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Chapter 1. An Introduction to SAS/IML So... > 1.2 Comparing the SAS/IML Language a... - Pg. 5

1.2. Comparing the SAS/IML Language and the DATA Step 5 You can read data from a SAS data set into a matrix. You can pass matrices to functions. Many functions act on the columns of a matrix by default. You can perform mathematical operations on matrices and vectors by using a natural syntax. You can analyze data and compute statistics without writing loops. Notice in the program that there is no explicit loop over observations, nor is there a loop over the variables. In general, the SAS/IML language enables you to create compact programs by using a syntax that is natural and convenient for statistical computations. The language is described in detail in Chapter 2, "Getting Started with the SAS/IML Matrix Programming Language." 1.2 Comparing the SAS/IML Language and the DATA Step The statistical power of SAS procedures and the data manipulation capabilities of the DATA step are sufficient to serve the analytical needs of many data analysts. However, sometimes you need to implement a proprietary algorithm or an algorithm that has recently been published in a professional