Articles by David Ringstrom

Technology

Tricks for Opening and Closing Multiple Excel Files

By David H. Ringstrom, CPA
Technology

Tricks for Hiding and Unhiding Excel Rows and Columns

Hiding and unhiding rows and columns are mundane tasks that many users take for granted. However, sometimes simple tasks can trip up Excel users, like unhiding just one row or column within a hidden set.
A&A

Provisioning Your Home Accounting Office

As the economy continues to contract, more and more accountants are considering striking out on their own. A benefit to providing accounting services is that you can often ease your way into your own business, as long as you don't run afoul of any non-compete agreements with your primary employer. I'm sure you've read a million articles about how to establish a separate workspace that's all your own and how to organize your files, so instead I'm going to focus on elements of my own home office that I've found particularly effective.
Technology

Add Contacts or Meetings to Contact Manager or CRM with Two Keystrokes

Product review by David H. Ringstrom, CPAAccountants of a certain age may remember a television show in which contestants would bid on how few notes they'd need to hear to identify an unidentified song. However, instead of saying, "Tom, I can name that tune in 5 notes," you may find yourself thinking, "I can add a new contact to Outlook with just two keystrokes!" The key is a clever program called Anagam that enables you to quickly add onscreen information — without manual transcription — into your contact manager or CRM.
Tax

Free Microsoft Excel-Based 1040 Form Available

By David H. Ringstrom, CPAJust in time for tax season, Glenn Reeves of Burlington, Kansas has created a free Microsoft Excel-based version of the 2008 U.S. Individual Tax Return, commonly known as Form 1040. The spreadsheet includes both pages of Form 1040, as well as these supplemental schedules: 
Technology

Excel Text Transformation Tricks

By David H. Ringstrom, CPAData arrives on your desk from multiple sources, and in many cases it's not quite in the format that you need. For instance, a user may have left the CAPS LOCK on while typing in a series of addresses. Or you've exported data from a program that pads fields with spaces at the beginning or end. Fortunately, there's no need to retype the list. Excel offers four easy-to-use functions that can quickly transform data into just the format that you need.
Technology

Excel 2007: Five Ways to Streamline Excel’s User Interface

By David H. Ringstrom, CPAIt's easy to get caught up in the day-to-day use of Excel 2007 and overlook minor tweaks that can make a significant difference in your use of Excel. In this article I'll review five of my favorite Excel 2007 tricks. Most involve customizing the user interface so that I can speed through my work without hitting unnecessary bumps:1. Extend your recently used file listBy default Excel shows the 17 most recent files that you've opened, but as shown in Figure 1, you can expand this to a maximum of 50: 
Technology

Excel 2003: Six Ways to Streamline Excel's User Interface

By David H. Ringstrom, CPAIt's easy to get caught up in the day-to-day use of Excel 2003 and overlook minor tweaks that can make a significant difference in your use of Excel. In this article I'll review five of my favorite Excel 2003 tricks. Most involve customizing the user interface so that I can speed through my work without hitting unnecessary bumps or screen prompts. These tricks will work equally well in Excel 2002, but only some apply to Excel 97 and 2000:1. Extend your recently used file list
Technology

Excel Tip: Hide an Excel Worksheet in Plain Sight

By David Ringstrom, CPAAs you’re probably aware, it’s simple to hide a worksheet in Excel 2007: right-click on the worksheet tab, and then choose Hide. To unhide the worksheet, right-click on any worksheet tab, choose Unhide, and then select the sheet you wish to make visible. It’s a little more effort in earlier versions of Excel: choose Format, Sheet, and then Hide or Unhide to change the visible status of a worksheet.
Technology

Excel 2007: Use these three techniques to turbo charge filtering

By David Ringstrom, CPADid you know Excel 2007 has a hidden command that enables you to filter a list with just one mouse click? And that there are two ways to sum just the visible rows in your filtered list? Read on to discover these time saving techniques.Not sure how to filter? Read Excel Filtering 101. 
Technology

Excel 2003: Use These Three Techniques to Turbocharge Filtering

By David Ringstrom, CPADid you know that you can streamline the AutoFilter feature in Excel 2003 and earlier versions? And that there are two ways to sum only the visible rows in your filtered list? Read on to discover these time saving techniques.Not sure how to filter? Read Excel Filtering 101.
Technology

QuickBooks 2009 splashes on the scene with plenty of new features

By David Ringstrom, CPAQuickBooks 2009 is now available, and includes a number of long-wished for features: 
Technology

Excel Filtering 101

By David Ringstrom, CPAFiltering is a powerful, but often overlooked feature in Excel that enables you to hide unneeded data within a list. In Excel 2003 and earlier, this feature is known as AutoFilter, while Excel 2007 refers to it as simply Filter. In this article I'll provide a quick overview of how to use this helpful feature.Filtering BasicsFiltering enables you to collapse a spreadsheet down to display only relevant rows.1. Copy the data from Table 1 into a blank worksheet, starting at cell A1. 
Technology

Excel Chart Advisor Prototype Simplifies Graphs

By David RingstromExcel 2007 users have a new tool in their arsenal: the Chart Advisor from the Microsoft Office Labs — a new proving ground for potential new Office features. Although this tool is a prototype, you may find it helpful in your daily work. This add-in for Excel utilizes an advanced rules engine to analyze your data, and then rank chart suggestions based on their respective score. Remember, this tool only works with U.S. English version of Excel 2007.

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