04 May

Drawing Reinforcement in Excel…Really (Part 3)

In Part 2 we covered the functions for creating coordinates for accurately representing shear reinforcement (stirrups and links) using an XY scatter chart in Excel.

In this third and final part, we’ll cover the functions for outputting the minimum lengths of stirrups or links. As mentioned in the first part in this series, estimating the total length of bars and hence weights can be a tedious boring process. These functions take out boring bits, but it’s still not ‘exciting’.

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08 Apr

Drawing Reinforcement in Excel…Really (Part 1)

One thing that irks me about a lot of spreadsheets I’ve seen created over the years is the fact that the inputs for something that can be visualised are hidden behind a few numbers in cells. No visual representations of the calculations are given. With an overarching reliance on the user to mentally complete the picture of their design inputs (and sometimes outputs) within their minds.

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28 Mar

To minimum or not to minimum, that is the question?

Minimum steel, love it or hate it, we have minimums for a reason even if it seems like overkill sometimes given that we may have very low demands.

This post will demonstrate why (I hope) we are required to comply with these arbitrary limits. Usually I’m going into these posts with only the theoretical background of why something exists, but hopefully once we get into it this theory can actually be demonstrated.

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15 Aug

Improving Excels spellchecker with highlighting

Excel does many things well, but it goes without saying many things could be vastly improved, or at the very least shown a bit of love by Microsoft.

One particular thing in Excel that that causes me some frustration is Excels inbuilt spellchecker.

Why? Because it’s infinitely more shit than the spellchecker in any of the other office products for a start.

This personal view is primarily born out of using Excel for the purposes of recording text based queries and responses as part of structural peer reviews. I use it as a log of sorts to log questions, responses and the like. The tabular nature of Excel lends itself to this application.

I’ve had logs that stretch to 40 odd A3 sized sheets full of queries when stuff goes a bit pear shaped and the designer has a ‘few’ (read ‘a lot of’) items to address, confirm, clarify, etc.

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