Basics of Spreadsheet, Introduction, Features of Spreadsheets, Features of MS Excel 2007, Starting Excel

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A spreadsheet is a large sheet having data and information arranged in rows and columns. As you know, Excel is one of the most widely used spreadsheet applications. It is a part of Microsoft Office suite. Spreadsheet is quite useful in entering, editing, analyzing and storing data.

Features of Spreadsheets

There are a number of features that are available in Excel to make your task easier. Some of the main features are:

  • AutoSum - helps you to add the contents of a cluster of adjacent cells.

  • List AutoFill - automatically extends cell formatting when a new item is added to the end of a list.

  • AutoFill - allows you to quickly fill cells with repetitive or sequential data such as chronological dates or numbers, and repeated text. AutoFill can also be used to copy functions.

  • AutoShapes toolbar will allow you to draw a number of geometrical shapes, arrows, flowchart elements, stars and more. You can draw your own graphs too.

  • Wizard - guides you to work effectively while you work by displaying various helpful tips and techniques based on what you are doing.

  • Drag and Drop - it will help you to reposition the data and text by simply dragging the data with the help of mouse.

  • Charts - it will help you in presenting a graphical representation of your data in the form of Pie, Bar, Line charts and more.

  • PivotTable - it flips and sums data in seconds and allows you to perform data analysis and generating reports like periodic financial statements, statistical reports, etc.

  • Shortcut Menus - the commands that are appropriate to the task that you are doing will appear by clicking the right mouse button.

Features of MS Excel 2007

Results-Oriented User Interface

Commands and features that were often buried in complex menus and toolbars are now easier to find on task-oriented tabs that contain logical groups of commands and features.

More Rows and Columns, and Other New Limits

It provides a user with 1,500% more rows and 6,300% more columns than the Microsoft Office Excel 2003. The formatting types are also increased to unlimited number in the same workbook as compared to the earlier limit of four thousand types of formatting.

Office Themes and Excel Styles

By the help of a specific style, in Excel 2007, the data can be quickly formatted in the worksheet by the help of a theme. You can share themes across other releases of Office 2007.

  • Applying a theme: Themes are used to make great-looking documents. A theme is defined as a predefined set of colors, lines, fonts and fills effects.

  • Using styles: A predefined theme-based format is called style. It can be applied to change the appearance of Excel charts, tables, PivotTables, diagrams or shapes. Styles can be customized to meet user specific requirements.

Rich Conditional Formatting

It is easy to use and apply conditional formats. A few tricks are required to observe the relationships in data, which helps to great extent for analysis purposes.

Easy Formula Writing

Some improvements that make formula writing much easier are as given below

  • Resizable formula bar: The formula bar automatically resizes to accommodate complex, long formulas.

  • Function Auto Complete: Function AutoComplete feature helps to write the proper formula syntax more quickly.

  • Structured references: Excel 2007 provides structured references to refer the named ranges and tables in a formula.

  • Easy access to named ranges: You can organize, update and handle multiple named ranges in a central location by the help of Excel 2007. This helps you to work on your worksheet, interpret its data and formulas.

Improved Sorting and Filtering

Enhanced filtering and sorting techniques of Excel can be used to arrange worksheet data more quickly to find the desired answers. In Excel 2007 you can sort data by color and by more than 3 levels.

Starting Excel

  • Click on (with the help of mouse) the Start button on the Taskbar at the bottom left corner of the Screen

  • Highlight the All Programs item. The program menu will open.

  • Select Microsoft Office from the list of programs.

  • Click on Microsoft Excel.

  • Symbolically these actions are shown below.

  • Select Start All ProgramsMicrosoft OfficeMicrosoft Excel 2007 commands from your menu bar.

  • You can also start Excel 2007 through run menu.

  • Type Excel in the open text box and click OK button. It will start MS Excel 2007.