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Excel Weekly News from Contextures Jan. 8, 2013

Keep numbers aligned when Excel is zoomed, quick keyboard shortcuts, and other tips, in this week's Excel news from Contextures.

 -  Debra

Keep Number Aligned When Excel is Zoomed

When you zoom below 70% in Excel, you might notice that the numbers start looking messy. Instead of aligning correctly, the narrower numbers, like 1, are closer together. This makes it difficult to read a list of numbers, and spot the largest or smallest amounts.

Fortunately, you can fix this problem, by making a small change to the registry. You can read the instructions on my Contextures blog -- Keep Numbers Aligned When Zooming -- and remember to make a backup copy of the registry first.

Pull Pivot Table Values With GetPivotData Function

You can use the GetPivotData function to pull pivot table values, based on specific criteria. Dates can cause a few problems, if you use them in the function arguments, so follow a few simple guidelines to avoid errors in your formula results.

pivot subtotals video

To see detailed instructions, and to watch the video tutorial, click here: Pivot Tables - GetPivotData Function

Video: 3 Excel Shortcuts

On Microsoft's Excel blog, Doug Thomas posted a video with 3 quick keyboard shortcuts for Excel. Maybe you use these already, but take a look at the very short video, if you're interested.

I like to use F4 to repeat the last action, instead of Ctrl + Y -- how about you?

To watch the video, click here: Video: Excel Keyboard Shortcuts

CUBE Functions with PowerPivot

On his blog, Excel MVP Bob Phillips gives examples of using the CUBE functions with PowerPivot data. These functions are similar to the GetPivotData function, and you can use text references or cell references.

To read the details, and see the formulas, click here: CUBE Functions with PowerPivot

Great Interactive Visualizations of 2012

If you're looking for new ideas for your Excel charts and dashboards, you'll find plenty of inspiration on the blog. This article has 20 of the best interactive visualizations from 2012. You won't be able to duplicate them all in Excel, but you can grab an idea or two!

You can read the article, and see the visualizations here: 20 Great Interactive Visualizations of 2012

Learning by Shipping

Steven Sinofsky, who used to be in charge of the Office division at Microsoft, has moved on, and started a new blog -- Learning by Shipping.

He'll be writing about products, product development and management, and I'm sure that he'll have a few interesting ideas to share.

To read the blog, click here: Learning by Shipping

Programming Is Amazing

Even if the only programming you do is recording and running macros in Excel, you'll understand the thrill of getting something complex to happen with the click of a button that you built.

On his The Codist blog, Andrew Wulf ponders the amazing world of programming, and the satisfaction that it can bring.

"Few other professions allow you to create new universes every day, have godlike powers of control over machines, change the world and do it all from your comfy (or not) chair."

Read the article here: Ever Take a Minute And Realize How Freaking Amazing Programming Is?

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