The old adage, "If you can't beat them, join them," apparently also holds true for Microsoft Excel, as software developers of all varieties are implementing features that make their products look more like the universally used spreadsheet program.Coupled with the increasing ability to integrate with Excel and other Microsoft Office products such as Word, adoption of the familiar worksheet interface is designed to make learning other, related applications easier.

"There is acceptance of anything that looks like Excel or works with Excel," said Jo Ann Cummings, product manager for CCH's ProSystem fx Tax.

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