Stations along the Science Railroad !

muyinteresante published this delightful map of progress of various branches of science and the personalities that helped them evolve. It took me a while to study the entire thing but I did end up with a pleasant sense of completeness even though the various 'scientists' (I use that term loosely to include philosophers, astronomy, biology and others) may have lived in periods separated by many years or even centuries....

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Stations along the Science Railroad !

How to speed up calculation and Improve performance of Excel and VBA

Posted on 23 November 2008

How to speed up calculation and Improve performance of Excel and VBA
The key to increasing speed of calculation and improving performance of your excel worksheet and VBA code lies in understanding how Excel calculates (and re-calculates) each cell and resolves dependencies. Whenever an event occurs that causes Excel to recalculate (for example a cell is changed, a VBA code calls for re calculation or anything else), the entire calculation process is carried out roughly as follows: 1. Load workbook in memory when the workbook is first opened. 2. Track all dependencies and build ...
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How to Set Up Flex (Flash) Command Line Compiler for SWF files

Posted on 09 November 2008

How to Set Up Flex (Flash) Command Line Compiler for SWF files
Getting the Flex command line compilers can be a bit of a trick. I recently started working with Flex and it took me a little time to get the configuration right. The 5 step process to get the Flex compiler to work in Windows: 1. Download Flex Builder from Adobe 2. Download Java SDK from Sun 3. Install both on your computer 4. Go to the Flex Builder's SDK bin folder and ...
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My First Flex Application

Posted on 08 November 2008

My First Flex Application
I started learning Flex (Flash if you please) a few days back. (See Another step): Well here's my first app :-) (File stored at Storewith.com) Just one minor hitch though...can't get wordpress to correctly render large .swf files. Which means that I can't embed any of the examples that I'll make into my wordpress blog :-( Have tested a lot of pluggins but none of them seem to get over this problem. ...
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USA Today does some good work

Posted on 07 November 2008

USA Today does some good work
I mentioned in one of my previous articles that for data visualization to become truly interactive one may need to explore newer avenues. I was mighty impressed by this graphic behind the results that appeared in USAToday recently. Here’s why: 1. The authors (Analysis: Paul Overberg of USA TODAY and Robert Lang of Virginia Tech and Graphic: William Couch and Juan Thomassie, USA TODAY) ...
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Clowning around with Excel

Posted on 01 November 2008

Clowning around with Excel
A sure shot way of spreading some holiday cheer around the office is to send your colleagues regular excel workbooks/reports with a bit of mischievous vba code in it :-) Here's my top 5 list: 1. Add a new menubar to excel. In my previous posts (Get each of your spreadsheets a customized menu), I talked about how to add custom menus to your excel workbook. Well......let's say that with a ...
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Another step

Posted on 25 October 2008

Another step
There are three strong contenders competing for the market  share of the RIA (Rich Internet Application) development market - JavaFX, Adobe AIR and Silverlight. All three are aimed at the same market but carry strong influences of the parent company. Take Adobe AIR for example - Adobe hit it big with Flash a few years ago and is now used in more than 92% of all websites. Adobe makes its bucks by offering ...
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The Presidential Race with the Halloween Twist

Posted on 24 October 2008

There has been ample supply of opinion polls and charts regarding the US presidential elections. I’ve been guilty of using Google Trends on this blog earlier. But over the past few days and weeks, the 24x7 in-you-face coverage of dresses, speeches, daughters/family, grand-fathers, great-great-great-grandfathers and anybody remotely in the vicinity of the candidates, has pushed me to a point where I am almost wishing that the election takes place over the weekend be spared the remaining weeks. However a recent story ...
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Where are you flying today

Posted on 22 October 2008

Where are you flying today
USA Today came up with this nice graphic on flight cutbacks by airlines in 2008 compared to the year before. It essentially is a radial chart with a lot of interactivity thrown in. I took a shot at doing this chart in Excel. I cut a lot of corners in the process (the defendant offers lack of data in his defence mylords :-)) but I think I came quite close to achieving some ...
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3 Nifty Ways to Send Email Using VBA in Excel

Posted on 21 October 2008

3 Nifty Ways to Send Email Using VBA in Excel
This article shows three methods using which you can send email using VBA in Excel. You can download a working example of sending email using vba in Excel here. Excel allows you to create the best-in-class charts, work with large amount of data and data sources work with images, flowcharts and what not. And if that was not enough, you can use the inbuilt vba editor to automate sending emails from ...
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Beats Me Every Time…..

Posted on 18 October 2008

Beats Me Every Time.....
....I don't know what specific pleasure women derive out of decorating their hands :-) ..... After the damage was done (financially speaking) while she was busy admiring the result of a few hours of effort....I was thinking to myself...with that kind of money I could've added a bit more RAM to my box, changed the air filter,........
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Interesting heatmaps

Posted on 18 October 2008

Interesting heatmaps
Heatmaps allow us to visualize the change in a particular variable over a certain period of time or area. I found some neat heatmaps that were worth sharing. Person scanning a website (Courtesy: Tobii.com) Change in economic indicators under each President (Courtesy: NY Times) UV Levels across the globe on 18-OCT-2008 (Courtesy: Temis.nl)...
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Bulls, Bears, Donkeys and Elephants

Posted on 16 October 2008

Bulls, Bears, Donkeys and Elephants
Who would want to use something like this..... (See Bulls, Bears, Donkeys and Elephants ) ......when they could've used this instead.....
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Opera study: Only 4.13% of the web is standards-compliant

Posted on 16 October 2008

By Ryan Paul | Published in www.arstechnica.com Browser maker Opera has published the early results of an ongoing study that aims to provide insight into the structure of Internet content. Major highlights are: 1. Adobe Flash is used on roughly 35 percent of all web sites. 2. The XMLHttpRequest scripting mechanism, one of the cornerstones of Ajax, is used on roughly 3.2 percent of the indexed web sites. So Ajax is growing, though not commesurate to the hype surrounding it. 3. The study found ...
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And the Booker goes too…

Posted on 15 October 2008

And the Booker goes too...
Beating a distinguished field of writers such as Sebastian Barry (The Secret Scripture), Amitav Ghosh (Sea of Poppies), Linda Grant (The Clothes on Their Backs), Steven Toltz (A Fraction of the Whole) and Philip Hensher (The Northern Clemency), 33 year old Aravind Adiga won the Booker for his debut novel White Tiger. Aaditya was born in Chennai, India and in Sydney, Australia. He went on to study at the Columbia University ...
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The Arthropods Image Salon

Posted on 15 October 2008

The Arthropods Image Salon
The Texas A&M University's department of entomology holds a yearly competition for images taken by their department followed by a public exhibition. Check out the large size pic of a red worker fire ant (Photographer: Freder Medina) and the Monarch Butterfly (Photographer: Spence Behmer) There are some good photographs at the microscopic level in the Photomicroscopy category ...
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How This Bear Market Compares – NY Times

Posted on 13 October 2008

How This Bear Market Compares - NY Times
A problem frequently encountered with displaying multiple series with overlapping data points within a single line chart is that they just seem to entangle themselves. To get an idea of all the data point that a series represents, the user has to either mentally segregate it from the rest or click on it to highlight the particular line. The NY Times recently published a chart How This Bear Market Compares that tries to solve this problem by highlighting ...
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It’s all coming to and end now…..

Posted on 11 October 2008

It's all coming to and end now.....
......and sanity is going to prevail soon. I am an eternal optimist and my understanding is that the extreme volatility seen in the global markets signals that the capitulation is coming to an end. 6 months from today, we will looks back at this point and think what a fantastic opportunity it represented. After the worst is over, the markets will return to a level ...
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How to create waterfall chart in excel in 2 minutes

Posted on 08 October 2008

How to create waterfall chart in excel in 2 minutes
A waterfall chart is used to represent a set of figures when they all impact the same derived number. A waterfall chart helps to link the individual values to a whole. A profit and loss statement is a good example where the magnitude of each figure has an impact on a derived number (which happens to be Profit in this case). A colleague of mine recently had a budgeting exercise assigned to him where he had to project the P&L figures ...
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Bar(ring) Chart

Posted on 07 October 2008

Bar(ring) Chart
I have always been a big fan of New York Times especially when it comes to creating cutting edge graphics. A few are mentioned in some of my previous posts. NY Times - Home Foreclosure Graph and The rise and fall of movies - NY Times. However once in a while, they err and publish..well...lets say less than world class charts. To my dismay one such chart was published recently: Home Prices in Selected Cities Through July ’08 ...
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