Excel : Java Glossary


Microsoft’s popular spreadsheet for Windows. It can import and export CSV files. Its native binary format is *.xls. There are tools to read and write Excel format spreadsheets in Java. In the late 1990s, I worked for David Pollack’s Athena on an Excel-compatible spreadsheet called Integer. It allowed many users to remotely collaborate on the same sheet. It could run on any machine, even servers and display on many machines. Unlike regular Excel, it exploited as many CPUs (Central Processing Units) as you could throw at it. Unfortunately, the project ran out of money just as it was beginning to catch on. In 2006, it came back to life.

The easiest way to exchange data with Excel is via CSV (Comma-Separated Value) files. To generate spreadsheet files with embedded formulae, you will need POI.

Jacob lets you communicate with Excel using COM (Component Object Model) (né OLE (Object Linking & Embedding)).

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