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Sas Formats: Uses and Abuses

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Abstract: SAS formats are a very powerful tool. They allow you to display the data in a more readable manner without modifying it. Formats can also be used to group data into categories for use in various procedures like PROC FREQ, PROC TTEST, and PROC MEANS (as a class variable). As with many powerful tools, there are some 'gotchas' to be aware of. Formats can crash a program without specific options. They can produce misleading information; this is especially true for picture format. There are many aspects of formats to consider, including 'built-in' or 'user defined' formats. A format may be temporary or permanent. The PUT and INPUT functions can be used to generate new variables using formats. If you have several format libraries, managing the formats can be difficult. The SAS dictionary tables are useful in managing the different formats. Code and output examples demonstrate the various uses and potential abuses of SAS formats.

This paper has been reviewed in accordance with the Untied States Environmental Protection Agency's peer and administrative review policies and approved for presentation and publication. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.
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Citation:Croghan, C. Sas Formats: Uses and Abuses. Presented at Southeastern SAS User Group, St. Petersburg, FL, September 22-24, 2003EPA/600/A-03/180 (NTIS PB2004-100887).
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Contact: Liz Hope - (919) 541-2785 or hope.elizabeth@epa.gov
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Division: Human Exposure & Atmospheric Sciences Division
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Branch: Immediate Office
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Product Type: Sympos/Conf
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Presented: 09/23/2003
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Related Entries:
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Bullet Item Human Exposure Database Support and Management
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