Category Archives: Product Review

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The Best Excel Book to Purchase from Amazon

Microsoft Excel is supposed to make your life easier; but if you find using it brings you nothing but frustration, it may be time to find a good book that can teach you the ropes of using Excel. We're here to help with that.

We have compiled a list of the ten best Excel books that can help you use Excel with ease and to its full potential.

Microsoft Excel Books FAQs

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1. What Is Microsoft Excel?

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Excel for iPad – Paste as Values

Being a long standing Excel user and an avid Apple products consumer, I downloaded the new Microsoft Excel iPad app in April 2014 and quickly found out that you can’t do anything of substance until you pay a subscription fee. After looking at the available options I decided to purchase the Office 365 Personal yearly subscription, which is $69 + tax USD. It comes with full access to all Office iPad apps, OneDrive document storage in the cloud, and allows me to install the latest Office applications on a PC or Mac, which I haven’t … Read the rest

Break Even Calculation International Phone

Break Even Calculation with an Unlocked iPhone and International Rates

iPhone 4 PhotoI just upgraded my wife to a new iPhone 4S and since she’s finished with her contract, AT&T will now unlock her old iPhone 4.

Having an unlocked phone is advantageous when traveling overseas because you can pick up a Sim card with a phone plan and save some money. The question I want to answer here is, “Is it worth it?”

Phone Plans

I’ve spent time in the UK and the best place to get a Sim card or even buy an inexpensive mobile phone is with O2. Great coverage, products, service, and … Read the rest

Microsoft Query Incompatible with Mac OS X Lion [Updated]

Lion picThe other day I read an article on how to prepare my MacBook Pro for Lion, the new Mac OS X coming out this month, and discovered that any application that requires PowerPC is incompatible with Lion and will not work. See update at the end of this post.

So I followed the instructions to check all the installed programs on my MacBook Pro and was surprised to find that Microsoft Query will be incompatible. This will affect any Excel for Mac versions you might have on your computer — 2004, 2008, 2011.… Read the rest

Google Docs pivot tables

Pivot Tables in Google Docs

Mark my words, “This is the beginning of the end for Excel.” To be sure this is a long way off and I probably won’t see this in my lifetime, but make no mistake Pivot Tables in Google Docs spreadsheets marks the eventual decline of Microsoft Excel.

Google Docs pivot tables

Of course, part of me will refute this claim vociferously and to the death. But common sense dictates that this prized feature of Excel escaping to Google Docs is a big deal. Even if it’s not right now.

PivotTables are to me, the heart of Excel. They represent … Read the rest

VBA Help System Lacking in Excel 2011

Since never using the VBA Editor in Excel 2011 for Mac was a slight embarrassment, I thought to give it a whirl with a half-written function that was started in Excel 2010. I quickly found out the Editor’s windows have more of a free-floating style, but the programming looked to be quite the same.

VBA Editor Excel 2011

Until I wanted to find out whether to use the TypeName or VarType function and tried to access Help. This is something they make sufficiently hard enough that I didn’t find either function definition before giving up and deciding … Read the rest

Microsoft Office 2011 Document Connection

Microsoft Document ConnectionOne of the neat programs you get with Microsoft Office 2011 is Microsoft Document Connection. It allows you to interface with your SkyDrive without going through a web browser.

Once you open the program and sign in to your SkyDrive account all your online files are accessible. You can open the files in Read Only or Edit mode.

Document Connection SkyDrive Files

In Preferences I set all my files to open in Edit mode so that when I double click on a file, Excel 2011 downloads, then opens the file so I can make changes.

Documnent Connection Download Files

Once changes … Read the rest

Excel 2011 Ribbon Screen Shots

There are eight default tabs on the Excel 2011 Ribbon, and nine if you unhide the Developer tab. They are Home, Layout, Tables, Charts, SmartArt, Formulas, Data, Review, and Developer.

Comparing the Excel 2010 Ribbon, the new Windows version, where the tabs are Home, Insert, Page Layout, Formulas, Data, Review, View, and Developer.

The Tables, Charts and SmartArt tabs in Excel 2011 are new and different from Excel 2010, and seem to replace its Insert tab. The Layout tab is similar to Page Layout. The rest of the tabs have the … Read the rest

Excel 2011 for Mac – Installation, Preferences, and VBA

After reading all the great things about Microsoft Excel for Mac 2011 that were written before its release, I decided to purchase a copy. My primary goal was to have an Excel version on my MacBook Pro that allowed VBA macros, however the full Office software suite seemed to be a really great value.

I paid $174.99 USD for the Microsoft Office for Mac Home and Business 2011 – 1 Pack edition on after pre-ordering and receiving a $25 discount from their price assurance guarantee.

Excel 2011 Software Installation

What you get with the … Read the rest

A New Charts Editor – Google Docs Keeps Improving

Tuesday Google announced a New Charts Editor in Google Docs. This is important because Google continues to improve it’s spreadsheet offering in the cloud. And while in my opinion, Excel will always be the king of spreadsheets, Microsoft has to be aware that many younger people may very well use spreadsheets in Google Docs because it’s free. Hence, a new generation of people that may grow up without Excel.

There’s a short video on the Google Docs Blog about the new Charts Editor in Google Docs. They also show a few screen shots of some, … Read the rest

Introduction to PowerPivot

In the year 2000, I began to use Microsoft Query to pull data from corporate client’s database tables, using their raw data to create PivotTable reports. Each table required a different query, each linked by using VLOOKUP formulas. And of course the data had to be restricted to Excel’s 65,536 rows.

Soon I was having clients write queries to get around using VLOOKUP formulas and started pulling data into Microsoft Access to get around the row limitations. But to get data into Microsoft Excel, the primary interface was Microsoft Query. I don’t know the … Read the rest

OnLive icon

Microsoft Excel 2010 on the iPad with the OnLive Desktop

OnLive iconExcel 2010 iconThe gold standard for Microsoft Excel is the latest Windows version, Excel 2010, and the gold standard for tablets is the iPad. The OnLive Desktop App brings them together.

If you love Microsoft Excel and have an iPad, then this app is for you. I could go on and on and on about what a great combination these are, but I won’t. Instead I’ll give you an overview and let you rush right out and experience it for yourself.

An Overview

The OnLive Desktop is an iPad only app that’s free in the iTunes App … Read the rest