This extension enhances your Google Sheets skills with ChatGPT


Google may be gearing up for its launch Own chatbot called Bard Although open to the public, ChatGPT is definitely the star of the current AI show. The OpenAI general purpose dialog chatbot recently released version 4.0 with many new features. Despite its many shortcomings, a race has begun to create the best general-purpose language AI.

But conversations aren’t the only thing OpenAI’s ChatGPT is good at. Some versions of ChatGPT provide an API that allows developers to leverage the functionality of the system for their own projects. This is the case with the new Google Sheets extension, saving you the hassle of creating formulas and repetitive tasks that the onboard tools couldn’t automate. .


This extension was created by Redditor u/rtwalz. Featured on Google SubredditOnce installed in your account, it will add some new functions to your spreadsheet: =AI(), =INFER(), =WRITE(). The first option allows you to interact with ChatGPT directly in your sheet and ask it to generate an answer to any query written out as a sentence you can imagine. As an example, u/rtwalz provides a list of email addresses and asks the AI ​​to guess the contact’s name based solely on the email name.

=WRITE() is similar to AI functions and can generate text based on descriptions. You can use it to create long text summaries or to explain specific options in a table. =INFER() is the most similar to the traditional expression, but better. You can use this to show AI the pattern you created and ask it to complete the rest of the pattern in your data set.

The tool also provides a sidebar where you can describe what you want to achieve and generate a formula. This is probably the most used feature. In addition to that, you can ask the extension to explain the formula. This is great if you don’t know what your Excel expert colleagues have created in a shared spreadsheet.

Does it really work?

To test the pace of the extension, I created a budget with a few different items I wanted to categorize. To give the AI ​​a starting point, we added a few categories, such as “home” for rentals and “entertainment” for TV cable subscriptions, and used inference formulas to complete the rest of the categorization. bottom. In Google Sheets, this is traditionally something you can’t use a formula for, as there’s no way to guess which category belongs to which cost. Inference tools powered by ChatGPT had no issues with this at all. We’ve automatically categorized the remaining items in our budget and added some new items that make more sense than the ones we’ve created before. I created an “Education” item for

With this categorization done, the next step was to analyze how much money was spent in each category. I asked to calculate the sum of the numbers with the “household” category next to the column. The system correctly created the =SUMIF formula to handle just that. For other categories, you can copy this formula and tweak the text for easy pasting.

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To test AI’s formula, I asked AI to suggest ways to save money within these categories. Here the results weren’t exactly overwhelming, but this could be the problem with my question. It said, “Please explain how you can save money on the expenses listed in the household category in this table.” and provided recommendations, and the responses were cut off after the seventh item. I also ironically suggested turning off the gas when not in use. thank you. This answer has a few more quirks, so here it is in full.

Rent: Look for cheaper rental options in your area, such as flats or small apartments.

Electricity: Turn off lights and appliances when not in use and use energy efficient light bulbs.

Natural Gas: Always turn off gas when not in use and use energy efficient appliances.

Cable TV subscription: Consider switching to a streaming service like Netflix or Hulu, or look for a cheaper cable package.

Liability Insurance: Find the best rates and compare different providers.

Monthly public transport tickets: Look for discounts and loyalty programs that offer cheaper fares.

Swapfiets Bike Hire: Consider buying a used bike instead.

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ChatGPT may change the way spreadsheets work

Aside from the ambiguous AI answer, the good results are not surprising at all. Since many people are already using ChatGPT’s dialog interface to create Excel and Google Sheets formulas, the extension is basically just removing the middleman in the form of a chat interface. It is also clear that this tool is much more useful for complex tasks than simple examples. Breaking down a small budget and creating his SUMIF formula isn’t too complicated, so using this tool can improve your quality of life on large spreadsheet projects.

The price clearly shows that it’s tailored for professional Google Sheets warriors. You only get 30 ChatGPT tokens for free when you install the extension. After that, you must pay at least $10/month to maintain access to the API and use up to 1,000 tokens/month. The token spending system is a bit complicated, but the extension’s sidebar does a good job of explaining what actions cost how much. but aside from that, the pricing structure seems fair — AI is pretty expensive right now, and developers aren’t big companies that can afford it. Recover costs in other ways.

It’s also not entirely clear which version of ChatGPT the tool uses. Almost certainly not the latest ChatGPT 4.0. OpenAI currently only provides various GPT-3 APIs, so it’s probably based on an older version unless the tools work around it in unofficial ways. However, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Older models are cheaper and sometimes faster, so they may outweigh the new features added by ChatGPT 4.0 within your spreadsheet tools.

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