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Chapter 21. Managing Data with Formulas ... > Adding Form Controls to Your Workshe...

Adding Form Controls to Your Worksheets

Form controls in Excel include check boxes, drop-down lists, spinners, and so on that you can add to charts, lists, and other areas of your worksheets to create custom forms for use in data entry and data management. There are multiple ways to use form controls, but the under-lying premise is to use form controls in conjunction with formulas. Form controls link to a cell, and then you apply a formula that addresses the link to look up the information or calculate from the information. For example, suppose you're creating a standard bid sheet for different types of construction equipment. A check box on the form could be set up so that if you check the box, it automatically includes and calculates the type of equipment and rate.

You can use form controls with tables, lists, charts, and even PivotTables. The controls actually are quite simple to create and use. After you set up your worksheet, you then apply the controls from the Forms toolbar as needed to fit your situation. The form shown in Figure 21.25, for example, uses a simple drop-down list to extract an equipment number. Formulas tied to the cell link then extract the corresponding values. Some form controls can be tied to Excel macros or VBA programs to perform tasks. For information on writing Excel macros and simple VBA applications, see Chapter 29, "Recording and Editing a Macro," and Chapter 30, "Creating Interactive Excel Applications with VBA."


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