The history of table calculators begins in the 1980's (1979 - Visicalc) and their use has considerably expanded since. Though, at the beginning, these calculators were used mostly in the field of economics, statistics and financial calculations, their use is more or less universal today and there probably aren't any technical workers who have no experience with a table calculator.
Microsoft Excel is obviously the best product. This program provides a wide scope of options and user modifications (control elements, programming language, table formatting, etc). This predestines it for use in engineering, industrial and technical calculations with the following main benefits:
- Common Familiarity - Common knowledge of MS Excel among most of users, multi-platform applications (MS Windows and Apple).
- User Interface - Excel enables us, for this type of task, to design a natural user environment.
- Open Solution - The user can simply modify or extend the calculation according to their own requirements and usage.
- Complex Solution - Interconnection of several calculations (even including separate tables) allows quick preparation of a solution for complex entries - tailored solution.
- Data Sharing - A range of programs (including many CAD systems) can cooperate with Excel tables directly.
- Communication - Simple data transfer - sending a workbook also includes sending the data and procedure.
- Publication - Easy publication of results on the Internet or Intranet, and simple modifications of print reports.
The only "disadvantage", which is disputable, can be seen in the necessity to install MS Excel (version 97, 2000, XP, 2003, 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Excel 365) for the use of the calculations.