I don't see how EG can compete with any interface that has a command line and function keys that are capable of executing all of SAS. Look for Art Carpenter and my upcoming paper at SUGI. Below is an example. I can execute the following using the command line or a function key. Art can do the same using the window statement. Note command lines, function keys and window statements are not supported in EG.
Suppose I have just finished a program and it runs interatively and I want to hit a function key or type 'bat' on the command line to run the program in UNIX batch.
If I hit F9 the following happens
1. The old UNIX batch log and list are deleted
2. The program is promoted to production (moved from development directory to production directory) Incidentally, I keep validation code at the end of the program and my promotion tool knows not copy that code to production. This is very handy.
3. The is stripped since production directory is UNIX.
4. The program is checked into SCCS
5. The program is run under UNIX batch
6. The log. list and a very nice logscrub are returned to my interactive display manager window. . Notepad windows h.h,i.i and j.j
7 To change focus to the logscrub I hit function key cntl H. Cntl I for list and cntl J for log.
You need SAS_Connect to make all of this happen. I sense a movement to remove SAS-Connect and Windows SAS for EG.
Additionaly I have a second 24in monitor with some dedicated window layouts. I don't see how to set and save window layouts in EG.
Here is another function, not easliy done in EG
If I put and 'A' in the prefix area of the old editor and then highlight 'proc datasets' and hit F8 the syntax for proc datasets will copied after the 'A' program line.
I have many more like highlighting a dataset and hitting F8 and a proc contentsappear in the output window.
I estimate I use a productivity tool at least every 30 seconds. Most of these tools are not supported by EG.
I started using SAS around 20 years ago at UNI under VM/CMS on a dumb terminal.
I still remember how hard it was in the beginning to get even easy tasks done (and SAS was already at this time a very comfortable programming language).
I worked later on for years with SAS on a Mainframe (OS/390,z/OS). The introduction of PC SAS was already a fancy thing and a lot of people stayed with their terminal emulation and batch submit.
Some older Mainframe colleagues never made the transition to PC clients (not only the SAS ones) and had of course a lot of reasons to do so. They became more and more outdated like the legacy systems they looked after.
I then didn't work with SAS software at all for a few years but had some exposure to .net 2 and MS Visual Studio 2005. I was simply amazed by this new world and it gave me a totally new perspective of where to position SAS and what challenges SAS as a vendor has to face to stay in the game.
When I re-entered the SAS world SAS had moved on from version 8 to version 9. This didn't bother me too much in the beginning as I remembered how easy it was to change from version 6 to 8.
Well: I was so wrong! Totally new architecture, metadata all over the place, new and changed clients...
It took me quite a while to get used to all this new stuff. But I also understand that SAS has to move on or they will become legacy like my former Mainframe colleagues; and if SAS becomes legacy my core competency in IT will become legacy!
And that's my point here: It's of no use to complain about the world changing. SAS must change or it dies.
And especially for us "coders": We must accept that novice business users will become more and more capable to perform tasks for which we and our expertise was in high demand not too long ago and that some skills which took us years to build up are no more needed. So what? Lifelong learning is not only a term and it keeps our jobs interesting.
I think that a critical evaluation of new and changed SAS components is a very valuable thing to do. But I believe the measure should be how SAS covers requirements from a business perspective and what functionality and usability SAS delivers in comparison to its competitors.
Never forget: We IT guys deliver a service to the business and it’s the business which earns the money and pays for our toys.