Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Chapter 3: Using Excel Sparklines
Using Excel
In This Chapter
Understanding the Excel 2013 Sparkline feature
Adding sparklines to a worksheet
Working with groups of sparklines
Modifying your sparkline graphics
Sparklines were developed by visualization guru Edward Tufte. Tufte envisioned mini word-sized
charts placed in and among the data that they represent. Sparklines enable you to see trends and
patterns within your data at a glance using minimal space. Following the sparkline concept,
Microsoft then implemented sparklines in Excel worksheets so that you can get visual context for
data that doesn’t take up a lot of real estate on your dashboard.
This chapter introduces you to sparklines and demonstrates how you can use them to add
visualizations to your dashboards and reports.
Sparklines are available only with Excel 2010 and Excel 2013. If you create a workbook
that uses sparklines, and that workbook is opened using a previous version of Excel, the
sparkline cells will be empty. If your organization is not fully using Excel 2010 or 2013,
you may want to search for alternatives to the built-in Excel sparklines. There are many
third-party add-ons that bring sparkline features to earlier versions of Excel. Some of
these products support additional sparkline types, and most have many additional
customization options. Search the web for sparklines excel, and you’ll find several add-ons
to choose from.
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