02-28-2017 11:23 PM
New to SAS. Using SAS Enterprise Guide 7.1. Trying to use it in anger for analytics and have a process flow with about 200+ nodes. After spending a month creating this [Process Flow], a few annoying user-interface issues are starting to spoil the user-experience for me.
1. I like my nodes arranged in a very particular and neat way (call me obesessive). The [Auto-arrange] feature is lousy and messes everything up. The [Grid] feature seems rather pointless. I would like to see a feature where the icons can *snap* to major grid-lines so I can line up all my icons neatly, horizontally and vertically. Just imagine all the icons lining up in the same way Windows Explorer lines up all your files in a folder when you display them in [Large Icons] mode. Why can't we have that?
2. In the [Process Flow], when you select a [Program] node, copy it, then paste it, my screen resets the [Process Flow] view to the top left corner. When you are working somewhere in the deep bottom left corner of a [Process Flow], this is annoying and disorientating. I am aware that you can right-click a specific location and create a new [Program] node and copy-paste the code into it, but my point is that the User-Experience should not be so disorientating when doing Ctrl-C Crtl-V. There is no need for the [Process Flow] view to reset or move.
On a similar vein, when you right-click and run only one node in your big [Process Flow], the [Process Flow] view will sometimes shift slightly and reset or re-centre its view (especially when a new data table is created as a result of your [Program] node). The view re-set is disorientating in a large [Process Flow]. Why does it need to happen? Can I turn it off? Stop moving my cheese please.
3. Maybe this feature already exists or I am just not aware of it. When programming (e.g. SQL Server), it is useful to see the [Program Code] and the [Output Data] simultaneously. How can I, or why cant I de-couple the [Program], [Log] and [Output Data] so that I can stack them as horizontal windows on top of each other. Click-switching between the three tabs is an unnecessary click-fest.
On a similar vein, why can't I put the [Process Flow], [Log Summary] and [Task Status] as a tab item that is grouped with [Program], [Log] and [Ouptut Data]? I spend 99% of my time looking at the [Program], [Output Data] and [Process Flow]. The [Log Summary]+[Task Status] occupies a chunk of valuable screen real estate. I know I can close them, however after every time I test a [Program] node, I have to go to [View]+[Log Summary] then [View]+[Task Summary]. Its just an unnecessary click-fest. Just let the user group all the windows into a collection of tabbed views. And let us be able to click-drag to make it happen intuitively.
SAS Enterprise Guide would be much better software to use when the UX becomes a lot more intuitive, flexible and easier to use.
02-28-2017 11:44 PM
Thanks for the comments. I know that the dev team is aware of many of these items, and they are working towards some improvements.
My personal advice about the 200+ nodes in a flow -- I find that to be too many to manage. If possible, try to break your project into multiple process flows (you can have as many as you like) and it might be easier to keep organized as you like it.
Copy/paste of flows has improved greatly over the past couple of releases. Are you using 7.13?
A split view of code/log is possible by using View->Workspace and Split or Stack. It's a little tricky to get just the items you want visible, but it's possible. I agree that more than 2 views would be better...but that's what we have for now.
03-06-2017 07:59 PM
I hope User-Interface and User-Experience will be improved as much as possible. I can see the potential of SAS if the software is an intuitive pleasure to use.
I am using SAS Enterprise Guide 7.12 HF3 (18.104.22.16844) 64-bit
03-01-2017 02:33 AM
03-06-2017 08:55 PM
Thanks for the suggestion. I hope i will not be raising duplicate issues.
My current annoyance is being unable to see/copy/paste more than 10,000 rows quickly (sigh)