Microsoft Office Tutorials and References

In Depth Information

**Ordering Items**

The total number of items must be the same as or greater than the number of

items to use, or else an error is generated.

You may be confused about why the function takes two arguments. On the

surface, it seems that the first argument is sufficient. Well, not quite. Getting

back to the Beatles (anyone have a copy of
Abbey Road
I can borrow?). If we

plug in 4 as the number for both arguments, like this — =PERMUT(4,4) — 24

permutations are returned:

✓
John Paul George Ringo

✓
George John Paul Ringo

✓
John Paul Ringo George

✓
George John Ringo Paul

✓
John George Paul Ringo

✓
George Paul John Ringo

✓
John George Ringo Paul

✓
George Paul Ringo John

✓
John Ringo Paul George

✓
George Ringo John Paul

✓
John Ringo George Paul

✓
George Ringo Paul John

✓
Paul John George Ringo

✓
Ringo John Paul George

✓
Paul John Ringo George

✓
Ringo John George Paul

✓
Paul George John Ringo

✓
Ringo Paul John George

✓
Paul George Ringo John

✓
Ringo Paul George John

✓
Paul Ringo John George

✓
Ringo George John Paul

✓
Paul Ringo George John

✓
Ringo George Paul John

Altering the function to use 2 items at a time from the total of 4 items —

PERMUT(4,2) — returns just 12 permutations:

✓
John Paul

✓
George John

✓
John George

✓
George Paul

✓
John Ringo

✓
George Ringo

✓
Paul John

✓
Ringo John

✓
Paul George

✓
Ringo Paul

✓
Paul Ringo

✓
Ringo George

Just for contrast, using the number 2 for both arguments — PERMUT(2,2) —

returns just two items! When using PERMUT, make sure you’ve selected the

correct numbers for the two arguments; otherwise, you’ll end up with an

incorrect result and may not be aware of the mistake. The PERMUT function

simply returns a number. The validity of the number is in your hands.