Here you will know how the spreadsheets evolved with the appearance of Microsoft Office program called Excel. The first spreadsheet that hit the market was highly appreciated namely VisiCalc in the early eighties of the last century and a few years later appeared Lotus 1-2-3.
In 1985, Excel was launched designed for Macintosh computers, and in 1987 appeared the first Excel application for Windows that was Excel 2.0.
Microsoft previously had created in 1982 first Multiplan spreadsheet program of the company which worked very well with computers with CP/M operating system to outpace Lotus 1-2-3 at the time, but although it was adapted to other operating systems such as MS-DOS in that environment, it was not as successful as its rival.
At that time, Lotus 1-2-3 was the leader in spreadsheets and this program did not work under Windows and it took time to adapt the product to the environment, a circumstance that was taken advantage of by Microsoft, which together with the great acceptance of its product under Windows managed to unseat Lotus 1-2-3 and get the primacy in market share which has continued till today.
The main feature of Excel when it came to market under the Windows environment was the ease of use, as it was very intuitive, thanks to the drop down menus and access to the commands quickly by clicking the mouse.
More or less every two or three years Microsoft releases a new version of Excel in the market since its inception starting from Excel 2.0 in 1987 to Excel 16.0 in 2016.
The extension file created with this program was devised from the name Excel, taking the letter ‘x’ and letter ‘l’ .In versions of Excel 2003 and earlier, this extension was ‘xls’ and the name of an Excel spreadsheet called bills was Invoices.xls. From the following Excel 2007 version the extension changed as ‘xlsx’
This new extension ‘xlsx’, adding a file ‘x’ occurs in all the range of Office products from 2007. The reason for this change is that the used language called XML (eXtensible Markup Language) which incorporates the advantages pertaining to the time to work with files. The files take up less space and it is easier to recover damaged files with more privacy.
To facilitate the use of this type of file in earlier versions of Microsoft Excel and vice versa, Microsoft has made available to users a converter program for the old file type to the new one.
Among the main features that have made Excel the leader in the field of spreadsheets are the following;
Possibility of making changes in the formats of the cells, in the type of font, size, etc.
Automatic calculation update
Graphic resolution and ease of realization of the same.
Database functions such as Filter, Sort, Subtotals and more
Combination with other Office programs such as cut and paste or combine correspondence.
Incorporation of the programming language VBA, which allows automation of repetitive tasks by creating Macros.
In spite of many alternatives, today, Excel still is the market leader and it seems to dominate the market in future because Microsoft is always trying to update it with the latest technology.