Spreadsheet facts for kids
A Spreadsheet is a computer program that imitates a paper worksheet. It shows a large sheet (like a sheet of paper) that has many cells in a grid of rows and columns. Users can put words or numbers into the cells, to make headings and store information (usually numbers). You can also move the grid lines around so that some cells are bigger than others, and change the color or size of text/font, the same way font/text is changed in a word processor. You can even put pictures in the worksheets, make multiple pages, and print out their results on real paper.
The primary reason most people use spreadsheets is for automatic calculations. Spreadsheets can be designed to add up the items/amounts on a bill, calculate sales tax, and even calculate income tax. A user can add and subtract the numbers here, even if the numbers are not next to each other. This means the computer does all the math, and people only need to give the correct information.
Another strength of spreadsheets, is that they can produce diagrams, like graphs and piecharts, based on the data the user enters. Sometimes the numbers make more sense when the computer turns them into a picture.
Contents
Popular spreadsheet software
 Microsoft Excel
 Apple Numbers
 OpenOffice.org Calc
 Google Spreadsheet
Less popular spreadsheet software
 Lotus 123 IBM, for Windows, Mac OS X & Linux, original 1983, last 2010
 Quattro Pro, for Windows, original 1989, last 2010
 Gnumeric, for Windows & Linux, original 2002, last 2010
 Kspread, Windows, Mac OS X & Linux, original 2007, last 2010
 EditGrid, internet based, like Google Spreadsheets, 2008
Old spreadsheet software
 VisiCalc, original 1979
 APLDOT modeling language: US Railway Association. 1976
 LANPAR spreadsheet compiler: Bell Canada and AT&T, 1969
 Autoplan/Autotab spreadsheet programming language: GE, 1968
 BCL, or Business Computer Language: IBM, 1963
Images for kids

Use of named column variables x & y in Microsoft Excel. Formula for y=x2 resembles Fortran, and Name Manager shows the definitions of x & y.

Animation of a simple spreadsheet that multiplies values in the left column by 2, then sums the calculated values from the right column to the bottommost cell. In this example, only the values in the A column are entered (10, 20, 30), and the remainder of cells are formulas. Formulas in the B column multiply values from the A column using relative references, and the formula in B4 uses the SUM() function to find the sum of values in the B1:B3 range.

Use of userdefined function sq(x) in Microsoft Excel.

Subroutine in Microsoft Excel writes values calculated using x into y.
See also
In Spanish: Hoja de cálculo para niños