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Archive for the ‘MS Excel’ Category



Going to the Edge

Friday, November 17th, 2006

Going to the Edge

Are you an Excel user who often works with huge ranges of data?

It’s sort of annoying when you’re trying to move from one end of the range to the other, isn’t it?

You can scroll for what feels like an eternity (and then probably pass the end of the data up anyway) or hit the Page Up / Down key about a million times. But… Continue reading

Separate Ranges

Monday, November 6th, 2006

Separate Ranges

Do you print different ranges of Excel data? You know, select parts of Excel worksheets?

You highlight one range of cells, hold down the Ctrl key and then highlight another range. When you’ve finally highlighted all the sections, you use Ctrl + P and tell Excel to print the selection.

What happens?

Well, let’s just say that it’s probably not what you were bargaining for. You get all… Continue reading

Let Excel Proofread

Friday, November 3rd, 2006

Let Excel Proofread

So, you’ve just entered a formula into an MS Excel cell and you get this: #NAME.

Now, what’s that?

Well, it turns out that you’re looking at Excel’s way of letting you know you’ve used a name Excel doesn’t recognize.

For me, it most commonly means that I’ve entered the name of a function with a typo and now Excel is confused.

If you have a short… Continue reading

Extending Your Chart Data

Friday, October 27th, 2006

Extending Your Chart Data

So, you’ve got a beautiful Excel chart (known to some of you as a graph) and it’s the perfect thing to display your data.

It’s got all the labels, colors, titles and every other aspect any good chart would have, but of all the bad luck, now you’ve got to start over.

Why, you ask?

Well, unfortunately you’ve got more data to add to the chart.… Continue reading

A Grid of a Different Color

Friday, October 13th, 2006

A Grid of a Different Color

Do you find it difficult to look at Excel’s grid for too long?

Or, maybe when you look at the screen, it seems to your eyes that all those gridlines are overpowering the data? That sure makes it hard to work on your worksheet when you have difficulty seeing the data, doesn’t it?

One option might be to tell Excel to stop displaying the… Continue reading

Cruising Around Your Charts

Friday, October 13th, 2006

Cruising Around Your Charts

Use Excel charts?

Find it difficult to select just the “right” portion of your chart? Or, maybe you’ve got the opposite problem. You can select portions easily, but you can’t seem to easily select the whole thing? Tired of the mis-clicks?

Whatever your selection problems may be, you just might find a solution if you give these a try.

Let’s begin big. To select the entire… Continue reading

To Update or Not to Update

Friday, October 13th, 2006

To Update or Not to Update

Did you know that there’s a choice as to how you insert the date or time into an Excel worksheet?

Did you know that you could choose to have the date or time entered as a piece of data that doesn’t change or as a field that will be updated when you open the file or press the F9 key?

Well, as you can… Continue reading

Drag and Drop Between Worksheets

Friday, October 6th, 2006

Drag and Drop Between Worksheets

So, you’ve got some data in an Excel worksheet that you need to move to a new location.

The only thing, it’s within the same sheet. Well, that’s no problem!

I’m positive that we all know about highlighting the data to be moved and then using the mouse pointer on the very edge of the selected cell(s) to click and drag the data to a… Continue reading

Copy Excel Formulas Exactly

Friday, September 22nd, 2006

Copy Excel Formulas Exactly

Ever have to create a column of formulas that are very similar? When you completed a copy / paste, were you upset to find that the cell references were changed during the paste?

Would you prefer that Excel leave your formula alone and simply copy the formula from the cell above without any changes?

The ability to force Excel to perform an exact copy of the… Continue reading

Center Stage

Friday, September 15th, 2006

Center Stage

Ever have something to print from MS Excel that was just too small? Was it all cramped up in the top left hand corner?

Wish you could find a quick and easy way to center the printout on the page (without moving that data all around the worksheet?)

Rub the monitor three times and poof! Your wish is my command.

Centering Excel data is just a few clicks… Continue reading

Make it Stand Out in Excel

Friday, September 8th, 2006

Make it Stand Out in Excel

Every once in awhile, we all have data in MS Excel that just needs to be presented with some “oomph.” Am I right?

Do you like to use AutoShapes or text boxes to draw the reader’s attention to specific information?

Maybe you’d be interested to know that the two can be combined. That is, you can put cell data into a text box or… Continue reading

Excel Cells Into MS Word

Friday, September 8th, 2006

Excel Cells Into MS Word

Have you ever tried to copy and paste cells from Excel to Word?

What happened?

I bet you went to Excel, highlighted the cells, copied the cells, went to Word, pasted the cells and poof! There they were.

Sounds great, doesn’t’ it?

Yeah, and it can be, but if you’re using Word and Excel 97, there are some slight problems.

You might notice that you… Continue reading

Copy Just Chart Formats

Friday, September 1st, 2006

Copy Just Chart Formats

Ever have a chart in MS Excel with what you considered the perfect formatting?

You’ve chosen just the right color combinations, font type and size, font alignment, spacing, etc. and you wouldn’t change a thing, no matter how much time you have to work on it.

Wish that the formatting could be applied to other Excel charts without all the individual changes it requires? Something like… Continue reading

Border It Quick

Friday, August 18th, 2006

Border It Quick

Often times, I find that when working in MS Excel, I’m trying to put a border around a cell or a group of cells. I’m sure many of you do the same, am I right?

So, what can you do?

Well, you select the cell(s) to be bordered, use the mouse to either set the borders from the handy button on the toolbar/ribbon or you can navigate… Continue reading

Super Quick Excel Charts

Friday, August 11th, 2006

Super Quick Excel Charts

That’s right, not just a quick way to Excel charts, but a super quick way!

In fact, in just two quick steps, you too can have a beautiful graph of your data.

Ready?

1. Select a cell in the data.

2. Hit the F11 key.

Poof!

Instantly, Excel creates a chart sheet with the data already in column form.

If you’re looking for a quick comparison… Continue reading

Keep It Blank

Friday, August 4th, 2006

Keep It Blank

Here’s another tip that stems from my file of reader questions. Ever have MS Excel data filling every other row? You know, with a row of data, blank row then another row of data?

Ever try using the fill handle to drag data down a column? What happened?

Yep, that’s right. To your complete horror, you filled every row!

So, now what? Do you add data by… Continue reading

Special Data Formatting – The Easy Way

Do you enter a lot of special data into MS Excel, such as zip codes, phone numbers or social security numbers?

Ever find yourself wishing that the parenthesis and / or dashes would just fill themselves into the correct locations? I mean, wouldn’t it be faster if you could just key 5551234567 in for a phone number and have (555) 123-4567 appear in… Continue reading

One Change = Many Changes

Friday, July 21st, 2006

One Change = Many Changes

Have you ever had an MS Excel workbook in which you find yourself constantly making the same changes to several different worksheets?

What did you do?

Did you go to the first sheet, make changes, move to the next sheet, make the same changes, move to the next sheet, again make the same changes, etc. (You get the idea, right?)

How tiresome was that?

Want… Continue reading

Set It Up Only Once

Friday, July 21st, 2006

Set It Up Only Once

By now, I’m sure most of you are aware that in MS Excel, you have different page setups for each worksheet.

How frustrated are you when you realize you’re in the Page Setup window, yet again, making the same changes you’ve made over and over for each worksheet in the book?

Or, what about the occasions when you insert a new worksheet into an established… Continue reading

Starting Over

Friday, July 14th, 2006

Starting Over

So, you’re looking through your Excel workbook and you realize that you’ve got way too many different formats. You’ve got different fonts, font sizes and things like bold and underline effects everywhere. Nothing seems consistent with anything else.

Looking for a way to start over without manually removing it all or building the worksheet again from scratch?

Never fear, because I’ve got just the thing to strip your… Continue reading

Quick Sheet Selection in MS Excel

Friday, July 7th, 2006

Quick Sheet Selection in MS Excel

Do you have a big Excel file?

One that contains lots of worksheets?

Are you irritated with the constant scrolling back and forth to move between the sheets?

Or, maybe you like to use the Ctrl + Page Up / Down option. That works well, but it gets old after awhile. Finally, maybe you just prefer to use your mouse. So, now what?

Want… Continue reading

DATEDIF

Friday, July 7th, 2006

DATEDIF

Have you ever found yourself trying to find the time difference between two dates?

That is, how many days, months or years have passed between the two?

What did you do?

For some things, it’s a matter of a calendar and a lot of counting.

Not very efficient, is it?

No, I didn’t think so either.

Want a quicker way to find the time difference between dates?

Yes? I… Continue reading

What’s the #### in My Worksheet?

Friday, June 30th, 2006

What’s the #### in My Worksheet?

Have you ever found yourself happily working in MS Excel only to be befuddled by the sudden appearance of #### in a cell where there should be a number?

Or maybe something along the lines of 2E+15 appeared?

Now, what is that?

Good question, and believe it or not, there’s a good answer. (You may not like the answer, but it’s a valid one… Continue reading

Drop Cap

Friday, June 30th, 2006

Drop Cap

What is a drop cap? Well, it is that ever so small, yet beautiful addition to a document. You may be amazed at how easy it is to put such a great touch on your documents.

To put a Drop Cap on your publication, you should first decide where the drop should happen.

Once the decision is made, the rest is quick and easy.

You begin by… Continue reading

Left, Right, Up or Down

Friday, June 23rd, 2006

Left, Right, Up or Down?

Default settings in MS Excel use the Enter key to move your cell selection one cell down.

Okay, so that covers the downward movement, but what if you want to move the selection up, right or left?

Well, one way is to move your fingers from their usual positions on the keyboard and then use the arrow keys.

Certainly not a bad plan and it… Continue reading

Relocate in Seconds

Friday, June 23rd, 2006

Relocate In Seconds

If you recall, during the creation of an MS Excel chart, we have to pick a location for the chart creation. In other words, where do you want Excel to put the graph?

You have two choices: you could embed it as an object in a worksheet or you could put it on its own chart sheet.

Ever find yourself wishing you’d made a different choice?

Maybe… Continue reading

Bits and Pieces

Friday, June 23rd, 2006

Bits and Pieces

Did you know that you can choose to format only part of what’s in an MS Excel cell?

Maybe you’ve got some text in a cell and need a couple of words bolded? Maybe a different font style or size is required for just a portion of the cell contents.

Either way, what do you do?

Can it even be done?

The answer you’re looking to hear… Continue reading

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