Module 1: Desktop Functionality and Simple Communications
o A network consists of two or more computers that are connected by physical cables or satellite
and radio communication.
o Networks enable several people to share information and equipment (such as printers) and to
interact using applications such as electronic mail or instant messaging
o One of the greatest advantages to using a networked system in the lab is that it enables us to
store files on a centrally located computer called a fileserver
o Compact Disks (CDs). CD-R opens (reads) files and the CD-W transfers (burns/writes) files from
your hard drive onto the CD
o Digital Video Disks (DVDs), can store more information than CDs
o Universal serial bus (USB) flash drives have huge storage capacities
o Secure Digital (SD) cards are also flash drives that are often found in cell phones, PDAs, and
o External Hard Drive
o Floppy Disk High density (HD) and double density (DD); difference is the amount of storage
space on each kind
Module 2: Spreadsheets
o The workspace for a spreadsheet file is called a workbook
o Each workbook includes one or more worksheets that are large grids of rows and columns
o Each column (vertical) is represented by one or more letters, and each row (horizontal) is
represented by a number
o The intersection between a row and a column is called a cell
o Each cell is identified uniquely by its location within the grid, and this unique combination is called
the cell’s address
o An active cell’s address is shown in the Name Box in the Formula Bar
o It is often convenient to refer to a rectangular region of cells, known as a cell range
o Cell ranges have two addresses separated by a colon
Kinds of cell entries
o Labels (e.g., Cost, 12 Arbour St.)
o Numeric values (e.g., 34, 22.45)
o Formulas (e.g. =B3/A2, =10*B3)
o Labels are often called text strings, character strings, or just strings in other applications
o Numeric values can also be used to represent financial information, and these can be displayed
using common financial notations
Error Message Meaning
#DIV/0! Calculation requires dividing by zero.
#N/A No value is available/no value matches the request.
#NAME? A name used in the formula does not match those defined (see the next
#NUM! There is a problem with a number (the one calculated or the one used in the
#REF! The formula refers to a cell that is not valid (e.g. has been deleted).
#VALUE! You are trying to perform an operation on incompatible types (e.g. adding text
Representative Functions Function Example Description
SUM SUM(A5:A9,2,B10) Adds together all values from cells and
constants listed in the parameters
MIN MIN(A5:A9,2,B10) Finds the minimum value in all mentioned cells
MAX MAX(A5:A9,2,B10) Finds the maximum value in all mentioned cells
AVERAGE AVERAGE(A5:A9,2,B10) Calculates the average value for all mentioned
cells and constants
COUNT COUNT(A5:A9,2,B10) Counts the number of numeric values from cells
plus the number of numeric constants listed in
CATENATE CONCATENATE(A6,"--",A5) Forms one label by laying each value from the
or mentioned cells and constants end to end in the
A6 & "--" & A5 order given; the “&” operator provides an
alternative mechanism for concatenating labels
SEARCH SEARCH("--",A7,5) Finds the leftmost location of the first label
within the second label at or beyond the
position given by the third parameter (default
starting position is 1)
MID MID(A6,start,2) Extracts part of the label specified by the first
parameter, starting from the position given in by
second parameter and having the length given
by the third parameter
LEN LEN(A17) Returns the number of characters in the label
specified by the parameter
The IF Function
o The IF function is used when you want to display a value or calculate a value that is conditional on
information in another cell.
o =10+IF(A2<5,3,7) returns 13 if the contents of cell A2 is less than 5 and returns 17 otherwise
o For example, COUNT(B16:D20) looks at the 15 cells in the specified range and counts how many of
those cells contain a numeric value
o COUNTIF(B16:D20,">5") counts how many cells have a value greater than
5,COUNTIF(B16:D20,"=no") counts how many cells contain the label “no”,
and COUNTIF(B16:D20,"<>butter") counts how many cells do not contain the label “butter” SUMIF Function
o =SUMIF(range, criteria, [sum_range])
o Range: The range you wish to check for the stated criteria.
o Criteria: The criteria to determine whether or not the corresponding value is added.
o Sum_Range: The value that is added if the given criteria is met.
Module 3: VLOOKUP, INDIRECT
o VLOOKUP (vertical lookup) provides this functionality for a table in which each row represents
o In general, VLOOKUP takes four parameters as follows:
1. the value to match in the lookup table (the search key)
2. the table to search for a match (the key is matched against the leftmost column)
3. the column in which to find the value to be returned (the leftmost column is column 1)
4. whether the closest match is to be found (TRUE) or an exact match is required (FALSE)
o =IF(ISNA(VLOOKUP(A15,class,1,FALSE)),"not registered","OK")
o which will return “not registered” if the content of A15 matches none of the values in the first
column of the cell range named class.
o To use lookup with inexact matching, the table must be sorted in increasing order of the value in
its leftmost column.
o INDIRECT takes a label as its only parameter and treats that label as if it were a cell address or
o SUMPRODUCT: Takes two parameters (two cell ranges of equal shape) and computes the sum
of the products of the corresponding cell values in each range.
o A label stored in a neighbouring cell is not the same as naming the cell
1. Assign specific cells for each piece of data.
2. Place labels in adjacent cells to identify items of data.
3. Insert comments (notes) in any cell that would benefit from additional information.
4. Assign names to key input cells and ranges.
5. Enter formulas (using appropriate names or forms for the addresses) to calculate derived values, and
spread them to adjacent cells as needed.
6. Check formulas as you enter them by changing the input data values several times to see the results.
Compare those results to the calculations you did by hand before starting. Pay particular attention to
formulas that are spread, copied, or moved.
7. Adjust column widths and choose formatting for each cell. Check the overall effect of the
spreadsheet: Is it easy to find the important output? Are related components visually connected?
Module 4: Large Spreadsheets and Charts
o A worksheet display can be split vertically into two areas, known as panes, showing two separate
groups of columns, or similarly it can be split into two horizontal panes showing two separate
groups of rows.
o It can also be split into four panes showing two separate groups of rows and columns
o Unlike a split display, by freezing panes you can scroll only the bottom right part of the display;
the other panes remain fixed.
o A third way to view multiple parts of a spreadsheet is to open two (or more) windows.
o Excel uses an exclamation mark to separate the sheet’s name from the cell reference, but Calc
uses a period in place of the exclamation mark. We will use the exclamation mark in these notes.
• E.g. =B2 * Sheet2!C3 Module 5: Introduction to HTML and World Wide Web
o a network consists of two or more computers that are connected by physical cables or satellite
and radio communication
o A commonly used protocol that is the main workhorse of the Internet is
called TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol)
• When a large piece of data is sent using TCP/IP, it is broken down into smaller units,
known as data packets, that are sent in separate, numbered envelopes
• If any packet is lost, the protocol resends it.
• The small packets are easier to resend and also allow better sharing of network
• The original data is reassembled from the individual packets by the destination computer
before it is delivered to the application.
• As an analogy, think of cutting a manuscript into small pieces, putting each into a
separate numbered envelope, and then mailing them.
o The Internet Protocol dictates that each computer (also known as a host) on the network must
have a unique IP address
o The words enclosed by left and right angle brackets, called tags, indicate to the browser the
nature of information on the webpage
o HTML tags are not case-sensitive
o Tags are paired
o Paired tags surround the text to be affected
o Tag pairs are nested
o Opening tags may have attributes
o Arts and Science
o Email hyperlink: Jane Smith
Effective Webpage Design
o Proximity: when items on a webpage appear close to each other, a relationship is implied
o Separation: separation of objects from a "focal point" attracts and guides the reader's eyes
o Alignment: important to signify relations, if lists or paragraphs are not aligned correctly, the reader
cannot easily follow from one component to the next
o Repetition: creates familiarity for the reader. Colours, logos, fonts etc should be consistent
o Contrast: text and images should be easily distinguishable from the background
o The Extensible Markup Language (XML) is an alternative notation to HTML, designed to allow
users to mark data with descriptive tags and (at least temporarily) ignore the data’s presentation.
o Like HTML, XML uses paired and nested tags, perhaps augmented with attributes
o However, unlike HTML, XML allows you to use any tags you wish — whatever will be meaningful
Module 6: Creating and Revising Wiki Articles
o As well as ordinary articles, wikis also include several classes of special pages that serve specific
functions. o These articles have titles that are preceded by a namespace, a designator indicating the special
nature of the page.
o User pages
• For every registered user on a wiki, there is a page in the User namespace on which
information about the user can be recorded.
• For example, if JaneSmith were a registered user, there would be a
page User:JaneSmith on which she (or others) could record personal data.
o Category pages
• Articles can be classified into categories to support the users’ ability to browse the wiki,
since each category has a corresponding page in the Category namespace
o Image pages
• Images stored in the wiki are addressed by referring to the image file in the Image
• For example, Image:Sparky.jpg refers to a JPEG image file.
o Discussion pages
• every article in a wiki has a corresponding discussion page, on which users can debate
the article’s contents.
• For example, corresponding to the Wikipedia article entitled Nunavut, there is a
discussion page labeled Talk:Nunavut.
Introduction to Wiki Text
o Headings are indicated by surrounding