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A searchable acronyms database created in Excel/VBA

Mr StressTest

New Member
I wanted to share this little beginner project I've been working on.

I've noticed on joining a new company, one of the first tasks is learning a myriad of new acronyms and definitions, and there isn't always an easy-to-search-and-edit list. For example, my current employer has 5,000 acronyms across the company, and my last was even more. A lot of companies, if they can be bothered, seem to have just created huge plaintext lists across 26 webpages (A-Z). However, the words you want aren't always in there, and adding a new entry is down to some arbitrary Web Dev you have to email.

I wondered why there isn't a little Google-like searchbar on your desktop just for searching for company acronyms and definitions. As a response, I've created a database using Excel and VBA for searching through to list of acronyms and dictionary definitions.

You can search a string in either column, by typing into a textbox search bar, then by pressing enter or using the Search button. You can clear your search, and if you don't find something you already know, you'll be prompted to add a new entry. These new entries can be input via a UserForm, which has some straight-forward data validation. There is 'ghost text' in the textboxes to direct you, which clears when you click on them. The Return key calls the Search subroutine, and the Tab key sets the focus on the next object.

It's quite straightforward but sort of a beginner project for myself getting to grips with VBA. There are still improvements I might make at some point. For example, Excel's AutoFilter only allows you to search based on two criteria in VBA (or two keywords in this case), requiring an Advanced Filter to expand the search criteria. Also, this version doesn't allow for wildcards and fancy search criteria. On entering new data, it doesn't yet format it or sort the new entries alphabetically. These are left as 'exercises for the reader'. Also, before saying "why not just use MS Access?", well people don't usually have this at home, most people don't use it day-to-day, and to be honest most people will prefer to work in Excel if you gave them the choice.

I'd like to hear your comments. If it's of any use, feel free to download or share.



Excel Ninja
Welcome to Chandoo. Org forums!

Thank you for sharing the tool you created. I liked the look and feel of it. I have moved it to a section ("The Vault") where we normally keep such tools or codes.