HOW TO ENTER BASIC FORMULAS IN EXCEL 2010 Blogs: Formulas are the real workhorses of an Excel 2010 worksheet. If you set up a formula properly, it computes the correct answer when you enter it into a cell. From then on, it keeps itself up to date, recalculating the results whenever you change any of the values that the formula uses.

You let Excel know that you’re about to enter a formula in the current cell by entering the equal sign (=). Some formulas follow the equal sign with a built-in function such as SUM or AVERAGE. Many simple formulas use a series of values or cell references that contain values separated by one or more of the following mathematical operators:

This Mathematical Operator . . . . . . Is Used For
+ (plus sign) Addition
– (minus sign or hyphen) Subtraction
* (asterisk) Multiplication
/ (slash) Division
^ (caret) Raising a number to an exponential power

For example, to create a formula in cell C2 that multiplies a value entered in cell A2 by a value in cell B2, enter the following formula in cell C2: =A2*B2

To enter this formula in cell C2, follow these steps:

  1. Select cell C2.

  2. Type the entire formula =A2*B2 in the cell.

  3. Press Enter.


  1. Select cell C2.

  2. Type = (equal sign).

  3. Select cell A2 in the worksheet by using the mouse or the keyboard.

    This action places the cell reference A2 in the formula in the cell.

    To start the formula, type =, and then select cell A2. -

    To start the formula, type =, and then select cell A2.
  4. Type * (Shift+8 on the top row of the keyboard).

  5. Select cell B2 in the worksheet by using the mouse or the keyboard.

    This action places the cell reference B2 in the formula.

    image1.jpg -

  6. Press Enter.

    Excel displays the calculated answer in cell C2 and the formula =A2*B2 in the Formula bar.

    image2.jpg -

If you select the cell you want to use in a formula, either by clicking it or by moving the cell cursor to it, you have less chance of entering the wrong cell reference.

Now comes the fun part: After creating a formula that refers to the values in certain cells (rather than containing those values itself), you can change the values in those cells, and Excel automatically recalculates the formula, using these new values and displaying the updated answer in the worksheet. Using the example shown in the figures, suppose that you change the value in cell B2 from 100 to 50. The moment that you complete this change in cell B2, Excel recalculates the formula and displays the new answer, 1000, in cell C2.

Did this glimpse into Excel formulas leave you longing for more information and insight about Microsoft’s popular spreadsheet program? You’re free to test drive any of the For Dummies eLearning courses. Pick your course (you may be interested in more from Excel 2010), fill out a quick registration, and then give eLearning a spin with the Try It! button. You’ll be right on course for more trusted know how: The full version’s also available at Exc

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Office Sway: What Is It and When to Use It Blogs: For the first time in a long time, Microsoft recently released a new app for Office product family called Sway. Office Sway is a presentation tool used to deliver captivating presentations.

Sway cards can contain multimedia content - 1: A collection of multimedia content on a Sway storyline

As with many new innovative technologies, it sometimes takes time and usage before the marketplace establishes the right niche. That’s because it’s not enough to understand what Sway is and when to use it, but also how to use it best. Until now, the de facto Microsoft application for presentations has been PowerPoint with traditional slide content that included text and imagery. However, since it’s launch, Sway has seen a rapid uptake, which should make you ask yourself whether it’s better to use Sway or stick with PowerPoint based on your target audience and purpose.

A Sway (equivalent of a document or presentation) is composed of multiple cards that are combined into a storyline.

Cards are containers that hold text, images and videos. You can combine cards into groups. A collection of cards make up the storyline. Unlike a page-centric document such as PowerPoint presentations, storylines can shift across the screen in a continuous fashion. Office 365 Sway adds an interesting twist by being strictly cloud based with both interactive and dynamic content. Now that you know what Sway is, what follows is a summary of when and when not to use Sway. You can also find an introduction to Sway on

Sway cards get organized into a storyline - 2: Creating a Sway storyline.

When Should You Use Sway?

This list indicates the typical times when you might choose to use Sway to deliver presentations to users.

When creating media-rich content

The proverb, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” hold true in many cases. This is especially true in Sway where much of the presentation is optimized to display images and create smooth transitions between cards.

When you want your reader to interact with content

One of the things that sets Sway apart from other presentation applications is its ability to include live content such as tweets and embedded IFRAMES from numerous sources that the user can interact with including Google maps, and numerous other audio, video and picture sharing sites. You can find a full list of embeddable sites here.

A Sway card can contain a tweet and a Google map - 3: Twitter card and Google Map card inside the Sway storyline

When you want to focus on content rather than formatting

Sway allows the user to focus on the content without worrying too much about the formatting. You can choose from numerous canned designs, fonts, and navigation patterns. Sway also lets you control the level of emphasis on the card transition animations. Not enough? You can try the Remix! option, which will randomly select from the designs, fonts, and layouts to give you a unique experience. Like a big gumball machine, you can see what’s available but you never know what you’re going to get.

A default theme for a sway - 4: Original design

A remix theme of a sway - 5: Remix 1

Another remix of a sway - 6: Remix 2

When a document is not required

A user stores their sways in Office 365 under their account. They can easily share a sway with other specific users, everyone within an organization or the public via a link. However, you cannot export a sway into a file. Microsoft has chosen to make a general move with Office 365 away from emailing documents and toward sharing information via links. Sway is well-aligned with this strategy. So you can share links to a sway but you cannot take a sway into a format that is offline.

When not to use sway

We must consider not only what content doesn’t lend itself to be “swayed” but also whether it makes sense for the audience that will be consuming it.

Look and feel matters

Sway offers some great ways to theme presentations. However, at this time Sway is limited in its flexibility and only allows a selection of pre-defined design themes.

  1. Sway only allows you to select from the selection of choices it offers you. You cannot pick your own colours or fonts.
  2. You can create cards for your content but you don’t have control about how it will actually render or appear.
  3. Text formatting is limited to bold and italics. You cannot choose any other formatting such as choosing other fonts per card or changing font colour throughout.
  4. Cards don’t have any animations associated with them such as content appearing or shifting on the page.

Focused on web rather than print

Yes, this is 2015 and organizations should be mostly paperless by now. At least that was one of the goals when computers were invented. The reality is that organizational behavior is sometimes hard to change, which includes not printing content that is readily available online. Since sways are purely cloud-based, there is no way to export them into a document or print them. If that is something that your organization requires then it’s best to create the presentation using a more traditional tool.

Are you ready to captivate your audience in new ways?

If you’re looking for new ways to share media-rich presentations with others, you may find that Sway offers a quick and convenient way to do so. When possible, try to use Office 365 Sway in your own organization for your next presentations where content matters more than format and pictures are more prevalent than the text that describes them. Take a look at the “Get Started with Sway (Preview)” video to familiarize yourself with the tool.

For detailed insights into guiding users and organizations around when to use what in Office 365, we at 2toLead have written a 60+ page whitepaper on How To Decide: When To Use What in Office 365 that you can download for free here. In addition to this whitepaper, we presented a session on this topic at Microsoft Ignite in May 2015 and you can hear our recorded session free here.

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What is Microsoft Sway? Blogs: Last week Microsoft announced the general release of its Sway digital storytelling app. Sway, which is part of Microsoft Office and designed for creating presentations, is in many ways an alternative to PowerPoint. But what is the difference and what can it do?

Sway was first announced in October last year and has been available in “preview” status since then. Its general release means it is available to the public and to Office 365 for business and education customers worldwide.

The software is available as a downloadable app for Windows 10, iPhone and iPad, or as part of Office Online. A version for Windows Phone (now Windows 10 Mobile) is also said to be in the works. The app fits perfectly into Microsoft‘s recent “cloud first, mobile first” approach: designed for use across phones, tablets, laptops, PCs and other devices.

The purpose of Sway is to convey concepts quickly, easily and clearly. Unlike PowerPoint, it is primarily for presenting ideas onscreen rather than to an audience. Tutorials, topic introductions and interactive reports are the sort of things to which it lends itself. Sway presentations are backed up to the cloud, and can be easily shared or embedded in websites.


The Sway interface is based around a storyline, into which users add a series of cards. These cards are then filled with content, with different cards available for different types of content, and which can be grouped together into sections. Content intended to be the user’s narrative can be easily added, removed, edited or reordered. This flexibility should allow stories created in Sway to be much more free-flowing that presentations created in PowerPoint.

An overall theme of a Sway can be selected by the user and some additional design tinkering can be done, but otherwise Sway’s built-in design engine chooses how your Sway will look and users have little control over the formatting of individual elements. This may sound limiting, but, by minimizing the amount of tinkering that users can do, the app is kept simple and is optimized for creating presentations quickly.

The design engine of Sway does a pretty good job of making its presentations look coherent and optimizes the design for viewing across different devices (we used the Windows 10 app for the purposes of this article, which is virtually indistinguishable from the web version). For informal presentations this should be more than adequate, but Sway isn’t for users who need to stick to brand guidelines.

Unlike PowerPoint, there’s no option for creating content in Sway itself. It must be uploaded into the software as it’s intended to be used or it can be pulled in directly from a variety of different sources from within Sway. This helps to simplify the creation process, too, and minimizes the amount the time spent on producing a Sway. Current sources include YouTube, Facebook and Flickr.

Using the online version of Sway, there’s an option to import an existing Word, PowerPoint or PDF document from which a new Sway can be created. This means a Sway presentation drafted in Word or a PowerPoint presentation can be converted to a Sway story, with headings, text and media automatically broken up into relevant cards and sections.


Users can choose whether a Sway should be viewed via vertical or horizontal scrolling or in a presentation mode, as would be the case with PowerPoint. This provides some flexibility for how a Sway will be used, such as embedded on a website or as an on-stage presentation tool. Although, as mentioned earlier, PowerPoint is still the better option for the latter.

Once a Sway is completed, it is possible to play it in the desired non-editing viewing mode and to share it. Sways can be shared via the user’s public gallery, via social media, as a link or as a piece of embeddable media. Sways can also be shared for co-authoring and collaboration.

Once it’s clear what Sway is actually for, it becomes an interesting product, although perhaps not one that will be used quite as much as its Office siblings. There’s a bit of a learning curve involved to get familiarized with the interface, but loading the example Sway presentations created by Microsoft should help with this and, indeed, they show just what is possible.

Below is an introductory video to Microsoft Sway.

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How to Publish With OneNote Blogs: The OneNote program comes as part of the Microsoft Office software package. Using OneNote, you can post text entered into the program directly to a blog that you own or have access to. OneNote allows you to publish your notes to multiple blogging platforms such as Blogger, TypePad and WordPress. You can also publish your notes to self-hosted blogs that are installed on a domain name that you own. In order to post the text entered into OneNote to your blog, you must set up the blog in Microsoft Word.

Things You’ll Need

  • Open the OneNote document that you wish to publish. Drag your cursor over the portion of the OneNote text that you would like to publish to highlight it.
  • Click the “File” button in the upper-left corner of the OneNote window. Highlight the “Send To” option in the drop-down menu that appears. Select “Blog” in the menu that appears to the right. The Microsoft Word program will open.
  • Click on the “Register Now” button when the “Register a Blog Account” window pops up. Click “Choose your blog provider” and select the type of blog you would like to publish your OneNote text to from the drop-down menu. Click the “Next” button to continue.
  • Enter the URL of your blog if requested by Microsoft Word. Type in the username and password that you use to log in to your blog. Check the “Remember Password” box if you would like to avoid being prompted to reenter your password in the future. Click the “OK” button to proceed.
  • Select whether you would like to publish images from OneNote to your blog in the “Picture Options” screen that appears. Enter the URL of the location on your blog that you would like these images to be stored if you choose to publish images. Click “OK” and your blog account will be set up for use with OneNote and Word.
  • Click the “Publish” icon in the upper-left corner of the Microsoft Word window. Select “Publish” from the drop-down menu that appears. Your OneNote text will now be published to your blog via Microsoft Word.

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Microsoft’s new WordPress plugin lets you directly publish your OneNote documents Blogs: Microsoft announced a new partnership today that makes it a lot easier to transfer your OneNote writings over to WordPress.

The company has created a WordPress plugin that inserts a OneNote button into your  editor. When clicked, you’ll be able to search for the specific onenote page you’d like to publish.

OneNote-welcomes-three-new-partners-cloudHQ-Equil-and-WordPress-4 -

As OneNote documents are synced to the cloud, you can start jotting your blog posts on any of OneNote’s supported platforms(iOS, OS X, Android, Windows and Windows Phone) to then input into WordPress. The plug-in could come in handy if you tend to use OneNote to draft your writing.

OneNote-welcomes-three-new-partners-cloudHQ-Equil-and-WordPress-5 -

To set up the link, check out the OneNote plugin page here.

WordPress aside, Microsoft also announced partnerships with smart pen maker Equil and cloud storage aggregator CloudHQ.

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Check out PowerPoint 2016’s best new features: charts, effects and more Blogs: PowerPoint 2016’s changes include new transitions and charts, and some powerful new research tools. Other features may follow the Office 2016 trend of being individually subtle, but taken as a whole they add up to some worthy reasons to upgrade.

Let’s start with the larger toolbar up top, the Quick Access Toolbar, and the reorganized Ribbon menu. The Ribbon menu spreads out more, resulting in fewer icons and more drop-down menus—slowly working its way back to the original menus (from the beginning through 2003).

Each of the following graphics were captured at 100%, normal size. Notice the difference between the 2013 and 2016 Ribbon and Tab menus.

Here are the menus from PowerPoint 2013:

2013 PowerPoint Ribbon + Tab menus -

And here are the same menus in PowerPoint 2016:

New 2016 PowerPoint Ribbon + Tab menus -

Notice the two new faces on the Ribbon: the Tell Me What You Want to Do option at the end of the main Tabs menu (preceded by a light bulb), and the Share tab, which provides options for collaborating via the cloud.

Tell Me What You Want to Do

This new feature is a quick and easy way toget help on any feature or process. Just place your cursor beside the light bulb or click Tell Me What You Want to Do and type out your question. For example, type add animation or and several related options appear in a drop-down list. Select an option and a submenu appears with features, additional options, instructions, or another submenu.

In this case, the Animation submenu appears, displaying a variety of effects. Scroll through the list, or choose one of the More Effects submenus to see additional options.

Tell Me What You Want to Do -
03 Tell Me What You Want to Do

Real time co-authoring

Now you can share and co-author projects thru the cloud. Click Share on the Ribbon menu to save your presentation on SharePoint, OneDrive, or OneDrive for Business. Next, the Share panel prompts you to invite people to share your projects. To access your Outlook address book, click the small book icon on the right side of the Invite People field. Once selected, click the permissions field below Invite People field to give your collaborators different levels of access to the document, and enter a message if desired. Finally, click Share.

PowerPoint then sends an email to your colleagues, inviting them to view or edit the presentation. You can also attach a copy or a PDF of the presentation to the email.

Share + co-author presentations thru the cloud -

Note: Choose File > History to view a list of all changes and/or to view or access earlier versions. Also notice that when you export your presentation to video, you can choose the file resolution based on the output screen.

Smart Lookup aka Bing Insights

This feature is an upgraded improvement of the previous Smart Lookup function in 2013, with a new name: Bing Insights. In a nutshell, it’s a quick click to the Internet driven by several sources such as Bing Snapshot, Wikipedia, the Oxford dictionary, and Bing’s image search, and it functions inside PowerPoint.

Select a word or phrase from one of the slides, right-click it, then choose Smart Lookup from the drop-down menu. The Smart Lookup panel appears on the right and displays several results of your search word (with images if available). Scroll down to view all results.

Select a word, right click, choose Smart Lookup -
Select a word, right-click, choose Smart Lookup

The Smart Lookup panel provides two search criteria options: Explore for information and images or Define for definitions, synonyms, grammar options, and word origin.

Select Explore for information or Define for definitions -
06 Select Explore for information or Define for definitions

Ink Equations

This feature also shows up in Word and Excel 2016. Select Insert > Equation and choose one from the Library (list) or select Insert > Equation > Ink Equation, and manually write one (with a stylus, mouse, or your fingers) on the popup drawing board, which Office then converts to text. Options on the drawing board include Write, Erase, Select & Correct, and Clear. Not a feature for everyone, but the Math geeks will like it.

Ink Equations -
07 Ink Equations


There are a few new graphic features: a new transition called Morph; an assistant feature called Design Ideas; some new, quick formats for shapes; and five new chart types.

Morph transition

The nuances of transitioning between slides can mean the difference between a lively, interesting presentation and a snoring audience. The new Morph transition makes the objects appear animated as they fade in and out of the frame. The slides must have one or more objects in common for it to work.

The easiest way to set up a Morph transition is to create all the objects on the first slide, then duplicate that slide as many times as needed. Then move the objects around, delete some of them, or rearrange the order so the objects appear to dance around the screen from one slide to the next.

A new Transition called Morph -
08 A new Transition called Morph

Quick Shape Formats

This feature is another way to help designers quickly create a slide presentation. Instead of always creating new styles for the shapes designers use in presentations (which takes time), PowerPoint has provided a number of “preset” styles that you can place with a single click. If more custom work is required, it takes far less effort to click through a color palette than it does to wade through all the effects.

Draw a shape. While it’s still selected, click Quick Styles, then choose a preset from the menu. Whenever a shape is selected, the Format/Drawing Tools menus automatically display with the Drawing group open.

Quick Shape Formatting, new style presets -
09 Quick Shape Formatting, new style presets

Design Ideas

This new feature provides several “Design Ideas” for the layout of each slide in your presentation that contains graphic elements. Think of it as a your personal advisor who looks over your shoulder and provides ideas for better presentations. It’s automatic, too: As soon as you Insert an image, the Design Ideas panel opens on the right, offering several layout options for the design of the current slide.

Select a layout, then continue adding more content to your slide. If none of the Design Ideas appeal to you, then close the panel and create your own layouts.

Design Ideas for presentation layouts -
10 Design Ideas for presentation layouts

New charts

PowerPoint has five new charts to show off your numbers: Treemap, Box and Whisker, Sunburst, Pareto, and Waterfall. Just click Insert > Chart, then select one from the list. When the spreadsheet or table pops up, enter the chart data and watch the image change right before your eyes.

Click the + sign to modify the chart elements such as Title, Data Labels, and Legend. Click the paintbrush to modify the style and color.

Five new charts Treemap -

New chart Box and Whisker -
Box and Whisker

New chart Sunburst -

New chart Pareto -

New chart Waterfall -

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