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How Do I Sort One Column In Numbers?

How do I sort one Column in Numbers without affecting the other columns?
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Craig Utting

Comments: 6 Responses to “How Do I Sort One Column In Numbers?”

    8 months ago

    The whole idea of sorting is to sort an entire table using the values in one or more columns. The rows should represent records of data and be related to each other. So it wouldn’t make sense to sort a single column and then mix the data up like that.

    So the first thing to consider is maybe the data doesn’t belong in the same table together. You didn’t give me any other information about what you are doing, so it is hard to comment more on that. But I would take that column out of the table and put it in it’s own 1-column table and sort that table.

    Craig Utting
    8 months ago

    Thanks for the fast reply!
    We run a Charity which lends out violins to students. There are around 300 violins/violas/cellos in our storage Container. I have made a spreadsheet with one column for each different size of violins. In each column is a list of the violin serial numbers, in the order I found them in the Container. I would like to be able to list them in numerical order so I can check them off against the list on the database. Surely there is a way to sort one column at a time?

    8 months ago

    Craig: So the “right” way to do it would be to have one record per row. So column A may be the serial numbers, and column B may be the size. Seems like it would be easy to copy and paste to create this from what you have now. Then you can sort by size first, serial number second. You can also use filters to just show one size, or to show all sizes, but grouped under headings. Very handy.

    Craig Utting
    8 months ago

    So your way sounds like the complicated way to do it. The serial number indicates the size: 1/4-violins are 100-series, 2/4 (ie: 1/2) are 200s, 3/4 are 300s, etc. The way you tell it, I should have a spreadsheet with 300 rows? I had 100s in one column, 200s in the next, 300s … etc. Then I can see all the violins on the screen at once. All I wanted to be able to do was sort each column by numerical order; surely this is a simple task? I just can’t work out how to do it.

    8 months ago

    Craig: Spreadsheets are much more useful when you have one record per row. In your case you have one record per cell. I guess if that is all you need then it is fine. You can sort columns by copying one column to a second temporary table, sorting and then pasting back. Or, copy each column to a separate table and leave them in separate tables, side-by-side.

    Marilyn Showalter
    6 months ago

    I agree with Craig. Spreadsheets are used for many purposes and there is not one “right” way to do it. I, also, would like to sort each column individually, but apparently that’s not possible with Numbers. And having to copy, paste into another table, sort, then replace in the original table is a waste of time – but apparently my only option. You know, Apple used to be user friendly – made for the common man. But it appears it is now made for the common developer.

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