# Looking for more elegant code

G

#### Greg Snidow

Greetings all. I will tell you now, this is very long, and I am just looking
some tips to make my already working code more efficient. I am posting a
complete set up, so feel free to bail now if you want to, my need is not
urgent. I posted two Solver question earlier, to which I found an answer to
both. This is a linear blending problem using solver with VBA. I have to
analyze a table of fuels to look for a better price by blending fuels. There
are twelve of them, so rather than manually move the data around and run
solver 12 times, I thought I would give a try to writing a macro to do it.
The data are in range("A17:F30"), with A17:F17 containing the column headings
"Fuel type", "Price", "Sulphur", "Flash", "Viscosity", and "Density", in that
order. The price column is datatype = currency, the rest are number with 3
decimal places. A18:F18 are blank for the need of another macro. The values
in A19:F30 are as directly below, followed by the macro, which runs solver
against all 12 fuel types, and populates a report section with the results.
Again, this works fine for my purposes, just looking for some tips if anyone
is willing. I have tried to comment the code as best I could, and I am not
sure what it will look like when you copy and paste, so thank you to anyone
for taking a look.

1% Sulphur Fuel Oil 16.08 1.000 204.800 1.819 0.996
3% Sulphur Fuel Oil 13.25 3.000 204.800 1.819 0.996
..07% Sulphur Fuel Oil 17.33 0.700 204.800 1.819 0.996
Heating Oil 24.10 0.200 260.400 0.243 0.855
1% Vacuum Gas Oil 20.83 1.000 52.500 1.170 0.904
2% Vacuum Gas Oil 20.10 2.000 52.500 1.170 0.904
..5% Vacuum Gas Oil 21.46 0.500 52.500 1.170 0.904
Straight Run (Low Sulphur) 21.00 0.300 18.500 1.678 0.928
Straight Run (High Sulphur) 20.00 2.750 18.500 1.678 0.953
Kerosene Jet Fuel 25.52 0.125 308.800 -0.782 0.797
Diesel Fuel 24.30 0.200 161.700 -0.054 0.850
Slurry 24.10 0.200 260.400 0.243 0.855

**********************************************
Sub Macro5()

' To hold the value of the row containing the fuel currently being used by
solver.
' it will always start at row 19
Dim CurrentRow As Integer

' To hold the name of the fuel currently being analyzed by solver.
Dim CurrentFuel As String

' Set the target price. This must be at least 1 cent less than an
un-blended fuel
Dim TargetPrice As Currency

' To hold the values of the 5 attributes of the fuel currently being
analyzed.
Dim BlendPrice As Currency
Dim BlendSulphur As Double
Dim BlendFlash As Double
Dim BlendViscosity As Double
Dim BlendDensity As Double

' To hold the solver values in column G, which are the percentages of each
fuel used
' in the blend when solver has found a solution

Dim BlendQty As Double

' To hold the names of the fuels having a value > 0 in column G when
solver has found
' a solution
Dim BlendIngredient As String

' Placeholders for telling the routine where to start populating the
Dim BlendIngredientStart As String
Dim ResultStart As String

' Set some initial values
CurrentRow = Range("A19").Row

' Set the formulas to make solver work
Range("B31").Formula = "=SUMPRODUCT(B19:B30,\$G\$19:\$G\$30)"
Range("C31").Formula = "=SUMPRODUCT(C19:C30,\$G\$19:\$G\$30)"
Range("D31").Formula = "=SUMPRODUCT(D19 30,\$G\$19:\$G\$30)"
Range("E31").Formula = "=SUMPRODUCT(E19:E30,\$G\$19:\$G\$30)"
Range("F31").Formula = "=SUMPRODUCT(F19:F30,\$G\$19:\$G\$30)"
Range("G31").Formula = "=SUM(G19:G30)"

' Set a hard stop for the loop. This will eventually use a variable range
using
' LastRow = .lastrow in a column or something like that
Do Until CurrentRow = 31

' Let 'er rip
CurrentFuel = Range("A" & CurrentRow).Value
Price = Range("B" & CurrentRow).Value
Sulphur = Range("C" & CurrentRow).Value
Flash = Range("D" & CurrentRow).Value
Viscosity = Range("E" & CurrentRow).Value
Density = Range("F" & CurrentRow).Value

' I would like to get rid of having to select this range. Can I do it
without selecting?
' the copy and paste bit seems to add to the clutter.
Range("B" & CurrentRow & ":F" & CurrentRow).Select
Selection.Copy
Range("B33:F33").Select
Selection.PasteSpecial Paste:=xlPasteValues, Operation:=xlNone,
SkipBlanks _
:=False, Transpose:=False

TargetPrice = Range("B33").Value
Range("B33").Value = TargetPrice - 0.01

' Set target cell, it is a price that must be lower than the price of the
first
' fuel used by solver.
SolverOk SetCell:="\$B\$31", MaxMinVal:=2, ValueOf:="0",
ByChange:="\$G\$19:\$G\$30"

' Set options
SolverOptions MaxTime:=100, Iterations:=1000, Precision:=0.000001,
AssumeLinear _
:=True, StepThru:=False, Estimates:=1, Derivatives:=1,
SearchOption:=1, _
IntTolerance:=5, Scaling:=False, Convergence:=0.0001,
AssumeNonNeg:=True

' Set result variable for decision to keep solver values or start over.
' I am only interested when solver returns a 0.
' I got this from http://peltiertech.com/Excel/SolverVBA.html#Solver1, and
it worked with
' the commented out version on my work laptop, with Excel 2003, but when I
tried it on my
' personal laptop with Excel 2007, I was getting an error like "missing
something or other",
' and when I went to Tools>References, there was an entry for "MISSING
SOLVER.xla", or something
' like that, right on top of the entry for "SOLVER". I unchecked the
"MISSING" one, and checked
' "SOLVER". Then when I took out the "Solver.xla!" portion of the code,
the error went away.
' Not sure what was happening, or if the two are related.
' result = Application.Run("Solver.xla!SolverSolve", True)
result = Application.Run("SolverSolve", True)

If result = 0 Then
' Set the variable values to populate the report section.
BlendPrice = Range("B31").Value
BlendSulphur = Range("C31").Value
BlendFlash = Range("D31").Value
BlendViscosity = Range("E31").Value
BlendDensity = Range("F31").Value

' Name the first blend as to include the name of the current fuel, for
which
' solver has found a better price by making a blend.
Range(ResultStart).Value = CurrentFuel & " Substitute"

' Start populating the report section with the new blend name, and
the resulting
' values of the attributes, based on solver's solution
Range(ResultStart).Offset(0, 1).Value = BlendPrice
Range(ResultStart).Offset(0, 2).Value = BlendSulphur
Range(ResultStart).Offset(0, 3).Value = BlendFlash
Range(ResultStart).Offset(0, 4).Value = BlendViscosity
Range(ResultStart).Offset(0, 5).Value = BlendDensity
' Create headers for the blend ingredients section of the report
Range(ResultStart).Offset(1, 1).Value = "Fuel Parts"
Range(ResultStart).Offset(1, 3).Value = "Part Quantities"

' Start looking the the ByChange range for values > 0. I want to
capture
' these values as the portion of the blended fuel that is made up of
' each ingredient fuel.
Range("G19").Activate
' Give the loop a hard stop. Will be range last row driven at a later
time
If ActiveCell.Value > 0 Then
BlendQty = ActiveCell.Value

' Get the name of each ingredient fuel.
BlendIngredient = ActiveCell.Offset(0, -6).Value

' MsgBox (BlendIngredient)
' MsgBox (BlendIngredientStart)

' Populate the name of the ingredient in the report section
Range(BlendIngredientStart).Value = BlendIngredient

' Populate the ingredient portion in the report section.
Range(BlendIngredientStart).Offset(0, 2).Value = BlendQty

' Reset the variable that tell the routine where in the report
to put
' the next ingredient.
BlendIngredientStart = Range(BlendIngredientStart).Offset(1,

' Check the next cell in the ByChange range for a value > 0
ActiveCell.Offset(1, 0).Activate
Else

' Check the next cell in the ByChange range.
ActiveCell.Offset(1, 0).Activate
End If
Loop

' MsgBox ("Done with " & CurrentFuel)

' Reset the report variable for the next blended fuel, if any.

' MsgBox (ResultStart)

BlendIngredientStart = Range(BlendIngredientStart).Offset(3,
' MsgBox (BlendIngredientStart)
Else

' Clear out the ByChange range, just so it looks better.
Range("G19") = ""
Range("G20") = ""
Range("G21") = ""
Range("G22") = ""
Range("G23") = ""
Range("G24") = ""
Range("G25") = ""
Range("G26") = ""
Range("G27") = ""
Range("G28") = ""
Range("G29") = ""
Range("G30") = ""
End If

'MsgBox (CurrentFuel & " done")

' Start the process for the next fuel in the list
CurrentRow = CurrentRow + 1

Loop

End Sub

J

#### Joel

1) Here are my changes for this section of code
from
Range("B" & CurrentRow & ":F" & CurrentRow).Select
Selection.Copy
Range("B33:F33").Select
Selection.PasteSpecial Paste:=xlPasteValues, Operation:=xlNone, _
SkipBlanks:=False, _
Transpose:=False
to
Range("B" & CurrentRow & ":F" & CurrentRow).Copy
Range("B33").PasteSpecial _
Paste:=xlPasteValues

You only need the cell, row, or column when copying and pasing mutiple
objects.

2) I don't like activecell because it makes the code harder to understand

from
If ActiveCell.Value > 0 Then
BlendQty = ActiveCell.Value

' Get the name of each ingredient fuel.
BlendIngredient = ActiveCell.Offset(0, -6).Value

' MsgBox (BlendIngredient)
' MsgBox (BlendIngredientStart)

' Populate the name of the ingredient in the report section
Range(BlendIngredientStart).Value = BlendIngredient

' Populate the ingredient portion in the report section.
Range(BlendIngredientStart).Offset(0, 2).Value = BlendQty

' Reset the variable that tell the routine where in the report
to put
' the next ingredient.
BlendIngredientStart = Range(BlendIngredientStart).Offset(1,

' Check the next cell in the ByChange range for a value > 0
ActiveCell.Offset(1, 0).Activate
Else

' Check the next cell in the ByChange range.
ActiveCell.Offset(1, 0).Activate
End If
Loop

to
For RowCount = 19 to 31
If Range("G" & rowcount).Value > 0 Then
BlendQty = ActiveCell.Value

'Get the name of each ingredient fuel.
BlendIngredient = Range("A" & Rowcount).Value

'MsgBox (BlendIngredient)
'MsgBox (BlendIngredientStart)

'Populate the name of the ingredient in the report section
Range(BlendIngredientStart).Value = BlendIngredient

'Populate the ingredient portion in the report section.
Range(BlendIngredientStart).Offset(0, 2).Value = BlendQty

'Reset the variable that tell the routine where in the report
'to put the next ingredient.
BlendIngredientStart = _

End If
RowCount = rowcount + 1
Loop

G

#### Greg Snidow

Joel, thank you so much for looking at my code. I get the first suggestion,
I knew there was an easier way. For the second suggestion, I'm having some
difficulty understanding what it is doing. With the line "For RowCount
19-31" are you naming a range? How does it know what RowCount is?. Also, I
changed the "Loop" at the end to "Next", and it proceeded ok. Incidentally,
it's not working as pasted, but I'm sure I can get it to work. It is only
capturing the name of the first ingredient fuel, then populating a 0 for the
quantity in the report section. Not sure why, but I think I can fix it.

G

#### Greg Snidow

Ok, I made it work by changing "BlendQty = ActiveCell.Value" to "BlendQty =
Range("G" & RowCount).Value" and then removing "RowCount = RowCount + 1".
So, I guess the question is, which method is more efficient? Thanks again
Joel.

J

#### Joel

I wouldn't use the word efficient. Efficient implies to me a reduction in
memory and memory is so cheap I wouldn't worry about the cost.

Activecell may run i very little bit quicker. Not sure. So there may be a
different in code execution time.

The real diffference in maintanability and time to debug. Now it is more
important to generate code that can be maintained and takes less time to
modify. It is important to write code that is understandable to every body
in the least amount of time.

There WAS a programming style called "Power Programming" that was used in
the 60's and early 70's. Since memory was very expensive computer was
limited to the size of the source code. So to get programs to run the key
was to write the code using the smallest number of ascii characters. The
code was hard to write, hard to get working, and hard to modify.

There was a book called "The C Language" which the first edition used power
programming. It was 80 pages long and took me over two years to understand
the entire book. I used it a lot. By the time they came out with the 3rd
edition it was 200 pages because they wrote the examples programs so they
were more understandable and they gave more details on how the examples run.