Convert A Photograph Into An Excel Spreadsheet

A digital photograph is ultimately nothing more than a series of numerical colour values, which makes it ideal for presentation as a spreadsheet. The Pixel Spreadsheet service does just that, letting you upload a picture and then converting it into a downloadable Excel spreadsheet.

Matt Barry designed the original code, which was then tweaked by the team at Think Maths to create a webapp. It converts each colour number into a conditional display function which renders the relevant RGB values.

The picture I uploaded to test the service is shown at the right. Obviously, a fair bit detail is lost when you choose to pixelate spreadsheet style, but the result is still impressive.

Alright, I'll admit it — there aren't terribly many obvious contexts where a lower-resolution spreadsheet version of a picture is more useful than the picture itself. However, it's a reminder that VBA can be used for a lot more than just basic financial calculations.

Pixel Spreadsheet [via Excel Blog]


    One of the less obvious uses is for needlework. This will give me an easy way to break down pictures for cross stitching, which I've been meaning to try for a while. After all, there's no place like (IPv4 for appropriately retro style)

      I use this for transferring images to a knitting grid:

      Can you limit the colours? If so, this could be used to turn photos into plans for Lego mosaics. You'd need to know the RGB values of the Lego in your collection, and make the spreadsheet cells the size of Lego plates (or bricks).

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