# Numbers is frying my brain cells. What do I do now???

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Dekema2, Feb 18, 2015.

1. Feb 18, 2015
Last edited: Feb 27, 2015

### Dekema2 macrumors 6502a

Joined:
Jul 27, 2012
Location:
WNY or Utica
#1

Data Validation

An alternative to Data Validation in Excel can be the use of pop up menus as described in this video. Simply add the values of what you would like in the menu under Cell > Data Format > Pop Up Menu.

Personally, I'd like to see Apple make it more intuitive by allowing you to select a set of values that can then be used in a pop up menu.

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Well, I'm in a required Freshman Engineering class and we're learning "Excel." The first week of class we practiced basic functions such as:

• common math/trig/stat fcns.
• errors
• data lookup

Fast forward to today, and I go into class feeling confident, knowing what can be done in Excel can somehow be replicated in Numbers.

That was until my professor started to talk about data validation...

He goes up to the Excel menu bar and used the D.V. options to distribute cell data or something (I can't remember, because as he was teaching us I was busy searching the Apple Discussion forum for an equivalent). I sit there and remain confused, and it's not like I'm going to ask him how do I do this when I'm

1. using Numbers
2. confused as heck anyway

It did get better before it got worse however. We used his pre-made Excel workbooks to create scatter plots and bar graphs. The problem I had with this however was there not being a secondary axis option for when I had two series with different scales.

Now it gets really bad. We now had a sheet with two tables, with data to create a scatter plot with a single point. The idea was to show a projectile's trajectory using the projectile equation (from Physics). My professor goes into the options menu of Excel and enables "iterative calculations." Class was coming to a close and I knew I was screwed. I frantically searched and found a thread on Apple forums saying "a circular reference is an error," and that Numbers can't solve the problem. That's when it hit me that if Numbers can't be a substitute for this program then I may have to ditch it...

The bottom line is, I now see the classic "simplify the program at the expense of features" complaint showing up in my class. It's pretty inconvenient and embarrassing for Apple, a company with a market cap of almost \$1T now to have such a stripped out program for basic functions.

---------------------------------

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to fix the issues, if possible? Also would you recommend me buying Excel?

2. ### Partron22 macrumors 68020

Joined:
Apr 13, 2011
Location:
Yes
#2
Libre Office help includes refs to "iterative references in spreadsheets" and "Validity of Cell Contents". You might give that App a shot. I've never used either feature, so guarantee nothing.

3. ### Apple fanboy macrumors Penryn

Joined:
Feb 21, 2012
Location:
Behind the Lens, UK
#3
I use Excel because I always have and I'm to old and lazy to learn anything new. It's not exactly the same as I'm used to on windows, but close enough.

4. Feb 18, 2015
Last edited: Jun 1, 2015

### dyt1983 macrumors 65816

Joined:
May 6, 2014
Location:
USA USA USA
#4
edit: To remove personally identifying info not relevant to the conversation.

5. ### Dekema2 thread starter macrumors 6502a

Joined:
Jul 27, 2012
Location:
WNY or Utica
#5
yeah I think I'm better off just spending the money on it at this point.

I would use LibreOffice, but I'm not 100% sure on what else our professor will have us do.

EDIT: Does anyone think their monthly subscription plan is worth it?

6. ### HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

Joined:
Feb 8, 2004
Location:
Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
#6
7. ### jmantn macrumors 6502

Joined:
Mar 13, 2012
Location:
Tn
#7
Apple's support community is great for app specific help. Go to their numbers forum and post. I had an issue setting up a stock sheet utilizing numbers and AppleScript to have it pull stock quotes when the sheet is opened and at predefined intervals. Got a solution within two days.

I myself used office extensively professionally primarily using access and excel with VBA. I'd try and answer your question but getting use to Mac apps myself. There's a lot of things I can do easier with iWork apps and scripting however as others have noted numbers is not excel and vice versa.

I'm confident there's a solution for you but at the least I'd ask the question there as well as u may be surprised

8. ### Osarkon macrumors 68020

Joined:
Aug 30, 2006
Location:
Wales
#8
Just get Excel. You may be able to get it subsidised as a student.

I've started using Numbers after years of Excel, and am really struggling.

9. ### Zxxv macrumors 68040

Joined:
Nov 13, 2011
Location:
UK
#9
Tell your lecturer your paying for top tuition and in this day and age that means also teaching apple numbers

watch him blow a fuse

watch him blow a fuse some more

tell him if he's only partly qualified and ask how on earth he got the job?

ask your lecturer who the most profitable computer company is in the world. (clue the answer is apple)

ignore the shouts of your lecturer to get out of class as you glance and smile at all the girls eyeing you up for your balls and bravery.

smile at the lecturer

wink at the girls

leave the room to cheers

email the dean of the school, CC tim cook, ask why in this day and age they put someone in charge who isn't fully qualified and up to speed with the latest software and hardware thats out in the so called real world.

Enjoy the sex with the girls who now think your a hero. (pass their mums my contact details as the man who showed you the way )

go on to make billions ... I'll see you there

10. ### gnasher729 macrumors P6

Joined:
Nov 25, 2005
#10
You had your rant. A market cap of \$700bn is not "almost \$1T". And you are comparing one application that is a major source of income for Microsoft and probably has made them many billion dollars, with a program that Apple gives you for free or for almost free.

Guess what: If you want a spreadsheet for an Excel course in an engineering class, you better open your wallet and buy Excel instead of moaning.

11. ### Ulenspiegel macrumors 68030

Joined:
Nov 8, 2014
Location:
Land of Flanders and Elsewhere
#11
ROTFLMAO.
(That is an excellent screenplay)

12. ### Thunderboltedge macrumors regular

Joined:
Nov 12, 2014
Location:
Milan
#12
Excel, as the Office suite can't be compared to any substitutes nowadays.

if you professionally use it, you cannot find any way out of this application.

And I include Outlook which is much more performant and complete than any other option in the market right now.

As they suggested you, just get parallels and install office 2010 and you'll be find, you will have even the windows' original apps in the dock as a normal OS one, so when you have to lunch it it will open the parallels and the app you wanted.

No other credible solution right now, sorry.

13. ### Dekema2 thread starter macrumors 6502a

Joined:
Jul 27, 2012
Location:
WNY or Utica
#13
You guys were a lot of help and had me laughing as well!!! I talked to my professor and told him I was using Numbers, he suggested I start Excel or use Google's spreadsheet (whatever it's called).

Well all I had to do was enter my email and it spat out a 1 gig copy of Office 2011. It appears my school purchased a license or something.

I've typically always used MR for general Apple support, but for more technical issues Apple's support community would be great for app specific help as you said.

HAH, this was funny. I wish I had the temerity to do this but I don't right now, sadly. Plus there's only 1 girl in my class and 30 guys...

You're right about the whole revenue thing for MSFT, but now I don't have to open the wallet.

14. ### Dekema2 thread starter macrumors 6502a

Joined:
Jul 27, 2012
Location:
WNY or Utica
#14
Data Validation

An alternative to Data Validation in Excel can be the use of pop up menus as described in this video. Simply add the values of what you would like in the menu under Cell > Data Format > Pop Up Menu.

Personally, I'd like to see Apple make it more intuitive by allowing you to select a set of values that can then be used in a pop up menu.

15. ### brianvictor7 macrumors 65816

Joined:
Oct 24, 2013
Location:
United States
#15
This isn't quite as good as it sounds. With each new version of OS X you tend to need a new version of Parallels. I don't see you coming out ahead paying \$50 for each Parallels upgrade or so each year when you can pay \$100 and also get unlimited cloud storage space plus the main MS Office software suite. Also, I've never had a satisfactory experience running two OS's at the same time. It drains battery and lags even on my 2013 MBPr.

16. ### nissan.gtp macrumors 6502

Joined:
Aug 22, 2007
Location:
Virginia
#16
agree, get Excel. But be aware, the Mac version is different than the Windows one, and not as good IMO, but way better than Numbers

17. Mar 5, 2015
Last edited: Mar 5, 2015

### HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

Joined:
Feb 8, 2004
Location:
Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
#17
OP is a college student. His college is probably running Vista or XP on some of their machines and Office is probably a generation or two old too. Following that lead, he could buy Parallels now and just stick with OS X and that version of Paralells until he graduates. Personally, I'm still doing great with the last version of OS X and Parallels 7 (and Office 2010).

We keep coming up with Apple-centric solutions when the issue is about compatibility with what his school uses. If he wants 100% compatibility, there is no Apple-centric way to deliver that other than Parallels (or similar) running Windows and a Windows version of Office. I like iWork and similar just fine myself but when a client needs 100 compatibility, there is no other way that still involves using Mac hardware.

And then there's this: http://www.macrumors.com/2015/03/05/office-mac-2016-preview/ which might be worth a try (for free) before laying out \$49 for Parallels and whatever Windows & Excel costs these days.

18. ### brianvictor7 macrumors 65816

Joined:
Oct 24, 2013
Location:
United States
#18
True enough that some schools will require students to run programs that are only available in Windows.