38. About Sheets and Spreadsheets
39 Set Calc Options
40 Create a New Spreadsheet
46 Edit Cell Data
Calc enables you to create and edit one or more sheets that you store in spreadsheets. Generally, people work with a single sheet for simple applications, such as a worksheet that an investor might use to analyze a single stock investment.
Typically, Calc helps users prepare financial information, but you can manage other kinds of data in Calc, such as a project timeline. Calc even supports simple database routines (see Chapter 10, "Using Calc as a Simple Database"), although you'll want to use OpenOffice.org's Base program for in-depth database projects (see Chapter 18, "Organizing Your Data with Base"). If your project requires multiple closely linked financial sheets, you'll keep these sheets in one large spreadsheet file.
A sheet is a collection of rows and columns that holds text and numbers .
Many people loosely use the term spreadsheet for single sheets inside a Calc spreadsheet . This lax term is used because Excel's sheets are called spreadsheets , but a Calc spreadsheet is technically the name for multiple sheets. It gets confusing! You'll often know by the context whether spreadsheets refer to a single sheet or a collection of sheets.
A simple example may help solidify the difference between a spreadsheet and a sheet in your mind. A company with several divisions might create a spreadsheet with annual sales for each division, and each division might be represented with its own tabbed sheet inside the spreadsheet. Any time you create, open , or save a Calc file, you are working with a spreadsheet. Often, that spreadsheet contains only one sheet. When that's the case, the terms spreadsheet and sheet really are basically synonymous.
All Calc files end in the .ods (Open Document Spreadsheet) filename extension. (Older Calc files end in the file extension .sxc and are completely compatible with OpenOffice.org.) Your spreadsheet name is the Calc name you assign when you save the file. You can save Calc sheets and spreadsheets in HTML and other spreadsheet formats, such as Microsoft Excel and Star Calc. When you save your sheet as an HTML file, you can embed your sheet data inside a web page. To save your work for the first time, select File, Save As ; then name your Calc spreadsheet, specify the location, and select the format if you want to save the spreadsheet in a non-Calc format. To load an existing Calc or compatible spreadsheet file, use File, Open .
A sheet is set up in a similar manner to a Writer table (see 23 About Writer Tables ), except that Calc sheets can do much more high-end, numeric calculating than Writer tables can.
Initially, blank Calc spreadsheets contain three sheets, named Sheet1, Sheet2 , and Sheet3 . When you click a sheet's tab, Calc brings that sheet into view. Initially, you'll probably stay with one sheet per spreadsheet, so you may never have to click the secondary sheet tabs to bring the other sheets into view.
You can insert additional sheets into a spreadsheet. Choose Insert, Sheet from the menu bar to open the Insert Sheet dialog box. Specify whether you want to add the sheet before or after the currently selected sheet, and whether it should be a new sheet or a copy of a sheet from an existing file.
Give your sheet a name other than Sheet1 . Doing so helps you keep track of what data is on each sheet. Right-click the sheet tab labeled Sheet1 , select Rename Sheet from the menu, and enter a different name, such as 2005 Payroll .
Each sheet column has a heading; heading names start with A, B , and so on. Each row has a heading, starting with 1, 2 , and so on. The intersection of a row and column, called a cell , also has a name, which comes from combining the column number and row name, such as C4 or A1. A1 is always the top-left cell on any sheet. The gridlines throughout the sheet help you to distinguish between cells . The Standard toolbar, Formatting toolbar, and Formula bar offer quick access to common spreadsheet commands and options. Every cell in your spreadsheet contains a unique name or address to which you can refer when you are tabulating data. This name is called the cell reference , and it is unique for each cell in the sheet. The active cell or cells are always highlighted with a dark border ( 46 Edit Cell Data shows how to select multiple cells). A cell's location, also known as its reference , appears in the Name Box.
Cell reference The name of the cell, composed of its column and row intersection, such as G14 . This is also called the cell address .
No matter how large your monitor is, you see only a small amount of the Sheet Area . Use the scrollbars to see or edit information in the off-screen cells, such as cell M200 .