Human-readable cell names

Human-readable cell names

Creating and auditing formulas in traditional spreadsheet applications is time consuming and error prone because they are represented by abstract cell references (e.g., A2) and you may mistype them without realizing it.

Cell references also make it hard for you, let a lone a colleague, to debug formulae or audit models.

This is why in Visyond you have the option of using descriptive natural names in formulas instead of cryptic cell references.

How natural names look

If your worksheet has labels for at least a row, Visyond will show the natural name in the Worksheet Number! Row Label[Column Label] format.

If  [Column Label] is not defined, then it will show Worksheet Number! Row Label [Column Letter] (e.g., 2!Revenues[B]) will be shown.

Although you can name a worksheet, you can only refer to its number in formulae. We do this to avoid making natural names too long. The worksheet number will be omitted if the cell is located on the same worksheet (for example, if you type ‘=2!A2+1‘ in a cell on worksheet 2, the formula will be shown as ‘=A2+1’.

If you want to go back to a classic Excel environment you can toggle Off the Names button.

Working with natural names

We recommend that when you are debugging formulas and auditing models keep the:

  • Audit Mode is On
  • Natural Names is On.
  • Precedents and Dependents is turned On.

When you click through the Visyond worksheet you will be able to spot any inconsistency in formulas, immediately figure out the precedent and dependent cells, and  instantly determine which cells have comments, attachments, or cases.

If debugging formulas with cell references is as hard as using a 2007 vintage phone to get directions, debugging with natural names is as simple as firing up Siri and asking for the shortest route.

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August 11, 2018

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