The notes end up being far more organized than as if I had just put them chronologically into an empty text editor (though in a pinch, I may just write my notes in a tab delimited format and import them into a spreadsheet). Even if I never need to chronologically reverse sort or sort by category.
More importantly, when doing a research project, it serves as a checklist for what I need to do. Awhile back I wanted to track homicides in my city and so I started off with just name of victim, name of suspect, age, time of day, link to a news article, time of arrest, address, etc. Without a spreadsheet, you'd forget at least one of those details as you did your research in the traditional note taking fashion.
And when you make your model more complex: i.e. realize that you need to record time of arrest, charges filed, age of suspect, etc., the spreadsheet makes it easy to backtrack and fill your past data rows.
And when you realize you need to make your data model more complicated: the fact that a number of suspects could be implicated and charged for a single homicide, and face various charges, you are all ready to have your "notes" be put into a database.
And now that it's in a database, it's just a weekend of hacking to make a homicides website or a map.
The one advantage of spreadsheets is that most people know how to work with them. And with Google Docs, you get easy collaborative note-taking, plus some of the fancier features and effects (I find color-formatting empty/filled cells to be useful)
Sorry for harsh feedback, and feel free to disregard it if Dropbox users are not a significant portion of your target market.
You'll need to be very careful not to fall to the "applications that download additional code" rule there. This happened to Codea (http://twolivesleft.com/Codea/Talk/discussion/comment/14504#...), and afaik they still haven't managed to get their project sharing feature re-approved.
Otherwise a proper scripting language in a spreadsheet app on my iPad seems very promising. It would be also great if one could search public scripts of other users.
Think about it this way: most customers who will consider your app have already bought Numbers. So how is your app better than Numbers? Lua scripting sounds good, but it might not be enough. As for the rest of the page, your screenshots tell me very little about the app capabilities, while the "feature" descriptions are overly vague.
I will likely buy the app just hoping that it will work better (and faster) than Numbers, but I am not convinced - it feels like a die toss.
I am probably your target customer, so you might want to consider this.
For me I wouldn't consider switching from Numbers without cross platform (desktop/phone/tablet) availability of my data.
1. With the Lua script, can I call a web service or a web page to get an xml or or a json with data and load that response directly to a sheet?
2. How do I put a button or something to trigger a script?
3. Can I open one of your files from a web link? as in "Open in..."
With those 3 items I have a server controlled reporting app.
Either way putting it on a tablet will definitely help.
EDIT: I should say that I think a better spreadsheet is a really important and interesting thing to build.
Sorry, but without a way to bring data in or out this app looks unfinished.
It obviously should come soon, though, and my expectation would be to see it in a free update.
There's an XLS version as well (doesn't support the full panoply of features):
No reason to release the product without having the data hooks in place. We don't need more silos.
It's pretty awesome even if you don't do Excel-like things with it. Just having a spreadsheet to organize stuff is really handy on the ipad.
I'm going to give this app a try, it looks well put together.
The only problem is that I couldn't find a link to buy it from. Is it available yet?
Rather, I would love to see someone work on being able to seamlessly hook up various data sources in the background to Excel so that I can still use Excel as the UI while having a proper db in the background.
So a bit alpha to be charging for it, but please keep going.
Multiple cell selection isn't implemented in 1.0. We had to be choosy about what feature we supported in 1.0, as there are a lot of spreadsheet features people want. Specifying the cells in the formula by typing them out does work, however.
The crashes we'll fix. Thanks for the kind words, we'll keep at it.
I believe that downloading scripts/code and allowing users to enter scripts may still prohibited.
Take a look at Codea -- lets you develop Lua apps (game focus) entirely on the iPad and, when you're done, provides an open source harness for creating an App Store app.
What you can't do is load a Codea project from some random place online and just run it directly in Codea. (You can post code on a website and Codea folk can copy and paste it.)
I think a spreadsheet app that really figures out a solid way of working around the lack of a hardware keyboard might do well (e.g. allowing you to format cells as sliders or spinners or whatever so you don't need to key in values).
If you are interest in getting it reviewed in iPad.appstorm send me an email with a coupon code.
Then now that people are showing other spreadsheets suddenly we can hear the whiners: "But I need my Excel shortcuts" and "But I need my wide-screen to show all my Excel colums".
I'm pretty sure that should we live one day in a world dominated by iOS / Android and online HTML5 / iOS / Android / Google Docs spreadsheets (we're already kinda are in that one in the SMEs world that said), we'd still hear the cries of a few corporate drones (or MS astroturfers) telling us that Excel is the one and only spreadsheet preventing the planet from imploding.