Mining data without being an expert

SAS Institute Logo at CeBIT 2010

SAS Institute Inc.

Data Mining experts are a rare species in a companies business habitat, in contrary to the rather common analyst. That is why more and more  data mining tools arise that try to avoid experts and give smaller or even more complicate reports into the hands of the business analyst. Big vendor SAS now offers a new product that fits into that scheme; the SAS Rapid Predictive Modeler.

SAS stressed that this tool indeed focusses on the business analyst, and says it will enable even subject-matter experts with limited statistical expertise to build reliable and robust data mining models. This eventually leading to useful and descriptive reports and graphs.

SAS Rapid Predictive Modeler

SAS® Rapid Predictive Modeler Screenshot

It works with the visual interface of either SAS Enterprise Guide or Microsoft Excel, with the SAS Add-In for Microsoft Office.

The user is guided automatically through the data preparation and all the necessary data mining tasks.

SAS stated that statisticians may “generate quick, baseline models when they are short on time and resources”. This actually says that if you have a bit more time and resources, it may end up in better-than-baseline results. When using the big brother of the tool: the Rapid Predictive Modeler is a part of SAS Enterprise Miner 6.2, which must be licensed anyway.

Regarding to the license costs, companies probably should spend some extra money and hire a good data miner, too. But a common business analysts’ result definitely is a good benchmark that has to be beaten by the common data mining experts

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