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Archive of posts filed under the User Interface category.

Custom columns in Outlook

This tip applies to Outlook 2003, Outlook 2007, Outlook 2010, and Outlook 2013. The names and locations of the ribbon / menu items may have changed with different versions but the ability to create a custom column and view applies to all versions of Outlook starting with at least Outlook 2003. The images in this […]

TM Goal Seek

TM Goal Seek enhances the existing user interface to Excel’s Goal Seek feature. The built in Goal Seek is a simple optimization tool that suffices for a large number of scenarios. The UI, unfortunately, is extremely unwieldy and unfriendly. TM Goal Seek is a simple add-in that is easier to use than the default dialog […]

Excel Services Interactive View

Analyze data with Excel on the web Microsoft has introduced a new web based capability that extends its Excel Services offering.  This new capability provides a limited interactive view of any table in a web page. An introduction to this service is below.  For those interested in additional capabilities and more advanced and useful capabilities […]

Model business dependencies in an Excel worksheet

The Civilization game dependency tree How to build a dependency tree when there is no obvious connection between the business model and an Excel model. A long time ago I spend a lot of time playing the strategy game Civilization. For those not familiar with the game, one of its features was “advances.” Each advance […]

Freeze Panes and Split Panes

When working with a worksheet that contains a large number of rows and/or a large number of columns with row and column headers, it is very helpful to always view the headers no matter where one scrolls through the document. An example is shown below. The table lists the year-by-year carbon dioxide emissions by country […]

TM Excel Dynamic Path Navigator

One of the features that consumers may find useful is retracing their path as they navigate through different workbooks, different sheets, and different windows. This navigation would be equivalent of a web browser’s Previous and Next feature. While Excel does not support this natively, the code in this note enables this capability. For a version […]

Highlight row and column of active cell

By default, when the user selects a cell, Excel highlights the row and column by changing the color of the associated row and column headers. This tip shares multiple ways to highlight the row and column in more obvious ways as well as a way to highlight the cell in a specific column in the […]

Introducing TM Retro Slicer

Those who have used a slicer in Excel 2010 slicer may want to see that capability in earlier versions of Excel. I like what Microsoft did with slicers in 2010 and have wanted to extend that capability backwards. For those who haven’t used a slicer, it is a filter on a particular pivot field shown […]

Same function different add-ins

Ever since Microsoft introduced the ribbon and I did my initial development work with it, an open issue has been how to handle the case where two, or more, add-ins offer the same functionality. One scenario is when the feature is something required for the larger functionality offered by an add-in. Here’s an example. The […]

Extend an object’s attributes to coordinate multiple userform controls

This was motivated by a question in the forum. The person asking for help had multiple comboboxes in a userform, each of which contained the same items, A through L for the purpose of this exercise. These items were sorted alphabetically. He wanted that when the user selected an item in any of the […]