Apple Numbers….

I’m playing with Apple’s new OSX spreadsheet – numbers.


It is lovely to look at – you can put multiple sheets on a page, and so you  can really drive to a good looking layout without worrying about the column sizes in the first table affecting how you lay out a table below.

Let’s try an import from excel (the above is an included template)


First up, there are some errors on importing, as Numbers does not support all excel features.  Errors I’ve seen include change tracking, outlines, some sorting criteria, and some conditional formatting. You can review the errors after the import.

After importing an excel spreadsheet, you can just grab the top left corner and start moving it around on the page. cool.

I can’t figure out how to get the equivalent of ‘freeze panes’ to work though. Not so cool.

A little menu arrow appears when you hover over a row or column tile (e.g. “A”). Click this and you can sort, insert a column before OR after or hide.

Interestingly, the import does not bring in the empty cells, and displays the charts that ou had on a sheet on the page. This is cool, as you are already in page layout mode and thinking about look and feel.


You would want to use Numbers when you have an excel spreadhseet that needs to look great. Charts get detuned on import, but you are then confronted with some very powerful beautification options. Numbers does not support secondary axes or mixed charts (e.g. bars with lines. Perhaps this is an Apple anti-complexity move.)

Overall it feels like Keynote versus Powerpoint. You can do more in Powerpoint, but it is much easier to make beautiful and effective presentations in Keynote. I’m going to invest the money to buy this and yje rest of iWork. The price is right at $99 Aussie or $109 NZ.

Published by Lance Wiggs


3 replies on “Apple Numbers….”

  1. My copy just arrived this morning and the best part was that it is actually the same price as in the US ($106NZD when you do the conversion with Google + tax).

    This is the first time I have seen an Apple product work out around the same price.


  2. I have been using this program for a few hours now and already can see some of the benefits. Presentation and publishing of data will be much easier and ‘less busy’. The PDF manual is very good and you can see the type of audience this product will play to. The extensive information about all functions is excellent. I haven’t seen something this extensive since Microsoft quit putting out a hard copy on their functions. All in all I am impressed with this program. It all just seems to fit.


  3. Hi, I have been trying to figure out how can i write my own code (like macros in excel) in numbers but havent been able to find a solution. Can anyone help?


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