Microsoft has released an update for Windows and macOS to fix a bug in Excel, reports The Verge.
This is the function of auto-converting numbers to dates. It’s useful for most users, as it’s designed to speed up and facilitate information entry. But not for scientists, whose scientific data this function actually destroyed.
For example, a 2016 study found that Excel inadvertently, converted the designation of the genes SET2 (short for Septin 2) to 2-Sep, and MARCH1 (short for Membrane-Associated Ring Finger (C3HC4) 1, E3 Ubiquitin Protein Ligase) to 1-Mar.
Because of this, scientists in 2020 began to use other designations so that their data would not be corrupted. However, Microsoft has now finally fixed this problem.
After the update, users were able to disable automatic data conversion. To make the appropriate changes, go to File Options, select Data, and then Automatic Data Conversion.
By the way, in August, Microsoft announced plans to integrate the popular Python programming language into Excel.