Thursday, June 24, 2010

Reading Challenge Spread Sheet

I was planning to join two or three more of the reading challenges that I targeted and for which I registered my intent in the Reading Challenge Portal during Bloggiesta. But as I set about choosing among them I decided that before I took on any more I needed a better way of keeping the info organized--something I could see at a glance. Like a spreadsheet.

So I spent the last three or more hours setting it up and inputting as much info as possible to bring it up to date. I did it in my WhizFolders Organizer Deluxe ap so that I could have it embedded right with the info I'd collected on all the challenges and my progress.

The challenges are listed across the top and the books (titles / authors) are listed in the far left column. Then in each of the cells I indicate if a book qualifies for a challenge with # / # where the first # indicates the number read so far and the second # indicates the goal.

Am already noticing a problem though. It is hard to keep track of which cell you are in once you have scrolled the title list and/or the challenge titles off the screen. I know that more sophisticated spreadsheet aps have ways of temporarily hiding rows or columns to get around that issue. So now I've got to decide whether the problem is severe enough to warrant recreating it in MS Office or Open Office. I could still embed it in the Whiz document but to work on it I'd have to call up the other program which would have a larger RAM footprint and be more complex and less familiar to me.

Would the advantage be worth the time and effort? For that matter is having the spreadsheet at all worth the time and effort? Just think, I could have spent the last three hours reading!

Hmm just had a thought as I was typing the last paragraph. What if I moved the title list into the middle? Who says it has to be on the far left? And then I could copy the column headings row and duplicate it about every ten or fifteen rows which would always keep it on the screen. Just might try it. But not tonight. I want to read.

I spent most of the week watching library DVD as fast as I could and thus haven't read much since last Friday. Even we brought more DVD home from the library today, including season 4 of The West Wing, I've decided to dedicate the weekend to reading. Which means of course that next weekend I'll be frantically watching DVD.

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