Specific errors: Circular references (part 1)

I mentioned earlier that one very common error code in spreadsheets is the “circular reference”. There’s a lot to discuss about circular references, so in this post I’ll cover the definition of the error and what it looks like in various spreadsheet programs. Next week I’ll cover how to track down the source of the problem, and common causes/solutions.

Definition
circular reference: noun. See circular reference.
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Common errors

Once you start working with functions and names and basically anything other than flat values, there’s a chance you’ll wind up with some sort of error messages.

There are a number of different errors you might run into, but most programs helpfully give you a code and possibly a quick tutorial that will, to some extent, help you figure out what’s wrong.

The most common errors I run into are:
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