Excel Roundup 20180322

Spring has finally arrived, so here is a "Goodbye  Winter" Excel Roundup, with articles that I've read recently, and upcoming Excel events and free online courses that I've heard about. To get Excel links and articles every week, sign up for my weekly Excel newsletter.

Data Viz

Best Lists - Here's a round up of the best data visualization lists from last year, compiled by data journalist, Maarten Lambrechts. This should inspire you for your 2018 projects.

Beginners - On the Flowing Data blog, Nathan Yau posted a link to Beginners Guide to Visualization literacy. Click that link, then click the "static version" link.

Dashboards - Audry Loper shows how she changed boring 6-page reports into informative 2-page reports. Her tips are useful for Excel dashboards too. And if you want to make those dumbbell charts, Mynda Treacy has instructions.

Charts - Jon Peltier shows how to work with blank cells, or #N/A cells in Excel charts. There are details for older versions of Excel, and the new setting in Excel 2016.

Excel Tips

Top Tips - Listen to John Michaloudis' podcast, to hear the best Excel tips from 2017. My pivot table tip is #8, at the 14:00 mark. The podcast player is at the top of the article, and you can download to listen offline.

Excel Tips - Neil Patel shares 7 advanced Excel tips. The examples show how to analyze website data, but are useful for other types of Excel projects too. NOTE: Tip #4 is a function for Google Sheets, not Excel.

Comments - On the Excel Esquire blog, Ben J. Kusmin shows how to find and review comments in Excel files. There are comment macros on my site, and comment tools in my Excel Tools add-in.

Data Entry - Jan Karel Pieterse shows how to add an Info button for data entry cells. He uses Excel Styles and hyperlinks, but you could keep it simple and skip those steps. Add them later, for a fancier setup.

Advanced Excel

Excel Ribbon - Doug Glancy is sharing his free tool to create and edit the code for custom tabs in Excel Ribbons. Doug couldn't use the Custom UI Editor that I showed, so he built his own add-in that runs within Excel (2010 and later versions).

Security - A recent security update has given admins the ability to disable Excel's Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE) prompts. Woody Leonhard explains the changes, and where you can find the details - they're in an old security bulletin!

Excel Oddities

Odd Facts - On the Data Rails blog, they posted "6 Cool Facts About Excel", but I can't find any proof of the 2nd (names) or 3rd (toolbars) items. Mike Alexander also mentioned those facts in an old post, and there's some discussion in the comments, but no links to a source.

Early Days - If you remember the early days of personal computing, you might find this story as funny as I did. Lots of executives suddenly had to do their own computer work, and it was a struggle!

Planning - Nick Orso has an interesting use for Excel - planning the layout of a mobile cabin. Skateboards are involved too!

Photography – For an entertaining use of spreadsheets, watch this video on Excel and HDR photography.

Excel Conferences

UK Excel – Would you be interested in an Excel related conference in the UK this year? If you are, please leave a comment on Simon Murphy's blog post.

Unlock Excel: CPA Australia is hosting another round of Unlock Excel conferences in April 2018. Events are in the following cities: Melbourne: April 9-10, Sydney: April 12-13, Brisbane: April 16-17. Get all the details on the Unlock Excel website.

Amsterdam Summit: Registration is open for this year's Amsterdam Excel Summit - June 7-8, 2018. The Summit day (June 7) will have a keynote address by a Microsoft Program Manager, and 8 sessions split over 2 tracks. On Masterclass day (June 8), there are two options - Excel Business Modeling and Power Query.

Excelapalooza: This Excel-based user conference is in its 7th year, and runs Sept. 17-19, 2018, in Dallas, Texas. Get more details on the Excelapalooza website.

Online Courses

Problem Solving - Mike Girvin (ExcelIsFun) has an interesting new "Excel and Business Math" series on YouTube. This video shows the 5 key steps for solving math problems in Excel.

Statistics - If you'd like to learn more about statistics, Crash Course has a great intro series on YouTube. It might help you get ready to use Excel's statistical functions.

Power Query - Learn more about Power Query, from experts Ken Puls and Miguel Escobar. Get the free trial of their online Power Query Academy, and watch 7 videos from their full course (about 1 hour).

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