43 Folders

Back to Work

Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.

Join us via RSS, iTunes, or at 5by5.tv.

”What’s 43 Folders?”
43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.

Open Thread: How are you using Excel?

Yesterday, I mentioned I'd been talking with someone who's looking at interesting things people are doing with Microsoft Excel. I talked to her again yesterday, and with her official okey-dokey, I'll virtually introduce Tralee Pearce (*waves*), a reporter from Toronto's Globe & Mail whom you might remember from a very swell article about the Hipster PDA.

So, by request -- and to help Tralee with fleshing out her fun-sounding article -- I hope you all will jump in here: What kind of cool, novel, and non-obvious stuff are you doing with Excel? What's the wildest, most obsessive, most nerdy thing you ever saw someone do with our favorite spreadsheet program?

don's picture

I have a few spreadsheets...

I have a few spreadsheets that I keep open.

First is a to-do list spreadsheet. I keep projects organized by due date and broken down into manageable chunks. I then do a simple formula that divides the number of days until the due date by the number of chunks and tells me how much I need to do on that project today to meet the due date.

Second is the spreadsheet that I use to keep track of my progress on my novel. It then calculates my completion date based on when I'd be done if I wrote 1500 words per day (my platonic ideal which I have yet to achieve), if I wrote the amount that I wrote today every day, and the average per day since I started keeping track (including 0s for the days that I didn't write at all). It averages those to give me the ECD that appears on my blog at the end of each entry. I also set goals for the day based on my previous average writing, what it will take to be finished by year's end, and what it will take to hit 50,000 words by the end of October (so that when I do the 50,000 word sprint in November for NaNoWriMo, I can finish at that point).




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


Subscribe with Google Reader

Subscribe on Netvibes

Add to Technorati Favorites

Subscribe on Pageflakes

Add RSS feed

The Podcast Feed


Merlin used to crank. He’s not cranking any more.

This is an essay about family, priorities, and Shakey’s Pizza, and it’s probably the best thing he’s written. »

Scared Shitless

Merlin’s scared. You’re scared. Everybody is scared.

This is the video of Merlin’s keynote at Webstock 2011. The one where he cried. You should watch it. »