CSE498, Collaborative Design, Fall 2021
Computer Science and Engineering
Michigan State University

Serving more than 80 million Americans, Delta Dental is America’s leading provider of dental insurance. To provide quality service, the company must host and leverage complicated data.

Delta Dental maintains a significant number of sophisticated Excel spreadsheets for various purposes. Comprehending these spreadsheets requires significant industry expertise. Furthermore, extracting the industry knowledge from the spreadsheets to use in other applications often requires the development of computer programs designed specifically for a single workbook, which is both tedious and costly.

Our Microsoft Excel Data Extractor/Modeler is a web-based tool that removes the need for developing single-use computer programs for extracting Excel data. Our system imports existing Excel workbooks and, with minimal user input, can extract the relevant information as well as the data hierarchies present in an Excel spreadsheet.

Our web interface is designed to look and feel similar to Excel, but with specialized functionality that allows users to formally define data hierarchies and dependencies. These hierarchies can then be visualized to understand the structure of an Excel spreadsheet, as well as to reformat an existing Excel spreadsheet into an easier-to-understand form.

The web application and resulting data visualizations and formatting help enhance employee comprehension of complex spreadsheets and add extensibility to the existing data. Our tool removes the need for development of single-use programs, saving valuable time for Delta Dental employees.

Users can access the Data Extractor/Modeler through a web application that uses JavaScript and TypeScript within the MEAN stack framework. We use X-SpreadSheet for our user interface and ExcelJS to extract the data and formulas from Excel workbooks.