The spreadsheet and the personal computer are intrinsically bound. In the early 1980s, the spreadsheet was the first “killer app”—the software application that drove people to buy a personal computer. While specialized computers for word processing were replacing typewriters and database software captured the computing power of mainframes, the spreadsheet allowed managers to track, analyze, and model decisions, especially financial decisions, using a tool with low barriers to entry on an affordable computer.
Key Terms in this Chapter
Text: Cell entries that include text and numeric identifiers such as a Social Security Number.
3D Reference: A cell reference that includes a cell located on another spreadsheet.
Value: A numeric entry that has a value and may be used in a mathematical expression.
Function: A complex formula built into a spreadsheet and referenced by a name, such as AVG for an average function to calculate the average of a range
Range: An area of cells specified by the upper left and lower right cells.
Relative Reference: A reference to a cell that is relative to the selected cell. This reference changes if the cell is copied.
Cell Reference: The means of addressing a cell, usually by its column, a letter designation, followed by a numeral, its row designation. For example, B2 is the cell at the second column and second row
Cell: The intersection of a row and column in a spreadsheet.
Formula: A cell entry that contains a mathematical expression which may contain cell references or constants.
Spreadsheet: A multi-dimensional, addressable, ordered array of cells whose contents may be text, values, formulas, or functions, which is able to display and store data and evaluate expressions
Absolute Reference: A reference to a cell that is a fixed location.