Using Open Calc for Spreadsheets

OpenOffice's OpenCalc (or Calc) application again provides numerous features that you would expect of a commercial application and is comparable with Microsoft Excel, the spreadsheet application within Microsoft Office. Some of the key features present are:

• Ability to handle multiple spreadsheets simultaneously

• Embedded graphics and charts

• Cell security

• External data sources

• Data Pilot (this is similar to PivotTables in Excel)

OpenCalc also supports compatibility with Excel, in its ability to load and save spreadsheets and templates in a number of Excel file formats, including Microsoft Excel 97/2000/XP and Microsoft Excel 4.x-5.0. Other interoperability features include the handling of VBA code and embedded objects (as we mentioned earlier in this chapter).

There are other, more specific options that mimic the behavior of MS Excel, and help to make users with an MS Excel background feel more comfortable. One specific such option is the ability to indicate that OpenCalc's searching capability should behave in the same manner as Excel's. This option can be found in the

Using Openlmpress for Presentations

Tools | Options dialog box, in the Spreadsheet | Calculate tab:

Note the Search criteria = and <> must apply to whole cells option in this dialog. When this option is selected, OpenCalc handles searches in the same way as Microsoft Excel, in that the search criteria entered are specific and must match the whole cell. When the option is unselected, the search criteria are matched against any position within the cell.

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