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LibreOffice Calc guidance (SOLVED)

Posted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 5:56 am
by wind_rose_2
Might anyone possibly suggest a good video covering the use of the program (for a new user) .
I have been playing with it for a few days and think l may be able to use it but have been stumbling around trying to learn how to do basic operations.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 7:24 am
by xenopeek
I'd suggest LibreOffice's Getting Started with Calc guide: ODT / PDF. That is part of LibreOffice's Getting Started Guide (you can order the complete thing as a book): https://documentation.libreoffice.org/e ... ted-guide/

I don't know for videos. Might help others to make suggestions if you add what you want to use Calc for.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:53 am
by bigal
Are you stuck with a particular problem or is it just general information you are after? If the former just post it here.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:08 pm
by cliffcoggin
If you have experience of Microsoft Excel you will find Calc to be so similar that no tuition is needed outside the Help pages. If you have no experience of spreadsheets in general I don't know what to suggest.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 1:17 pm
by wind_rose_2
Thank you all..l am a complete novice to Calc and Excel and have no need for either other than for personal use/education/curiosity and l had thought l may be able to incorporate it into my daily finances.
There are so many "experts" on line (Youtube) and l thought if someone had previously found one to be better than the rest this may be the place to ask.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 6:55 am
by lsemmens
The only issue that you will really encounter is determining what it is you want the spreadsheet to do for you?

It can be used for many things. So, the first question I would ask you is, "What is your problem?" This is not meant to be in any way demeaning. More what problem are you hoping to solve with a spreadsheet? I started out with Databases last century and there are many things that a spreadsheet is used for that are better suited to a database. A phone book is a perfect example, it looks like a perfect spreadsheet example, but, strictly speaking it is a database. Don't get me wrong, you can use a spreadsheet as a database, but that is not their power. Financial Analysis, OTOH, perfect spreadsheet material.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 7:44 am
by cliffcoggin
wind_rose_2 wrote:
Fri Feb 14, 2020 1:17 pm
Thank you all..l am a complete novice to Calc and Excel and have no need for either other than for personal use/education/curiosity and l had thought l may be able to incorporate it into my daily finances.
There are so many "experts" on line (Youtube) and l thought if someone had previously found one to be better than the rest this may be the place to ask.
In that case look for Excel videos to get an idea of what spreadsheets are and can do. Then try a few simple exercises in Calc. I keep all my financial data and most of my work data in spreadsheets because Calc is an ideal way of storing and manipulating data that would be laid out in a table on a paper system.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 7:47 am
by AZgl1500
I have used Microsoft's Excel since it was announced.

Very familiar with the way it works.....
to me, it was a bit stupid for LibreOffice to just ever so slightly change up the way it access cells to perform minor things like add up a column's contents.

type in the precise Excel format and it will not work.

the Help feature has always been my resource for figuring out how to add 2 cells together correctly

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 7:50 am
by bigal
I am still leaning about both spreadsheet and database design. They are both huge subjects, each in its own right. That is not meant to put you off either though. Yes, there is a vast amount of information and advice ‘out there’. The trouble I always find is that what you want to know is not exactly explained. So my initial advice is the old proverb, suck it and see. Fire up Calc and play around with it. Fire up Base and make up a few tables. Get the feel of them both.

I use Calc every day and have done so for a lot of years. To me the secret of a good spreadsheet is in the formatting of the cells. Start a dummy spreadsheet then try putting a list of headings across the top, Row 1, then format each cell in Row 2 according to the heading. Text, Numbers, Date, Fractions & etc. If you want to carry out a mathematical calculation you enter a formulae in the cell that you want the result to appear in. Note that all mathematical formula must be proceeded by an = sign. So, assuming that cells A1, B1 and C1 are formatted as Number, to add the contents of A1 to the contents of B1 the calculation formula you type in C1 will be =A1+B1. No spaces.

I am sorry if this is too simple but I have no idea just how much you all ready know. That said, I stand by my advice above. Suck it and see. Try different things out and if they work that is good. However, when they don’t work look at what you have done. Are there simply typos there, is the formatting not right, is the data correct? Analyse what has gone on. You will, I hope, be pleasantly surprise just how quickly you learn. Once you have little bit of experience try creating a spreadsheet for a particular purpose. And as ever, if you get stuck ASK. Provided you explain exactly what you have done, and what you want to achieve I am sure that there will be someone here to help.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 9:41 am
by lsemmens
bigal is right in his/her analysis, play with it, you can't break it. FWIW I started out in Lotus 123 and it took me until Excel was in about it's third iteration before I began to use it, even then some of the syntax was way different to Lotus. I have now crossed over to using Calc (albeit rarely these days) and there is still a learning curve for us old Spreadsheet users. The biggest hurdle you will ever meet is: knowing something CAN be done and then asking the right questions to find out HOW it can be done. Like with learning Linux, dumb questions are easier to fix than dumb mistakes.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 11:49 am
by cliffcoggin
Lotus 1-2-3. Now that takes me back.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:04 pm
by bigal
I have a copy of 8 bit versions of Visicorps Visicalc as well as a copy of Infomix Smartware 2 and a full program of Angoss Software v2.52 from 1993 all of which are on 3.5” floppies floppies all stashed away amongst other oldies in a box. Now they ARE old. They were for my 64k Commodore Pet. I never got around to installing them as I only had the Commodore 5.25” floppy drives and never got around to adding a 3.5 inch one.

None of this is helping the OP though – as interesting as it is.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 8:19 pm
by wind_rose_2
Wow, history and mathematics in one format !
To put some light on my situation l had been using Windoze based Quicken for years to assist me in the daily accounting of running small business and when l retired continued to use it for my personal finances and tax preparation.
Since my converting to Linux (where have you been all my life) l have been experimenting with different programs and have come to like the SKROOGE program as l like its format.
The thing with that program is there is a rather steep learning curve and the support forum consists primarily of the program developer and a hand full of others with more knowledge of the program that l. I always feel as though l am asking questions much to basic for them to pay attention to.
And since Quicken is only in Windoze l got to thinking that possibly creating my own spread sheet for accounting specific to my requirements may be the logical path.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 2:06 am
by lsemmens
If you know the formulas for the calculations, we can certainly point you in the right direction.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 2:51 am
by AZgl1500
bigal wrote:
Sat Feb 15, 2020 1:04 pm
I have a copy of 8 bit versions of Visicorps Visicalc as well as a copy of Infomix Smartware 2 and a full program of Angoss Software v2.52 from 1993 all of which are on 3.5” floppies floppies all stashed away amongst other oldies in a box. Now they ARE old. They were for my 64k Commodore Pet. I never got around to installing them as I only had the Commodore 5.25” floppy drives and never got around to adding a 3.5 inch one.

None of this is helping the OP though – as interesting as it is.
wow! Memories are made of this.

I had forgotten what my 1st spreadsheet application was called, but you tagged it !

My first decent word processor was called Word Perfect, and hated the day that my employer forced us to do all of our in-house documentation with Microsoft Office apps.

I felt crippled, like cut off at the knees.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 7:41 am
by cliffcoggin
Windy.

If you can define what data you want to record, what calculations you want to make, and what results you want to see, then you will have overcome the biggest hurdle in setting up a spreadsheet. After that, laying out the spreadsheet and inserting the formulae is relatively straightforward, although it's essential to be methodical and test everything. Only you can take the first step of defining the parameters; everything else you can get assistance with either here or elsewhere.

Re: LibreOffice Calc guidance

Posted: Sun Feb 16, 2020 1:15 pm
by wind_rose_2
cliffcoggin wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 7:41 am
Windy.

If you can define what data you want to record, what calculations you want to make, and what results you want to see, then you will have overcome the biggest hurdle in setting up a spreadsheet. After that, laying out the spreadsheet and inserting the formulae is relatively straightforward, although it's essential to be methodical and test everything. Only you can take the first step of defining the parameters; everything else you can get assistance with either here or elsewhere.
How right you are. The actual format will need to be designed by me so l am giving it some thought. I could compile my data monthly and reconcile to coincide with back statements.
Then at year end for tax purposes have a separate sheet consisting of all transactions throughout the year.
It is a lot to consider and l guess that is why Quicken has become so popular.
Has anyone taken the time to download the Skrooge Program l have been attempting to use ? It is available in the Software Manager. I would appreciate opinions of the program from a professionals perspective.
Regards Dave