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JAL3

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Its embarassing to admit but I have almost no competence in spreadsheets. In school I had the option of doing the spreadsheet thing or learning real programing to solve problems. I chose the latter and was never great but could get basic jobs done...until the big switch to WIndows. Now everything I learned is useless and I still have not learned Excel because there has always been somebody else to do it for me, but not any more.

I think what I want to do is simple but have not been able to make it work.
I'm trying to set up a prayer request list for my church and, at the touch of a button, be able to generate a report with all of the concerns for the last 7 days and print it out. Its that last part that's eating me alive.

This is partly because the voluteer receptionists at the church are generally very adverse to technology newer than dial telephones. They don't want to use the menus etc. It was a struggle to get them to type info into the five columns. Going through the print screens has proven to be a trauma for some, including me, since that part at least seems simple to me.

I could work up a kludge with Access but the church's software does not include that one.

Is there some simple way to do what I'm looking for?
 

sunward

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....Is there some simple way to do what I'm looking for?
Ask someone else to do it?

What you are looking to do doesn't sound simple. And access may be the best solution. If it is unavailable, why not try open office org's base?
 

powderburner

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To sort the kind of list I think you are talking about, you will first need to set up your spreadsheet with a column formatted with dates. This might be the date the prayer reqst was received, or the date it expires, or some other date.

You can do this by selecting a column to contain this data, and either click a cell at the top and drag/highlight as far down the worksheet as you need (how big is your church?), or you can just click the column label in the first row (which should highlight the entire column). Then you can click format cells in the header toolbar, then number, then select date (and "OK" to complete). This will turn them all into the same m-d-y format, and IIRC when you type in "Mar 10, 2009" the EXCEL software will automatically turn it into something like "3/10/2009" or whatever your version of EXCEL is set up for. The other columns will default to let you type in text comments, or you can format them (following a similar process to the one just described) specifically for text. You may want to highlight the column heads and format them for LH justification, just to be tidy.

Then when you complete a line, perhaps with someone's name in colA, the date in colB, other info in colC, and the actual prayer reqst/need in, say, colD, you will have one line of data for one prayer reqst. Continuing the example, if you have maybe 30 reqsts in your database, you click on the top LH cell (A1) and hold and drag across your entire database (to cell D30) to highlight the entire database. Then, click data in the header toolbar, then sort, and sort by; you should have a window open or something that shows some sort options. Here, if you want to sort by date, since you put the date info into col B, then you click in the "sort by" space colB. Click "OK" and it should sort the entire highlighted database by the key data column that you have selected.

After your list is sorted, scroll down the page to find the first entry that is eight days old (if you only want the last seven), and click that line on the line marker (on the far LH side). Click insert, then page break, and EXCEL will cut off your page and move the other data to a following page.

(Boy, after typing all that, I sure hope it works, what with "we're on a mission from God" and all that)
 
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JAL3

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Thanks for the advice. I'll be making hospital rounds this mornign and will give it a try this afternoon.
 
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