A new release of AppDev Studio (2.0) is available for Release 8.2. This applications development suite makes it easy to build Java, CGI, HTML and traditional applications. Plus you can design and build applications specifically for wireless and hand-held devices. Enhancements include new drag and drop capabilities for applications development and support for Java 2 and Swing, a new Java toolkit.

IT infrastructure openness and the ability to integrate enterprise applications. By supporting open industry standards and leveraging emerging technologies, SAS Integration Technologies provides the tools for seamlessly integrating SAS applications with other enterprise applications and systems. The publishing framework enables proactive information delivery across platforms, operating environments and applications with a single point of control for managing large communities of users and objects.

Web analytics and reporting. A production release of WebHound software offers a scalable and flexible solution for understanding online user behavior through Web log analysis and business-oriented reporting. WebHound is also a chief component of SAS' broader e-CRM solution, e-Discovery. This solution integrates online and offline data, using SAS' state-of-the-art data warehousing technologies and provides data mining capabilities such as profiling and segmentation for further identifying customers' needs and personalizing Web content.