Somewhat recently, I regularly had to generate Pivot tables and corresponding charts from datasets provided as both CSV and Microsoft Excel files. Now, with its data source and pivot table tools Microsoft Excel usually lends itself to that sort of task. However, to completely automate this task VBA macros are required. Those too work quite nicely if one overcomes the initial aversion of working with Microsoft's not exactly well-designed and usable IDE for VBA macros (Excel's own macro recording feature is quite ... Read more
Today startup entrepreneurs are celebrated for disrupting industries and changing the world. Marc Andreessen is famously quoted with the statement "Software is eating the world!". Back in the days when software was nothing but a nascent industry, Dan Bricklin both changed the world with software, disrupted not one industry but several at the same time and in fact almost single-handedly created the industry of small business software. His name nowadays isn't exactly well known as is the software he created. The new ... Read more
Continuing on last week's post about RunKit - a Node.js prototyping environment for the browser - here are two interesting tools that make use of RunKit: GitBook is a collaborative documentation tool that allows you to create beautiful, version-controlled documentation for your software. It's used by software components like Redux and it leverages RunKit to embed live, reactive code examples in your documentation.
Fieldbook is was a database creation tool thats touted as "A database with an API – as simple as a ... Read more
Lots of the software of the world is written in Microsoft's Excel. A spreadsheet environment lends itself particularly well to addressing everyday computing problems. Compiling tabular data, creating connections between particular pieces of that data, condensing and aggregating over a dataset's values. These are common tasks a spreadsheet solves very well with no need for complex database or application server software. A spreadsheet is a flexible tool that provides simple, responsive and instant feedback to data input and algorithm changes. However flexible, ... Read more