Have there been any attempts to improve the design of spreadsheets?

Are there notable attempts to redesign the spreadsheet, as a number-heavy GUI which requires hours of painful concentration?

As of today, the mainstream spreadsheet applications still use the same basic screen design as in 1980s: a large collection of small uniform cells, some of which have data. Excel indeed allows resizing the columns and building different fonts, but basically it is still the same. Hundreds of millions of office workers worldwide have to stare into ugly uniform screens for hours, trying to find what they need.

I suppose most take it for granted, but I wonder if anyone recently tried redesigning the entire paradigm.


Look back at the history of spreadsheets. This has been addressed in the past:

  • Javelin
  • Lotus Improv (v1 was for NeXTstep, v2 for Windows) — review here: http://simson.net/clips/1991/1991.NW.Improv.html
  • Flexisheet (this is moribund, but opensource)
  • Quantrix Financial Modeller (still available — be sure to check the price tag)

Basically, the improvement which is needed (and was implemented) is to force the naming of every row, table and ultimately cell, and allow a dynamic re-arranging.

Source : Link , Question Author : Vadim Berman , Answer Author : WillAdams

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