Excel automatically changes numerical entries
Thread poster: 1279 (X)

1279 (X)
Local time: 09:32
Jan 22, 2008

Hello fellow translators!

I've started out 2008 with a resolution to keep more detailed business records in order to track productivity and be better able to find old files on my computer. To this end, I've made myself some nice little spreadsheets on Excel (Standard Edition 2003), my goal being simplicity and ease of use.

However, I find that Excel seems to randomly change numbers I enter. I will put in a PO#, invoice #, word count, or the like, and it will automatically switch the numbers when I tab to the next box. Sometimes it puts them into scientific notation, sometimes makes them into a time or a date, and sometimes just seems to replace the numbers with other numbers. Sometimes it doesn't happen at all. It's maddening. I'm not using any templates with pre-set formula boxes or anything (I don't think). It seems there must be some easy way to correct this. Please tell me how to fix this, and it will make my week!


Jørgen Madsen  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:32
English to Danish
+ ...
Format the cells Jan 22, 2008

To avoid this, you can format each cell manually by right-clicking it and selecting "Format cells". You can even format several cells at a time by selecting them and right-clicking them. Then you can choose "Text" in the Category window to keep the numbers exactly as you typed them.

I also use Excel to track my business, and it's very useful.

icon_smile.gif Jørgen

[Edited at 2008-01-22 21:41]


1279 (X)
Local time: 09:32
Thanks, Jorgen! Jan 22, 2008

I knew there had to be an easy solution. Thank you very much.


Jørgen Madsen  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:32
English to Danish
+ ...
You're welcome :) Jan 22, 2008

Just one comment:

If you want the numbers right-aligned as numbers should be if they are amounts etc., you can just click the relevant icon on the Formatting toolbar. Eventhough formatted as text, the numbers will still act as numbers, if they are used in calculations.



Uldis Liepkalns  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:32
Member (2003)
English to Latvian
+ ...
Type apostrophe before the numbers Jan 22, 2008

Otherwise Excel sees numbers entered into the cell as some formula and tries to adjust it accordingly.
(Don't worry, after pressing Enter the apostrophe becomes invisible, though it's still there if you double click the cell for editing).


Clare Corado wrote:
However, I find that Excel seems to randomly change numbers I enter.

[Rediģēts plkst. 2008-01-22 22:36]


Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:32
Italian to English
+ ...
Values and dates Jan 23, 2008

If you want to use Excel for any calculations, format your numbers as numbers or values rather than text. You can also choose what currency (€, £ etc.) and how many decimal places to use. This has the advantage that you can, for example, automatically add up how much you've earned in a given month or how much you should invoice a specific client.

Dates (e.g. deadlines) should be formatted as dates, and again you can choose the exact format you want.


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Excel automatically changes numerical entries

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