# Ideas for Excel

Excel can be a bit intimidating for novices, but confidence in the use of spreadsheets is really important. Five applications of Excel are examined here, and I'm grateful to Ian Guest of SE Sheffield CLC for permission to post a spreadsheet that he devised for making 3D representations of landscapes in Excel.

Draw a river cross section (Court Fields students!) Very simple chart application. Replace your depth readings with the example values.

Newly created is this ultra-simple spreadsheet for working out flow velocities from an MJP flow meter, without using the annoying graph. Comments about the accuracy of this are welcome!

Investigating the juicy geography stream at night!

Drawing population pyramids
This spreadsheet explains the process of constructing beautiful population pyramids!

Using Excel to improve coursework presentation.
This spreadsheet was well received last year so I've reposted it here. Thanks to Jon Peltier, Microsoft Excel MVP for pointing out that you can use any picture you want to turn a bar or column chart into a pictogram. Copy the picture you want, then select the series, or just the bar, and paste. Double click on the bar or series to format it, on the Patterns tab, click the Fill Effects button. On the Picture tab, select Stack and Scale to 1 Unit per Picture.
In order to use a Wingding character, draw a textbox, format the color you want and the Wingdings font, type the appopriate character, shrink the borders to zero. Use the textbox as the picture.

Disability index
Map disabled access to your local shopping centre using this index. This site gives more detail and a description of a GCSE investigation.

3D representations of topography
This excellent spreadsheet application was sent to me by Ian Guest (SE Sheffield CLC) who comments " This Excel file produces a 3-D representation of a hill which you can view from any angle. If you look on the Chart1 sheet, move your cursor over one of the corners of the graph area (a pop-up will say "Corners" when you're in the right place) and click, the black corner 'handles' will appear and your cursor will turn into a '+' when you hover over them. You can now drag any one of the corner handles which allows you to look at the hill from any direction and elevation. If you have a look at Sheet 1, you'll probably get the idea of how it was done.
A really good exemplification of this technique has been written up by Wycombe High School.

I have developed a nice local study on crime. Example of a local crime map. (Data VERY kindly provided by Wellington Police Station!)
Base map and photograph
Instructions for producing the crime map. (Word doc)