Searching for a spreadsheet solution for a practical issue? Here are several Excel advices: For more than 20 years, until Excel 2007, Excel users could use only Simple Tables as a spreadsheet database. This type of database can come in two styles: horizontal and vertical. Horizontal spreadsheet databases have their dates in one title row, as shown in the figure below. Typically, the date columns use monthly “buckets,” but they could use any time period required. And the Codes column could contain General Ledger account numbers, SKUs, employee codes, whatever. To illustrate the power this database offers, check out my Excel dashboard templates, which get their data from this type of Excel database. To update your report each period in those templates, you just update the database, change the report date in one cell, then recalculate Excel. If you rely on Excel databases for your other reports and analyses, all your reports could update just as easily.
Spreadsheets are composed of columns and rows that create a grid of cells. Typically, each cell holds a single item of data. Here’s an explanation of the three types of data most commonly used in spreadsheet programs: Number data, also called values, is used in calculations. By default, numbers are right aligned in a cell. In addition to actual numbers, Excel also stores dates and times as numbers. Other spreadsheet programs treat dates and times as a separate data category. Problems arise when numbers are formatted as text data. This prevents them from being used in calculations.
Excel automatically recognizes dates entered in a familiar format. For example, if you enter 10/31, Oct 31, or 31 Oct, Excel returns the value in the default format 31-Oct. If you want to learn how to use dates with formulas, see Properly Enter Dates in Excel with the DATE Function.
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Excel file formats: The macro-enabled file format for an Excel template Excel 2010 and Excel 2007. Stores VBA macro code or Excel 4.0 macro sheets (.xlm). .xla The Excel 97-2003 Add-In, a supplemental program that is designed to run additional code. Supports the use of VBA projects.
Text file formats: .txt Saves a workbook as a tab-delimited text file for use on the Macintosh operating system, and ensures that tab characters, line breaks, and other characters are interpreted correctly. Saves only the active sheet. .csv Saves a workbook as a comma-delimited text file for use on the Macintosh operating system, and ensures that tab characters, line breaks, and other characters are interpreted correctly. Saves only the active sheet.
Excel Tips and Tricks!
When creating a classmate address list, for example, you may need a diagonal link in the first cell to separate different attributes of rows and columns. How to make it? Everyone knows that Home->Font-> Borders can change different borders for a cell, and even add different colors. However, if you click More Borders, you will get more surprises, like a diagonal line. Click it and save—you can now make it immediately.
In order to retain the validity of data, sometimes you need to restrict the input value and offer some tips for further steps. For example, age in this sheet should be whole numbers and all people participating in this survey should be between 18 and 60 years old. To ensure that data outside of this age range isn’t entered, go to Data->Data Validation->Setting, input the conditions and shift to Input Message to give prompts like, “Please input your age with whole number, which should range from 18 to 60.” Users will get this prompt when hanging the pointer in this area and get a warning message if the inputted information is unqualified.