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Excel 2013: The Missing Manual by Matthew MacDonald

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Chapter 3. Moving Data

Simple spreadsheets are a good way to get a handle on Excel. But in the real world, you often need a spreadsheet that’s more sophisticated—one that can grow and change as you track more information. For example, on the expenses worksheet you created in Chapter 1, you might want to add the name of the stores you shopped in. Or you may want to swap the order of your columns. To make changes like these, you need to add a few more skills to your Excel repertoire.

This chapter covers the basics of spreadsheet modification, including how to select cells, how to move data from one place to another, and how to change the structure of your worksheet. What you learn here will make you a master of spreadsheet manipulation.

Selecting Cells

First things first: Before you can make changes to an existing worksheet, you need to select the cells you want to modify. Happily, selecting cells in Excel—try saying that five times fast—is easy. You can do so many ways, and it’s worth learning them all. Different selection techniques come in handy in different situations, and if you master all of them in conjunction with the formatting features you’ll learn in Chapter 5, you’ll be able to transform the look of any worksheet in seconds.

Making Continuous Range Selections

The simplest type of selection you can make is a continuous range selection. A continuous range is a block of cells that has the shape of a rectangle (high-school math reminder: a square is a kind of rectangle), as shown ...

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