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How to make excel display sharp time on graph axis

I was trying to make Microsoft Excel display sharp times on graphs, but took me a while to figure out how to. I had this graph of time to complete the task, per group of participants. The X axis displayed the participant group, and the Y axis corresponded to time. But as you can see on the example, instead of showing rounded times like 2, 5 or 10 minutes, Excel was showing fractions like 01:26, 2:53 etc. I would prefer having a scale with sharp times, for aesthetic purposes and also to make it easier to understand and compare. Supposing I have these values, the graph automatically generated by Excel, with default settings, is below:

Control 1st study 2nd study 3rd study
00:02:55 00:09:26 00:05:55 00:06:10

average time 1

Experienced Excel users know that if you double click that axis you can enter it’s minimum, maximum and intermediate values. But adding the time data like 00:00:00, 00:00:10 doesn’t help. I had to understand how Excel deals with time to enter the right values there. As explained on a forum, Excel handles time as fractions of one day.

1 = 1 Day
1/24 = 0.041666667 = 1 Hour
1/24/60 = 0.000694444 = 1 Minute

So, instead of inserting like 00:00:01 on the axis options fields, you have to insert 0.000694444. If you want your major subdivisions of the axis be at every 2 minutes, then add 0.001388889 to the major unit field.

To change the scales on your axis, double click (or right click) on the axis or values you want to format, and the ‘Format axis’ window will pop up.

format axis - axis options highlighted

Usually, setting only the ‘Major unit’ is enough to improve your graph axis. On the right pane select ‘Fixed’ to be able to change the values, and paste the fraction of time that suits your data. In my case, 1 minute lines looked better on the graph.

format axis - axis options highlighted final

Then the final result is a scale with rounded numbers which are more suitable for humans, since sharp times make it easier to understand and compare.

average time 2

If you have any suggestions or contribution just leave a comment below.

Os chineses estão chegando

Cena do documetario

Eu assisti a este programa há algum tempo aqui na Inglaterra, e concluí que todo brasileiro precisa ver para entender um pouco dos fatos que nem todo mundo conhece.

Veja como o crescimento da China afeta a vida dos brasileiros, desde cariocas na praia, o Eike Batista, uma fábrica de biquinis e até os índios na Amazônia. Mas ates de culpar os chineses, precisamos ver quem corta, queima, vende e usa ilegalmente madeira da floresta.

Tive que recuperar o arquivo do programa original, encontrar a legenda em inglês, traduzir a legenda para o português e re-editar o vídeo.

Título original: “The Chinese are Coming”

Fonte: BBC 2

Veja, comente, compartilhe.

Hip-notics Cable Park location

I was trying to locate on Google Maps the Hip-notics Cable Park in Turkey but couldn’t find it. It’s a famous place to do wakeboard without a boat.

I browsed a bit with the help of Google Translate and the original address, and managed to find it in the middle of fields and farms. I wanted to mark it myself, but the service didn’t allow me. So I decided to embed the map here for other people to find. Now you can see: 3 beautiful man made lakes equipped with cables to pull wakeboarders around.

View Larger Map

Their website says that it is Antalya, but in fact it’s near Serik, in a small village called Çakış.

Persuasive Technology 2011

I participated in the 5th Persuasive Technology conference in Copenhagen and at the end they announced that the next one (2011) will be in Ohio. I was trying to find the date to check if it overlaps with other HCI conferences that I want to attend, but couldn’t find this information anywhere on the internet. So I emailed Harri Oinas-Kukkonen and asked more information. He kindly forwarded me an email from the organizers, as follows:

The Sixth International Conference on Persuasive Technology will be held at Ohio State University (Columbus, OH, USA) from June 2-5th, 2011.

The 2011 Conference will build on themes from the earlier conferences. A special emphasis for the 2011 Conference will be Persuasive Technology: Enhancing Sustainability and Health.

Papers on research, theory, and methods from a wide range of disciplines are invited for submission to the conference. An interdisciplinary Doctoral Seminar, sponsored by the Association for Consumer Research and the Society for Consumer Psychology, will follow the conference. An overall goal of the conference program, conference activities, and subsequent publications will be the development and enhancement of global interdisciplinary connections. Selected papers from the conference may be published in special issues of high quality journal outlets.

Full length papers (preferred) or extended abstracts should be submitted […] by March 5th, 2011
Conference Co-chairs are Curtis P. Haugtvedt and David Ewoldsen

More details about the conference venue will be available on at Details regarding last year’s conference can be found at

He commented that this deadline is quite late (and I agree), less than 3 months before the conference itself, so it might be a provisional date.

UPDATE: The 2011 website was published recently:

How to get rid of the ICQ Search on your Firefox

When you install the ICQ instant messenger software, it hijacks all your browsers, add toolbars and replace the default Google search engine with the annoying ICQ Search. You will have to uninstall the add-on from your browser, uninstall the ICQ toolbar from you Control Panel – Add / Remove programs, but you will still have ICQ search when you type search terms directly to your address bar.

To restore it to Google Search, just try this:

Open up Firefox. Click on the address bar and type in about:config, then in the search bar type Keyword.url, under preference name double click on Keyword.url and copy and past this into the box

Then click Ok


Produzi o site da Setam – Serviços Técnicos de Administração e Marketing, utilizando o WordPress. Fiquei responsável também para escrever os textos dos estudos de caso e publicar as imagens. Após entrevistas com os funcionários consegui aquelas informações e publiquei como num blog. O site é bem simples, mas acho que como ferramenta de comunicação o resultado ficou legal, e além disso, a objetividade foi pedido do cliente.

Que Droga

Produzi um site que fala sobre diversos tipos de drogas, sintéticas ou não, modernas ou antigas, apartir de cartilhas que recebi do Ministério da Saúde na Inglaterra. O conteúdo pode ser visto no endreço A intenção é divulgar este tipo de informação especificamente para os jovens, para redução de danos. Sabemos que algumas pessoas usam drogas de qualquer jeito, mas considero que seria melhor se soubessem antes o que estão fazendo.