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Microsoft Excel using Excel Render
Version 3 / November 20, 2012
|Operating system||Microsoft Windows|
Excel Render is an Add-in for Microsoft Excel spreadsheets that display formulas in their natural mathematical form. Notable features include: document calculations with beautiful equations; find errors with a structured view of the variables and values used by formulas; publish equations to other applications and websites; audit spreadsheets quickly, by revealing the hidden logic behind any calculation. Excel Render is developed by Codecogs.
Microsoft Excel is a popular spreadsheet program used in homes, business, and schools. Although Excel can show the formulas used in calculations most people prefer only to see the values, thereby adding to the overall simplicity of spreadsheet program. Excel includes functions to perform complex calculations in specialized areas of Mathematics including statistics, logic, trigonometry, accounting, and finance. When Codecogs has developed the product Excel Render, their stated aim for this add-in for Microsoft Excel is to simplify the use of complex calculations of mathematics.
The first version of Excel Render was release 2010. This was a web-power solution quickly implemented in VBA to test the idea, but it was unfortunately limited by the length of the equation that could be rendered in Microsoft Excel. In February 2011, Version 2 was released, which was completed rewritten in C# thereby overcoming the earlier equation length limitation. However, to cater for different variants of Excel, separate compilations are needed for Excel 2003 and Excel 2007/2010. A version of the Mac Office has not currently been released. Version 2 greatly enhanced the functionality, with many new ways to represent matrices introduced along with a more robust algorithm to recognise variable names. A sequence of improvements were rapidly released, but perhaps the most significant was support for alternative Excel function names designed for different languages. As an illustration the familiar "SUM" function may also be called case "SOM", "SUMME", "SOMME", "SOMMA", "SUMA", "SOMA", "SUMMA", "SUMMER", "СУММ"
Last November 2012, Version 3 was released for public testing. The latest version is the first using an offline equation rendering solution that has been developed internally by CodeCogs, specifically for Microsoft Windows. Again no versions for the Mac Office are planned. CodeCogs state that their off-line implementation can also be used to render normal LaTeX, with it supporting about 98% of the Mathematical Latex standard. Since Excel Render is no longer reliant on a web-connection, it is naturally faster. Further enhancements to this add-in include a Number Find and Text Find capability.
Excel Render can be used in a variety of purposes, but at the most basic level, the Add-in simply:
- displays the value being used by each variable within a formula
- displays the exact cell reference uses in the formula. This will typically just display the usual excel formula in a graphical form, but where Excel cells are named [add reference] then this feature converts the 'names' back to A1 style cell reference.
- display appropriate names for the variables. The names used to label a variable are usually derived from the text label placed to the left of the cell, but where this is not available a variety the tool searches for viable alternatives
The following figures illustrate the three main ways the same equation may be represented:
- Excel Render using Cell References has rendering the selected cell using the absolute cell references.
- Render using Cell Names has renders the selected cell by using the cell or range names specified in the Excel workbook/
- Excel Render is using Cell Values has renders the selected cell using the numeric or text values from the cell specified.
- "About Excel Render"
- " Step-By-Step Spreadsheet Activities for Microsoft Excel" Brown, Joan Marie, pages 1-95, Accessed January 2013.
- " “Introductory - Microsoft Excel 2010” William R Pasewark, Sr PhD,Scott G. Pasewark,William R. Pasewark, Jr. Ph.d.,Robin M. Romer,Carolyn Denny Pasewark,Jan Pasewark Stogner, Accessed January 2013
- Excel Render Help