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I've been following this debate with great interest. 

One big question comes to mind: Why would someone use the apostrophe construct in the first place 
if he intended to perform arithmetic calculations using the cell content? I understand ending up 
with a text string rather than a number by forgetting to use VALUE() on a substring in a formula 
but even that seems to fall into the category of a "cockpit error" rather than an "aircraft design 
flaw" as is being implied on one side of this debate. 


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