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  #11  
Old 10-09-2018, 06:37 PM
nonactuarialactuary nonactuarialactuary is offline
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Originally Posted by Childish Gambino View Post
I've had the great fortune of being on teams where everyone was pretty competent so I've never been overrun with requests. But I did have a guy offer to buy me a beer for copying his formula down the column. The Financial Recoveries team kept telling me they didn't like excel because "it was hard to type all the formulas". Eventually I came to realize that they were typing the formula (often something very simple like A2+B2) into every row, hundreds or thousands of times. I opened it, hit ctrl+d, and sent it back. I was genius-for-a-day.
When I was just starting out, I worked with someone that asked me to check the calculations in their spreadsheet. I agreed, and once they sent their file, I instantly noticed that all the numbers were hardcoded, so I asked them what I was actually supposed to be checking. As it turns out, the first three or four columns in the spreadsheet were an extract from some database, but the last column was a calculation using the earlier columns as inputs. The numbers were hardcoded because the person had painstakingly went through the file, punched the relevant numbers into a calculator, and typed the response in the last column of the spreadsheet. They wanted me to recalculate the numbers by hand to make sure they were doing it right, and were flabbergasted that I took 15 seconds to redo the calculation that they had spent a week on. This person wasn’t an actuary, but they did have an MBA, and they otherwise seemed computer literate, just completely unaware of how Excel works. I learned a lot about how the real world operates through that interaction. What might seem completely obvious and intuitive to me might be completely foreign to someone else.
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  #12  
Old 10-09-2018, 06:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Childish Gambino View Post
I've had the great fortune of being on teams where everyone was pretty competent so I've never been overrun with requests. But I did have a guy offer to buy me a beer for copying his formula down the column. The Financial Recoveries team kept telling me they didn't like excel because "it was hard to type all the formulas". Eventually I came to realize that they were typing the formula (often something very simple like A2+B2) into every row, hundreds or thousands of times. I opened it, hit ctrl+d, and sent it back. I was genius-for-a-day.
hey! you must know my BIL!
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  #13  
Old 10-09-2018, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by campbell View Post
https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-fir...54380?mod=e2fb



I am very disappointed that none of y'all were quoted....or were you?
Why would they question me? I don't know how to help anyone with Excel.
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  #14  
Old 10-09-2018, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Childish Gambino View Post
I've had the great fortune of being on teams where everyone was pretty competent so I've never been overrun with requests. But I did have a guy offer to buy me a beer for copying his formula down the column. The Financial Recoveries team kept telling me they didn't like excel because "it was hard to type all the formulas". Eventually I came to realize that they were typing the formula (often something very simple like A2+B2) into every row, hundreds or thousands of times. I opened it, hit ctrl+d, and sent it back. I was genius-for-a-day.
To me, it's not so much that people aren't smart enough to figure these things out - I am sure they could. What has always amazed me is the lack of questioning that "there must be a better way" and a willingness to take things only to the point where they've figured out "a way" and be satisfied to continue with that. I guess it's a personality type.

My very first exposure to spreadsheets was when my wife first worked at a hospital and they had purchased VisiCalc (yes I am old) to do some sort of analysis. They were having trouble (some of these were IT people!) and my wife asked if I would look at what they (the IT people, not my wife) were doing. It was the exact situation you describe. I knew nothing of spreadsheets, but my first comment within minutes of playing was that there must be a way to copy these formulae. Let's find it.
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  #15  
Old 10-10-2018, 01:54 PM
Dr T Non-Fan Dr T Non-Fan is offline
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The solution for experts is to be total jerks about helping others. Then they go away, either learning on their own or asking someone nicer.

Problem solved!!

Oh, and by the way, YOU'RE WELCOME!
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  #16  
Old 10-10-2018, 01:57 PM
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  #17  
Old 10-10-2018, 02:09 PM
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Parks and RecROOation Parks and RecROOation is online now
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I opened it, hit ctrl+d, and sent it back. I was genius-for-a-day.
Huh, TIL. I owe you a beer
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  #18  
Old 10-10-2018, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
To me, it's not so much that people aren't smart enough to figure these things out - I am sure they could. What has always amazed me is the lack of questioning that "there must be a better way" and a willingness to take things only to the point where they've figured out "a way" and be satisfied to continue with that. I guess it's a personality type.

My very first exposure to spreadsheets was when my wife first worked at a hospital and they had purchased VisiCalc (yes I am old) to do some sort of analysis. They were having trouble (some of these were IT people!) and my wife asked if I would look at what they (the IT people, not my wife) were doing. It was the exact situation you describe. I knew nothing of spreadsheets, but my first comment within minutes of playing was that there must be a way to copy these formulae. Let's find it.
VisiCalc could be purchased? i thought it was free open source


the googles tell me that, yes, it was available for sale
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  #19  
Old 10-19-2018, 02:12 PM
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My first rule of Excel is to think it through before you start to code. (or revise) And this goes for programming in any language.
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This. And everything else JMO wrote.
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  #20  
Old 10-19-2018, 04:26 PM
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Wizards don't do magic tricks. What garbage is this
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