Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Chapter 10: Charming Charts and Gorgeous Graphics
were probably too busy with more important things like cool cars and
rock ’n’ roll to pay too much attention to an old algebra teacher. Besides, you
probably told yourself, “I’ll never need this junk when I’m out on my own and
get a job!”
Well, see, you just never know. It turns out that even though Excel automates
almost the entire process of charting worksheet data, you may need to be
able to tell the x-axis from the y-axis, just in case Excel doesn’t draw the chart
the way you had in mind. To refresh your memory and make your algebra
teacher proud, the x-axis is the horizontal axis, usually located along the
bottom of the chart; the y-axis is the vertical one, usually located on the left
side of the chart.
In most charts that use these two axes, Excel plots the categories along the
x-axis at the bottom and their relative values along the y-axis on the left. The
x-axis is referred to as the Category axis, while the y-axis is referred to as the
Value axis. Often, the x-axis can be thought of as the time axis because the
chart often depicts values along this axis in time periods, such as months,
quarters, years, and so on.
Worksheet values represented graphically in the chart remain dynamically
linked to the chart so that, should you make a change to one or more of the
charted values in the worksheet, Excel automatically updates the affected part
of the chart to suit.
Excel 2013 offers you many quick and easy ways to chart your data. Before
you use any of these methods, you need to indicate the data you want
graphed. To do this, you simply position the cell pointer somewhere within
the data table to select one of its cells. If, however, you want to chart only a
part of the data within a larger table, in that case, you must select the values
and headings you want included in the new chart.
Charts thanks to Recommendation
My personal favorite way to create a new chart in Excel 2013 is with the
new Recommended Charts command button on the Insert tab of the Ribbon
(Alt+NR). When you use this method, Excel opens the Insert Chart dialog
box with the Recommended Charts tab selected, similar to the one shown
in Figure 10-1. Here, you can preview how your data will appear in different
types of charts by simply clicking its thumbnail in the list box on the left.
When you find the type of chart you want to create, you then simply click the
OK button to have it embedded into the current worksheet.
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