What is Microsoft Excel? Description, History, and Uses
Microsoft Excel is a part of Microsoft Office that allows users to organize, analyze, and manipulate data effectively. With its easy interface and wide range of functions and formulas, Excel enables users to create easily complex calculations, generate graphs and charts, and perform data analysis. It offers a grid structure called a cell where users can input data, perform calculations, and visualize results in a tabular format.
- Microsoft Excel complete tutorial
Excel also provides tools for conditional formatting, sorting, filtering, and data validation, making it a versatile tool for data management. Whether for personal or professional use, Excel’s ability to handle large datasets and automate tasks through macros and formulas makes it an indispensable tool for data-driven decision-making and efficient data processing.
What is Microsoft Excel?
Microsoft Excel is a computer program developed by Microsoft company for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. It is a part of Microsoft Office which includes other programs such as Word and PowerPoint, Access, etc.
It is an electronic spreadsheet used to store, organize, and manipulate data. The data is stored in cells. It is usually organized into a series of columns and rows on a worksheet. The collection of columns and rows is referred to as a table.
What is Excel used for?
Excel is distinguished from all other office programs because it allows us to work with numeric data. We can perform basic arithmetic calculations with the numbers stored in Excel. We also apply more complex mathematical functions or statistical functions.
Excel makes it easier for us to work with numbers and allows us to easily analyze them. It generates reports with tools such as graphs and dynamic tables.
The main uses of Excel include:
- Data entry
- Data management
- Arithmetical and financial analysis
- Charting and graphing
- Financial modeling
- Customer relationship management (CRM)
A Brief History of Microsoft Excel:
In 1982, Microsoft entered the field of electronic spreadsheets with the launch of its Multiplan product. At that time there were already two competitors that were strongly positioned in the market. SuperCalc from the company Sorcim and VisiCalc from the VisiCorp company, so it was not a simple task for Microsoft to gain a bit of a market.
As that was not enough, in 1983, Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheet was launched, which took everyone by surprise and quickly positioned itself as the most used spreadsheet. Microsoft only observed how the Lotus spreadsheet was positioned in the first place, so it put aside its Multiplan product and started working on the first version of Excel which was launched in 1985.
That first version of Excel was made exclusively for the Macintosh platform, but two years later, in 1987, Microsoft released Excel 2.0, which is already considered a version for the Windows platform. From that moment, the Microsoft spreadsheet began its growth to become the most used spreadsheet of all time.
Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet:
Excel belongs to the category of computer programs known as a spreadsheet. The spreadsheets were developed since the 1960s to simulate paper accounting worksheets and thus help in the automation of accounting work.
Electronic spreadsheets have been replacing paper calculation systems, and although initially they were created for accounting tasks, nowadays they are used for a myriad of applications where you need to work with tabular data.
Spreadsheets can also perform calculations on data using formulas. To help you find and read the information in a spreadsheet, Excel has many formatting capabilities that can be applied to separate cells, rows, columns, and entire data tables.
Since each worksheet in the recent version of MS Excel contains a large number of cells. Each cell has a unique address known as a cell reference.
As mentioned, each cell in a worksheet is identified by a cell address or cell reference, which consists of the column letter and the sequence number intersecting at a cell location. When you write a cell reference, the letter of the column is always written first followed by the serial number – such as A1, B5, or E10.
How to enter data in a worksheet?
You can enter data in a worksheet cell in two steps. these steps are as below:
- Click on the cell where you want the insert the data.
- Start typing from the keyboard.