In an unlikely mash-up, Matt Parker of Think Maths offers a free tool that converts a digital photo of your choice into an Excel spreadsheet. According to the website, "digital photographs are actually just spreadsheets. When you take a photo, your camera measures the amount of red, green, and blue light hitting each pixel, ranks them on a scale of 0 to 255, and then records those values as a spreadsheet." Parker's website is able to extract said values from a digital photo, record the numeric values in worksheet cells, and then use Excel's Conditional Formatting feature to recreate the photograph.
If you have Excel 2007 or later, you can try the technique yourself:
- Visit http://think-maths.co.uk/spreadsheet and choose a photo of your choice, as shown in Figure 1.
- Click the Download Excel button to download your resulting Excel file.