PLEASE keep in mind that none of the people involved are
programmers or computer geeks. They're scientists with specialties
in other areas -- I'm still the one who solves most of my father's
computer problems, for example. The person who does the VBA
programming probably could handle something equivalent at that
level, but I think whatever I suggest can't reach much beyond that
level of demand.
you didn't really mention what kind of data you intend to process.
I'm guessing it's more or less numerical data, which would mean that
Excel has never been the best tool to do it. Depending on the kind of
'macro-processing' that you need (mathematical/statistical analysis
or more the text processing kind?), these are the three paths that I
would suggest looking into:
a) Python with scipy/numpy - Python is really easy to learn, offers a
large variety of mathematical as well as text-processing methods. It
is however nothing that carries its own GUI. You could look into
ipython, which is basically a Python interpreter with some GUI on top
of it. Idea is to write data to files, push it through Python scripts
-> voila, final data. However this means non-interactive work.
b) Matlab - The expensive but wide-spread way to process numerical
data. Has extensive GUI, online documentation and drawing/plotting
c) GNU R / SPSS / Origin - If you're more or less into statistical
analysis, these are the tools to go for. Scientific tools, though.
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