Playing Games

Yesterday evening we had a family get-together. No real reason; we just wanted to have an evening of game playing. (In our family, Risk and Monopoly are two perennial favorites.) We had a nice evening, just enjoying each others' company.

I hope that your week has been good and that you take time, once in a while, to slow down and enjoy the small pleasures that are available to you.


ExcelTips (ribbon) for 27 September 2014

Powerful spreadsheets
Averaging without Hidden Cells

Grabbing an average of a range of cells is easy using Excel functions. If you want that average to ignore hidden cells when the range consists of a row, then Excel doesn't have a way to get what you need. This tip examines a couple of ways you can get around Excel's deficiency.

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(Thanks to Steve Aprahamian, Michael Avidan (Excel MVP), Bob Beechey, Andrija Vrcan, Ioannis Nikolopoulos, and Craig Korfanta for contributing to this tip.)

Time formulas
Adjusting Times for Time Zones

Collect a series of times in a worksheet, and you might need to adjust those times for various time zones. This involves a simple math operation, as described in this tip.

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Why do professionals use Excel dashboards these days?

Why do cars have dashboards? To translate the state of the complex machine to the driver (at a glance), so she can pay attention to what matters (the road). Plain spreadsheets don't offer at-a-glance insight of what's going on in the complex machine of business. If you want to learn the fundamentals to plan for how and what info to include on a dashboard and the way to best present it, then gain this knowledge here (still FREE).

Powerful spreadsheets
Defeating Automatic Date Parsing

Excel is continually trying to figure out what type of data is being stored in a cell. If it can interpret a value as a date, it will do so at the drop of a hat. Here's how to stop Excel from doing that parsing and messing up your data.

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Printing Limited Pages from a Range of Worksheets

Need to print just a few pages from a group of worksheets? The easiest way to handle the task may be through a macro, as described in this tip.

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Help Wanted

This section is for those having problems making Excel behave. If Excel is giving you fits, feel free to submit your own Help Wanted question.

If you have a solution for the problems below, click the link after the problem to send us your answer. (All responses become the sole property of Sharon Parq Associates, Inc., and can be used in any way deemed appropriate.) If your response is used in a future issue, you will be credited for your contribution to the answer.

Unwanted Weekend Dates in Chart

We have a set of data by date that is used for a graph. The data is entered by date which only reflects weekdays. (The data contains no entries for weekends.) When we graph the data (using the dates as the horizontal axis), Excel inserts the weekend dates with no data points. These dates are not in the original data and we cannot seem to get rid of them so that only the data in the database is shown in the chart. How do we eliminate the unwanted weekend dates from the chart?
—Scott Paris (provide an answer for this Help Wanted question)

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