#spreadsheet #notation #csv #a1 #reference


A package for converting to and from A1 spreadsheet notation

14 releases (5 breaking)

0.6.2 Mar 24, 2024
0.5.0 Mar 6, 2024
0.4.3 Dec 8, 2023
0.4.2 Oct 11, 2023
0.2.1 Jul 16, 2023

#38 in Value formatting

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Used in csvpp

MIT license

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A library for parsing to and from A1 spreadsheet notation. A1 notation uses letters A-Z for columns and a one-based number for the row. So for example at position (0, 0) of a spreadsheet (the top left corner) is "A1". (1, 1) is "B2", (1, 0) is "B1", etc.


For serde or rkyv support, you can enable it with the respective features (either specify features = ["serde"] or features = ["rkyv"] in your Cargo.toml).

Instantiating A1s

The most common need is to parse a string:

let a1 = A1::from_str("A1").unwrap();
// it parses it into an instance:
    A1 {
        sheet_name: None,
        reference: RangeOrCell::Cell(Address {
            column: Column { absolute: false, x: 0 },
            row: Row { absolute: false, y: 0 },
// and can display it back:
assert_eq!(&a1.to_string(), "A1");

// you can also just call `a1_notation::new`:
let from_col_a_to_d = a1_notation::new("Foo!A:D").unwrap();
    A1 {
        sheet_name: Some("Foo".to_string()),
        reference: RangeOrCell::ColumnRange {
            from: Column { absolute: false, x: 0 },
            to: Column { absolute: false, x: 3 },

assert_eq!(&from_col_a_to_d.to_string(), "Foo!A:D");

If you have zero-based coordinates and want to represent them as A1, there are several fns for instantiating:

// to create a reference to a specific cell:
assert_eq!(&a1_notation::cell(2, 2).to_string(), "C3");

// a reference to an entire column
assert_eq!(&a1_notation::column(5).to_string(), "F:F");

// or an entire row
assert_eq!(&a1_notation::row(5).to_string(), "6:6");

// and finally a range between two cells:
assert_eq!(&a1_notation::range((0, 0), (4, 4)).to_string(), "A1:E5");


Given all the various combinations or cells, ranges, row ranges, column ranges and non-contiguous ranges you can calculate if one reference contains another.

// a column contains any cell in that column:
let col_a = a1_notation::new("A:A").unwrap();
let a1 = a1_notation::new("A1").unwrap();

// likewise, a row range contains anything between it:
let top_5_rows = a1_notation::new("1:5").unwrap();
let b2 = a1_notation::new("B2").unwrap();

// and a range between two points works as you'd expect (it forms a rectangle)
let c3_to_j20 = a1_notation::new("C3:J20").unwrap();
let d5 = a1_notation::new("D5").unwrap();

Into/From/AsRef impls

As much as possible it implements Into/From and AsRef to convert between the various structs. Generally you can go from more specific to less specific but not the other way around. You typically should work with A1 structs but you can also use these traits to work with these lower level ones and cast them upwards.

// an address can act as a column or row using AsRef:
let a1 = Address::new(0, 0);
assert_eq!(&Column::new(0), a1.as_ref());
assert_eq!(&Row::new(0), a1.as_ref());

// addresses, columns and rows can `into()` "upwards" to an A1 or RangeOrCell
let col_b = Column::new(1);
    RangeOrCell::ColumnRange {
        from: Column::new(1),
        to: Column::new(1),

    A1 {
        sheet_name: None,
        reference: RangeOrCell::ColumnRange {
            from: Column::new(1),
            to: Column::new(1),


You can move references (and ranges) around:

// A1 -> D1 -> D3 -> C3
    &a1_notation::cell(0, 0)


You can iterate through the various types of ranges.

// a cell just emits itself (once)
    a1_notation::cell(0, 0)
        .iter().map(|r| r.to_string()).collect::<Vec<_>>(),

// a column range iterates column-wise
        .iter().map(|r| r.to_string()).collect::<Vec<_>>(),
    vec!["D:D", "E:E", "F:F", "G:G"]);

// and a row range goes row-wise
        .iter().map(|r| r.to_string()).collect::<Vec<_>>(),
    vec!["3:3", "4:4", "5:5", "6:6"]);

// a grid-based range goes row-by-row
        .iter().map(|r| r.to_string()).collect::<Vec<_>>(),
        "A1", "B1", "C1",
        "A2", "B2", "C2",
        "A3", "B3", "C3",

A1 Reference Examples

Here is a table illustrating A1 references:

Reference Meaning
"A1" Cell A1
"A1:B5" Cells A1 through B5
"C5:D9,G9:H16" A multiple-area selection
"A:A" Column A
"1:1" Row 1
"A:C" Columns A through C
"1:5" Rows 1 through 5
"1:1,3:3,8:8" Rows 1, 3, and 8
"A:A,C:C,F:F" Columns A, C, and F

For more info take a look at the package on crates.io and it's Rust docs.

Additional Reading


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