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Quartz | Level 8

I have not visited this post for a while, and it is good to hear some feedback and I am glad the concern about the lack of development in WRS and the EBI platform is not just from me. SAS have done well at looking into ways of bringing the visual analytics platform into the reach of more of its customers with less onerous dependence on hardware, but the fact remains that many of us have invested much into the EBI platform and can’t just pick up and move into VA. The enhancement in WRS in the last 4 years have been minimal (the next release is 4.4), whilst VA has rocketed to version 6.2. And I have made suggestions, and even asking WRS to support the latest mapping component (there is no intention to update its compatibility from  ArcGIS Server 10.0 when we will be up to version 10.2 next month), is not considered priority whilst VA has a slick new Google like mapping capability, which will see continued improvements and development.

I think that those customers that have supported EBI deserve to see the type of enhancements that have gone into VA. There is no longer anything to really look forward to in the EBI world whilst VA gets all the hype. My suggestion would be for SAS to make the VA interface compatible with EBI and bundle it in with the EBI platform. I think that after seeing next to no improvements in WRS over the last 4 years, we are entitled to it.

Lapis Lazuli | Level 10

In the meantime I have visited SAS global forum 2013.

without going into details, the message i got is that for ebi server, there will be bug fixing and minor enhancements only from this time on; the road ahead is va, but where that road is heading to is not exactly clear.

also there will be no migration path for ebi content to va.

SAS Employee

We have already moved down the path of providing bundles that include both BI and VA. There are certainly cases where one solution is more appropriate than the other. When we release the next version of our mobile BI app (later this summer), you will be able to surface WRS reports through the mobile application. You can also leverage relational data information maps by registering them as a data source in metadata.

With ESRI, I know that we have had challenges in updating support to the newer version. There have been some architecture changes with ESRI , but we are still working to make that happen.

With WRS, there will be at least a partial migration path for VA. The details of what will be supported are still being worked out.

Lapis Lazuli | Level 10

Diane, what do you mean with:

You can also leverage relational data information maps by registering them as a data source in metadata.

You can register information maps just as you do tables and other data sources, and then use that registered map as input to a new information map. The topic is covered in "Establishing Connectivity to a SAS Information Map" in SAS(R) 9.3 Intelligence Platform: Data Administration Guide, Second Edition

Lapis Lazuli | Level 10

ah thanks

Quartz | Level 8


its pretty obvious that EBI specific clients are on the way to deprecation. How then do you explain the pages of new features for VA in the SAS 9.4 release, whilst WRS and OLAP studio/server gets six trivial enhancements between them, IM studio gets no enhancements (are IM's even compatible with 9.3 stored processes yet?), and AMO and EG enhancements basically revolve around compatibility with VA?

Will SAS please spell out a clear and accurate roadmap for EBI, and perhaps provide some details on how all those EBI  users who are generously donating their licence fees to VA development can benefit from the VA client?



SAS Employee

Hi Nick! Thanks for your feedback, and taking the time to read our new doc! Smiley Happy Here is my perspective:

  • Visual Analytics (VA) is a new software release. It's less than 2 years old? So, it's going to continue to grow very quickly in terms of us adding capabilities.
  • EBI is over 10 years old now. Oy - time flies. It is a much more mature product and continues to add value to customers with fewer enhancements (quantitatively speaking). EBI has also been upgraded to work with the new 9.4 architecture, so we are still committed to supporting this solution bundle for the foreseeable future.
  • Information Maps have been available for use in stored processes (using the information maps libname engine) in 9.3 since the beginning. Perhaps you can clarify where you think there is a gap in our support here? Information maps can also be leveraged in Visual Analytics.

I think we have been pretty clear that the Visual Analytics architecture is the framework we are consolidating on for our BI/Reporting solutions in the future. Just as it is for all our solutions, we respect that license fees are paid to us to provide our customers with the best experience we can to solve their analytical and reporting challenges. We are working hard to provide a path forward for our EBI users to move into the VA paradigm.

I think the important question you ask is how EBI customers can also benefit from Visual Analytics. I think this deserves a separate thread, and I will pull together some highlights to post to the community.

Quartz | Level 8

Thanks for the quick reply.

The incompatibility I am describing can be found here: Prompts don't work properly if you use 9.3 stored processes.

I don't buy the argument that EBI is an older platform and so will have fewer enhancements. The BI web clients haven't changed in 4 years apart from minor tweaks whilst clients such as AMO and SAS EG have changed drastically. I get it - you can't enhance two products that are supposed to do the same thing, but whilst we wait for VA to mature, organisations such as ours have to figure the best path to take. I am happy for our organisation to move to the VA paradigm, but who is going to foot the bill for that transition? All I am trying to achieve is for existing EBI customers to not get the short end of the stick by this drastic change in direction that SAS is taking.

So yes, a separate thread on how SAS is going to achieve this would be appreciated.


Quartz | Level 8

Hi all,

I found this site today.  It is one year since the last post.  Our site is getting ready to move to producing worldwide reports using Business Intelligence and Web Report Studio.  Are we making a mistake by not starting with Visual Analytics?  I would hate to have to learn how to develop code in Enterprise Guide, EBI and WRS only to learn that I have to learn VA in a year.

Lapis Lazuli | Level 10

SAS has, in the meantime, officially communicated that WRS and BI Dashboard are replaced by VA.

WRS and BI Dashboard are still supported but they won't get enhancements, apart from bug fixes,

Quartz | Level 8

Thank you! 

I am not surprised.  I've been using SAS since version 6.  Any time SAS says "for the foreseeable future", they usually end something within the forseeable future.  In my experience, "forseeable" lasts until the end of the day that the person writes "foreseeable".  Smiley Happy

Quartz | Level 8

It is, as I predicted, 2 years ago.

VA looks like a great product, and if you have the money and the time, I would suggest you move over to using VA now, before being stuck with an obsolete platform.


Quartz | Level 8

@ralph ... Not me, no papers from me Smiley Wink

Calcite | Level 5

Thank you for making the effort to go over this, Personally i think strongly about this and love learning more about this subject. If at all possible, while you gain expertise, can you mind upgrading your site with increased information? It's very useful for me personally.


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