Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Note You will be able to open and use interactive Web pages in your Web browser.
However, if you need to modify the data on the Web site, you won’t be able to open and modify
interactive Web pages in Excel. You should store a backup copy of the original workbook you
published, in case you need to modify the data. If changes are made to the original
spreadsheet, you’ll need to republish and set up the interactivity with the new Web page.
Using the Internet as a Data Source
The Excel application has two commonly known sources of data: databases on any given
network, and the user. Traditionally, if an item of data wasn’t available in a database, the user was
required to type it in and maintain it. To enable this, the application had to include a number
of sheets and dialog boxes to store the information and provide a mechanism for the data entry.
A typical example of this would be maintaining exchange rate information in a financial
model. It’s usually the user’s responsibility to obtain the latest rates and type them into the
model. You can add value to the application by automating the retrieval of up-to-date
exchange rate information from one of many Web sites.
The following sections demonstrate different techniques for retrieving information from the
Web, using the USD exchange rate available from http://www.fms.treas.gov/intn.html#rates as
an example. The Web page should look similar to Figure 25-4.
Figure 25-4. The U.S. Treasury site shows sample data laid out in a table format.
This information will be evaluated in the next sections.