It is a common joke at Intel about how Excel is used to run the company – in my experience that often doesn’t seem to be very far from the truth. I have been evaluating Office 2007 recently and have found a lot to like about it. The new UI was expecially nice and it seemed in my limited use to make it “easier” to do things. The only downside was that while I love the enhancements to Outlook – the thing isn’t stable enough to use for long periods of time – at least for me.
Okay – back to Excel – in 2007 – they are introducing the concept of tables in Excel – this link has a great screenshot tutorial/overview of the capability. Basically the idea is that when building formulas and calculated columns you no longer have to use cell references, but you can use columns names outlined in a header row. So if you have two columns named Out_Date and PrevOut_Date – you could add a third column called Cycletime which took Out_Date – PrevOut_Date as the formula – no A3, B7, etc.. References.