A couple months ago, I did the exact opposite of this. I called it the ListToRange() Function. It’s weirdly helpful at work because I have to go back and forth between having numbers listed out and then having them clustered for other things.
“Range object” is an unnecessarily intimidating term for a collection of cells within your workbook. Say you need to run some complicated math or formatting over the same cells over and over throughout a long script. You could call on the column number and row every damn time, but who wants to do all that typing?
I recently picked up a book called “Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker” by Kevin Mitnick. To be totally honest, I’d never heard of Mitnick before. He was a little before my time—when he was arrested in 1995, I was still struggling to understand why the hell I had to learn fractions and everything I knew about computers was based on WarGames.
So I’ve finally reached that point where I’m writing Macros well enough to accomplish simple tasks, but the results are just not pretty to look at. One of my macros returns a list of numbers associated with some data in a worksheet that looks like this:
, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 10, 11, 12, 34, 35, 36, 37
Kind of gross, right? I want a to have a concise list. And DEAR GOD, you’d think writing the logic to get 1-5, 7, 10-12, 34-37 would be breeze.
Ok, I’ve been dancing around dictionaries in VBA for weeks—mainly because they seemed confusing. And I’m lazy. Turns out, they are supremely helpful storage devices. If say, you want a randomly ordered alphabet (otherwise known as a deranged alphabet) for a simple substitution cipher, the easiest way to store each letter with it’s new associated value is with a dictionary.
Imagine you have a combination lock with 4 digits. If you wack your head against a car hood by accident and forget the combination, this means you have a problem with 255 wrong answers and 1 right one. If you had a few days to spare, you could try all of them. The marvelous thing about computers is that they can, quite easily, auto-generate all 256 possibilities and beat the lock senseless with them. Until it opens.
That’s a brute force attack.