Solution – Exprienced Challenge 6: How Do You Spell That Again?

This was a challenge a good 15 or 20 years in the making. That’s not because it took us that long to come up with the challenge; even we work faster than that. It’s just that one of the OfficePalooza organizers learned about the Soundex algorithm 15 or 20 years ago (yes, back when he…


Solution – Experienced Challenge 5: I’m Leaving on a Jet Plane

We have to admit that Challenge 5 took us a little by surprise: it turned out to be easier than we anticipated. (As you might expect, things almost always turn out to be harder than we expect.) Even we knew that a simple SQL query could return a collection of all the non-stop flights from…


Solution – Novice Challenge 4: I Need a New Style

Our initial idea for this challenge was to have you set the font in the entire document to the first font on the local computer (alphabetically speaking) that begins with the letter B. However, we changed our minds about the alphabetically part; we’ll explain why when we take you through the solution we came up…


Solution – Novice Challenge 3: What Do I Owe You?

Challenge 3 was an interesting one. Not so much the challenge itself, but people seemed surprised at how little authors made in royalties. (This may come as a shock to some people, but most authors don’t make a lot of money off book sales.) Be that as it may, those are the numbers we came…


Solution – Experienced Challenge 4: Hmmm, So Maybe This is Rocket Science After All

This is the story of The Challenge That Almost Wasn’t. When we first thought of adding a missile trajectory challenge to OfficePalooza (because, after all, could you really call yourself a Palooza if you didn’t have missiles in there somewhere?) we immediately turned to the Internet for help on calculating such a trajectory. Note. Yes,…


Solution – Experienced Challenge 3: Are You Smarter Than a PowerPoint Developer?

What could be more fun than taking a test? OK, good point: pretty much everything is more fun than taking a test. Fortunately, in Challenge 3 you didn’t have to take the test, all you had to do was write the test. And writing a test is a whole bunch of fun. Uh, isn’t it?…


Solution – Novice Challenge 2: What Did I See?

This challenge required that you use search and replace and that you know how to call up an input box. Neither of those things is too difficult once you find the right functions and objects. Here’s the solution we came up with: Sub ChangeSubject()   Dim strSubject As String Dim strReplace As String   ‘Set…


Solution – Novice Challenge 1: Color My Column

We gave you a good start in this challenge by having you put the code in the Worksheet_SelectionChange subroutine. This subroutine runs each time a new cell is selected. Your solution may be different, but here’s how we solved this challenge: Private Sub Worksheet_SelectionChange(ByVal Target As Range) On Error Resume Next   ‘Take action based…


Solution – Experienced Challenge 2: The Secret Word is FGJAJGSHSBSW

So is this what real spies do all day: write Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) macros that decode five-word messages? Well, to be honest, we’re not at liberty to say; that’s classified information. But as far as we know, yes. So what kind of macros would a secret agent write? Well, again, we’re not a…


Solution – Experienced Challenge 1: That’s a Lot of Jellybeans … Isn’t It?

Well, we said Challenge 1 in the Experienced Division would be an easy one, and guess what: we were right. (And to think our manager bet her manager that would never happen!) Although there were a couple minor missteps here and there, at the time we wrote this no one who had tried Challenge 1…