Novell hack week, day 1

Novell’s hack week has started. For those of you who don’t know what a hack week is, it’s a work week where we, the programmers at Novell, get to goof around with more or less whatever project we find interesting.

I’ve chosen to start a new project called “Sterling”, the goal of which is to keep better track of my moneys. I’ve used GnuCash to do this for some time, but it’s clunky and overkill for my uses. I want to streamline the process of entering transactions and otherwise keep the complexity down, especially for people like me who know (and care) little about accounting. Indeed, I want the UI to resemble Tomboy‘s in many ways:

  • Always running, with a panel applet interface.
  • Desktop-global “new transaction” hotkey.
  • Per-user database, no open/save dialogs.
  • Implicit save on edit.
  • Type-ahead completion of transaction description.
  • Suggesting details of transaction based on similar past transactions.
  • Tagging of transactions for easy cross-sectioning.
  • Simple search-as-you-type view of transaction history.
  • Multiple currencies recognized by their ISO 4217 codes.

Star Trek future features:

  • Currency conversion (use Google?).
  • Multiple registers (similar to books in Tomboy).
  • Export to XML, merge from XML.
  • Remote synchronization (by Zeroconf discovery or specific URI) allowing for shared databases.
  • Desktop search integration.
  • Drop-dead attractive graphs.

In order to make things as difficult for myself as possible, I’ve decided to learn something new and do it in C#/Mono. Of course, I’m already running into trouble…

MonoDevelop got stuck

Strange but true. I miss C, Emacs, Automake already.

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