A significant proportion of spreadsheets have severe quality problems.
Ayalew (2007)
Developing an error-free spreadsheet has been a problem since the beginning of end-user computing.
Mireault (2015)
Spreadsheets are often hard, if not impossible, to understand.
Mireault & Gresham (2015)
Errors in spreadsheets are as ubiquitous as spreadsheets themselves.
Colbenz (2005)
Errors in spreadsheets... result in incorrect decisions being made and significant losses incurred.
Beaman, et al (2005)
Overconfidence is one of the most substantial causes of spreadsheet errors.
Sakal, et al (2015)
94% of the 88 spreadsheets audited in 7 studies have contained errors.
Panko (2008)
Untested spreadsheets are riddled with errors.
Miller (2005)
Most executives do not really check or verify the accuracy or validity of [their] spreadsheets...
Teo & Tan (1999)
Spreadsheet errors are pervasive, stubborn, ubiquitous and complex.
Irons (2003)
Spreadsheet development must embrace extensive testing in order to be taken seriously as a profession.
Bock (2016)
Spreadsheet errors are still the rule rather than the exception.
Nixon & O'Hara (2010)
Most large spreadsheets have dozens or even hundreds of errors.
Panko & Ordway (2005)
1% of all formulas in operational spreadsheets are in error.
Powell, Baker, & Lawson (2009)
Spreadsheet errors have resulted in huge financial losses.
Abraham & Erwig (2007)
Never assume a spreadsheet is right, even your own.
Raffensperger (2001)
Spreadsheets... pose a greater threat to your business than almost anything you can imagine.
Howard (2005)
Spreadsheets have a notoriously high number of faults.
Rust, et al (2006)
Spreadsheets can be viewed as a highly flexible programming environment for end users.
Abreu, et al (2015)
The results given by spreadsheets are often just wrong.
Sajaniemi (1998)
People tend to believe their spreadsheets are more accurate than they really are.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2006)
Spreadsheets are commonly used and commonly flawed.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2008)
Spreadsheets contain errors at an alarmingly high rate.
Abraham, et al (2005)
Spreadsheets are the most popular live programming environments, but they are also notoriously fault-prone.
Hermans & van der Storm (2015)
Spreadsheets are dangerous to their authors and others.
Durusau & Hunting (2015)
Every study, without exception, has found error rates much higher than organizations would wish to tolerate.
Panko (1999)
Spreadsheets are alarmingly error-prone to write.
Paine (2001)
Despite overwhelming and unanimous evidence... companies have continued to ignore spreadsheet error risks.
Panko (2014)
The issue is not whether there is an error but how many errors there are and how serious they are.
Panko (2007)
Every study that has looked for errors has found them... in considerable abundance.
Panko & Halverson (1996)
Spreadsheets are notoriously error-prone.
Cunha, et al (2011)
Your spreadsheets may be disasters in the making.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2006)
Spreadsheet errors... a great, often unrecognised, risk to corporate decision making & financial integrity.
Chadwick (2002)
It is now widely accepted that errors in spreadsheets are both common and potentially dangerous.
Nixon & O'Hara (2010)
It is irrational to expect large error-free spreadsheets.
Panko (2013)
The quality and reliability of spreadsheets is known to be poor.
Bishop & McDaid (2007)
Spreadsheets are easy to use and very hard to check.
Chen & Chan (2000)
The untested spreadsheet is as dangerous and untrustworthy as an untested program.
Price (2006)
The software that end users are creating... is riddled with errors.
Burnett & Myers (2014)
Research on spreadsheet errors is substantial, compelling, and unanimous.
Panko (2015)
...few incidents of spreadsheet errors are made public and these are usually not revealed by choice.
Kruck & Sheetz (2001)
Even obvious, elementary errors in very simple, clearly documented spreadsheets are... difficult to find.
Galletta, et al (1993)
Spreadsheets are more fault-prone than other software.
Kulesz & Ostberg (2013)
Spreadsheet shortcomings can significantly hamper an organization's business operation.
Reschenhofer & Matthes (2015)
A lot of decisions are being made on the basis of some bad numbers.
Ross (1996)
60% of large companies feel 'Spreadsheet Hell' describes their reliance on spreadsheets.
Murphy (2007)
Studies have shown that there is a high incidence of errors in spreadsheets.
Csernoch & Biro (2013)
Despite being staggeringly error prone, spreadsheets are a highly flexible programming environment.
Abreu, et al (2015)
Programmers exhibit unwarranted confidence in the correctness of their spreadsheets.
Krishna, et al (2001)
Spreadsheets are extraordinarily and unacceptably prone to error.
Dunn (2010)

Spreadsheet bibliography

Title Fragment-based diagnosis of spreadsheets
Authors Thomas Schmitz, Birgit Hofer, Dietmar Jannach, & Franz Wotawa
Year 2016
Type Proceedings
Publication Software Technologies: Applications and Foundations
Series July, pages 372-387
Abstract

Large spreadsheets are often diffcult to understand and to test. Detecting the true cause of an observed wrong calculation outcome in a chain of calculations is even more challenging.

In this work, we propose a novel approach that automatically decomposes large spreadsheets into smaller units called fragments. This decomposition serves two purposes.

First, it allows us to apply fault localization procedures that can exploit such structural abstractions to find possible explanations for the wrong outcomes (called diagnoses). This results in a faster identification of the diagnoses.

Second, it makes the testing process better manageable for the users, as they can provide simpler test cases to reduce the number of possible explanations of the fault.

An empirical evaluation of our method shows that the required running times for computing the possible explanations can be measurably reduced when applying the proposed fragmentation approach and that fragment-based test cases help to significantly reduce the number of possible explanations.

Full version Available
Sample
Example of fragment-based diagnosis
Example of fragment-based diagnosis

This example spreadsheet computes the velocity and the distance covered by an object within three phases (acceleration, constant velocity, and deceleration).

The three formulas in row 5 are faulty. The spreadsheet creator has forgotten to divide the computed distance by two, which results in a triple fault comprising the cells B5, C5, and D5.

In fact, the developer only made one mistake, but by copying the formulas the number of actually faulty formulas was tripled.

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