Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Entering and Filling in Data and Series
Figure 11-4 Click OK to ill in the values 1960 through 1969 in the selected range. Change the
step value to 5 to ill in 1965, 1970, 1975, and so on.
Using the default step value of 1, Excel ills in 1961, 1962, and so on, all the way to 1969 in
our selection of 10 cells. If we change that value to 5, each step in the series shifts
accordingly, to 1965, 1970, and so on.
Ironically, the Date Unit section of this dialog box is unavailable in the previous figure
even though we entered what looks like a date. Why? Because Excel didn’t store our entry
in date format. To make these options available, we could change the entry in cell A2 to
1/1/1960; if we format that value using the mmm-yyyy format and choose a date unit of
Month and a step value of 6, the series will progress through Jul-1960, Jan-1961, Jul-1961,
and so on.
We saved our best trick for last, however. All the previous copies and ills can be
accomplished just as easily by dragging the ill handle in the lower right corner of a cell or range.
Using the ill handle allows you to extend a surprising variety of series, some of which
are not available from the Series option on the Fill menu. Besides numeric series, you can
extend units of time, including hours of the day (9:00 AM, 10:00 AM, . . .) and days of the
week or months of the year, abbreviated (Mon, Tues, . . . and Jan, Feb, . . .) or fully spelled
out. As you can see in the folllowing example, the ill handle looks like a thin black cross;
as you drag, the border shows you which cells you’ve selected and a ScreenTip shows what
will appear in the cell.