November 10, 2016

Google Sheets: Great new feature will blow you away


Oh. My. Gosh. Google Sheets has gotten awesome. The somewhat-boring online spreadsheet app from Google now has a secret strength that will make you forget that you never took an Excel class.

We all know spreadsheets can help you analyze data in all kinds of ways, but if you’re like me, you struggle with formulas. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve tried to get the data to reveal its secrets and ended up just counting lines with my finger on the screen.

But now Google Sheets has a little button in the bottom right corner of the sheet: Explore. When you click on the button, a pop-up window analyzes the data in your sheet and guesses what kinds of information you might be looking for. Ask it a question, and the Explore feature will answer. If you’re interested (which I’m not), it’ll reveal the formula that it used to pull the info.

By the way, I use Excel for most of my documents, including spreadsheets. So I just pasted my data into a blank Google Sheets file for the analysis.

You have to watch this video to get the full picture. And it’s my first attempt at subtitles, so please forgive the misspellings! (I also know we have a typo in “Monterey.”)

HEY… an update. I just found a new feature after I made the video. You can highlight certain columns or rows to get specific data points. Super helpful. Also, the charts and data you’re offered depend on the type of data you’re using. Again I say… #omg!

Did I forget to mention that Google Sheets is free? Happy spreadsheeting!


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  • This is awesome! Thanks for breaking that down. I always see the explore button and never clicked it because I didn’t know what it would do. Love it and not feeling more confident to use it.

  • Beth,
    Love your suggestions!
    I just got windows 10 and am looking for a stand alone program that is free for manipulating pictures on windows 10. I have been using Picasa3 but it is going away. I need to use the “retouch” feature and “enhancements”.

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