Ms. Compy Fix-It is Back! With an Excel 2007 Data Labels Workaround

Well hello there!  It’s certainly been a while.  I hope everyone’s been doing well and not having too many computer struggles.

I am happy to report that I have a workaround for that annoying (and completely inexplicable) Excel 2007 quirk of not allowing chart data label resizing.  I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve struggled with this, so I’m very excited to share my workaround with you, even if it’s not a complete fix.

(I’m working on making 3 charts fit in a very tiny space, so forgive the use and misuse of gridlines, titles, etc.. I’ve had to pare it down to barebones 🙂 )
Image

See how ugly they are?!  Ugh!  Well read on to see how to force it to use that extra space around it, like the pretty last graph.

In order to describe it properly, I’ll have to define what I mean when I say certain things:
“Whole Chart area” – the area that includes the chart, its axes, the title, and the legend (see below)
excel Example Pic 3.1
“Inner Chart area” – the area that gets selected that includes the data and not much else (see below)
Image

So, in my struggles with this, I’ve noticed a few things:

  • Excel changes the data labels when you resize the Whole Chart area
  • Excel doesn’t change the data labels when you resize the Inner Chart area
  • Excel will not reliably change your data label size when you increase or decrease your font size (sometimes it will even act differently from one chart to the next!  I’m still trying to figure that part out…..)

So!  If you want to adjust your data labels – say they’re crazy-thin like mine above:

  1. expand the Whole Chart area until your data label is as wide as you’d like
  2. shrink the Inner Chart area until your chart is the size you’d like
  3. select the Whole Chart area and ensure your background is “None” – as it’s now quite huge and will cover any other data you have beside it (if you wanted a nice border around your chart, you can always just draw a rectangle shape with no background and it’ll work almost as well)
  4. move around your axis label and title, as they’ll no longer be centred
  5. if you’d like the font size to be bigger/smaller, give it a try.  I found the data labels I adjusted in this way were able to increase/decrease font size after as well.  Who knows, maybe this frees them from their Excel-prison shackles!

excel Example Pic 5

Has this helped solve your problem?  Let me know in the comments!  🙂

Slate Grays

my hands are dry and rough from working
my eyes are small and used to squinting
my stature average, verging on petite
I have thin skin and veiny feet
my complexion’s poor, my tone is pale
genes say my bones will be quite frail
I have no nails as they are weak
my voice is too high when I speak
my mother thinks my hair’s too long
I think all compliments are wrong
I’m a sceptic, sometimes too much so
though I try to be fair to friend and foe
my opinions strong, my manner shy
in public you’ll never see me cry
in private I keep emotions tame
my anxiety has that cause to blame
I hate to shop, but buy a lot
no place could ever be too hot
I dislike snow, I dislike cold
I’m terrified of getting old
I have good friends who understand
I’m always later than I plan
I’m sensitive, and feel more pain
than I let off, or care to explain
I never intentionally drink alcohol
and for this, flunk social protocol
I dislike freckles, and have a bunch
I bend, I slouch, I slump, I hunch
I get depressed but never treat
I just stay up late and never eat
somehow, I’ve seemed to manage this wreck
to keep my addictive tendency in check
though these faults I easily admit
I’d like to think there’s some good to it
I’ll never regret the time departed
for when I love, I love whole-hearted

    

      

Copyright L.M. 2008.

Open Mic Night

a night of hills
rounding o’er the surprises
at the almost intangible
we crashed
but would you look now
the sky separated
no more lenses
and look how it shines

sparkled eyes sending
flashes of truth and water
yet you stay
what a day
at the razor edge, slipped
but somehow fell up

how could you doubt
every same word
every same thought
every same hope
that I should see them too
presents your proof

I wanted to see through
the piercing eyes
the flicker I suspected
was maybe for show
mischief like a contact lay
across your iris, scratching thin
just enough to let you know
the trouble you were getting in

yes, I say so honestly
whether or not I should
but this eve you’ve proven
after everything, it’s still good

so all those hills we scrambled over
skating ice and slipping tripping
end up scorching the fruits
and giving something we can put to use

no more lenses, show the truth
look how you shine
and we will be fine
just show me all this hidden you

    

     

Finished: 6:03 a.m., Saturday, December 1st, 2007.