Excel and VBA are an area that I know and love. When you’re working as an engineer, nearly everything goes through Excel. Being able to automate those tasks is huge. From a programming point of view, VBA is not that bad. Probably the only language that takes abuse from serious programmers as “childish” and from non-programming business users as “insanely complex”. It’s a tool that gets the job done.
bUTL is an add-in for Excel that is an accumulation of all the utility and helper code that I have written over the years. It is heavily geared toward speeding up common utility tasks and is also heavily featured when it comes to working with
Charts. bUTL recently was published on GitHub to open source the code, provide references for others, and motivate myself to improve it. Even putting a VBA project onto GitHub is an interesting task in itself and will get a blog post at some point.
“Lab Apps” add-in
The Lab Apps add-in was a purpose built add-in for Excel that provided data collection, analysis, and visualization for managing quality critical data in a chemical manufacturing plant. It was built to pull data from a Star LIMS system. All of the analysis and visualization was done with native Excel elements. Specific features included:
- Built necessary SQL statements dynamically to pull in sample, batch, or specification details.
- Provided an automated approach to analyzing Cp/Cpk metrics.
- Provided built in SPC charting (using Star LIMS defined limits) to analyze unit performance and quality adherence.
198+ answers to Stack Overflow questions
I am fairly active on Stack Overflow answering Excel VBA and formula related questions. There are a number of one-off solutions involving formulas or VBA. There are also a couple of general utility related code that made it into bUTL after I wrote the Stack Overflow answer.