Microsoft Office Tutorials and References

In Depth Information

**Chapter 17: Charting Techniques**

17

Charting Techniques

In This Chapter

Creating charts from any number of worksheets or different workbooks

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Plotting functions with one and two variables

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Creating awesome designs with formulas

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Working with linear and nonlinear trendlines

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Useful charting tricks for working with charts

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When most people think of Excel, they think of analyzing rows and columns of numbers. As you

probably know already, though, Excel is no slouch when it comes to presenting data visually in

the form of a chart. In fact, it’s a safe bet that Excel is the most commonly used software for

creating charts.

After you’ve created a chart, you have almost complete control over nearly every aspect of each

chart. This chapter, which assumes that you’re familiar with Excel’s charting feature,

demonstrates some useful charting techniques — most of which involve formulas.

Understanding the SERIES Formula

You create charts from numbers that appear in a worksheet. You can enter these numbers

directly, or you can derive them as the result of formulas. Normally, the data used by a chart

resides in a single worksheet, within one file, but that’s not a strict requirement. A single chart

can use data from any number of worksheets, or even from different workbooks.

A
chart
consists of one or more data series, and each data series appears as a line, column, bar,

and so on. Each series in a chart has a SERIES formula. When you select a data series in a chart,

Excel highlights the worksheet data with an outline, and its SERIES formula appears in the

Formula bar (see Figure 17-1).