Concept: Spreadsheet software
The spreadsheet software Microsoft Excel, when used with default settings, is known to convert gene names to dates and floating-point numbers. A programmatic scan of leading genomics journals reveals that approximately one-fifth of papers with supplementary Excel gene lists contain erroneous gene name conversions.
Data analysis at the descriptive stage and the eventual presentation of results requires the tabulation and summarisation of data. This exercise should always precede inferential statistics. Pivot tables and pivot charts are one of Excel’s most powerful and underutilised features, with tabulation functions that immensely facilitate descriptive statistics. Pivot tables permit users to dynamically summarise and cross-tabulate data, create tables in several dimensions, offer a range of summary statistics and can be modified interactively with instant outputs. Large and detailed datasets are thereby easily manipulated making pivot tables arguably the best way to explore, summarise and present data from many different angles. This second paper in the WASP series in Early Human Development provides pointers for pivot table manipulation in Excel™.
A hydrochemical facies evolution diagram (HFE-D) is a multirectangular diagram, which is a useful tool in the interpretation of sea water intrusion processes. This method note describes a simple method for generating an HFE-D plot using the spreadsheet software package, Microsoft Excel. The code was applied to groundwater from the alluvial coastal plain of Grosseto (Tuscany, Italy), which is characterized by a complex salinization process in which sea water mixes with sulfate or bicarbonate recharge water.