Excel Roundup 20140317

imageHappy St. Patrick’s Day! Four years ago, we celebrated by creating Ireland’s flag in Excel. The flag is a simple column chart, with the 3 columns coloured to match the flag’s design. It’s an easy project, so you’ll be done in time to go out to celebrate.

Irish flag in Excel blog.contextures.com/

The blog post also has a video of some festive Canadian Irish music, featuring Great Big Sea, playing with The Chieftains. I’ve linked to it again this year, at the end of this post. The music will get your toes tapping, while you work on Excel projects today.

Contextures Posts

Here’s what I posted last week:

  • If the items in a pivot table Report Filter drop down are out of order, here's how to sort them.
  • Finally, for a humorous peek at what other people are saying about Excel, read this week's collection of Excel tweets, on my Excel Theatre blog.

Other Excel Articles

Here are a few of the Excel articles that I read last week, that you might find useful:

  • You can pick a business book to read, based on your favourite book as a child. The Excel Bible isn’t listed, but what children’s book would be a a good match for that?
  • Did you read any of the articles that explained how Steve Ballmer, Microsoft’s former CEO, used Excel to balance his work and family time? He said “a spreadsheet”, but I’m sure he meant Excel. Or could he still be using MultiPlan?
  • Chandoo shows us the 6 best charts to use, when you want to show your progress against a goal. There’s a sample file to download, so you can experiment on your own.
  • Jon Acampora recommends the best keyboards if you like to use Excel's keyboard shortcuts. My laptop looks like most of the "bad" pictures in the article.
  • Ross Hall explains what you should do if you inherit a spreadsheet that nobody really understands.

Excel Resources

Here are some upcoming events, courses and new books, related to Excel.

  • Registration is open for the Amsterdam Excel Summit. The one-day event runs on May 14, 2014, and features sessions by several Excel MVPs, such as Bill Jelen (Mr. Excel), Ken Puls and Charles Williams. All the sessions are in English, and the limit is 100 participants, so sign up now, if you’re interested.

What Did You Read?

If you read (or wrote) any other interesting Excel articles recently, that you’d like to share, please add a comment below, or send me an email.

Please include a brief description, and a link to the article.

Toe Tapping Music

Here’s the video, to put you in the St. Patrick’s Day mood – Lukey, by Great Big Sea, with The Chieftains.

Or watch on YouTube: Lukey, by Great Big Sea


Make an Irish flag in Excel blog.contextures.com/

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12 Responses

  1. Hi Deb,

    I posted a new article on my blog on how to use Cartesian Products in MS Access and MS Query to generate random data: http://dataprose.org/2014/03/its-a-cartesian-product-dummy/

    Kind regards,

  2. Jon Acampora says:

    Hi Debra,

    I hope I did not offend your laptop keyboard. :) Most of those “bad” pics are of my laptop, so it does not have the best layout for keyboard shortcuts either. Most laptops don’t… Thanks for the link!

    • Thanks Jon! My laptop isn’t offended, but those key positions do cause problems sometimes. I frequently turn off Num Lock accidentally, and sometimes end up in insert mode. At least it has a number pad!

  3. Jon Acampora says:

    Ah yes the old Num Lock issue. That’s a good one I should add to the article. Just out of curiosity, what laptop do you use?

  4. Jeff Weir says:

    That is VERY funny!

  5. Lynda Maynard says:

    I use a Razer Anansi gamer’s keyboard because it’s got 12 extra programmable keys I can assign my frequently-used macros to. When I got it, I said to the store clerk “Go ahead – ask me what I play”. He asked, and I replied “Excel VBA!”

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