Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Using Names
The Name Manager dialog box (Formulas➜Defined Names➜Name Manager) makes identifying
names by their scope easy (see Figure 3-3). Note that the dialog box is resizable, and you can
adjust the column widths. You can also sort the information within this dialog box. For example,
click the Scope column header, and the names are sorted by scope.
Figure 3-3: The Name Manager displays the scope for each defined name.
Naming constants
Virtually every experienced Excel user knows how to create cell and range names (although not
all Excel users actually do so). But most Excel users don’t know that you can use names to refer
to values that don’t appear in your worksheet — that is, constants.
Suppose that many formulas in your worksheet need to use a particular interest rate value. One
approach is to type the interest rate into a cell and give that cell a name, such as InterestRate.
After doing so, you can use that name in your formulas, like this:
An alternative is to call up the New Name dialog box (Formulas➜Defined Names➜Define Name)
and enter the interest rate directly into the Refers To box (see Figure 3-4). Then you can use the
name in your formulas just as if the value were stored in a cell. If the interest rate changes, just
change the definition for InterestRate, and Excel updates all the cells that contain this name.
This technique also works for text. For example, you can define the name IWC to stand
for International Widget Corporation. Then you can enter =IWC into a cell, and the cell
displays the full name.
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