Any questions for Dan Bricklin?

Dan Bricklin is the inventor of the spreadsheet. Dan, along with Bob Frankston released the world’s first spreadsheet, called VisiCalc in 1979.

Dan has worked on many projects since and recently has started work on wikiCalc – an open source, online spreadsheet application.

I’m interviewing Dan this coming Tuesday afternoon (10th Oct 2006) for a PodLeaders podcast. We will be talking about VisiCalc, his new application WikiCalc and anything else that may arise in the questions!

As always, if you have questions you’d like me to put to him, feel free to leave them in the comments and I’ll put them to him.

6 thoughts on “Any questions for Dan Bricklin?”

  1. Hi Tom,

    My question is that MS Excel (and most other MS products) has an excess of features that very few people will actually use, ever.

    Does he see the success of online spreadsheets being in some way dependent on going back to the basics and focusing on the core features – simple things like entering numbers and performing calculations on them.

    Also, as he is involved in wikiCalc, would be interested to hear what he makes of Google Spreadsheets.


    Laurence Veale

  2. On the topic of patents, ask him to outline how they won in Texas and what his experience was like as an expert witness. I gather it took up a considerable amount of his time last year.

  3. I am interested in Wikicalc as a tool in education – for K12 students. For collaborative gata gathering and calculations etc and I am starting a project exploring how it can be used (I use wikicalc with my students in Iceland University of Education). I would like to know how Dan sees the potential for wikicalc in education.

  4. Salvör,

    Dan came back with the following response:

    There has been lots of interest from the scientific and communities. I’ll be interested in seeing how it gets used in education besides just as something for programming courses to start from (“modify this poorly written code to add the following features…”). K-12 should be interesting. I’m sure there will be uses found in such settings, but I don’t know enough about them to guess what they’d be.

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