Using Names to Work with Ranges

Dealing with cryptic cell and range addresses can sometimes be confusing. (This confusion becomes even more apparent when you deal with formulas, which I cover in Chapter 15.) Fortunately, Excel allows you to assign descriptive names to cells and ranges. For example, you can give a cell a name such as Interest_Rate, or you can name a range JulySales. Working with these names (rather than cell or range addresses) has several advantages:

  • A meaningful range name (such as Total_Income) is much easier to remember than a cell address (such as AC21).

  • Entering a name is less error-prone than entering a cell or range address.

  • You can quickly move to areas of your worksheet either by using the Name box, located at the left side of the Formula bar (click the arrow to drop down a list of defined names) or by choosing Home Editing Find & Select Go To (or F5) and specifying the range name.

  • Creating formulas is easier. You can paste a cell or range name into a formula by using Formula Autocomplete, a new feature in Excel 2007.

  • Names make your formulas more understandable and easier to use. A formula such as =Income—Taxes is more intuitive than =D20—D40.

Creating range ...

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