[python-uk] Tell us what you did with Python this year....

Jonathan Hartley tartley at tartley.com
Tue Dec 21 14:40:35 CET 2010

On 20/12/2010 16:51, Matt Hamilton wrote:
> On 20 Dec 2010, at 15:41, Jonathan Hartley wrote:
>> clients with extremely large spreadsheets (which take hours to recalculate on Excel)
> *shudder*
> But that is what makes what you have done even more amazing :) I'm pretty sure spreadsheets of that level of complexity have a lot of subtle excel'isms that you must support and at least be able to do on your system.

Heh. Even as a spreadsheet-making company, we empathise with the shudder 
- they are brilliant ad-hoc investigation tools, but are often 
inappropriately used, simply because they are the one tool many people 
are most familiar with. My boss coined (or at least uses) the term 
'frankensheet' :-) You are right to pinpoint Excel compatibility as our 
biggest demon - we have Excel import functionality for the desktop 
product, but not yet for the web app, and it's not 100% - we sometimes 
come across customer sheets which use functions we haven't implemented 
(we opted to implement them as-and-when we came across them, so as to 
avoid doing lots of work emulating corners of Excel which are rarely 
used.) Similarly, we do occasionally find Excel sheets using formula 
grammar that we can't yet cope with, but that is rare these days. The 
biggest outstanding concerns on this front are user-interface issues (an 
Excel sheet that has some formatting that we don't properly duplicate, 
making it look wonky or even unreadable) or sheets that use VBA - we 
haven't yet implemented anything to deal with that.


Jonathan Hartley      Made of meat.      http://tartley.com
tartley at tartley.com   +44 7737 062 225   twitter/skype: tartley

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