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Excel 2010 Power Shortcuts

Cleaning up spaces


From:

Excel 2010 Power Shortcuts

with Dennis Taylor

Video: Cleaning up spaces

Extra spaces in data many times don't cause major problems, but occasionally they do. And it's increasingly a problem in these days of downloading data. In this particular worksheet here you might notice already here in cell C5 there are some extra spaces between the two words. That's probably not going to be a problem. But what happens if we sort this data? I want to click somewhere in column C here. Any cell could have stayed there. I'm going to click A-Z. The entire list is going to be sorted. And what do we see here? This ends up first.
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  1. 1m 37s
    1. Welcome
      1m 17s
    2. Using the exercise files
      20s
  2. 22m 45s
    1. Entering data or formulas in non-adjacent cells simultaneously
      2m 28s
    2. Converting formulas to values with a simple drag
      2m 34s
    3. Copying data or formulas down a column instantly
      2m 56s
    4. Adjusting all or selected column widths or row heights in a flash
      2m 21s
    5. Instantly displaying all worksheet formulas
      3m 16s
    6. Two quick shortcuts for creating charts
      1m 18s
    7. Print Preview
      1m 7s
    8. Instant date or time entry
      1m 16s
    9. Undo/Redo/Repeat
      3m 19s
    10. Zooming in and out quickly
      2m 10s
  3. 7m 37s
    1. Expanding and collapsing the Ribbon and Full Screen view
      1m 23s
    2. Keyboard command access
      2m 22s
    3. Quick Access toolbar display tips
      3m 52s
  4. 14m 30s
    1. Split screens and frozen titles in a flash
      5m 56s
    2. Repeating title creation and suppression
      6m 17s
    3. Customizing your display of Status Bar totals
      2m 17s
  5. 11m 31s
    1. Navigation shortcuts
      2m 30s
    2. Tips for navigating between workbooks
      3m 48s
    3. Navigating within worksheets
      5m 13s
  6. 11m 12s
    1. Selecting an entire row, column, or worksheet
      3m 20s
    2. Selecting noncontiguous ranges and visible cells only
      4m 39s
    3. Selecting the current region and moving around region corners
      3m 13s
  7. 22m 16s
    1. Accelerating data entry
      6m 27s
    2. Auto-Fill techniques for entering dates
      4m 59s
    3. Auto-Fill techniques for entering times
      2m 37s
    4. Custom lists for rapid entry
      5m 54s
    5. Cell editing tips
      2m 19s
  8. 12m 38s
    1. Copy/Move acceleration tips
      3m 27s
    2. Worksheet Copy/Move shortcuts
      2m 29s
    3. Dragging and inserting variations
      3m 47s
    4. Instantly displaying Paste Special options
      2m 55s
  9. 29m 31s
    1. Rapid formula creation
      3m 48s
    2. Selecting all cells that depend on the active cell
      5m 24s
    3. Selecting all cells that can affect the active cell
      2m 38s
    4. AutoSum shortcuts
      2m 57s
    5. Rounding shortcuts
      5m 14s
    6. Generating random numbers
      3m 16s
    7. Counting unique entries
      3m 11s
    8. Performing calculations without formulas
      3m 3s
  10. 17m 4s
    1. Controlling rows and columns
      5m 50s
    2. Realigning imported text
      2m 27s
    3. Handling blank cells
      4m 20s
    4. Collapsing and expanding detail
      4m 27s
  11. 28m 8s
    1. Formatting numbers
      6m 49s
    2. Aligning data
      3m 49s
    3. Adding background color for readability
      3m 43s
    4. Formatting data conditionally
      1m 54s
    5. Creating custom formats
      6m 23s
    6. Formatting periods over 24 hours
      3m 2s
    7. Applying strikethroughs and borders
      2m 28s
  12. 25m 46s
    1. Sorting shortcuts
      2m 40s
    2. Cleaning up spaces
      4m 47s
    3. Identifying duplicates
      6m 10s
    4. Splitting columns
      3m 57s
    5. Ensuring unique entries
      2m 46s
    6. Forcing dates to be weekdays only
      3m 56s
    7. Displaying unique items from large lists
      1m 30s
  13. 18m 38s
    1. Placing and adjusting charts
      2m 37s
    2. Creating chart titles from cell content
      2m 22s
    3. Creating and manipulating shapes
      5m 31s
    4. Linking and unlinking pictures
      8m 8s
  14. 9s
    1. Goodbye
      9s

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Excel 2010 Power Shortcuts
3h 43m Intermediate Aug 12, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In Excel 2010 Power Shortcuts, Excel expert Dennis Taylor shares tips and shortcuts to vastly increase efficiency and get the full power out of Excel 2010. There are tips for working with the Ribbon and Quick Access toolbar, navigating workbooks and selecting cells, rapid data entry and editing, working with formulas, formatting data, working with charts, sorting data, and much more. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Creating charts with keyboard shortcuts
  • Converting formulas to values by dragging
  • Repeating Undo and Redo actions
  • Displaying formulas instantly
  • Navigating quickly through worksheets and across workbooks
  • Formatting numeric, and date/time data in a flash with keystroke shortcuts
  • Inserting dates or times instantly
  • Grouping rows or columns to create collapsible regions
  • Building data-entry shortcuts with Auto-fill
  • Displaying unique items from large lists
Subjects:
Business Productivity
Software:
Excel
Author:
Dennis Taylor

Cleaning up spaces

Extra spaces in data many times don't cause major problems, but occasionally they do. And it's increasingly a problem in these days of downloading data. In this particular worksheet here you might notice already here in cell C5 there are some extra spaces between the two words. That's probably not going to be a problem. But what happens if we sort this data? I want to click somewhere in column C here. Any cell could have stayed there. I'm going to click A-Z. The entire list is going to be sorted. And what do we see here? This ends up first.

It's got some leading spaces. This does too. We're not counting them exactly, but we see this. We scroll down a little bit, it looks like maybe we've got a few these. In fact, this list doesn't look like it has sorted at all, does it? And then eventually we see, oh yes, here it is. What's happening here? Notice if you look closely from this cell upward everything has at least one leading space. My zoom factor right now is 130%. A lot of us work at 100% or even lower if we have lots of data.

Those leading spaces do not always jump out at you, but they certainly emerge when you sort the data, as in this case here. So how do we clean this up without re -keying or retyping any of the data? Typically, in situations like this, what you need to do is to temporarily put in a new column. So I'm simply going to right-click on column D here, Insert, and what are we do here? We use a function called Trim. And that essentially does three things to data. It will remove leading spaces, which can be a big problem, particularly in sorting.

Trailing spaces, usually not a major issue, and also multiple inner spaces, as an example in row 4 there, between Quality and Assurance. Multiple consecutive inner spaces get reduced to one space. So we'll simply Enter here, and double- click to copy this down the column using one of our top ten tricks, and that data looks pretty good. And you can see what's happening here with those multiple inner spaces. And you can see the difference here. The leading spaces are gone. Now, trailing spaces, I didn't put any em, but I am going to put one in here on purpose.

You don't see those very readily, and we don't see any difference over here at that end of it, but those are taken care of as well. So once we've this in place, the next thing to do after we put in the formula here is use another one of our top ten tricks and simply copy this and paste it all in one action into column C. So with the right mouse button drag any edge here on top of the old data, and as we let go the right mouse button, Copy Here as Values Only.

And then get rid of this column. And now we can click in column C, do our A-Z Sort, and things will be in the appropriate order. There is another issue with spaces as well. I want to make column F a bit wider here, because there are some formulas here. And this formula in English says, IF your status in Full Time and your job rating, which for the moment we can't see, is >3. You get a $1000, otherwise nothing. We make that column a bit narrower with there. There we are. We can just see that Job Rating out there.

So in the first case here it's a Contract person, so automatically that person doesn't get the bonus. We'll stick around on the Full Time people here that does have the appropriate rating. For example, right here. But what if the Status entry here had a trailing space? Now, the trailing space you wouldn't see. It wouldn't emerge if you were sorting, but it certainly pops up here. Why didn't this person get the bonus? This person has a Full Time Status, as well as a Job Rating of 5, and if it is greater than 3, combination of both, but it's not happening.

So what might we do here? Probably what we did with column C, but if we don't have the time to do that or if you want to cover all bases here, another way to approach this is to simply use the Trim function right here. We want to say IF this cell here is equal to Full Time, why don't we look at the trim version of this? And we would do this for the entire column possibly. The trim version of E10. If that's equal to Full Time and the Job Rating is above 3, we'll give these people a $1000 dollars.

So that takes care of that issue, and we would then copy this downward by double-clicking and then drag it upward. I think the better long term approach is to clean up the entire column first, but you can also do this on the fly. And maybe this data is being used by another worksheet or another user who refers to this, and we really can't make a change to it. This is a workaround here. Again, using the Trim function, which is great for cleaning up data. It gets rid of leading spaces, trailing spaces, and multiple inner spaces get reduced to one.

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