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How to Excel in Excel - Part of Microsoft Office 2010

Microsoft Excel FREE Tutorials and Training - Information on How to Use Excel 2010, Excel 2007, Excel 2003, Excel 2002

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Microsoft Cheat Sheet
Excel Joke - Bill Gates Wearing Joker Hat

From Our Illustrious Joker:
The average person spends 9.5 years sleeping, 4.2 years eating, 3.8 years on the toilet, 2.8 years traveling and...1.9 years waiting for Excel to recalculate

Excel Training - Excel 2010 and Excel 2007 FREE Online Video Tutorials

You need an excel spreadsheet open to do all these tests.
All tests are multiple choice with answers.
Microsoft Excel Test - Beginner
Microsoft Excel Test Intermediate
Cell References and Ranges Test
Charts
Excel Errors
Formatting
External Files and Templates
Editing

Jan's Excel Quiz - Intro Level

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Excel Joke - Bill Gates Wearing Joker Hat

Auto-Save: What your spreadsheet does immediately after you make a huge mistake and just before you press Undo. If you have a sound card, you may be able to hear your program laughing at you.


America's Favorite Books on Microsoft Excel

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What is Excel?

Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet program written and distributed by Microsoft for computers using the Microsoft Windows operating system and for Apple Macintosh computers. It features an intuitive interface and capable calculation and graphing tools which, along with aggressive marketing, have made Excel one of the most popular microcomputer applications to date. It is overwhelmingly the dominant spreadsheet application available for these platforms and has been so since version 5 in 1993 and its bundling as part of Microsoft Office.

Microsoft originally marketed a spreadsheet program called Multiplan in 1982, which was very popular on CP/M systems, but on MS-DOS systems it lost popularity to Lotus 1-2-3. This promoted development of a new spreadsheet called Excel which started with the intention to, in the words of Doug Klunder, 'do everything 1-2-3 does and do it better' . The first version of Excel was released for the Mac in 1985 and the first Windows version (numbered 2.0 to line-up with the Mac and bundled with a run-time Windows environment) was released in November 1987. Lotus was slow to bring 1-2-3 to Windows and by 1988 Excel had started to outsell 1-2-3 and helped Microsoft achieve the position of leading PC software developer. This accomplishment, dethroning the king of the software world, solidified Microsoft as a valid competitor and showed its future of developing graphical software. Microsoft pushed its advantage with regular new releases, every two years or so. The current version for the Windows platform is Excel 11, also called Microsoft Office Excel 2003. The current version for the Mac OS X platform is Microsoft Excel 2004.

Early in its life Excel became the target of a trademark lawsuit by another company already selling a software package named "Excel" in the finance industry. As the result of the dispute Microsoft was required to refer to the program as "Microsoft Excel" in all of its formal press releases and legal documents. However, over time this practice has been ignored, and Microsoft cleared up the issue permanently when they purchased the trademark to the other program. Microsoft also encouraged the use of the letters XL as shorthand for the program; while this is no longer common, the program's icon still consists of a stylized combination of the two letters, and the file extension of the default Excel format is .xls.

Excel offers many user interface tweaks over the earliest electronic spreadsheets; however, the essence remains the same as in the original spreadsheet, VisiCalc: the cells are organized in rows and columns, and contain data or formulas with relative or absolute references to other cells.

Excel was the first spreadsheet that allowed the user to define the appearance of spreadsheets (fonts, character attributes and cell appearance). It also introduced intelligent cell recomputation, where only cells dependent on the cell being modified are updated (previous spreadsheet programs recomputed everything all the time or waited for a specific user command). Excel has extensive graphing capabilities.

When first bundled into Microsoft Office in 1993, Microsoft Word and Microsoft PowerPoint had their GUIs redesigned for consistency with Excel, the killer app on the PC at the time.

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