Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
So What Ya Gonna Put in That New Workbook of Yours?
Whenever you can, organize your information in tables of data that use
adjacent (neighboring) columns and rows. Start the tables in the
upperleft corner of the worksheet and work your way down the sheet, rather
than across the sheet, whenever possible. When it’s practical, separate
each table by no more than a single column or row.
When you set up these tables, don’t skip columns and rows just to “space
out” the information. In Chapter 3, you see how to place as much white
space as you want between information in adjacent columns and rows by
widening columns, heightening rows, and changing the alignment.
Reserve a single column at the left edge of the table for the table’s
row headings.
Reserve a single row at the top of the table for the table’s column
headings.
If your table requires a title, put the title in the row above the column
headings. Put the title in the same column as the row headings. You can
get information on how to center this title across the columns of the
entire table in Chapter 3.
In Chapter 1, I make a big deal about how big each of the worksheets in a
workbook is. You may wonder why I’m now on your case about not using
that space to spread out the data that you enter into it. After all, given all the
real estate that comes with each Excel worksheet, you’d think conserving
space would be one of the last things you’d have to worry about.
You’d be 100 percent correct . . . except for one little, itty-bitty thing: Space
conservation in the worksheet equals memory conservation. You see, while
a table of data grows and expands into columns and rows in new areas of the
worksheet, Excel decides that it had better reserve a certain amount of
computer memory and hold it open just in case you go crazy and fill that area with
cell entries. Therefore, if you skip columns and rows that you really don’t need
to skip (just to cut down on all that cluttered data), you end up wasting
computer memory that could store more information in the worksheet.
You must remember this . . .
Now you know: The amount of computer memory available to Excel
determines the ultimate size of the spreadsheet you can build, not the total number
of cells in the worksheets of your workbook. When you run out of memory,
you’ve effectively run out of space — no matter how many columns and rows
are still available. To maximize the information you can get into a single
worksheet, always adopt the “covered wagon” approach to worksheet design by
keeping your data close together.
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