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Final Friday Fix: September 2021 Challenge

24 September 2021

On the final Friday of each month, we are going to set an Excel / Power BI challenge for you to puzzle over so that you can get your “Excel fix”. Challenge your office colleagues to see who can solve the puzzle quickest. There are no prizes at this stage: you are playing for bragging rights only!

…eno siht rof esrever otni niarb ruoy tup ot deen thgim uoY

The Challenge

This challenge was brought to our attention by Abbott Katz (thank you) – and we couldn’t resist it.  The Microsoft Research Blog discussed LAMBDA at the beginning of the year.  Highlighting the power of this new Office 365 function, they wrote the following:  

Aside from the fact that there is a mistake in the formula for REVERSE, having one too many closed brackets (they really should use FORMULATEXT!), the Research Team has erroneously stated that “…reversing a string is beyond the built-in functions of Excel and could only previously (sic) be written outside the formula language…”.

Our reader – and indeed us too – humbly begs to differ.

So here’s this month’s challenge:

For all current versions of Excel (not just Office 365, Excel on the web and Insider / Beta variants), write a formula that will reverse the text in a cell (i.e. reverse the text string).  You cannot use VBA, dynamic arrays, JavaScript, TypeScript or Office Scripts.

Sounds easy?  Then why not have a go?  We’ll publish one solution in Monday’s blog.  Have a great weekend in the meantime!