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jethro's picture

Excel 2010 - some of the major advantages over 2003 or 2007

The Ribbon and Backstage

image Ok not everybody's favourite feature first time they switch from Office 2003. It does take some getting used to – and I still use keyboard short cuts for things. However the contextually sensitive ribbon has some major advantages over the old system. I honestly prefer the ribbon now especially in Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word. In Office 2010 the ribbon can also be personalised.

The backstage view (access from the File menu now places in one easy place all file management tasks such as save, share and print. All the similar commands are grouped together. No more going to 3-4 different places to set print settings for an excel file.

Here's the best way to think about the Ribbon and Backstage.

  • The Ribbon is for everything you want to do in a document – insert stuff, format stuff, change stuff.
  • The Backstage area is for everything you want to do with a document – print it, save it , share it etc.

Sparklines and Pivot Tables

If you thought pivot tables were cool ways to play with (analyse) data before than wait until you play with the sexy new pivot tables in Excel 2010.

And sparklines (inline in cell micro charts) are an excellent way of demonstrating trends in a small space. I can’t wait to start incorporating some of these features for some of our clients when they upgrade.

Check this pivot table taken from timesheet data. I added the pivot chart and sparklines in about 3 minutes flat.

jethro's picture

Tightening Security

I have been having some trouble with comment spam lately. We use Mollom, a great ser vice that works well with Drupal and stops most spam. However some spammers are getting more clever – and at the same time j0406665very stupid. They are putting more realistic comments in and getting past the text analysis – but as there are  no links allowed they are kind of stupid. The comment doesn't gain them anything – just fills my comments with rubbish.

So now all anonymous comments require approval – and I can bulk delete the time wasters spam. If you have a legitimate comment to make – and you are encouraged to do so – either log in to make it, or realise that it will go into my approval queue for checking.

So to all my legitimate readers and commenters – thanks for participating. And to all the spammers  go away – there's nothing for you here!

Thanks for reading.

jethro's picture

Web round up 4 March 2009

Got lots of things to share today.

IMG_5445Starting off with Windows 7:

Crossing to Windows Home Server we have these posts:

Now over to Microsoft Office:

jethro's picture

Security vulnerabilities announced in Microsoft Excel and Drupal

Security vulnerabilities were announced today in Microsoft Excel and also in Drupal.

IMGP7005-800 See the Official MS security advisory (968272), and the explanation by ars technica.

Our advice for now would be to be EXTREMELY careful when opening any Excel spreadsheet, Word document or PowerPoint file that is emailed to you. Rule of thumb – if you don’t know the person who set you a file (any file) NEVER open it. If you weren’t expecting the file from someone you do know then email or call them and ask them if they sent you it and if so what it is BEFORE opening it. I trust that MS will release the appropriate patch shortly.

The Drupal security vulnerabilities have been announced on the Drupal website and upgrades and patches released for both version 5 and 6.

For our Jethro Consultants Web hosting customers this means an immediate patch for those who are on maintenance contracts with us, and for those who are not they pay us by the hour to apply. We get to those as soon as we can. We are also busy upgrading our own websites.