Recently I’ve written a couple of posts about spreadsheets and financial modelling. I’ve mentioned that I can remember creating spreadsheets on paper when I first started as a trainee accountant. That was 1986. Spreadsheet software existed then but our accountancy teams’ computers were dumb terminals connected to a mainframe. It was over the following years that PCs began to appear in the offices, first to be shared but soon everybody had one.
This podcast from the BBC World Service is a nice history about the spreadsheet. What I found most interesting was the observation that this particular form of automation led to the creation of new and more interesting jobs because it freed accountants from the drudgery of hand-writing spreadsheets. This is quite different from automation in factories which, overall, reduce employment.
On the subject of spreadsheets, my free course about how to create spreadsheets that comply with financial modelling standards is still available here.