SAS announces general availability of SAS Viya Workbench developer environment for building AI models  

Lightweight developer canvas facilitates rapid SAS or Python coding in a cloud-native, scalable environment  

SAS announced expanded capabilities of the SAS® Viya® flagship data and AI platform today, including the general availability of SAS Viya Workbench. Targeted to developers and modelers, Viya Workbench is a self-service, on-demand compute environment for conducting data preparation, exploratory data analysis, and developing analytical and machine learning models.

“While SAS Viya is the foundation of the SAS software ecosystem, the company is evolving its portfolio with innovative products to meet diverse user needs,” said Kathy Lange, Research Director for AI Software, IDC. “New offerings like SAS Viya Workbench – an on-demand analytics environment – aim to increase productivity, enhance performance and build trust among AI developers.” 

Developer canvas for experimentation and exploration

Viya Workbench allows developers and modelers to work in the language of their choice, initially SAS and Python, with R available by the end of 2024. Using an intuitive and flexible interface, Viya Workbench offers two development environment options – Jupyter Notebook/JupyterLab and Visual Studio Code.

Tapping into powerful SAS analytical procedures (PROCs) and native Python APIs within Viya Workbench accelerates development of high-performance AI models. Additionally, state-of-the-art, custom Python libraries – unique to Viya Workbench – can significantly improve speed and performance with minimal changes to a developer’s existing Python program. 

Viya Workbench is a flexible, scalable and efficient development environment that is on-demand, self-provisioning and self-terminating with minimal IT support. The dedicated analytical environment features customizable CPU/GPU compute power to match the needs of the project. Models and other results can be leveraged in SAS Viya for data management, governance and operational deployment.

Viya Workbench will initially be available through the Amazon AWS Marketplace in Q2, with future plans for additional supported cloud providers and a software-as-a-service deployment option.

Increased developer productivity, faster AI innovation 

The business case for Viya Workbench is strong. AI developers and modelers want to work with modern, open source packages and cutting-edge cloud compute, but they are also under pressure to deliver fast results and manage costs. In addition, they want prebuilt, scalable infrastructures that allow them to focus on creating, innovating, iterating and testing their work.

“The many challenges developers face aren’t just minor annoyances – they are obstacles that prevent questions from being answered and work from getting done,” said Jared Peterson, Senior Vice President of Engineering, SAS. “Viya Workbench provides maximum flexibility and results by allowing developers to use their language and IDE [integrated development environment] of choice, tailor compute power up or down to meet the needs of the project, and ultimately boost their productivity and efficiency. They can work faster, be more creative and take more risks – which, let’s be honest, is not only what’s expected but it makes the job more fun.” 

Learn more about SAS Viya Workbench online at

Today's announcement was made at SAS Innovate, the data and AI experience for business leaders, technical users and SAS Partners. Keep up with the latest news from SAS by following @SASsoftwareNews on X/Twitter.

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Tapping into powerful SAS analytical procedures (PROCs) and native Python APIs within Viya Workbench accelerates development of high-performance AI models.