If you’re playing buzzword bingo out there, you can check AI off from your cards for about the billionth time this year. Google continues to find ways to integrate AI with changes made to their spreadsheet app Sheets. The software has been updated with AI that looks at your data and makes suggestions, by using “machine intelligence”, on how to best analyse and visualise your data.
One of my favourite spreadsheet tools – I’m an Excel user – is pivot tables. Even when planning my recent wedding, I used pivot tables to look at the guest list to work out the split of family and friends, adults and kids in different age groups and other bits and pieces of information we needed to make sure the reception venue and caterers knew what they were getting themselves into.
When I worked in the power industry, they were a powerful tool for looking at trends, usage patterns and other information that wasn’t easily gleaned from thousands of rows of data from a power management system.
The challenge was about what data was best to look at when asking particular questions. Google has now started using AI to not just help form the answers, but to guide you in asking the questions and for best presenting those answers.
There’s a detailed blog post that describes the recent changes to Sheets. But it’s a clear sign that we are going to see more AI infused into our everyday software as companies keep trying to add value to products that have become increasingly complex over the years.