Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Microsoft Excel Functions and Formulas – a book review

As vacation time approaches, the normal thing to do is to plan the vacation budget. Ever since Lotus 1-2-3 bit the dust, Microsoft Excel is the de-facto program you’ll probably use. But, similar to Photoshop, Excel is one of those programs where you probably only use 10% of its computing capabilities.

Microsoft Excel Functions and Formulas was written for those of you who know the basics, but have never scratched the surface of what else could be done. In a very direct manner, it gives hundreds of scenarios and how to craft an Excel formula to solve it.

This isn’t a beginner’s book on how to use Excel, although a beginner could probably benefit from it. It rather gives you step-by-step solutions to solve a range of problems such as:
  • ·         Converting dollars to euros
  • ·         Converting miles per hour to KM per hour
  • ·         Converting fahrenheit to celcius
  • ·         Using the INDIRECT function to play “Battleship”
  • ·         Using conditional formatting to create your vacation gantt chart
  • ·         Creating your own calendar or to do list
  • ·         Using the WEEKNUM and MOD functions to shade bi-weekly paydays on the calendar

The book also comes with a CD-ROM. Each chapter in the book appears on the CD so you can use the calculations without having to rekey them all yourselves.

My only regret was that there were no examples given or even touched on concerning pivot tables.

Microsoft Excel Functions and Formulas is one of those books you can pick up and become productive with immediately. No need to read the entire book, but you can refer to a problem and learn its solution right away. 

Look for it on Amazon.com.

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