I love creating new software releases—especially when I get to give customers the 1984 Prego response: It’s in there!
“Hey Kevin, it would be great if we could select a different currency for each account. Is that planned for a future release?” It’s in there.
“Is there any way to hide accounts or buckets that I no longer use?” It’s in there.
“What about scheduled transactions?” It’s in there!
With every new release of MoneyWell, the product moves closer to my original vision for it. Managing finances and cash flow was never easy for me—partially because I didn’t like being told that I can’t buy something for someone. I’m pretty good at denying myself stuff, but not so good when it comes to my family. I need structure and easy access to financial figures to help me behave myself and running a Quicken budget report didn’t cut it.
My initial vision for MoneyWell was a single-window interface that could tell me quickly what I have to spend for each type of expense. The “envelope” system of allocating your income into various containers, each marked by a spending category, was ideal. If I could pull up MoneyWell and see immediately that I only had $20 left to spend on dining out, I would either be able to say, “No, we can’t go out tonight” or see that there was more money left in the entertainment bucket that we could use for dining instead.
This part of my vision is complete and I know that I can’t just look at my bank balance anymore and say, “Hey we have money! Let’s get you that iPhone today!” I watch my buckets instead because managing cash flow is more than the act of asking the ATM how much is in there.
What’s coming in the next few releases? More visuals about where cash is going and more planning tools for future spending. Now that I have today under control, I want to know what my spending is going to look like over the next 12 months or more. How much can we plan to spend for a vacation this summer? When are the big property tax bills due? How fast can we eliminate the last of our debt? Should we put more into savings or other investments?
Software and cooking are very similar. The trick is to put all this stuff “in there” without mucking up the look and taste of the sauce. What happens when you put too much salt in it? Or too much tomato paste? Or too much garlic… actually I don’t think you can add too much garlic. Scratch that last example. For me, it’s vital to remember what I was cooking in the first place. That’s why MoneyWell 1.3 is simmering a bit longer. I keep running it through strainers and taking taste tests until I think it’s ready to be served. I hope everyone enjoys the next course in the meal. I know I can’t wait to serve it!