I have just finished reviewing The Essential Guide to SAS Dates and Times, Second Edition by Derek Morgan. Wow! If you need to write complex programs involving dates, times, or date-time values, you need this book. It is the most complete and up-to-date collection of information on this topic I have ever seen. Even though I have been working with SAS dates and date functions for years, there was so much in this book that was new to me—and amazingly useful. The writing is very clear and Derek supplies detailed examples to show how things work. The earlier sections of the book discuss date, time, and date-time formats and informats. The discussion on the ANYDTDTE informat and associated formats was particularly useful and was presented with lots of examples to clarify the subtle aspects of this informat. Date interval functions can be scary, even to the experienced SAS programmer. Derek included numerous examples that make this difficult topic approachable. The section on how to create your own date intervals would be worth the purchase price of the book by itself.
"Derek Morgan's second edition of The Essential Guide to SAS Dates and Times has one third more pages, including a new chapter on ISO 8601 date formats, which are used by Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium (CDISC) programmers. I enjoyed both the simple tips, such as the program that showed that only four bytes are necessary to store dates as integers, and the more complex ideas like graphing with dates, and the National Language Service (NLS) and non-Julian calendar formats.
"If you have been confounded by changing dates from character strings to SAS numeric dates I recommend that you make room on your bookshelf for this essential reference for handling dates with the power of SAS software."
"Many experienced programmers will start to read Derek's book The Essential Guide to SAS Dates and Times, Second Edition secure in their own knowledge of SAS dates and times, but, by the time they have finished reading it, will have realized that there was so much they didn't know! Everyone finishing this amazing book will be prepared for almost every date and time possible, from 1582 to the distant future!"
Consultant and Author
Holland Numerics, Ltd