David Pierce, The Verge:

But I’d wager that if you wanted to see the most exciting drama happening at the MGM on this Friday night, you’d have to walk through the casino and look for the small sign advertising something called The Active Cell. This is the site of the play-in round for the Excel World Championship, and it starts in five minutes. There are 27 people here to take part in this event (28 registered, but one evidently chickened out before we started), which will send its top eight finishers to tomorrow night’s finals. There, one person will be crowned the Excel World Champion, which comes with a trophy and a championship belt and the ability to spend the next 12 months bragging about being officially the world’s best spreadsheeter. Eight people have already qualified for the finals; some of today’s 27 contestants lost in those qualifying rounds, others just showed up last-minute in hopes of a comeback.

I did not expect to be enthralled by a write up about a spreadsheet writing competition. Yet, here I am.

I very much recommend clicking through if just to see the awesome visual style that The Verge’s team applied to the article. Nice touch, and helps make the site feel like a magazine.