Excel Power & Performance

The best explanation we've found to help new Excel users find comfort, despite the confusion and frustration they often feel, when opening a blank Excel Workbook, is to compare the similarities between spreadsheet modeling and the power & performance characteristics of a Ferrari.  In short, Ferrari's don't perform well at low speeds -- and neither does Excel.

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Formulas & Functions - Part I

It might seem a little neurotic to make any distinction between Formulas & Functions, but experienced users know the difference, even if they don't hold specific definitions in their minds.  The reason they do is because they know that Excel is designed to save time and increase efficiency, and so any time they can make Excel work harder THEY WILL!

One of the most intimidating aspects for new users  "learning" Excel, is the belief that there is some form of special programming language, or a black book of secret Excel guru commands that they have to learn before they can actually use the program.  The truth is that anyone with an 8th grade math education can learn to use Excel in less than 15 minutes, if they're able to take 3 minutes first to learn the difference between Formulas & Functions.

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Cells & Ranges

Excel worksheets are often described as looking like "graph paper", which tends to be a workspace that most users are unfamiliar with.  The quantitatively inclined tend to find comfort in graph paper, whether as a result of their experience with the format or because we all share at least a slight degree of "OCD".

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Excel's Obsession with Objects

Virtually everyone we've ever asked is familiar with Russian Nesting Dolls (Matryoshka Dolls), which is why for years these have been the most relatable illustration we've found to help people understand the way desktop applications work.  

Excel, along with every other Microsoft Office application you've used in the past decade, is what's referred to as an "Object-Oriented" application.  Simply put, you're working with a virtual Matryoshka Doll that consists of concentric objects that all exist within one another and are assembled together to form the entire workspace.

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