Let's dig in further!
In simplest terms, a CSV file is formatted so that every piece of information in the file is separated with a comma (or other delimiter
, which we'll get into later!). What does this mean? When a program reads a CSV file, it knows that every time it sees a comma, the next piece of information should be treated separately from the preceding information.
Okay, but what does that really mean?
This type of data structure (CSV) enables programs - like Excel, Numbers, cloud apps and databases and more - to read your data in an organized way. This way, when you go to view the data, say in Excel, you don't see a mess of text and numbers all smashed into one cell. You see the data structured into tabular form - i.e. in columns and rows, that make up a table. The end result? A beautiful table of data you can read, apply formulas, import, export and more!