It’s the quick search for a name, the desire for a file. An afternoon has lingered too long, forcing you to remain within a cubicle — surrounded to statistics and the projection of dollars, calculating the trends of the year. Numbers are beginning to blur, however. You want only to escape them. And so you hurriedly look for a tab, know that it will contain the information you need (the final piece of this all too tedious puzzle). But, as you select it, you receive a sudden… error.
Excel will not open the document. It declares instead that it can’t, that the name is already in use. You frown, surprised by this. Your current spreadsheet doesn’t share the same title. There should be no conflict therefore.
The complication isn’t found in the file identity, however. It instead is tucked in one of the cells: you used the same phrase within your sheet; and Excel now cannot distinguish between the two. It instead assumes your command to already be complete, and a new document merely confuses.
A new name must be offered — and a rule must be learned.
Excel offers obvious convenience. Its ability to organize (and process) information could never be denied. But that information must still be labeled as separate entities. There can be no repetition of phrases, no use of the same titles. The program is meant to offer specificity and that becomes impossible when documents contain duplicated data.
It is essential therefore that users take note of their cells, making certain that they do not use the same names for other spreadsheets. Be distinctive instead to avoid any complications — as well as that dreaded error sign.
This is not, despite what so many claim, an inconvenience. It is simply a demand for precision; and those who must rely on Excel for their work should be able to offer it.
Remember the names. Remember the numbers. Do not confuse the two.