[ExI] ai class at stanford

Kelly Anderson kellycoinguy at gmail.com
Wed Aug 24 13:41:04 UTC 2011

On Tue, Aug 23, 2011 at 6:27 PM, spike <spike66 at att.net> wrote:
>>... On Behalf Of Adrian Tymes
> Subject: Re: [ExI] ai class at stanford
> 2011/8/23 spike <spike66 at att.net>:
>>> So in that loose sense, a spreadsheet with macros could be considered an
> object oriented language, ja?
>>...Not really, IMO.  It is possible to use the concept of objects in non-OO
> languages, and I believe what you describe is an example of such.
> OK cool.  I like the spreadsheet programming environment in some ways,
> because it lets you see everything that is going on.  If you think of each
> individual sheet as an interchangeable module,  the language can even be
> considered modular and top-down.  A sheet or a column of cells fits at least
> the strict definition of a user defined function and a sheet, column or even
> perhaps a single cell fits at least the strict definition of a user defined
> function.
> I am pushing this notion for a reason.  The engineering environment in which
> I work has enormous resources already in excel sheets.  An example would be
> an extremely sophisticated atmosphere model, which has evolved over the
> years, and takes into account F10.7, geomagnetic index, latitude, longitude,
> altitude, time of day, temperature, pressure, a bunch of other minor
> factors, and it works really well, but the catch is, it's a spreadsheet.
> Porting all that to any other language would be a nightmare.  That
> atmosphere model looks to me like an object.  Pressure as a function of
> yakkity yak and bla bla would be a user defined function.

What we really need for spreadsheets to more fully reach their full
potential are:
1) Hosted in the cloud (ala Google Spreadsheets)
2) Ability to reference values from other spreadsheets with live
updates (Hyper-references)
3) Ability to access data from anywhere inside the spreadsheet. (HTTP,
web services, etc.)
4) Ability to send notices from Excel to other environments. (email,
sms, web services, etc.)

Give me that and I'll be all over programming in Excel.


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