02 Costly Birthdays
She just couldn't finish her cost analysis, because those birthdays kept on interfering.
When she tried to create a cost analysis for electronic media, the employee was surprised when her table repeatedly showed absurd results at the end of her calculations. After a quick search, it became clear that when importing the CSV file for the usage statistics into Excel, the prices had automatically been transformed into dates. Usage statistics for electronic media are typically delivered as CSV files. If these are imported into an Excel file in the basic settings, prices are converted to dates, even though this is not the desired outcome. This prevents a meaningful interpretation of the data since no average usage costs can be calculated if a part of the prices is systematically excluded.
The example shows that when importing data into spreadsheet programs, careful attention must be paid to the correct formatting of the cells, otherwise automatic formatting changes may occur.
- personal communication