Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Chapter 1: Excel 2010: Where It Came From
Excel sort of evolved from MultiPlan, first surfacing in 1985 on the Macintosh. Like all Mac
applications, Excel was a graphics-based program (unlike the character-based MultiPlan). In November
1987, Microsoft released the first version of Excel for Windows (labeled Excel 2.0 to correspond
with the Macintosh version). Because Windows wasn’t in widespread use at the time, this version
included a runtime version of Windows — a special version that had just enough features to run
Excel and nothing else. Less than a year later, Microsoft released Excel Version 2.1. In July 1990,
Microsoft released a minor upgrade (2.1d) that was compatible with Windows 3.0. Although
these 2. x versions were quite rudimentary by current standards (see Figure 1-2) and didn’t have
the attractive, sculpted look of later versions, they attracted a small but loyal group of supporters
and provided an excellent foundation for future development.
Excel’s first macro language also appeared in Version 2.The XLM macro language consisted of
functions that were evaluated in sequence. It was quite powerful, but very difficult to learn and
use. The XLM macro language was replaced by Visual Basic for Applications (VBA), which is the
topic of this book. However, Excel 2010 still supports XLM macros.
Figure 1-2: The original Excel 2.1 for Windows. This product has come a long way.
(Photo courtesy of Microsoft)