43 Folders

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

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”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?

Matthew's picture

When I was a schoolteacher,...

When I was a schoolteacher, I used Excel to track my students' mastery of specific objectives. I could not only see at a glance whether my students were demonstrating competence in, say, double-digit addition, I could tailor assignments for specific students and print out progress reports with a single click.

Now that I have a one-man consulting business, I use Excel for the bread-and-butter accounting. The only real flourish is a worksheet I've set up to calculate my current and estimated annual taxes as my income and expenses change. This way, I can always feel confident that I'm setting aside enough for Uncle Sam.




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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