Nov 17th 2016 by jack_sheldon • 44 Questions • 5266 Points
Hello from the Microsoft Excel team! We are the team that designs, implements, and tests Excel across each of our platforms; e.g. Windows desktop, Windows mobile, Mac, iOS, Android, and the Web. We have a great group of people from the Excel team with deep product experience ready to answer your questions. We did this a year ago and we are excited to be back. We'll focus on answering questions that pertain to Excel usage, its various platforms, and the Excel team. There may be questions that come up around bugs, feature requests, what’s new, training & resources. Here are some quick links that may be useful to you.
Home page for all Excel resources and feature requests: https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Excel/ct-p/Excel_Cat
Excel Support for Bugs: https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/msoffice/forum/msoffice_excel?auth=1Excel Support
We'll start answering questions at 9:00 AM PDT and continue until 11:00 AM PDT.
This post can be verified here: https://twitter.com/msexcel/status/797450130853134336
After this AMA, you may have other help related questions that come up. You can still ask these normal Excel questions in the https://www.reddit.com/r/excel subreddit.
10:45 AM - The questions so far have been great. Please keep them coming. Our session ends in an about 15 minutes.
11:00 AM - We are wrapping up the Excel AMA. We'll stick around for a few more minutes to finish some answers. Thanks for all of the great questions.
Can you tell us how to find these deals ourselves? I am often willing to go anywhere from Irish airports if the price is right
The young entrepreneur invested the ACC compensation payment he received after his accident into the stock market, he "did alright" and used his earnings to buy a house.
Was that a bit of a risky gamble in hindsight?
How much is "alright"?
PMFJI but this is related to the data being charted. If the minimum is more than 5/6 of the maximum, then the Y axis will not start at zero. For a line or scatter chart, this is fine. For a bar or area chart it can be very misleading. I agree that it would be nice if the bar chart behavior were different, but because of the data, it's pretty obvious when you're making a chart that you need to force the axis to start at zero.
Flexibility is always key, so you've got that going for you. I'll send out a few flights from Irish airports every month so keep an eye on those.
I've mentioned it in a few posts already, but try a vague search by continent on google flights. Change the month of travel and see if anything strikes you as interesting. Thats the quick answer - I'll be happy to add more detail in a bit, but my inbox is exploding at the moment!
I invested about 40k (not all of my money) into 10 different ventures with varied risk, after lots of research, so I was pretty safe but obviously not immune. I made 25-30k over a couple of years.
Thanks Jon! We are looking at updating this to have better defaults for future versions MSFT - Leif
Graham and Kathleen: raising a young daughter into such publically visible setting as streaming and Desert Bus for Hope, how do you balance that?
As Penelope gets older will you allow her to get more involved in LRR/DB and streaming in general, or less and explicitly keep her away from internet publicity?
Additional question, do you ever plan to revisit making full length sketches should a fitting script arise?
As a follow-up to this: are there any plans on getting rid of ineffective visuals such as 3D pie charts, in line with Stephen Few's thoughts on the matter?
Is there a data visualization sub-team as part of the wider MS Excel development thing?
Thanks a bunch for answering, Excel has given me a lot in my professional life and I hope you never stop improving it!
Video Response: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UWbAZJtWAuI&feature=youtu.be
Hi Damer Yes, there is a Data Viz team in the greater Excel. We create the charts for all Office apps. In regards to 3D charts, we certainly support the views from Few and others on this topic. For instance in the Recommended Chart features you will never ever see a 3D chart. We are looking at ways in the future to minimize the chances for the end user to pick these charts. MSFT - Leif
What's your opinion about the guy who bought 12,000 pudding cups for 1,2 million airmiles?
Thanks for that. It sure feels long :)
Overall, I'm probably having more good days than bad ones in the last while so need to stay positive.
Wish you well. It's folks like you that motivate others in similar situations.
Where's the best place you have been for the least money and inconvenience?
Just made a pledge on KS. Best of luck with the game.
Tough one, but I would recommend Sri Lanka.
It's gone through a terrible 30 year civil was less than a decade ago, so it's tourist industry is just starting to boom. What that equates to is cheap rates and a culture not yet accustomed to taking advantage of tourists, like you will see in much of SE Asia. It's also one of the most beautiful countries I have ever visited. Landscapes, top notch beaches, UNESCO sites, safaris, they have it all. Highly recommend!
edit: the food is fantastic as well!
Thanks so much! I really appreciate it :-)
Does clearing cookies and/or using incognito really help?
speaking of the bone zone, can your girlfriend enjoy your bone zone?
Might we ever get purchasable shame ticket pads? I would love them for personal use when watching DB at home
What is your favourite feature which the average Excel user wouldn't necessarily know about?
Very rarely and only with the sleaziest of travel agents as far as I've seen. It's mostly a myth, but never hurts to try just before booking!
Video Response: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-4gskWwBqI&feature=youtu.be
Ctrl-` switches to formula view and back. Love it! :-)
-- Alex [MSFT]
Do you really?
The best I've seen has been an £18 mistake fare to Belize.
The best I've taken has been a £112 single stop roundtrip fare to Bali. It's a special feeling walking onto a flight knowing most everyone else paid 5-8x my fare.
Hi Canada, this is your loud downstairs neighbors. Can you send us some Hope? We're a bit low at the moment.
Can you add a way to copy and past formulas without it updating the referencing? Also, a way to "transpose" formulas without updating referencing. Currently, I have to "Find-Replace" all the "=" signs to ..., then paste it somewhere else (or transpose) and then "Find-Replace" all of the "..." with "=" again. This would have saved me days of time in my graduate work.
That's a great suggestion! You should post it as a feature suggestion to our user voice site: http://excel.uservoice.com
For pasting fomulas without adjusting, one little workaround that might help you is to do this for small-ish ranges is: 1. Press Ctrl+` (control back-tick) - this changes the sheet to display formulas instead of values 2. Copy, paste into notepad 3. Copy from notepad and paste back into Excel 4. Ctrl+` to switch back to standard view
I dare question why in the first place their system allowed such a low price.
You would expect upon validation that the system would compare it to similar tickets and say something like "this is 90% cheaper than the average, are you sure you want to proceed ?// Please provide manager override code to proceed" or something like that.
Can I please help develop your game? I live in Canterbury too.
What do you do with all the hats used on Feed Dump? Do you still have them all, and if not, when was the last time you purged your collection?
Power User / VBA Developer here. I'm going to be a little direct, because while I love Excel, I've definitely seen it's warts.
Can you/someone fix the Ctrl-Break bug in Excel? I don't run into it often, but when I do, I am surprised that this isn't a priority. It's the second most WTF thing in Excel. http://stackoverflow.com/a/5823507/2886869
The most WTF thing in Excel is the Data Model. I've had Pivot Tables quit on me, saying that the Data Model is corrupt, with no additional tooling, or help, and I've had to rebuild entire spreadsheets. I really like the idea of ListObjects and Tables, but if they randomly break, I can't really put them in my spreadsheets until the tooling around fixing them is better.
Can we update the VB Editor to, like, 2005? It hasn't changed since Office 97 and there are things that I really would like IE code folding, regex search inside the VBE, Eclipse's automatic reformatting of code, VIM bindings, etc, etc. Can we take SOME of the Visual Studio Code stuff and port it?
Airlines are getting better at preventing error fares, but the truth is their systems are so complex (and often outdated) that they can't fix them all - which is where I get to take advantage :)
Definitely maybe! PM your details and I'll be in touch if I raise enough monies. Unless you don't need money? Do you have experience with Unity?
Basically we collect all the hats we get for feed dump and hang onto them for a while. From time to time we perform a cull and keep the very best hats. The rest are sent to a farm upstate to charity. If we hung onto them all we'd have rooms that were floor to ceiling with hats, and it would just be untenable, but most of your favorite LRR hats are FeedDump Hats.
Great post and series of questions. We want to take the time to answer it well and will do so over the next couple of days (running out of time in the room and we have to go back to our days jobs now). Thanks for the terrific questions!
-Charlie [MSFT Excel Team]
Why would you want to share anything with us? What's in it for you? It seems to not at all be in your best interest. Not only will you increase the risk that airlines will quickly find out, but the benefits of your elite status on airlines will be watered down by a larger population.
I don't know if you're still answering questions and this is probably a dumb one but how do you drive if you can't use your arms and legs?
Why the switch from 8 hour shifts to 12 this year? Will there be more codrivers next year? (Kate Stark needs a shift with Kathleen or Jamie.)
Let's be real here:
Does the Microsoft Excel team prefer waffles or pancakes? [serious]
Not much in it for me monetarily, but I'm hoping to build a reputation as an expert in the industry. If I find a fare I want to jump on, I'll book it while I write up an email about it. I don't get any commission from my links or deals and don't have any partners.
Airline industry is huge and few of my mates also getting a great deal that I found won't cause anyone harm!
Hand controls. Left hand has a glove with a pin in it which slots into the steering wheel to turn. Right has a glove that controls brake/accelerator, push/pull lever respectively. The head rest has buttons for indicator and high beam/low beam, which I control with my head. Auto gears, and auto windscreen wipers.
WE've done 12 in the past, we've done 24 in the past, shift durations have never been locked, it's always something we're willing to play with. We didn't think that 8 hours quite gave the drivers time to make the shift their own. 12 feels like a better duration for the drivers, without pushing them so hard that they spend the rest of the event recovering.
Waffles are superior in every way: crisper, lots of wells to hold the syrup, and they look like a spreadsheet. -Stacy [MSFT]
Can you be more specific about your mobility ? What parts of your body are you able to move?
It's a great tool for setting up email alerts for particular itineraries. It has one of the better interfaces out there for a flight search tool as well.
Overall a good site.
Biceps, triceps (after tendon transfer surgery), deltoids, half of my shoulder muscles, and up.
Is there a simple way to benchmark what a "normal" price for a flight is? Is it just looking at the surrounding fares on Google flights, or is there a way to learn historical data too?
is it difficult to use your computer after your injury? If you are programming you must use it well but do you need special computers or software. It must be difficult to find out about all different options
Why do you love VBA? The best programmer in the world could make the the neatest and tidiest VBA code in the world with perfect comments and it would still look like spaghetti after the second procedure.
The thing is, although efficient at tiny macro tasks, a mess. Let it stay as legacy, the last thing we want is more tools being made with it.
http://www.faredetective.com/farehistory/ will give you some historical info on specific flights.
For me it's mainly experience, but its true that it can be tough to tell if you don't know the standard fare. For example a £500 flight to Cape Town is actually a descent deal, but a £500 to Joburg is nothing too special.
I use my knuckle to type one letter at a time for small things, and the govt bought me voice recognition software which I use for longer messages/assignments. The govt also has technology specialists to tell you the options. Our healthcare is the shit.
I am from Brazil, so it's not suitable to sign up for the email list, since you said most of flights are departing UK. Could you please teach me, besides the Google flights technique that you mentioned in previous posts, how could I do to learn it?
Have you heard of the studies involving stem cells to reverse paralysis and would you participate if it were viable? Congrats on continuing to LIVE in a manner better than people without your injuries.
I think I speak on behalf of all accountants everywhere when I say, thank you for Excel.
Where do you see Excel going from here? Are there any "game-changing" new features on the horizon, or is the focus going to instead be to continue to polish the existing product?
Iberia.com often has the best rates to Europe from Brazil. I'll take a look for you later to see what I can find.
I mention a few other methods in the posts up top. If you have particular dates in mind, I recommend skyscanner.com alerts and accessing Ibeia.com from a spanish URL to see if they have any discounts for locals.
Yeah there seem to be quite a few studies that are progressing well. Maybe in 5-10 years when they've done enough human clinical trials I'll participate. I don't think it will get me walking, but I don't need to improve much to be independent and not need caregivers. But those treatments can lead to more damage, so they are still quite risky. Thanks :-)
What "game changing" new feature would you like to see?
How far into the future do you recommend searching for cheap flights?
What I mean is -- will a flight be cheaper if it's sold on the day of departure, or a year in advance?
I'd love to visit south america (from CPH) some day and find the cost to be high.
First time asking in AMA's *Have you ever been bullied with this condition? *Have you used your great power to do awesome jokes like "I sit around a lot, but I still get to do many things." ?
Is there a keyboard shurtcut to past without text style? Thus inhereting the one in the cell?
Apolgize if the nomenclature is improper due to havign never used excel in english.
Last minute deals arn't going to be very common as airlines try their best to take advantage of business travelers and hike up their last minute rates.
6-12 weeks in advance is the sweet spot, but it varies greatly. For peak and holiday seasons, I recommend looking just as the flights start showing up (typically 11-12 months in advance). For example, if you looked in Sept 2016, you could find a ton of cheap fares to all sorts of southern Europe beach destinations for <£50 for August 2017.
No, no bullying. I would verbally own them if they tried. Drunk people are annoyingly nice and supportive to the point where it's embarrassing for everyone.
Wheelchair jokes are easy and they always get a laugh so that's a good way to break the ice. What's small, black, and sits at the top of the stairs? Paraplegic after a house fire.
We have no idea. That's a long way off. Let's see how Desert Bus 10 shakes out first. :p
You can also do CTRL V and then CTRL V again. (CTRL V twice) Cheers, -Dave L [MSFT]
I often think that if I broke my neck I'd be done for. I don't have the funds to have multiple surgeries.
So, where did all the $ come from to keep you going?
I mentioned my love for Sri Lanka already. Others at the top of my list would be Ukraine, Vietnam, and Belize.
The awesome single-payer health care system in New Zealand. It's called Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC). And travel insurance helped.
When finding super-cheap deals do you just sorta browse until you hit a gold vein or is there some special methodic approach?
C5/C6 quad here, I have a degree in CS and have been playing poker profissionally for the last 3 years. Grats for your project mate. I´m interested in how you approached girls after your accident, I´ve been only with hookers after mine (bone zone works fine with stimulation). Never been a true "playa" but I used to be fine and now I´ll fail or not even try. How did you get laid, engaged etc?
Typo or nefarious reason why MomoCon doesn't appear on the LRR wiki for DB9 Prize Sponsors? ;P
How does Excel decide to change things based on the cell values? For example, I regularly handle surveys and one field uses text ranges (i.e. 0-2, 3-4) but it automatically converts it to a date, then when I change it to a text field, makes it a 5 digit number instead of the original data?
Just browsing can get you lucky fare, but I've developed a methodology over the years to best utilize my time.
I tend to stay away from the big names (Kayak and the like). Google Flights and their back-end search matrix are where I spend ~60% of my search time. I've gotten fairly efficient at it by now!
Just being as confident as I could to talk to girls (fake it till you make it). Then it's a numbers game. Go on Tinder and online sites, be clean, and treat them with respect. Just keep trying. It took me a couple of years to find the right person, but don't settle for someone that won't make you happy long term. In my experience most girls (probably guys too) have to live through a few bad relationships before they realise what traits are important long term. Work on those traits, then just keep trying. You'll find someone eventually :-)
When a user first types a formula or value into a cell, Excel attempts to parse the string using a large set of number formats including dates, scientific notation, currency and more. Because a string like 3-4 matches a date format (such as March 4th or 3rd of April) we commit the value as a date. When you convert the formatting back into text, we show the date value as a string. (Times and Dates are stored in Excel as a floating point number of days since an epoch)
The easiest solution I use for all different data packages like SPSS, access or excel is to create a fake top row of data. Just make sure every column has something in it and it matches the data type you want. After the data is imported you delete the top row.
For numeric type a 2 in the box (1 in the box sometimes turns into boolean instead of numeric), for a date type any date and for text type gibberish.
That's probably the easiest solution if your dataset doesn't export directly to a richer format or support data connections from Excel.
Have you run into issues in terms of pricing differences between adult and child?
I'm stressing over money as I have to go from Dublin to Houston in March to renew my kid's passport. I wouldn't be able to book anything till after pay day in a couple weeks but if I could get it sorted before Christmas it'd make it easier for Christmas time in general
Editing to add: from everything I've been looking into, they only renew the passport if you can't actually go back to the states. I'll give it a try sure but chances are I'm going to have to go
How has fighting through all of the adversity and struggle changed your perspective of the world? What things that have occurred would you change and do you think they would change where you would be at now?
How long are you guys looking to run Desert Bus? Is it something you could see going five years or even ten years down the road? Maybe pass it down to the LRR babies someday? Love you guys lots, thank you for all the work you do! .^
If I had to do this a lot, I'd use a macro.
Come to think of it, I download my add-in sales numbers in a zipped text file, and I do use a macro to import it. Every once in a while the sales service adjusts their file format, and I have to go in and adjust my import settings.
Cheaper flights for kids is virtually a thing of the past, with very few airlines or agents still offering a cheaper far. A seat is a seat in their eyes. There are a few websites that offer cheaper pricing for students however.
United and Air Lingus will (sometimes) do cheaper fares to Houston, but it's not common unfortunately. I'll keep an eye out for you!
I don't think it really has. Trump being elected president definitely has.
I don't really understand your second question sorry.
We don't know. Our focus is on DBX right now, then we'll figure out what 11 looks like.
Also, feel free to upvote this feature request on uservoice. https://excel.uservoice.com/forums/304921-excel-for-windows-desktop-application/suggestions/10576116-add-a-setting-option-where-all-csv-delimited-files
I'm currently residing in Ireland, local to Dublin airport.
I'm more in the market for sweet holidays now than before, so I might as well try to get a freebie out of this: Can you find me an exciting deal in 5 minutes? :D
Also; what's the best European country you've been to, and what kind of deal did you land to get there?
As a negative thinking person I have always wondered how some people seem to stay positive and motivated no matter what. Any insight you could share?
on it. It may take me more than 5 minutes to get back to you with my inbox slowly being put to sleep however!
Mindset by Carol Dweck has some good insight. I think I have been lucky genetically, and in the environment I was raised, but I think it is a mindset thing and it takes practise. Also understanding positive/negative feedback loops and how positive thinking will impact your life, might increase motivation for you to develop a positive (growth) mindset as you will appreciate the influence it has.
SecretFlying do this and put all the flights on their website for anyone to view, as well as Facebook and Twitter.
What sort of flights have you found that I couldn't get on there?
As a person with almost zero physical ability, what are your thoughts on automation, and how it will affect society?
I get the better of them sometimes and they have caught a few that I've missed. I search for UK/Ireland only while they try to manage the entire globe.
It's a good resource that I've recommended on another comment, but the trouble is that they post everything so if you are someone who typically flies out of Manchester for example, you have to sift through 100 posts to find a relevant one. They also only cover the main 1 or 2 airports in each country, so those outside of London or Dublin will rarely see a deal.
My mates like my emails because they go directly to their inbox and are generally relevant or at least from the same country!
I cannot wait, even though I will. The advancement of computers, touch screen smartphones, and the internet has already enabled me to do so much. I cannot wait till Google Home, Amazon Echo or other personal AIs develop a little more so I can be as productive as before my accident. Then a wheelchair/robot that could get me from bed to chair and back would be awesome. Obviously a decent Universal Income needs to be introduced to mitigate the damage automation will cause society.
Have you found any deals that ended up being too good to be true? As in, cheap flight advertised but they did not deliver on their advertisement. Any tips on what to watch out for, that would be a red flag to not trust the advertisement?
Cheese! I was really hoping to come up with something more interesting than that but here we are. Any plans to spend some more time on the snow with a ski chair?
It's not so much false advertising, as reluctance to honour mistake and error fares. The airline industry is quite complex (which works in my favour!) so if you know where to look you can find quite a few mistake fares. Some get honoured, but other times booking agents find a way to get out of it and renege on the deal.
I always recommend waiting up to a week before booking hotels and other reservations if you do catch a mistake fare.
Who even is this? Show yourself. Yeah I would like to but it's really expensive to hire the equipment and instructor.
What's the best way to find cheap business/first class flights?
Patches. You are now 1 of 2 people who know my Reddit username. What sort of money are we talking for a day on the snow?
Dear Drs LRR,
What is one thing about Desert Bus that has surprised you the most?
Is there anything that you thought would be a cool feature to add then it turns out to be the most used and important one?
I typically search for economy class fares as I'm looking to spend the minimum. I've sent out 1 business class deal in the last 8 weeks, but will keep an eye out.
Best way to get those is generally points from credit cards. Airlines make a disproportionate portion of their revenue from charging up business class fares, so it's rare to score a cheap deal otherwise.
Oh hey! I won't dig dw. $100/hr for the instructor and more for equipment, but the sit ski really needs to be custom built or I can't do it for long. Snowplanet is the best place. One day I'll get a custom sit ski though.
The generosity of the community. People coming back year after year to watch this nonsense. It will never stop being a delightful surprise.
Not sure if you used the iPhone version of Excel at all, we added a full screen view feature there, which takes you to full screen on the phone to view only the current sheet content. It's very helpful for users to navigate the content on a small screen. I'm not sure if the most used, but it's absolutely a popular one on the phone version.
- Jeff Zhang (MSFT)
Do you use web scraping to find these flights? If so do you have any tips?
Haha I don't have anything too worrying on here. I'd be happy to throw in a bit of dosh to get you back on the slopes when the time comes! And if I can help at all with this project let me know. I can't code but I have lots of free time if there is anything else useful I can do.
Yeah I use the Revitive footplate once a day to keep my feet healthy, as they can easily break down and are prone to infection due to my poor circulation. Otherwise I play wheelchair rugby, and use gloves with a theraband tied between them to exercise the muscles I have available in my upper arms and shoulders.
We'll continue to have more of the value we provide to people delivered via intelligent services (like Map Charts, PPT designer, file storage, collaboration, etc.). We also update the product itself monthly, and it's excited getting to push those new features out to people on a regular basis.
Yes, a number of us have had the chance to meet Bill and present our plans to him. It's always exciting. He's definitely a big fan of Excel, and has some great opinions on the investments we're making.
Why should I sign up if you don't know what flights I'm actually looking for?
Also, do you help out with flights into the UK?
Were you in the earthquake a few hours ago? I noticed you never signed off and stopped answering questions. If you get a chance, check back in to let us know you are ok!!
Why can't we still not open two workbooks with the same name at the same time?
No pressure at all to sign up!
I send out cheap flight fares as I find them to virtually everywhere in the world. Those who seem to enjoy my alerts most are generally travelers open to go wherever there is a good deal. I tend to send out deals for flights months in advance so if you see a fare you want to take advantage of, you have plenty of time to plan for the trip. I send roughly 3-4 deals a week, so you may find your destination on there soon!
If there is somewhere in particular you're keen to travel, let me know and I'll take a quick look to see if I can help out while I'm here.
What country are you in? Do they have good spinal rehabs? I had really good OTs that specialised in spinal and a couple of bad ones who didn't. The trick is to encourage and motivate without belittling and undermining. Also treat every person as completely different cases and try not to expect the same out of 2 people, even if they have the same break. Usually the young OTs are good. The annoying ones are usually older grumpy OTs stuck in their ways, just to make a few generalisations :-)
Great question! Please go to the Excel Tech Community and in the top pinned post or in the resources section, you will see link to all Free training programs for Basic, Intermediate & Advanced Users. https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Excel/ct-p/Excel_Cat -Sangeeta [MSFT]
Can you get me a cheap flight from Bucharest to Paris for the 15th December? Possibly not to bauvais
Psychologically, what do you credit with enabling you to adjust as well as you have?
I can try!
One way or return?
Just knowing that a positive outlook on life would mean I would be happier, and more likely to do well and achieve my goals. I think my BSc in Psych helped me to realise that really early - within the first week. Later on, joining a wheelchair rugby team was another boost to learn to be a successful quad (aka tetraplegic).
Who did the flight simulator?
I think I would probably be worse off financially and in terms of reaching my goals. ACC provides me 80% of minimum wage for weekly compensation (until I earn more than that), which means I still live like a student, but I can focus on my passions and achieve my goals. It would have been difficult to achieve what I have with a full-time job. And my gf is amazing, so I couldn't have done better there.
Nobody here did - there was a source repository mix-up and Flight Sim folks checked it in by accident
She got a sister? haha
Seriously though, good on you man. Keep it up.
Is there a realization with-in the team that the naming around DAX/M/PowerQuery/Get&Transform/PowerPivot/PowerBI is super confusing to people?
Even if you aren't confused, the vocabulary to explain what these things to other people just isn't there. For example, Rob Collie has to spend a whole chapter explaining this in the latest version of his DAX book. (I recently did a PowerBI/PowerPivot lunch learning at work to a bunch of data analysts and most of the time ended up being around this...)
No but she's got a brother who's a bit of alright if you're that way inclined. Cheers :-)
Thanks for the feedback. Yes, we recognize the confusion, which has occured over time. Hopefully you see some improvements - for example, the Power BI brand has come from an unclear definition to being very specific around the Service and it's projections. We'll continue to improve this over time. thanks, ash [MSFT]
I had a friend who broke his neck diving into a lake and ended up as a quad. Great guy and he was doing his best to live his life but he had some serious depression issues. He kept a suicide bottle of Xanax and a note that he'd change the date on, periodically. He was 30 when I knew him and had been paralyzed for about 8 years. He said he just didn't know how long he could go on like that for. I lost touch with him and found out, years later, that he eventually did it.
How have you dealt with this?
Also, he actually got laid pretty frequently. He told me that there's girls who fetishize the quadriplegic situation and called them "quad hoppers". Have you encountered this?
First of all: as a finance major, I love you guys and your product. You're wizards.
As far as I can tell, Excel has seemingly endless depth despite being easy to use. Where do you go from here? How are you working to improve it?
Not sure, I just have a different mindset I guess. Haha not really. It creeps me out when girls are overly interested. The gf keeps any advances at bay.
Great to hear that you love the product. We continue to improve the product in terms of reliability and performance. We have millions and millions users worldwide and it is important to keep Excel as a reliable experience for all of them. See this blog post on some of the themes around Intelligent Cloud Services and Collaboration which we will working towards.. https://blogs.office.com/2016/09/26/office-365-news-in-september-at-ignite-intelligence-security-collaboration-and-more/ -Sangeeta [MSFT}
What are your plans for VR?
The natural interaction with hand controllers like on the Vive and the upcoming oculus touch controllers seem like a huge opportunity and a perfect fit for educational games, because even people without computer and controller experience can quickly jump in.
What updates and features do you plan on implementing in excel?
Yeah I think it's a real opportunity to make education as immersive as possible. I've only looked at the feasibility of VR and possible ways to implement, but haven't fleshed out specifics yet.
You can also check our What's new page: https://support.office.com/en-us/article/What-s-new-in-Excel-2016-for-Windows-5fdb9208-ff33-45b6-9e08-1f5cdb3a6c73
We update that whenever something new is released.
Wow, very cool! I have wanted to create an educational game related to socially responsible engineering for a while. I have a computer science degree and a bit of experience with Artificial Intelligence, but I have had a hard time finding good resources on educational game design. Would you be able to please suggest some good reading on the topic? Textbooks, articles, anything really that you think would help me design a better educational game. Thanks, love your game concept!
Nearly 95% of the time I am in excel my hands are on the keyboard, but I am curious how the Surface Dial interacts with the application and couldn't find this information online. Could you or someone familiar with the Dial speak to this?
There is a good book called Mathematics Education for a New Era, that explains how to teach mathematical thinking in video games. Otherwise, Lave and Wagner (1991) teach about situated learning and the importance of teaching/testing in situations that are relevant to daily life; van Oers (2012 I think) that talks about including students in choosing what to learn, choosing their own goals and how to test skills etc to avoid them feeling alienated from learning process (which often leads to low motivation and behavioural problems); learn about differences and pros/cons for learning face-to-face or online/video games, as different environments affect social hierarchies between students, participation levels, and engagement. Learning these differences will help design the game so it compliments things students will learn in everyday life, such as social interactions and how to treat others. There might be some other stuff on my website you might find interesting :-) www.educationthesedays.com
The Surface Dial in Excel uses the common Windows Dial Features of Scroll and Zoom-in Excel. With 2016 we also added Ink features in Excel ( as well as rest of Office), with the Surface Dial we support the Ink Replay feature as well.
Being in Canadian treatment: Were hormonal treatment options, specifically human growth hormone, ever discussed or used during your phenomenal recovery?
I've always been curious how open they are about treatments like this that involve increasing growth factors specific to nerves and brain function (brain-derived neurotrophic factor, BDNF)
1. Does the Excel team have any plans for integrating Cortana with Excel?
2. If so, what kind of ideas are you looking at?
Thanks for doing the AMA!
Cortana in Excel - that sounds pretty cool :)
I can tell you that we're generally exploring this area and we partner with folks in Microsoft research on a range of new technologies, including new ideas in ML, AI, and natural language.
There's a ton of scenarios that we could look at, so I'd love to get your suggestions on specific stuff you'd like to see us make Cortana do in Excel by using user voice: https://excel.uservoice.com/.
- Charlie [MSFT Excel Team]
Do you have any sensation in your penis or testicles?
Glad you seem to be doing so well man:)
Any plans to add a shortcut to force selected cells to calculate as arrays?
It's a pain in the ass to go and ctrl+shift+enter 70 different cells.
Here are a few things to try, all of which will persist array formula property:
- Drag-fill the formula (use $ to lock row and column references, if needed)
- Use fill-down (Ctrl-D) or fill-right (Ctrl-R)
- Copy formula, select destination range, paste
-- Alex [MSFT]
Oh man, I've been looking forward to this all week! Unfortunately I don't need to use Excel at work that often, so most of my experience has been for personal use.
Q1 What's the most memorable/off-the-wall use of Excel that you've run into?
Q2 Did most of you have a great desire to work specifically on the Excel team beforehand? Or did most of you more or less kinda fall into the team?
Q3 Do you find yourself trying to find excuses to make spreadsheets for personal use more often now that you're on the team?
Definitely maybe! PM me. I won't decide that till next year though.
Q1 - I wrote a tower defense game in Excel a couple years ago. I've also found that customers always come up with the most creative uses of Excel.
Q2 - I didn't really have a preference when I went into the interview for my internship, but I did choose Excel over the SmartArt team and this team has been awesome.
Q3 - Are they really excuses? I use it for everything from mini-golf scorecards to white-elephant party gift tracking.
How long did it take you to program Rocket Island? Also, after it takes off, do you plan on updating the game in the future? Great Kickstarter video and thanks!
So far it's taken 7 months to develop and longer to design. I'd say it will take a year or so to complete, depending on funding. Yeah I would like to update it to add languages, cell-phone features and gameplay, but again it depends on funds. Cheers :-)
Sorry but I've got nothing to give, hence the crowdfunding. I find people are more willing to give funds to support an idea or product that they feel will allow you to continue to support yourself in the future. Don't give up, it takes a lot of thinking and research, but you'll think of something if you keep trying. Have you tried training as a draftsperson, 3d modeller or designer? You can do anything on a computer these days, but it takes time and effort to learn.