Problems with Excel

23 thoughts
last posted Aug. 26, 2016, 2:18 p.m.

7 earlier thoughts


DMR has "seen Excel used in amazing ways."

  • "I’ve also seen people sit down with a calculator and compute cell values themselves, blissfully unaware that the software could do it for them. Excel is a tool for lining up numbers."

  • "I’ve seen an application’s configuration managed by tweaking a CSV file in Excel and uploading it to a server. Excel is a tool for separating labels from values."

  • "I’ve had screenshots pasted into Excel and attached to an email. Excel is an ubiquitous file format."

  • "I’ve received an entire application wireframed by the accounting department, with each screen drawn with filled-in ASCII-art columns on its own worksheet and every button hyperlinked to a worksheet showing the next application state."

This reads like a parody. I'm sure I can come up with a hundred wacky uses for a hammer -- use the claw as a chisel! use it to press the buttons on your dishwasher! But such a list is really just an ironic illustration of 1) the fact that the hammer has only one suitable function, and 2) the various forms that stupidity can take when this truth is ignored.

15 later thoughts