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View Poll Results: Is Excel formula a programming language?
No 1 12.50%
No, but indented 2 25.00%
no; 2 25.00%
(NO) 1 12.50%
{no} 2 25.00%
10 NO 3 37.50%
Noland 2 25.00%
Planet No 2 25.00%
Dr. No 4 50.00%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 8. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 04-24-2021, 07:44 PM
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Default The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Yes, Microsoft really called this the world’s most widely used programming language.

I guess in the same sense that Excel is a robust enterprise-class database.

We're talking about Excel formulas, you know, the stuff you write directly in cells: =IF(A2="Bob",B2*1.15,B2).

xkcd this week alerted me to the news:


And here's the Microsoft announcement from December:
Announcing LAMBDA

Quote:
Today we are releasing to our Beta customers a new capability that will revolutionize how you build formulas in Excel. Excel formulas are the world’s most widely used programming language, yet one of the more basic principles in programming has been missing, and that is the ability to use the formula language to define your own re-usable functions.

=LAMBDA

Simply put, LAMBDA allows you to define your own custom functions using Excel’s formula language. Excel already allows you to define custom functions, but only by writing them in an entirely different language such as JavaScript. In contrast, LAMBDA allows you to define a custom function in Excel’s own formula language.
The nightmare is real: 'Excel formulas are the world's most widely used programming language,' says Microsoft • The Register

Widely used, I'll accept. I've seen what accountants and sales managers do with Excel formulas, and it's scary. But a programming language?
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  #2  
Old 04-24-2021, 08:16 PM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Your poll is missing "No"
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  #3  
Old 04-24-2021, 09:27 PM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Yes, it isn't
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  #4  
Old 04-24-2021, 09:55 PM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Also 'No

The apostrophe (usually) prevents Excel from mangling what you type using its dreaded "smart formatting" Programmers who've flirted with FORTH in the dim and distant past pronounce it as tick-No.
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Old 04-25-2021, 08:15 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

The apostrophe is also how you do SQL injections, too. So there's that.
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  #6  
Old 04-25-2021, 10:13 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ensign Steve View Post
The apostrophe is also how you do SQL injections, too. So there's that.
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  #7  
Old 04-25-2021, 10:35 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Not really having a problem with calling it a programming language. I'm generally more interested in whether particular qualities make something useful or interesting than I am in demarcation. That said, while Excel's lambda makes the language Turing complete, is Excel really any more useful for anything other than relatively simple computations now?

Not to rag on Excel, I've used it plenty, but mostly as a quick and dirty way of performing the same computations on lots of different inputs with quick visual feedback.
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  #8  
Old 04-25-2021, 10:59 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Well yes. If I still had to do things where Excel is a given - existing systems produce Excel-formatted outputs (done well ... or not), other people producing ever-so-important weekly or monthly management reports needs inputs in Excel style - I would be right on this.

But have you ever seen "Excel formulas" as one of the categories in the many "most popular / most widely used programming language" lists?
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  #9  
Old 04-26-2021, 07:32 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

No, but but aren't those are generally compiled from coder self-report or lines on GitHub or some other thing where Excel formulas wouldn't show up? Besides, I've seen CSS on such lists.

As an aside while looking into this I ran across a page of things which turn out to be Turing complete. Including an Excel spreadsheet prior to this lambda thing as well as Apache mod_rewrite, SQL and Magic: The Gathering.
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  #10  
Old 04-27-2021, 12:10 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Turns out I've been a programmer all along :cool2:
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  #11  
Old 04-27-2021, 01:09 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

Them Visual Basic macros. Gateway drug to coding.
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Old 04-27-2021, 05:21 AM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

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  #13  
Old 04-27-2021, 09:47 PM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

This would have been seriously useful in 1983. As is, this feature has been absent so long they've built several entire languages to work around it.
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  #14  
Old 04-27-2021, 11:11 PM
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Default Re: The world’s most widely used programming language get custom functions!

EXACTLY.
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