If you’re building a spreadsheet to share with others or simply one for your own tracking, using a checklist can make data entry a breeze in Microsoft Excel. Here’s how to create a checklist in your spreadsheet and make it look like your own. Why a checklist? You might use a checklist for tracking items to pack for a trip, products for your company, a holiday gift list, monthly bills, or keeping track of tasks. With a simple check box form control, you can create a checklist for anything you like in Excel. Access the Developer Tab Before you can use the check box form control in Microsoft Excel, you need to make sure that you have access to the Developer tab . If you don’t see this tab at the top of Excel, it takes only a minute to add it. Right-click anywhere on your Excel ribbon and select “Customize the Ribbon” from the drop-down list. Alternatively, you can click File > Options > Customize Ribbon from the menu. On the right side of the window, under … [Read more...] about How to Create a Checklist in Microsoft Excel
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While browsing the web, you may have come across graphical files with an “SVG” extension. What is special about these files and how can you view them? We’ll explain. What Is an SVG File? In the context of computer graphics, SVG stands for “Scalable Vector Graphics.” An SVG file is a computer file that uses the SVG standard, defined by the World Wide Web Consortium , to display an image. Typical image formats—such as JPG, PNG, and GIF—utilize raster graphics, which means that they display an image by storing a grid of pixels, called a bitmap. Each pixel’s color and location are stored in the file. If you scale a raster image larger than intended, the image becomes jagged and blurry. In contrast, SVG images use vector graphics to define an image. In a vector graphics image, the image is stored mathematically as a series of instructions that tell a viewing program how to “draw” the image on your screen. Since the drawing can take place at any size, SVG files are … [Read more...] about What Is an SVG File, and How Do I Open One?
Version 1.0 of the Universal Serial Bus (USB) standard was released in January 1996. 25 years and three attempts later, we’ve gone from USB 1.0’s 12 Mbit/s speeds to USB4’s 40 Gbit/s speeds. Here’s how USB conquered the world. The Problem: Wrestling with Ports and IRQs In the early 1990s, connecting peripherals to PCs was a mess. To use set up any PC, you had to utilize a handful of different types of incompatible ports and connectors. Most commonly, those included a keyboard port, a 9- or 25-pin RS-232 serial port , and a 25-pin parallel port . In addition, PC game controllers used their own 15-pin standard, and mice often plugged into serial ports or proprietary cards. At the same time, peripheral manufacturers began bumping into data rate limits in existing ports used for peripherals on PCs. Demand for telephony, video, and audio applications was growing. Traditionally, vendors had sidestepped these limitations by introducing their own proprietary ports that could be … [Read more...] about 25 Years of Making Connections With USB (After Three Attempts)
Laptops offer the power of a PC wherever you go, from the other side of the country to the other side of the couch. But sometimes you want a desktop for a bigger display, a larger keyboard, and a beefy mouse. Here’s how to turn your laptop into a pseudo desktop. Any Laptop Can Transform Into a Desktop Transforming your portable PC into something more permanent is easy with a few cables and the necessary peripherals. The best part is that your laptop doesn’t have to remain tethered to your workspace, and any time you need to get on the move, just disconnect the cables and you’re good to go. Let’s go through the basics of a DIY setup to get on the road to big-screen glory. What Do You Need From a Laptop? The first question people often have is whether their laptop can handle driving all those peripherals, including a larger screen. The answer for most people is almost always yes. Even something as old as an Intel Sandy Bridge CPU can work. All that counts is that the PC has … [Read more...] about How to Turn a Windows Laptop Into a Desktop PC
Creating a chart in Excel is neither easy nor intuitive for inexperienced users. Luckily, there’s a feature called Quick Analysis that can create charts, tables, and more with just a click. First, we’ll make a chart in order to understand our data better. In this example, this is a table of the types of drinks purchased at a fictional restaurant. To get started, we’ll select the cells we want to group by clicking and dragging. Next, click the small “Quick Analysis” icon. You’ll find it at the bottom right of the selected data. From the pop-up window, click “Formatting.” This is just one of many analysis types, though it’s a great one to start with for our fictional example. Move the cursor over each option to preview it. Let’s take a closer look at Data Bars. This option, Data Bars, turns each cell into a progress bar. The highest value in our table covers the width of the cell with each additional bar being scaled proportionally. The next … [Read more...] about How to Use Excel’s “Quick Analysis” to Visualize Data