Working With Numbers

Charilaos Skiadas has created a spreadsheet bundle which marks up column-formatted data and supports various functions to be run on ranges. I’m not a user of spreadsheets myself, so I probably have the terminology wrong, but there is a screencast, and it looks pretty cool!

I do however regularly have the need to do some quick ad hoc column summations and basic math, so to demonstrate how I do that, I recorded a screencast to show the math bundle in action (12 minutes, 26 MB). It also shows how to deal with column data in TextMate and a few other tidbits.

5 Comments

  1. 22 Apr 2006 | # Haris Skiadas wrote…

    I love your screencasts! They are always clear and to the point, and I always learn something new, even now. On this one I must admit there was one tiny flaw. At times it was really unclear where the cursor was. Not sure if this was just the black on white thing, but I really couldn't find it.

    The purpose of my bundle is I guess dual:

    First, to offer natural navigation to spreadsheet users by hijacking the tab and enter keys (I know, I know…) for the purpose of moving around cells, as well as providing the syntax for recognizing cells as such. People used to columnar editing will probably not be very impressed by that.

    The second was to provide the ability to create commands that can be run multiple times, i.e. that are part of the document, and can be rerun if some values in the tables change.

    Ok, enough about my bundle :)

    Thanks again for the screencast! Keep doing them, they are great!

  2. 22 Apr 2006 | # Alisdair McDiarmid wrote…

    Just another note of support for your screencasts. I use TextMate every day, but every time I see someone else use it I find new, better ways of doing things. Thanks for taking the time to teach!

  3. 24 Apr 2006 | # Clayton Hynfield wrote…

    This kind of work is one of the first ways I put TextMate to use as a sysadmin. I was measuring network throughput and creating tables, and I really didn't want to have to fire up Excel just to do column manipulation and some simple sums and averages. TextMate to the rescue!

    Thank you, Allan, for an absolutely indispensible editor.

  4. 25 Apr 2006 | # Nithin wrote…

    Great Screencast.

    How long do these end up taking you? I think the videos are more lucid than written documentation. So, perhaps they can serve as a replacement for the written documentation?

  5. 26 Apr 2006 | # Allan Odgaard wrote…

    Thanks for the support, it’s definitely nice to know that the time spent is worth it.

    Nithin: As for how long time they take, the actual time for shooting is not bad, i.e. I do the narrating live and I can mostly do them in one take, so there is no post-production (other than clipping the start/end).

    But planning what to show, is a tad harder. This one was easy, because I just wanted to show the Math bundle (in response to a ML letter), but e.g. an HTML screencast is harder, because there is so much to show, but it should be short and to the point.

    Worst case is having 5 HTML screencasts each lasting 30 minutes, and each demonstrating slightly different things related to HTML. I say worst case, because that’s 2 and a half hours of video to watch for someone new to TextMate, just to pick up some HTML stuff.

    So it doesn’t scale well with respect to “replacing” the documentation. But I will definitely do lots more of them.

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