Excel Roundup 20150309
Last week, we saw a preview of Tableau's Elastic app for spreadsheets. This week, you can see another beta add-in – BigPicture, from Palisade. It looks like Visio combined with Excel's built-in drawing tools and SmartArt graphics.
Currently, you can download a free copy of the beta, to try it out (Windows only, Excel 2007 or later).
Watch this short video, to see how it works -- the demo starts at the 1:30 mark.
Or watch on YouTube: BigPicture Demo
Here’s what I posted recently:
- Use Excel's TRIMMEAN function to calculate an average that excludes a specified percentage of outliers, from the top and bottom of the data.
- For a humorous peek at what other people are saying about spreadsheets, read the latest collection of Excel tweets, on my Excel Theatre blog.
Other Excel Articles
Here are a few of the Excel articles that I read recently, that you might find useful.
- Of course, you already knew this, but the Wall Street Journal has confirmed that Excel skills are key to landing a job that pays well. The last paragraph reveals details on who funded the report.
- On the Junk Charts blog, Kaiser Fung shares data science principles, including this quote from Hans Rosling, "the passion of the people plus Excel were all you need. You don't need fancy software."
- If you do programming in Excel VBA, or another language, you'll no doubt agree with Andrew Wulf's comment, "Every programming language has pluses and minuses and brilliance and dumb-ass."
- Performance updates, and other updates, have been added to Power Query. You can read the details, and download the update.
- On LifeHacker, Rick Delgado shows 7 ways to visualize data without Excel. How many of them really are "a better way"?
- Doug Glancy had trouble changing a letter from upper to lower case in a pivot table label, but found a workaround. Bonus tip: Do not let drunken monkeys near your computer!
- Chris Newman posted sample code to help you get started with programming charts and graphics in Excel.
- In his latest podcast, Chandoo explains how to make things disappear in Excel. I hope he also tells us how to make them re-appear! You can also download the transcript, in case you'd rather read the info.
- The Office 2016 for Mac preview has been released, and you can download it and see what you think of the new features. The Excel screen shot shows a pink pie chart and a rainbow-coloured table, but claims the new version is "retina-friendly".
- Ken Puls shows how to consolidate multiple worksheet print areas with Power Query. To keep the setup save, he warns that you need "anticipate the scope of what your users are likely to do". Good luck with that!
Here are some upcoming events, courses, recently published books, and other new items, related to Excel.
- Frankie and Matilda Learn Excel, by Denise Humphrey
- This is the first Excel book I've seen that's aimed at children (ages 6-18)
- "Frankie (a dog) and Matilda (a cat) have been arguing all day about who eats the most food and they decide the best solution is to create a spreadsheet in Excel…You can create a spreadsheet like Frankie and Matilda's as you follow the story and you can download data to practice in your own time if you wish."
- Microsoft Office for iPad Step by Step, by Joan Lambert
- "This is learning made easy. Get productive fast with every Office for iPad app–plus OneNote, too! Jump in wherever you need answers–brisk lessons and colorful screen shots show you exactly what to do, step by step."
- Amsterdam Excel Summit, April 13-15, 2015. Mark your calendar for April 13-15, so you can attend this amazing Excel event. Last year's summit was an outstanding success, and registration will open soon, for this year's event. Registration is now open, and you can click here to register.
Share Your Events and Articles
If you read or wrote any other interesting Excel articles recently, or have upcoming Excel events, please let me know. Thanks!
Links to Recent Excel Books on Amazon.com