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Microsoft Excel is a highly utilized spreadsheet developed and distributed by Microsoft Corporation. First released for Macintosh operating systems in 1985 and Windows OS two years later in 1987, since then it has become an integral component of their Office suite, being utilized worldwide by businesses, organizations and individuals.
Excel enables users to manipulate and analyze tabular data in an accessible format. Features like formatting, charting, sorting, filtering and calculating capabilities - make Excel an indispensable resource for data analysis, financial modeling and visualization projects.
Excel can be traced back to 1978 when co-founder Bill Gates saw VisiCalc, the first electronic spreadsheet software, being demonstrated. Gates immediately saw potential in VisiCalc and recognized an opportunity for Microsoft to develop its own version.
Excel was initially released for Macintosh operating systems in 1985, proving to be an instantaneous hit due to its user-friendly and intuitive design. Later on in 1987, Windows users saw Excel being made available as well and soon became its primary competitor worldwide.
Over the years, Excel has evolved considerably with each new version being released, adding features and capabilities not previously found within. Some key developments were introduced with VBA (Visual Basic for Applications), enabling users to automate tasks and develop custom functions, while PivotTables introduced in 1994 allowed for quick summarization and analysis of large amounts of data.
Excel remains one of the world's most beloved spreadsheet software, favored by business professionals as well as students and educators alike. Thanks to its comprehensive feature set and user-friendly interface, Excel will likely continue to be indispensable in data analysis and modeling in years to come.
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