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Excel Countdown

Did you know that Excel can count the seconds until a deadline?

Every time we turn around lately, someone mentions something like, "Thirteen schooldays left." or "Just two more Thursdays to go."  While clock watching and second-counting is a supreme waste of time, it's good to know that Excel can at least add a measure of precision undreamt of by us weary, spring-fever victims.

Below is an example of how Excel can count down the days, hours, minutes, and seconds until a certain day and time. Here are a few tips:

bullet You can Refresh this page to update the countdown. The shortcut is F5 in Internet Explorer. 
bulletCopy and paste these cells into Excel to study the formulas and modify it for your own purpose. Or, click here to download an Excel example file. Be sure to "Save As..." the file into your own home directory. One nice thing about the Excel file is that the cells are annotated using the "comment" feature.
bullet You can also click in the spreadsheet and recalculate. The Excel shortcut for recalculate is F9. Hold F9 down for a running countdown! 

Note that the date and time indicated in cell C2 is noon on June 13th, an arbitrary, random moment selected as an example. In Excel, edit this value to your own target date and time and you can experience the joy of watching the seconds tick down to your own personal goal.

More ideas like this:

bulletUsing similar techniques, you could have a spreadsheet count the seconds you've been alive or the duration of a science experiment. 
bulletEdit the target date in C2 to create a countdown to birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, or any special days.
bulletCount the seconds until you meet your loved one again. Or rather, let Excel count the seconds while you watch television or something.
bulletLook up your life expectancy, then set up a spreadsheet to count the days, minutes, and seconds you have left. Then make good use of them!
bulletSend me your idea!


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