Singleuser applications

This is a spreadsheet application that only the developer uses, but its complexity extends beyond the spreadsheets in the for-your-eyes-only category. For example, I developed a workbook to keep track of registered users for my shareware applications. It started out as a simple worksheet database (for my eyes only), but then I realized that I could also use it to generate mailing labels and invoices. One day I spent an hour or so writing macros and then realized that I had converted this application from a for-your-eyes-only application to a single-user application.

No one else will ever use this spreadsheet, but it's a slick little application that's very easy to use. In this particular case, the time that I spent modifying the spreadsheet from a for-your-eyes-only spreadsheet to a single-user application was definitely time well spent because it has already saved me several hours of work. The application now has buttons that execute macros, and it has greatly reduced the amount of effort required to deal with the mechanics of tracking my customers and mailing products.

Creating single-user applications for yourself is an excellent way to get practice with Excel's developer's tools. For example, you can learn to create custom dialog boxes, modify menus, create a custom toolbar, write Visual Basic for Applications

(VBA) macros, and so on. You'll find that working on a meaningful project (even if it's meaningful only to you) is the best way to learn advanced features in Excel — or any other software, for that matter.

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