Handy loan calculator for Excel

Loan Amortization Schedule for Excel is, no surprise, an XLS file that has loan amortization formulas embedded in it. Distributed as a ZIP file with the XLS sheet and a couple of text files (release notes and license agreement), there's no installation process to follow. Just open the XLS file with Excel (or compatible program) and you're good to go.

The layout of the first sheet is simple: space at the top for loan mount, interest rate, term, and a few other details like payment frequency and compounding period. You just enter your information to see the monthly … Read more

PDF to Excel Converter makes the job easy

You have many options for converting PDF files into Excel documents, depending on what software you already have, what the PDF contains, and what you expect as a finished product: everything from free Web-based tools to expensive pro tools and enterprise-level packages. Blue Label Software's PDF to Excel Converter falls somewhere in the middle, offering lots of speed and convenience, but at a significant cost, compared to the freeware.

PDF to Excel Converter's user interface is a nicely rendered variation on a common layout for tools of this type, with a tree view in a sidebar to the … Read more

Microsoft touts touch in Office 2013

Microsoft is aiming Office 2013 at touch-screen devices as well as PCs. So the company is starting to pull out the stops to convince tablet users that the new Office is just right for them.

In a blog post yesterday, Clint Covington, a lead program manager for Microsoft's User Experience team, explained how touch works in the new suite. Products such as OneNote and Lync have been redesigned from the ground up to fully support touch. The other applications in Office have been "touch-enabled," which means they support certain touch features but remain true to their roots … Read more

Prevent Excel from reformatting two numbers to a date and month

Topping my list of Microsoft Excel pet peeves is the program's automatic conversion of two numbers on either side of a hyphen into the date and month the numbers correspond to, such as "1-1" becoming "01-Jan."

The change occurs even when you choose any of the options available when you select Paste Special. I have looked high and low for a way to disable this setting in Excel, to no avail.

You can make the change for an entire worksheet by clicking the small box above 1 and to the left of A in the … Read more

Put CellworXs to work in Excel

Microsoft Excel is the business world's standard spreadsheet application for lots of reasons, not the least of which is the ability to expand its capabilities through add-ons. CellworXs by Softalis is a free Excel add-on that adds significant data analysis capabilities, including the ability to generate dynamic reports and offline report versions that can be shared with others. CellworXs has the potential to greatly reduce the time and expertise needed to create sophisticated analyses. Instead of requiring lots of "help calculations" and in-depth technical knowledge, CellworXs uses simple formulas to enable users to build database-specific analysis, consolidation, … Read more

Quickoffice Pro HD is a mini office suite on the go

As its name suggests, Quickoffice Pro HD is a mobile office and productivity suite for use on the go. It lets you create and edit office files, and even sync them to your favorite cloud storage service.

If you're a fan of Google Docs like I am, then you've probably noticed that editing files from your mobile device can be a bit of a pain. The Google Drive (download) app (which recently slurped up Google Docs) doesn't offer a very robust menu of formatting tools, which makes workflow more complicated than it should be (especially when dealing … Read more

Exec sings goodbye to Microsoft on YouTube

When I first saw this I thought the first line was "Long, long lines of coke."

I thought this would be a contemporary dirge to the emptiness of the corporate American dream. This was, after all, being sung to Don McLean's "American Pie."

Sadly, it seems, the first words are "long, long lines of code." For this is the resignation ditty of Karen X. Cheng, a project manager at Microsoft.

I sing a haiku to TechCrunch for explaining that she is leaving on a jet plane to work for something called Exec, a … Read more

Microsoft releases Office 2011 SP2 for OS X

Microsoft announced on its Office for Mac Blog today that it has made its Service Pack 2 for Office for Mac 2011 available for download. This update addresses a number of problems users have been having with Outlook, but also fixes some aspects of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

The update is available via Microsoft's included Autoupdate utility, but can also be downloaded from Microsoft's Web site. The update is about 110MB in size, and after installing the version of your Office installation will be 14.2.0.

With the release of Office 2011 Microsoft replaced its old Entourage … Read more

Office Web Apps refresh likely on Microsoft's menu

Microsoft Office users can expect to see a new version of Office Web Apps this summer, according to Windows Live enthusiast site LiveSide.net.

The cloud-based suite will reportedly be available in "preview" mode at the same time that Office 15 for the desktop is released as a beta. Users will be able to try the latest features of Office Web Apps to create or edit documents stored through SkyDrive or Hotmail, LiveSide added.

Little else is known or at least revealed about a new version of Office Web Apps. Microsoft did not immediately answer CNET's request … Read more

An early look at Microsoft Office 15

Microsoft Office 15 will come built for the desktop but offer a huge touch of the Metro flair, according to a description posted by Supersite for Windows author Paul Thurrott, who obtained a copy of an early preview version.

Accord to Thurrott, the technical preview of Office 15 kicks off like the current version, letting you choose which applications to install.

But after a full installation, you'll find your Metro start screen cluttered with a huge number of live tiles for each application. That's an inherent flaw in the Metro UI, which doesn't allow tiles to be … Read more