The First Excel Dashboard Report Shown in Public

The first time the general public saw Excel dashboards was in 1993 when Tektronix used this report to demonstrate the quality of their printers.

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The first time the general public saw Excel dashboards was in 1993 when Tektronix used this report to demonstrate the quality of their printers.Tektronix invented one of the early moderately priced color printers. When one of their employees saw a sample of my Excel dashboards from 1992, the company asked to use my technology to promote their printer.

I reluctantly agreed.

My concern was that Tek couldn’t offer a way to explain what this dashboard was all about. (That was before the Internet as we know it.) Plus, even if companies asked me to create dashboards like this for them, I’d have to program each report from scratch. That would them cost them thousands of dollars! Even worse, their employees wouldn’t have the freedom to create their own reports for themselves.

The reason I’d have to program the worksheet is that Excel didn’t have the ability to hold more than a couple of charts in a spreadsheet. (Workbooks came later.) So my macro (before VBA) had to create a chart, copy an image, position the image in the report, and then repeat.