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A holiday sure to appeal to some people more than others, Spreadsheet Day commemorates the date that VisiCalc, the first spreadsheet program for personal computers, was released – October 17th, 1979. Since its beginnings, Spreadsheet Day has grown to become a day for celebrating both the advantages and the aggravations of working with spreadsheet software.

History of Spreadsheet Day

The idea for spreadsheet day came about on February 2010, when the importance of spreadsheets in day to day business operations, and in fact living, became apparent to its creator. By the following October, celebrations were underway.

All of it really began back in October of 1979, when the first spreadsheet program Visicalc, was released for the Apple II, and the process of organizing and computing massive amounts of data became stream-lined and simple.

It was developed by Dan Bricklin of Software Arts, and was then produced for distribution by Personal Software, and marked the transition of Apple II’s from a machine for computer enthusiasts into a viable tool for business.

What made VisiCalc so important was its ability to be used on personal computers, finally putting this valuable tool into the hands of homeowners and small business owners alike.

How to Celebrate Spreadsheet Day

It all begins with recognizing how ubiquitous spreadsheets are in modern life. Every business uses them to manage their books, and data for everything including names and numbers of members and much more. Following on the heels of that, you could take the time to learn how to use spreadsheets and design them for your own lifestyle.

While Microsoft Excel remains the most popular spreadsheet program out there, even those on a limited budget can take advantage of these powerful tools with free options like Libre Calc, a free version available as part of the LibreOffice suite.

They’re surprisingly easy to use, and can help you balance your budget, prepare shopping lists, keep track of important dates and people, and just about anything else your imagination can come up with. So take Celebrate Spreadsheet day as an opportunity to get your life organized!

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