Blog Archive

Excel Tip: Use Vlookup to extract values

Situation: Often we need our lookup formulas to go wild. Not in the sense of go-wild-and-chomp-a-few-kilo-bytes-of-data sense. But wild like wild cards.
For eg. In the below data, we may not remember the full name of sales person, but we know that her name starts with jac. Now how do you get the sales amount for that person?
Data for this Example -Using Wildcards with VLOOKUP formula


Simple. Use wild cards. Like this: =VLOOKUP("jac*",$B$5:$E$17,3,FALSE) to fetch the value from 3rd column for the person whose name starts with jac
Data for this Example -Using Wildcards with VLOOKUP formula

Sample File

Download Example File – Using Wild cards with VLOOKUP formula

Special Thanks to

Michael Pennington, Lukas for the tip. (Click on the name to see their tip)
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Story: Daddy – Can I have $10?

A man came home from work late, tired and irritated, to find his 5 year old son waiting for him at the door.

"Daddy, may I ask you a question?"

"Yeah, sure, what is it?" replied the man.

"Daddy, how much money do you make an hour?"

"That's none of your business! What makes you ask such a thing?" the man said angrily.

"I just want to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour?" pleaded the little boy.

"If you must know, I make $20.00 an hour."

"Oh, " the little boy replied, head bowed. Looking up, he said, "Daddy, may I borrow $10.00 please?"

The father was furious. "If the only reason you want to know how much money I make is just so you can borrow some to buy a silly toy or some other nonsense, then you march yourself straight to your room and go to bed. Think about why you're being so selfish. I work long, hard hours everyday and don't have time for such childish games."

The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door. The man sat down and started to get even madder about the little boy's questioning. How dare he ask such questions only to get some money. After an hour or so , the man had calmed down, and started to think he may have been a little hard on his son. May be there was something he really needed to buy with that $10.00 and he really didn't ask for money very often. The man went to the door of the little boy's room and opened the door. "Are you asleep son?" he asked.

"No daddy, I'm awake," replied the boy.

"I've been thinking, maybe I was too hard on you earlier," said the man. "It's been a long day and I took my aggravation out on you. Here's that $10.00 you asked for."

The little boy sat straight up, beaming. "Oh, thank you daddy!" he yelled. Then, reaching under his pillow, he pulled out some more crumpled up bills. The man, seeing that the boy already had money, started to get angry again. The little boy slowly counted out his money, then looked up at the man.

"Why did you want more money if you already had some?" the father grumbled.

"Because I didn't have enough, but now I do," the little boy replied.

"Daddy, I have $20.00 now… Can I buy an hour of your time?"

Story: The King's Teeth

Category: Contemporary n Modern

Once there was a king who dreamt that he lost all his teeth

The king then summoned two dream interpreter to decipher to him the meaning of his dream

teeth, tooth, golden tooth, king teeth
The first man told the king that the dream means that all the royal family would die. Hearing that, the king had the guards beat and punish him outside.

On the other hand, the second man told the king that the dream means that the king would live longer than the royal family, which actually means that the royal family would perish first. Because of his wise words, the king grant him a treasure gift.
People can escape perils in life by acting rightly, saying rightly and doing things at the right time. The same meaning delivered in different way may produce differing effect.

Story: The Worms

Jul 28th, 2011

by Ahmed.
A king was once passing along his way when he saw some animal droppings. And he saw some worms in those droppings. The thought came to his mind that there is no purpose behind the creation of these worms. They are useless, with no real job.
Very soon thereafter he lost his eyesight. Being rich, he spent thousands of rands trying different treatments to restore his eyesight. All to no avail. Then it was mentioned to him that a certain pious Hakeem (natural medical practioner) was very good. The king sent for him.
The Hakeem refused to go to the king and asked that the king come to him. On examining the king, the Hakeem prescribed a powder that was to be put in the king's eyes three times a day. Gradually the king's eyesight returned until he was fully cured.
He went to the Hakeem with lavish gifts which the Hakeem refused. The king said, 'At least tell me what you used in that wonderful medicine.' The Hakeem replied that he used the worms which one finds in animal droppings. He dried them out, crushed them into powder and made the king apply that to his eyes. The king bowed his head in submission to God, Who created every atom with a definite purpose.
Never look down on any creation of Allah Ta'ala, for everything is there for a reason. The events that happen to us also have definite purpose. Every human is a valuable treasure who can benefit the world.

Mobileye – Driving Crash Adviser

A new device created by a US based company claims it can drastically reduce the number of road accidents, caused mainly due to negligence.

The Mobileye 5-Series warns drivers at
the possibility of an accident, be it from a reckless motorist or a jaywalker crossing a street.

The Mobileye 5-Series assists the driver, by identifying dangerous situations on the roads and providing audio-visual warnings to prevent or mitigate a collision.

These new Advanced Driver Assistance Systems also enables the user to visualise these critical real-time warnings for the first time on their smartphone.

The gadget also reads and displays traffic signs, automatically turns high beams on or off, activates lane departure warning, forward collision warning, headway monitoring and pedestrian collision warning

Internet-Connected Toothbrush Helps You Improve Your Brushing Habits

Unveiled at preview event for Consumer Electronics Show from French-based startup Kolibree


Th Kolibree toothbrush, the world's first Internet-connected toothbrush, is displayed "CES: Unveiled," the media preview for International CES, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center January 5, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Kolibree toothbrush includes a sensor which detects how much tartar is being removed in a brushing. It also records brushing activity so users can maintain a consistent cleaning each time. The device conveys the information wirelessly to a smartphone app. The world's largest consumer technology trade show, also known as the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), runs from Jan 7-10 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (AFP)

Brush smarter. That's the message from the makers of what is billed as the world's first Internet-connected toothbrush.

Unveiled Sunday at a preview event for the Consumer Electronics Show, the device from French-based startup Kolibree aims "to reinvent oral care," according to co-founder Loic Cessot.

"The technology in the industry has not evolved for years," Cessot told AFP.

"The idea is not to brush stronger, but smarter."

The Kolibree toothbrush includes a sensor which detects how much tartar is being removed in a brushing. It also records brushing activity so users can maintain a consistent cleaning each time.

The device conveys the information wirelessly to a smartphone app -- a particularly useful aid for parents who want to monitor the teeth cleaning efforts of small children, according to Cessot.

"When you use a normal toothbrush you never really know what you've cleaned. It might be 30 percent. The only person who really knows is the dentist."

But the app can tell users if they have missed hard-to-clean areas or are not getting a thorough brushing.

The app, which is open for developers to add on other programs, aims to increase motivation and make the experience more fun, said Cessot.

The self-funded startup created by Cessot and former Microsoft and Google executive Thomas Serval plans to release the toothbrush worldwide in the third quarter, getting a boost from a crowdsourcing effort.

Orders will be available initially through Kickstarter from $99 to $200, depending on the model and will include a free mobile app.

Great Wisdom from China

(Translated from Chinese)
Because none of us have many years to live, and we can't take along anything when we go, so we don't have to be too thrifty...

Spend the money that should be spent, enjoy what should be enjoyed, donate what you are able to donate, but don't leave all to your children or grandchildren, for you don't want them to become parasites who are waiting for the day you will die!!

Don't worry about what will happen after we are gone, because when we return to dust, we will feel nothing about praises or criticisms. The time to enjoy the worldly life and your hard earned wealth will be over!

Don't worry too much about your children, for children will have their own destiny and should find their own way. Don't be your children's slave. Care for them, love them, give them gifts but also enjoy your money while you can. Life should have more to it than working from the cradle to the grave!!

Don't expect too much from your children. Caring children, though caring, would be too busy with their jobs and commitments to render much help.

Your children take for granted that they are rightful heirs to your wealth; but that you have no claims to their money.

50-year old like you, don't trade in your health for wealth by working yourself to an early grave anymore... Because your money may not be able to buy your health...

Out of thousand hectares of good farm land, you can consume only three quarts (of rice) daily; out of a thousand mansions, you only need eight square meters of space to rest at night.

So, as long as you have enough food and enough money to spend, that is good enough. You should live happily. Every family has its own problems. Just do not compare with others for fame and social status and see whose children are doing better, etc., but challenge others for happiness, health, enjoyment, quality of life and longevity...

Don't worry about things that you can't change because it doesn't help and it may spoil your health.

You have to create your own well-being and find your own place of happiness. As long as you are in good mood and good health, think about happy things, do happy things daily and have fun in doing, then you will pass your time happily every day.

One day passes without happiness, you will lose one day.
One day passes with happiness, and then you gain one day.

In good spirit, sickness will cure; in a happy spirit, sickness will cure faster; in high and happy spirits; sickness will never come.

With good mood, suitable amount of exercise, always in the sun, variety of foods, reasonable amount of vitamin and mineral intake, hopefully you will live another 20 or 30 years of healthy life of pleasure.

Above all, learn to cherish the goodness around... and FRIENDS... They all make you feel young and "wanted"... without them you will surely  feel lost!!

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Are you ready to take medical advice from your phone?

Looks like we're going to need your phone for this. Reuters/Jim Young

That's what BlueStar, a prescription-only smartphone app, is banking on as it prepares to hit the market this year. The app, made by app-maker WellDoc, is the first to require a doctor's prescription. While anyone can download the app onto a smartphone, tablet or computer, only those with a prescription code provided by a pharmacy can use it. While a small number of people in select areas of the US are already using BlueStar, 2014 promises to be its coming-out party, as a number of large corporations are set to extend their health coverage to accept the app. The cost will vary, depending on the prescription, but is likely to creep well above $100 per month.


Approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2010, the app helps people with type 2 diabetes, the most common form, by nudging them when it's time to check their blood sugar levels, reminding them how and when to control fluctuations, and offering periodic advice. For instance, it might remind patients to eat before taking medications or praise them for diligently tracking their glucose levels.


Unlike, say, Nike's FuelBand, which helps log health-related performance data, BlueStar doesn't monitor patients directly, but they are expected to enter information on what they ate and when, and the app in return advises them on the timing of blood sugar level checks, and then, using those levels, the appropriate dosage of medication (which is why it needs a prescription). The prescribing doctor can also use it to tweak the patient's care regimen.


There are obstacles to the app's success. For one, WellDoc will have to persuade physicians of its worth. Relying on an app to inform patients on the fly, after all, strips doctors of immediate control. BlueStar is hoping to mitigate that by sending regular patient updates to physicians. Patients might also bristle at constant nudges and reminders if they don't turn out to improve their health.

If the app does prove helpful, it will have a lot of room to run. Over 25 million people in the US alone have diabetes—over 8% of the population. As few as 15% of diabetic patients, however, keep daily records of their sugar levels, Athena Philis-Tsimikas, corporate vice president at the Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute, told Spectrum. That the app is prescription-only could help it spread, assuming health insurance companies are willing to cover the costs. (Presumably, it's hoped that the extra billions the app could cost insurers will be offset by savings from better treatment and fewer doctor visits.) Two insurers already agreed last year to begin reimbursing patients for BlueStar's monthly fee in 2014, and a number of large corporations, including Ford and Rite Aid, have chosen to include it in their health coverage.

Story: Stay Sharp

Once upon a time a very strong woodcutter asked for a job in a timber merchant, and he got it. The pay was really good and so were the work conditions. For that reason,the woodcutter was determined to do his best.
His boss gave him an axe and showed him the area where he was supposed to work. The first day, the woodcutter brought 18 trees.
"Congratulations," the boss said. "Go on that way!" Very motivated for the boss' words, the woodcutter try harder the next day,but he only could bring 15 trees. The third day he try even harder, but he only could bring 10 trees. Day after day he was bringing less and less trees.
"I must be losing my strength", the woodcutter thought. He went to the boss and apologized, saying that he could not understand what was going on.
"When was the last time you sharpened your axe?" the boss asked. "Sharpen? I had no time to sharpen my axe. I have been very busy trying to cut trees."
Our lives are like that. We sometimes get so busy that we don't take time to sharpen the axe." In today's world, it seems that everyone is busier than ever, but less happy than ever. Why is that? Could it be that we have forgotten how to stay sharp?
There's nothing wrong with activity and hard work. But God doesn't want us to get so busy that we neglect the truly important things in life, like taking time to pray, to read. We all need time to relax, to think and meditate, to learn and grow.
If we don't take time to sharpen the axe, we will become dull and lose our effectiveness. So start today. Think about the ways by which you could do your job more effectively and add a lot of value to it.

World's First Connected Toothbrush Will Keep Cavities Away


LAS VEGAS — You'll have no excuse but be gingivitis free at your next dentist appointment, thanks to the world's first connected toothbrush that keeps daily tabs on your brushing habits.

Called the Kolibree smart toothbrush, the device was announced on Sunday at the 2014 International CES show in Las Vegas. The toothbrush, which will ship later this year, provides details about your brushing habits, improving your overall dental health. Price will range between $100-$200, depending on the model (details about different versions aren't yet available).

After downloading the accompanying app and connecting it to the toothbrush via Bluetooth, each brush stroke is recorded. The data then syncs to the app and reveals if you brushed long enough and reached important parts of the teeth and gums. The app can works with several toothbrushes, so a whole family can participate. It also rewards improvement and gives a score to help encourage both adults and kids to improve.

"It's like a FitBit for your teeth," a company spokesperson told Mashable. "The more you know about the health, the smarter you can be about how to approach it. The same should apply to dental care and oral care hasn't been updated in years."

The Kolibree brush will also have an API to let third-party developers create new apps for it.

Queen of Holland - Story with Lesson

A distinguished lady, noted for the fine family from which she came, was once presented at the court of the Queen of Holland. Later, the wife of a minor government official asked her how she happened to know the proper way to behave, before a queen. "I really didn't know," the woman replied. "But I have only one set of manners and I use them all the time."

We should have one set of manners, too. We should always be gentle, kind and most of all, loving. Treat the rich and the poor, the attractive and the unattractive all the same, because each is a reflection of God Himself. And how you treat them, is a reflection of what kind of a person you are.
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Story: Bad Temper

There once was a little boy who had a bad temper.
His Father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, he must hammer a nail into the back of the fence.
The first day the boy had driven 37 nails into the fence.
Over the next few weeks, as he learned to control his anger, the number of nails hammered daily gradually dwindled down. He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence.
Finally the day came when the boy didn't lose his temper at all.
He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that he was able to hold his temper.
The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone.
The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence.
He said, "You have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same.
When you say things in anger, they leave a scar just like this one. You can put a knife in a man and draw it out. It won't matter how many times you say I'm sorry, the wound is still there.
"A verbal wound is as bad as a physical one."

14 Bad Tech Habits To Break In 2014

Thanks to smartphones, cloud technology and social networks, we can take the Internet with us everywhere these days. The down side–we can take the Internet with us everywhere these days.

We are a society tethered to our devices. Apple AAPL -0.68% played on this recently with a tear-jerker of a holiday commercial. But as clever as Apple marketing is–very few teenagers (or any of us for that matter) with faces glued to iPhones use the smartphone to create touching family moments. Most are only texting or surfing the Web.

So as we reflect on the life changes we hope to make in 2014, I asked my digitally astute colleagues at FORBES to share their technology New Years Resolutions. Below are bad technology habits we want (both ourselves, and others) to break in 2014–Good luck.

1) I will stop checking email before bed, right when I wake up and in bed in general.

Has this ever happened to you? Just before turning in, you check your iPhone one final time, only to have a (stressful, annoying, distressing—insert any adjective here) email keep you tossing all night. Or have you checked your phone first thing in the morning, and an email or text fills you with anxiety before you've even fully woken up? It happens to us too.

Tip: Keep all screens out of the bedroom. If like me, you use your iPhone as your alarm clock, swap it out for a clock radio to remove the temptation.

2) I will turn-off all email notifications.

The Microsoft Exchange email alert, the Gmail inbox counter and G-Chat indicator—few things are more distracting than these attention stealers.

Tip: Dig into your settings to switch off the distraction-inducing blips and chimes from detracting from the task at hand. Create a disciplined schedule to check your email once every hour or so–you'll gain an incredible amount of control over your work day.

3) I will not use my iPhone or Android as a social crutch.

When did if become a requirement to bury your face in a smartphone during every minute you find yourself waiting for a friend at a bar or restaurant? Keep your phone in your pocket, take in the scene and maybe even talk to the person next to you at the bar.

4) I will talk more and text less.

No more refusing to answer calls from friends so you can text them back asking "what's up?" Same goes for texting happy birthday, happy anniversary, happy new year. While texting is great for logistics, for big, emotional moments and milestones—reach out and touch someone. But there's a caveat to this rule, see resolution #5.

5) If a person does not answer my call, I will not leave a voicemail—that's what texts are for.

Pass codes, dialing "1″ for new messages, quickly scribbling down the phone numbers and addresses left in those messages–no one has the patience for that these days. As a result, now no one checks voicemail any more–at least not right away. Send a text, your friend will appreciate it, and it will actually be received.

6) I will not use my smartphone in the following places:

- in the gym

- in an elevator

- in a crosswalk

- in the checkout line

- in the drivers seat

- in the restroom

7) I will not use hashtags outside of Twitter, and when I do, it will be solely for trending topics (say no to #stopwritingstupidhashtags)

8) I will limit my Instagram posts to one photo per event/setting.

Tip: Want to post a series of pics—create a Facebook photo album. Another good tool is the InstaFrame app that lets you make a photo collage to share as a single Instagram image. A final option for not spamming your Instagram feed—use Instagram Direct to send photos to folks you know will appreciate seeing same sunset, 7 different ways–with 7 different filters.

9) I will not check Facebook more than 3 times a day.

Tip: Download Anti-Social–the program will block social networks like Facebook and Twitter but still let you access the rest of the Web.

10) I will not Google facts, dates, actors' names, or anything else in the presence of other people.

11) I will not show people Memes in public

Memes, funny videos, cat photos should be shared via text message and email only–not by pushing smartphones under our friends' noses.

12) I will unsynch my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts because people don't need to see the same post on three different platforms.

13) I will delete enough email to keep my pile of unread Gmail messages below five-figures–because seeing you have 10,000 unread emails is just plain overwhelming.

14) I will stop writing click-bait, listicle-style Web stories. (But hey, it's not 2014 yet, so I better get them in while I still can. Happy New Year everyone.

Follow me on Twitter: @Stevenbertoni

Source: Forbes

89 ways to Avoid Divorce!

Marriage is tough on both men and women, and living with another person for years in the same house while facing the challenges of raising children, financing your life, working and dealing with health problems is never easy.
So if you want a rock solid marriage, one that will go the long haul - Read these words of advice carefully, and write them on your heart!
89 Tips for a Divorce-Proof Marriage:
1. Do it by surprise from time to time, leave love notes around the house.

2.Work as a team.

3. Say i love you to one another everyday.

4. Give a hug or kiss everyday

5. Do not withold sex unless its a mutual consent or special circumstances!

6. At least one date night once a week, and go over and beyond to make it special

7. Become each others best friend

8. Let no one get involved with your marital affairs includes parents, in laws and friends!

9. Exercise and work out together
10. Put your children first, then your marriage, then your extended family, then everything else in thats order.

11. Become transparent with one another.

12. Set boundaries for your marriage. It's important that you both know what you can and cannot do.

13. Lay aside your pride and ego – the winner of the argument is usually the loser!

14. Make his or her favorite meal. 
15. Do things your spouse loves without you basing it on their performance.

16. Don't go tit for tat. Learn to let go.

17. Don't let the sun go down while you angry – another words try to resolve the issue asap

18. Fellowship, and get around other happily married couples

19. Plan and surprise your spouse with a romantic vacations as your budget allows

20. Live a healthy lifestyle
21. Look into his or her eyes, touch their face and give thanks for him or her who puts up with you during the good and bad times

22. Don't lie to each other. A hard truth is always better then an easy lie

23. Ask your mate if their are any needs going unmet.

24. Spend some type of quality time with your spouse

25. Invest in your marriage – do a marriage retreat at least 2x a year

26. Read Quran together and discuss God's plan for marriage.

27. Renew your vows – remember your promise to your spouse at the alter – for better or worse in sickness and in health.

28. Be ready to make many sacrifices – things you may not feel like doing – but do them anyway

29. Be ready to make many compromises.

30. Listen to your spouse's guidance.

31. Ask your mate for areas where they can improve in.

32. Hear one another out.

33. Try to resolve problems and issues when your both calm.

34. Instead of trying to be right look for the solution that brings peace.

35. Do not use sarcasm.

36. Tell your spouse you can't live without them.

37. If you know you did wrong, be ready to make things right.

38. Be ready to apologize and be ready to forgive when the situation arises.

39. Fight for your marriage!

40. Don't focus on your spouse weakness but focus on their strengths.

41. Keep good company around you and your ,you want people who can encourage and uplift you!

42. Husbands help out around the house – remember that your wife is a helpmate but that doesnt mean she does everything.

43. Wives encourage your husband give them praise, it strengthens them.

44. Find out your strengths and weaknesses and be ready to help one another with where you are weak.

45. Support one anothers goals and dreams.

46. Always consult one another when making big decisions

47. Give many compliments to one another

48. Understand the grass is not greener , you just have to water your lawn more

49. Don't compare your marriage with someone else's – you dont know whats goign on behind closed doors

50. Watch what you take into your spirit. Today's reality shows, our society's view, and what you see on tv are not good examples for marriage.

51. Never embarass your spouse in public – deal with your issues in private

52. Wives spend time encouraging him and supporting him and their is nothing you won't happily get.

53. Do not verbally abuse your spouse.

54. Do not physically abuse your spouse.

55. Do not bring up your past arguments, and disagreements.

56. Never bring up or use something in an argument, your spouse told you in confidence about him or her.

57. Let your spouse know you can be trusted.

58. Don't give your spouse any reason to feel insecure.

59. Read books on becoming a better husband.

60. Read books on becoming a better wife.

61. Learn your spouses love language.

62. Always be in a learning process with getting to know your spouses likes and dislikes.

63. Husbands make love to her mind during the day and the rest will follow

64. Try not to let your children see you in disagreement or arguing.

65. Husbands surprise her with roses and the like, not just for birthdays, holidays and anniversary, but just because

66. Wives, your husbans love surprises also, put on one of his favorite nighties just because.

67. Don't always try to get your way, but try to find a way that works for both of you

68. Alone time – yes its needed, but don't go overboard. Let your mate know your thinking of them

69. Its healthy to have your time with friends, so long as they respect your marriage

70. Never cheat.

71. Never try to justify a wrong.

72. Stay fit and stay looking your best for your husband or wife.

73. Hear your spouse out before jumping to conclusions.

74. Don't keep your spouse in the dark about things.

75. Never bad mouth your spouse to anyone.

76. Keep your love life between the two of you.

77. Your objective should be to make your spouse a better person as a result of being with you not by control but by love.

78. Open your spouse up to new things that are healthy for him or her.

79. Be open to new things, allow your spouse the chance to treat you like a king or queen

80. Communicate – he or she cannot read your mind.

81. Say what you mean, mean what you say.

82. Take your time to cool off, but when you start acting like room-mates your marriage is in trouble

83. Love, respect, loyalty and faithfulness should all be a given.

84. Have a vision and purpose for your marriage

85. Keep in mind your spouse is not your enemy but your best friend

86. Don't look at marriage as an obligation but look at it as chance to love your mate unconditionally.

87. Our character should reflect the fruits of the spirit, love, patience, kindness, long suffering

88. Your objective should not be to change your spouse, but for your spouse to see your change

89. You cant change your spouse, but you can change how you love them and how you react to them