Blogging by Solveig Haugland, author of the Guidebook and owner of Tips for using, transitioning, and more.

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April 21, 2008

You want to do some good, hard sorting. Not just sorting by the first column, but by perhaps the third column. Maybe you want to sort first by state, then by city, then by last name. For that, you need the Sort window under Data > Sort.

You have your data. Select all the data to sort, and either select the headings or not. You"re good either way.

Choose Data > Sort.

Click the Options tab. You need to tell Calc whether you"ve got headings selected or not. If you"ve got headings selected, you want the option shown, "Range Contains Column Labels," to be selected. If you didn"t, unmark it.

Now click the Sort Criteria tab. If you selected headings you"ll see the headings themselves; if you didn"t then you"ll just see Column A, etc. Select the column to sort by, and Ascending or Descending.

Click OK.

You get your results. Here, the amounts under the column for the year 2000 are sorted in ascending order.

Now, let"s look at a different set of data. You have a lot of people from the same state, and several cities per state. In this case you might want to just sort by last name, but you could also group by location. So you"d sort by state (the broadest category), then city, then alphabetically by last name. Click the image to see more detail.

Select the data, with or without headings, and choose Data > Sort. In the Options tab, be sure to select the Range Contains Column Labels option if you selected headings.

In the Sort Criteria tab, select first State, then City, then Last Name.

Click OK.

You get your results. Here"s a closeup of one section, followed by the complete data. Click either to see them closeup.

This window that I"ve covered in this blog entry is pretty much what you need. If you want to go a little farther and sort by something else, like days of the week in the order they come, not alphabetical order, tune in for the next sorting blog.

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Posted at 06:24 AM in Calc: 2008 | Permalink

I know this has nothing to do with your post, but I am at a loss as to how to perform a (seemingly) simple function in Calc. I have a column containing sequential dates through the year, and in the next column, in every seven cells, I would like to have a date range of the previous week listed. Does this make sense? (I've written & rewritten & rewritten AGAIN this question, and it still seems confusing.

For example:

Column A has descending days of the week listed:Sun = cell A1Mon = cell A2Tues = cell A3Wed = cell A4Thurs = cell A5Fri = cell A6Sat = cell A7(etc...)

......I hope this makes SOME KIND of sense to you, since I am dumbfounded on how this can be accomplished without typing our the date ranges as text throughout the entire year and for each year to come.