This is the website for Black Tor Consulting Ltd, we would like to offer you some help with your technology issues.
Mainly on this site we focus on Microsoft Excel formulas, VBA automation of workbooks and website design.
Cross Browser Support
This site has been tested in all major browsers.
- Internet Explorer
- What else ?
Microsoft Excel 1997 to 2013
Excel is at its most basic a simple tool to provide results to its users with a minimum of fuss.
However it can provide so much more for you than a simple sheet full of numbers with totals at the bottom.
Excel 2013 has over 400 different functions, most of which can be used in conjunction with others to created complicated equations.
Learn to write your own functions so that you can do new things such as count the number of cells with a specified background colour.
Support of Excel 1997-2003
Microsoft will end its support of Office 2003 on the 8th of April 2014. At this time all security upgrades for this version will cease.
The improvements made to Excel in 07, 10 and 13 are considerable and will greatly improve your reporting process and any use you make of Excels new big grid.
If you are running Office 2003 after support ends you should ensure that you upgrade so that you continue to receive security upgrades.
Users often find that they are disorientated when they first move to new versions of Excel. However in only 2-3 weeks you will be working faster and more quickly.
Visual Basic Application
Essentially VBA is a way within Microsoft Office applications to automate almost any process you can think of.
Use VBA to... create and update charts and pivots to give daily management information statistics (MIS) without the effort.
Use VBA to... email multiple staff members and clients with updates task lists, progress reports or invoices.
Some resources can be found on the Downloads page.
Add-in version number:1.1
What is VBA?
VBA is the abbreviation for Visual Basic for Applications. It is the language used by office applications such as Access & Excel to perform tasks for you.
Atlhough VBA is a computer language you do not need to sit down with a book to use it. Using the recorder on the Developer tab you can create your own macros.
Each section of code which starts and finishes is called a macro or subroutine. Within the VBA Editor (Alt + F11 to show it) each macro is started by 'Sub'.
Although these recorded macro's will not adjust to changes to your workbook or data they are an excellent place to start if you want to learn code.
Design and Maintenance
How you present your self or your company on the world wide web is crucial and comprises a number of factors.
Compatibility: does your site need to be compatible with mobiles, tables, laptops and desk tops?
Images/Colour: do you have a range of images to use or colour palette planned for your site, what do those colours mean?
Media: do you expect users to print your web pages? If so they need to be designed with colours that are printer friendly.
We do not attempt to compete with the multitude of agencies that will offer to produce a template based site for you from a stock layout and palette.
At Black Tor we believe in a bespoke design for each site which is tailored to fit the customers requirements and their requests, building your site together.
We will discuss with you the best colours and font to use and also any images that need to be included in the design that suites you.
Establishing a direct contact with our customers is important to us so that we can be a real source of help and advise as we develop and maintain your website.
- Other Stuff
Pages of Interest
Book Covers We Have Created
Ghosts from Afghanistan: A complex cover combining eight different images each layered onto a smokey background. Additional images were wrapped around the mannequin to give an interesting perspective.
The Escape of Jack the Ripper: This cover has a more modern appearance. Colour washes and again multiple images were required to build the final cover image which can be seen here.
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Excel: A Brief Guide
The first step in using Excel is learning how to use the functions that it contains to provide you with the totals and information that you want. You can enter functions or formulas by either typing the formula directly into the cell, by using the drop down menus contained in the Formula tab of the ribbon or using the button labeled AutoSum. The formulas have been divided into different sections to help you locate what you need. When entering a formula manually the first character you enter after the equals sign will produce a list of the functions that start with this letter, from here you can either select the complete typing the formula name or select the appropriate name.
When typing the formula directly into a cell little additional help is given. However when using the drawdown box option a small form is provided with a description of what is required in each part of the formula. Commonly formulas are divided internally by either a comma to denote differing sections or stages of the formula, ranges of cells are separated by a colon.
As a starting place this is the formula that is the most common and simple for people to use. However many people do not realise how versatile it is. formula used
Currently this site is under construction and this page is being updated with information. Please revisit the site over the next few days and weeks as we add more content.