My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

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My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Algeorge
Hi. After discussing various options of GNUcash your support and giving it a good run for its money I have produced this video. I do not mind being corrected on any aspect of it as my videos must be as accurate as possible.
You will notice in summary that GNUcash would be my preferred accounting software if it were more user friendly in some respects.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcVWbsnOQmE
Kind regards,
Alistair George (www.alistairgeorge.com)
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Tommy Trussell
On Tue, Sep 25, 2012 at 9:40 PM, Algeorge <[hidden email]>wrote:

> Hi. After discussing various options of GNUcash your support and giving it
> a
> good run for its money I have produced this video. I do not mind being
> corrected on any aspect of it as my videos must be as accurate as possible.
> You will notice in summary that GNUcash would be my preferred accounting
> software if it were more user friendly in some respects.
> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcVWbsnOQmE
> <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcVWbsnOQmE>
> Kind regards,
> Alistair George ( www.alistairgeorge.com <http://www.alistairgeorge.com>
>  )
>
>
Thanks for that video review! I entered a few suggestions on YouTube but
deleted them I will enter them here on the list instead.

First of all I cannot say much about Skrooge because I haven't used it
much. I have been using GnuCash for quite a few years now.

I've most often heard GnuCash pronounced "guh-noo cash" but I'm folks have
differing opinions.

Most of the reports in GnuCash DO include a filter for the dates. When you
have the report open, click the "gear" icon to see the report options. Most
reports allow you to specify a date range. They do vary by report.
Unfortunately sometimes the report name is confusing. For example, the
Income Statement may be the best report for categorizing your expenses for
a date range.

When you were entering the split, you might have found it easier to have
chosen "Remove Transaction Splits" then re-enter the amounts. However if
you are splitting your expenses the same way for every fuel transaction,
you can fairly easily type the formula, such as 50*5 and GnuCash will
replace the calculated amount as soon as you tab to the next field, so just
tab through the existing amounts, re-typing the formula for each field. I
don't believe GnuCash formulas can persist in any of the registers.
Scheduled Transactions allow persistent formulas, but the implementation is
a bit strange and/or buggy.

There are several ways to export GnuCash data but the most direct ones
involve running a report and copying the data from the report to another
program (such as a spreadsheet). Obviously for your review purposes you
were hoping to transfer the entire file among different programs. There are
processes converting the entire file and/or extracting data directly from
it (see the GnuCash FAQ and discussions on this list) but I don't think any
are well supported.

Thanks again for your video review!


> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
>

(If you want to discuss this further you might want to subscribe directly
to the list rather than using Nabble -- as you may have noticed the
submissions via Nabble are moderated.)
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Krzysztof Harwas
Hi.

I watched the video -and I agree with one thing: sometimes registering
transaction can be pain in the arse to figure out on what side of the
ledger it should be registered: left or right. Sometimes I register a
transaction and it turns out i thought it should decrease the account
balance while it is increasing it. Then I have to change the 'sides' of the
transaction. It is not a problem when you choose 'transfer' option and fill
in the 'form' in the window that pops-up, but with this option you can
register only one transaction between two accounts. Wouldn't be nice to be
able to register more than one transaction (like in SPLIT) but being able
to add more transactions to the 'transfer' window?

regards

Kris

2012/9/26 Tommy Trussell <[hidden email]>

> On Tue, Sep 25, 2012 at 9:40 PM, Algeorge <[hidden email]
> >wrote:
>
> > Hi. After discussing various options of GNUcash your support and giving
> it
> > a
> > good run for its money I have produced this video. I do not mind being
> > corrected on any aspect of it as my videos must be as accurate as
> possible.
> > You will notice in summary that GNUcash would be my preferred accounting
> > software if it were more user friendly in some respects.
> > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcVWbsnOQmE
> > <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcVWbsnOQmE>
> > Kind regards,
> > Alistair George ( www.alistairgeorge.com <http://www.alistairgeorge.com>
> >  )
> >
> >
> Thanks for that video review! I entered a few suggestions on YouTube but
> deleted them I will enter them here on the list instead.
>
> First of all I cannot say much about Skrooge because I haven't used it
> much. I have been using GnuCash for quite a few years now.
>
> I've most often heard GnuCash pronounced "guh-noo cash" but I'm folks have
> differing opinions.
>
> Most of the reports in GnuCash DO include a filter for the dates. When you
> have the report open, click the "gear" icon to see the report options. Most
> reports allow you to specify a date range. They do vary by report.
> Unfortunately sometimes the report name is confusing. For example, the
> Income Statement may be the best report for categorizing your expenses for
> a date range.
>
> When you were entering the split, you might have found it easier to have
> chosen "Remove Transaction Splits" then re-enter the amounts. However if
> you are splitting your expenses the same way for every fuel transaction,
> you can fairly easily type the formula, such as 50*5 and GnuCash will
> replace the calculated amount as soon as you tab to the next field, so just
> tab through the existing amounts, re-typing the formula for each field. I
> don't believe GnuCash formulas can persist in any of the registers.
> Scheduled Transactions allow persistent formulas, but the implementation is
> a bit strange and/or buggy.
>
> There are several ways to export GnuCash data but the most direct ones
> involve running a report and copying the data from the report to another
> program (such as a spreadsheet). Obviously for your review purposes you
> were hoping to transfer the entire file among different programs. There are
> processes converting the entire file and/or extracting data directly from
> it (see the GnuCash FAQ and discussions on this list) but I don't think any
> are well supported.
>
> Thanks again for your video review!
>
>
> > Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
> > You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
> >
>
> (If you want to discuss this further you might want to subscribe directly
> to the list rather than using Nabble -- as you may have noticed the
> submissions via Nabble are moderated.)
> _______________________________________________
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> [hidden email]
> https://lists.gnucash.org/mailman/listinfo/gnucash-user
> -----
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> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Derek Atkins-3
Hi,

On Wed, September 26, 2012 1:05 pm, Krzysztof Harwas wrote:
> Hi.
>
> I watched the video -and I agree with one thing: sometimes registering
> transaction can be pain in the arse to figure out on what side of the
> ledger it should be registered: left or right. Sometimes I register a
> transaction and it turns out i thought it should decrease the account
> balance while it is increasing it. Then I have to change the 'sides' of
> the
> transaction.

Make sure you always use an Asset or Liability account register when
entering your transactions.  It'll help keep "which side" clearer to most
Humans.

Entering Splits is generally such as easy.  Just start it by filling in
one of the Income or Expense accounts and the amount for the (open) Asset
Account before you click on the Split button.  Then GnuCash will properly
fill in the amount on the right side in the right row.  Then you'll easily
see which side to use.

>     It is not a problem when you choose 'transfer' option and
> fill
> in the 'form' in the window that pops-up, but with this option you can
> register only one transaction between two accounts. Wouldn't be nice to be
> able to register more than one transaction (like in SPLIT) but being able
> to add more transactions to the 'transfer' window?

That would significantly complicate the window and make it look just like
the register.   So you might as well just use the register.

> regards
>
> Kris

-derek

> 2012/9/26 Tommy Trussell <[hidden email]>
>
>> On Tue, Sep 25, 2012 at 9:40 PM, Algeorge <[hidden email]
>> >wrote:
>>
>> > Hi. After discussing various options of GNUcash your support and
>> giving
>> it
>> > a
>> > good run for its money I have produced this video. I do not mind being
>> > corrected on any aspect of it as my videos must be as accurate as
>> possible.
>> > You will notice in summary that GNUcash would be my preferred
>> accounting
>> > software if it were more user friendly in some respects.
>> > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcVWbsnOQmE
>> > <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcVWbsnOQmE>
>> > Kind regards,
>> > Alistair George ( www.alistairgeorge.com
>> <http://www.alistairgeorge.com>
>> >  )
>> >
>> >
>> Thanks for that video review! I entered a few suggestions on YouTube but
>> deleted them I will enter them here on the list instead.
>>
>> First of all I cannot say much about Skrooge because I haven't used it
>> much. I have been using GnuCash for quite a few years now.
>>
>> I've most often heard GnuCash pronounced "guh-noo cash" but I'm folks
>> have
>> differing opinions.
>>
>> Most of the reports in GnuCash DO include a filter for the dates. When
>> you
>> have the report open, click the "gear" icon to see the report options.
>> Most
>> reports allow you to specify a date range. They do vary by report.
>> Unfortunately sometimes the report name is confusing. For example, the
>> Income Statement may be the best report for categorizing your expenses
>> for
>> a date range.
>>
>> When you were entering the split, you might have found it easier to have
>> chosen "Remove Transaction Splits" then re-enter the amounts. However if
>> you are splitting your expenses the same way for every fuel transaction,
>> you can fairly easily type the formula, such as 50*5 and GnuCash will
>> replace the calculated amount as soon as you tab to the next field, so
>> just
>> tab through the existing amounts, re-typing the formula for each field.
>> I
>> don't believe GnuCash formulas can persist in any of the registers.
>> Scheduled Transactions allow persistent formulas, but the implementation
>> is
>> a bit strange and/or buggy.
>>
>> There are several ways to export GnuCash data but the most direct ones
>> involve running a report and copying the data from the report to another
>> program (such as a spreadsheet). Obviously for your review purposes you
>> were hoping to transfer the entire file among different programs. There
>> are
>> processes converting the entire file and/or extracting data directly
>> from
>> it (see the GnuCash FAQ and discussions on this list) but I don't think
>> any
>> are well supported.
>>
>> Thanks again for your video review!
>>
>>
>> > Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
>> > You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
>> >
>>
>> (If you want to discuss this further you might want to subscribe
>> directly
>> to the list rather than using Nabble -- as you may have noticed the
>> submissions via Nabble are moderated.)
>> _______________________________________________
>> gnucash-user mailing list
>> [hidden email]
>> https://lists.gnucash.org/mailman/listinfo/gnucash-user
>> -----
>> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
>> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
>>
> _______________________________________________
> gnucash-user mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.gnucash.org/mailman/listinfo/gnucash-user
> -----
> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
>


--
       Derek Atkins                 617-623-3745
       [hidden email]             www.ihtfp.com
       Computer and Internet Security Consultant

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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Algeorge
Hi I have amended description on video to read:
ADDENDUM. I have been advised I had some errors in video review:
1..my pronunciation of GNUcash is wrong.
2..GNUcash REPORTS one user says: Most of the reports in GnuCash DO include a filter for the dates. When you have the report open, click the "gear" icon to see the report options. Most reports allow you to specify a date range. ME: my version does not show the gear icon.
3..GNUcash to make a custom report is much more complex than Skrooge which has a wizard-like reporting. A report can be generated from a search as well in Skrooge.
3..GNUcash does not accept standards keys. For example when you have a tab open the usual way to close it would be Ctrl-F4, but you must use the close button! This inconsistency is consistent through GNUcash and IMHO a bad decision from the programmers as its very easy to implement a user friendly interface, which would make a real difference to user experience.
Alistair.

Derek. The point of the video is to demonstrate what most new users would expect from an accounting program <u>mainly with the user interface</u>. Unfortunately sometimes programmers ideas can be fixated on how <u>they</u> consider the user should work, not on how the user would find it easiest.  This is an area of GNUcash and I have commented on several times lately and in the past, and as an ex programmer myself I know just how easy it is to change the user interface.

By adding a formula option in the splits similar to Skrooge as shown in video, and tweaking the interface would make a big difference in user experience IMHO.
Kind regards,
Alistair George.
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RE: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Dustin Henning
I didn't watch the video (because I'm more of a reading person), but I'm not
sure your pronunciation of GnuCash is wrong.  The reason I say this is I saw
the post that said something to the effect of "most people I know pronounce
it gu-noo", but I believe it is called GnuCash because it is based on the
Gnu public license, which I believe comes from the Gnu operating system
whose mascot is an animal called a gnu (see gnu.org).  That gnu is
pronounced new, not gu-new, and therefore, if you pronounced it new-cash, I
believe you were right (and sometimes, most people are wrong, see history).
        Dustin

-----Original Message-----
From: gnucash-user-bounces+the00dustin=[hidden email]
[mailto:gnucash-user-bounces+the00dustin=[hidden email]] On Behalf Of
Algeorge
Sent: Wednesday, September 26, 2012 17:10
To: [hidden email]
Subject: Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is
interested)

Hi I have amended description on video to read:
/ADDENDUM. I have been advised I had some errors in video review:
1..my pronunciation of GNUcash is wrong.
2..GNUcash REPORTS one user says: Most of the reports in GnuCash DO include
a filter for the dates. When you have the report open, click the "gear" icon
to see the report options. Most reports allow you to specify a date range.
ME: my version does not show the gear icon.
3..GNUcash to make a custom report is much more complex than Skrooge which
has a wizard-like reporting. A report can be generated from a search as well
in Skrooge.
3..GNUcash does not accept standards keys. For example when you have a tab
open the usual way to close it would be Ctrl-F4, but you must use the close
button! This inconsistency is consistent through GNUcash and IMHO a bad
decision from the programmers as its very easy to implement a user friendly
interface, which would make a real difference to user experience.
Alistair./
Derek. The point of the video is to demonstrate what most new users would
expect from an accounting program <u>mainly with the user interface</u>.
Unfortunately sometimes programmers ideas can be fixated on how <u>they</u>
consider the user should work, not on how the user would find it easiest.
This is an area of GNUcash and I have commented on several times lately and
in the past, and as an ex programmer myself I know just how easy it is to
change the user interface.

By adding a formula option in the splits similar to Skrooge as shown in
video, and tweaking the interface would make a big difference in user
experience IMHO.
Kind regards,
Alistair George.



--
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ge-if-anyone-is-interested-tp4657081p4657094.html
Sent from the GnuCash - User mailing list archive at Nabble.com.
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Eric Ladner-2
On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 5:17 AM, Dustin Henning <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I didn't watch the video (because I'm more of a reading person), but I'm not
> sure your pronunciation of GnuCash is wrong.  The reason I say this is I saw
> the post that said something to the effect of "most people I know pronounce
> it gu-noo", but I believe it is called GnuCash because it is based on the
> Gnu public license, which I believe comes from the Gnu operating system
> whose mascot is an animal called a gnu (see gnu.org).  That gnu is
> pronounced new, not gu-new, and therefore, if you pronounced it new-cash, I
> believe you were right (and sometimes, most people are wrong, see history).

GNU, as in gnu.org pronounces the G.

Yes, the mascot is a gnu (pronounced like "noo" or "nu", but that's
part of the pun, I suppose.  The name "GNU" is a recursive acronym
meaning "GNU's Not Unix".

Listen to Richard Stallman (the guy that created it):
http://www.gnu.org/pronunciation/pronunciation.html


--
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RE: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Dustin Henning
 

-----Original Message-----
From: Eric Ladner [mailto:[hidden email]]
Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2012 07:32
To: [hidden email]
Cc: Algeorge; [hidden email]
Subject: Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is
interested)

On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 5:17 AM, Dustin Henning <[hidden email]> wrote:
> I didn't watch the video (because I'm more of a reading person), but
> I'm not sure your pronunciation of GnuCash is wrong.  The reason I say
> this is I saw the post that said something to the effect of "most
> people I know pronounce it gu-noo", but I believe it is called GnuCash
> because it is based on the Gnu public license, which I believe comes
> from the Gnu operating system whose mascot is an animal called a gnu
> (see gnu.org).  That gnu is pronounced new, not gu-new, and therefore,
> if you pronounced it new-cash, I believe you were right (and sometimes,
most people are wrong, see history).

GNU, as in gnu.org pronounces the G.

Yes, the mascot is a gnu (pronounced like "noo" or "nu", but that's part of
the pun, I suppose.  The name "GNU" is a recursive acronym meaning "GNU's
Not Unix".

Listen to Richard Stallman (the guy that created it):
http://www.gnu.org/pronunciation/pronunciation.html


--
Eric Ladner


Nice, not going to listen for the same reason I didn't watch the video, but
I accept evidence/facts, just not "most people think/say."  ;)

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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Les Elliott
In reply to this post by Algeorge
On 09/26/2012 04:10 PM, Algeorge wrote:

> Hi I have amended description on video to read:
> /ADDENDUM. I have been advised I had some errors in video review:
> 1..my pronunciation of GNUcash is wrong.
> 2..GNUcash REPORTS one user says: Most of the reports in GnuCash DO include
> a filter for the dates. When you have the report open, click the "gear" icon
> to see the report options. Most reports allow you to specify a date range.
> ME: my version does not show the gear icon.
> 3..GNUcash to make a custom report is much more complex than Skrooge which
> has a wizard-like reporting. A report can be generated from a search as well
> in Skrooge.
> 3..GNUcash does not accept standards keys. For example when you have a tab
> open the usual way to close it would be Ctrl-F4, but you must use the close
> button! This inconsistency is consistent through GNUcash and IMHO a bad
> decision from the programmers as its very easy to implement a user friendly
> interface, which would make a real difference to user experience.
> Alistair./
> Derek. The point of the video is to demonstrate what most new users would
> expect from an accounting program <u>mainly with the user interface</u>.
> Unfortunately sometimes programmers ideas can be fixated on how <u>they</u>
> consider the user should work, not on how the user would find it easiest.
> This is an area of GNUcash and I have commented on several times lately and
> in the past, and as an ex programmer myself I know just how easy it is to
> change the user interface.
>
> By adding a formula option in the splits similar to Skrooge as shown in
> video, and tweaking the interface would make a big difference in user
> experience IMHO.
> Kind regards,
> Alistair George.
>
>
>
> --
> View this message in context: http://gnucash.1415818.n4.nabble.com/My-comparison-between-GNUcash-and-Skrooge-if-anyone-is-interested-tp4657081p4657094.html
> Sent from the GnuCash - User mailing list archive at Nabble.com.
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> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
Many years ago, I sold computerized accounting systems and made a lot of
commissions by focusing on the comparative advantages of my services vs
the competition.

There has been a great deal of time and energy put into doing this
video, which shows comparative advantages.  Yet I am confused by this
effort.  You seem to have used Skrooge for some time and like it.  But,
for some reason, you would prefer to use GC.  However, you seem to want
to make GC to be like Skrooge.  They are two different approaches to
doing personal accounting.  If you like the approach that Skrooge takes,
why change?

Then, you make the statement:

Derek. The point of the video is to demonstrate what most new users would
expect from an accounting program <u>mainly with the user interface</u>.


How do you know what most new users expect?

I am just trying to understand.  Perhaps I am just too dense.

Regards,
Les
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Derek Atkins
In reply to this post by Algeorge
Hi,

Algeorge <[hidden email]> writes:

> Hi I have amended description on video to read:
> /ADDENDUM. I have been advised I had some errors in video review:
> 1..my pronunciation of GNUcash is wrong.

Personally I don't think there is a "correct" way to pronounce it.  I
personally believe both are "correct".  Toe-May-Toe, Toe-Mah-Toe..  ;)

> 2..GNUcash REPORTS one user says: Most of the reports in GnuCash DO include
> a filter for the dates. When you have the report open, click the "gear" icon
> to see the report options. Most reports allow you to specify a date range.
> ME: my version does not show the gear icon.

There is most definitely a Report Options toolbar button.  It's there,
in all versions of GnuCash.  Maybe it looks like a wrench over a piece
of paper in your version?

> 3..GNUcash does not accept standards keys. For example when you have a tab
> open the usual way to close it would be Ctrl-F4, but you must use the close
> button! This inconsistency is consistent through GNUcash and IMHO a bad
> decision from the programmers as its very easy to implement a user friendly
> interface, which would make a real difference to user experience.
> Alistair./

Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close a
window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.

> Derek. The point of the video is to demonstrate what most new users would
> expect from an accounting program <u>mainly with the user interface</u>.
> Unfortunately sometimes programmers ideas can be fixated on how <u>they</u>
> consider the user should work, not on how the user would find it easiest.
> This is an area of GNUcash and I have commented on several times lately and
> in the past, and as an ex programmer myself I know just how easy it is to
> change the user interface.

Patches are always welcome.

> By adding a formula option in the splits similar to Skrooge as shown in
> video, and tweaking the interface would make a big difference in user
> experience IMHO.
> Kind regards,
> Alistair George.

Sorry, I'm not going watch the video.  Can you explain this "formula
option" and how it is different or improved from GnuCash's current
formula evaluation?

> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
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-derek

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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

John Ralls-2

On Sep 27, 2012, at 6:33 AM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi,
>
> Algeorge <[hidden email]> writes:
>> 3..GNUcash does not accept standards keys. For example when you have a tab
>> open the usual way to close it would be Ctrl-F4, but you must use the close
>> button! This inconsistency is consistent through GNUcash and IMHO a bad
>> decision from the programmers as its very easy to implement a user friendly
>> interface, which would make a real difference to user experience.
>> Alistair./
>
> Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close a
> window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
> know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.

Indeed. The standards that we try to follow are the respective platform Human Interface Guidelines. Gnome's [1] specifies ctrl-W for "close".

Regards,
John Ralls

[1] http://developer.gnome.org/hig-book/3.4/input-keyboard.html.en#standard-shortcuts
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Michael Leone
In reply to this post by Derek Atkins
On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 9:33 AM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close a
> window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
> know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.

GnuCash is not a "Linux" program (in the sense that Linux is the only
platform it runs on). It is multi-platform. On a Windows platform, at
least, Control-F4 or Control-W is the "standard" UI command to close a
window, but may not be the same on all the other platforms that
GnuCash runs on (Linux, Mac, etc)..

Ideally, if possible, a multi-platform program should have a
consistent UI. The problem is that (generically speaking)  a UI is not
the same on all platforms. And hence, some keyboard shortcuts (such as
the Control-F4 mentioned) are not going to give the same result on all
platforms. But as long as the menus are the same on all platforms,
that's more important (for consistency). IMO.

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RE: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Dustin Henning
...

-----Original Message-----
From: gnucash-user-bounces+the00dustin=[hidden email]
[mailto:gnucash-user-bounces+the00dustin=[hidden email]] On Behalf Of
Michael Leone
Sent: Thursday, September 27, 2012 09:50
To: [hidden email]
Subject: Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is
interested)

On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 9:33 AM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close
> a window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
> know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.

GnuCash is not a "Linux" program (in the sense that Linux is the only
platform it runs on). It is multi-platform. On a Windows platform, at least,
Control-F4 or Control-W is the "standard" UI command to close a window, but
may not be the same on all the other platforms that GnuCash runs on (Linux,
Mac, etc)..

Ideally, if possible, a multi-platform program should have a consistent UI.
The problem is that (generically speaking)  a UI is not the same on all
platforms. And hence, some keyboard shortcuts (such as the Control-F4
mentioned) are not going to give the same result on all platforms. But as
long as the menus are the same on all platforms, that's more important (for
consistency). IMO.

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I don't recall ever using Control-F4 to close a window.  I believe Control-W
would, but have never tried.  I generally use Alternate-F4, and IIRC, this
works in Fedora.  Control-F4 in Windows closes a tab (even in Firefox), and
I'm not sure whether or not I have tried that on any version of Linux.  I
believe a program should behave consistently with the UI it is running on
(so GnuCash on Linux should have different shortcut keys in some cases than
GnuCash on Windows, Mac, etc.).

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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Michael Leone
In reply to this post by John Ralls-2
On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 9:45 AM, John Ralls <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> On Sep 27, 2012, at 6:33 AM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> Hi,
>>
>> Algeorge <[hidden email]> writes:
>>> 3..GNUcash does not accept standards keys. For example when you have a tab
>>> open the usual way to close it would be Ctrl-F4, but you must use the close
>>> button! This inconsistency is consistent through GNUcash and IMHO a bad
>>> decision from the programmers as its very easy to implement a user friendly
>>> interface, which would make a real difference to user experience.
>>> Alistair./
>>
>> Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close a
>> window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
>> know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.
>
> Indeed. The standards that we try to follow are the respective platform Human Interface Guidelines. Gnome's [1] specifies ctrl-W for "close".

Control-W works on Windows, too. Just tried it on MS Word and IE9.

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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

David Goodenough
In reply to this post by Michael Leone
On Thursday 27 Sep 2012, Michael Leone wrote:

> On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 9:33 AM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close a
> > window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
> > know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.
>
> GnuCash is not a "Linux" program (in the sense that Linux is the only
> platform it runs on). It is multi-platform. On a Windows platform, at
> least, Control-F4 or Control-W is the "standard" UI command to close a
> window, but may not be the same on all the other platforms that
> GnuCash runs on (Linux, Mac, etc)..
Control-F4 goes back to one of the most important things that IBM ever
did - CUA or Common User Access which was a component of SAA or Systems
Application Architecture.  SAA was really the first time that APIs and
libraries became standardised, before that a Fortran or C library on
one platform did not necessarily provide the same functions with the
same semantics and arguments as that on another platform.  IBM had
this problem with the multiple platforms it produced (at least 5 major
ones at the time).

CUA was a standard which said what program "Windows" (not Windows the
the system, but applications with UIs) looked like, what the standard
controls on the window looked like and did, and things like where menus
where to be found.  It was adopted as the style guide for Windows, and
a lot of the thinking behind it came from concepts first proposed by
Xerox Park.  It was also the guide for OS/2 and is the basis for both
GNOME and KDE.  Almost everything now breaks the old rules at least in
part because there are now things what we want to do that the designers
never thought about - but CUA is where it all started.

I have a copy of the original version of the CUA Advanced Interface
Design Reference, SC34-4290-00, dated October 1991.

David
>
> Ideally, if possible, a multi-platform program should have a
> consistent UI. The problem is that (generically speaking)  a UI is not
> the same on all platforms. And hence, some keyboard shortcuts (such as
> the Control-F4 mentioned) are not going to give the same result on all
> platforms. But as long as the menus are the same on all platforms,
> that's more important (for consistency). IMO.

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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Geert Janssens
In reply to this post by Algeorge
Alistaire,

Thank you for your video. I watched it because I'm always curious to
learn how others perceive GnuCash. In my view, it raises some valid
points and at other times it contains some misinterpretations.

1. As others have noted already, most reports where it makes sense will
have a date filter. If you find any that doesn't, you're invited to
report this. Preferably via our bugtracker (bugzilla) [1].

2. Your following comment, related to reports:
 > ME: my version does not show the gear icon.

The icon on the toolbar is theme dependent, but just hovering the mouse
over the icons would have revealed one button to be called "Edit report
options". You don't open a report in your video either. That would have
given me the opportunity to tell you what the icon looks like with the
theme you have chosen. In any case: when a report is open, you can edit
the report options using "Edit->Report Options".

 > 3..GNUcash to make a custom report is much more complex than Skrooge
which
 > has a wizard-like reporting. A report can be generated from a search
as well
 > in Skrooge.

I don't know how Skrooge custom report creation works. Yet I also agree
that this is an area that can be improved in GnuCash. Help is welcome.

4. In the video you generally claim multiple times that the GnuCash
transaction entry interface is "messy" and the Skrooge one is much better.

In my opinion, you are trying to compare two fundamentally different
input systems here. And on top of that, the two applications are using a
fundamentally different basic concept, which heavily influences how data
input should be done: GnuCash does double-entry bookkeeping as you
mention already in your video. Skrooge does not. GnuCash has chosen for
an in-place editing mechanism for rapid data entry. Skrooge uses a model
where you have an overview of entries and an edit panel below. I
personally prefer the GnuCash method. I quickly tested Skrooge, and at
first sight, Skrooge's method of input would require way too much
switching between keyboard and mouse to be efficient for me. I'm saying
this mostly to show that "better" can also mean "preferred" and be a
very personal interpretation.

5. You also point out that you can't double-click to expand a split
transaction. Something that would be easier in Skrooge.

In the video you are double clicking in the description field of the
transaction. That is an editable field, accepting user input (like
typing text, selecting text and so on). Based on the concept of in-place
editing, double clicking on such a text field should select the text.
That is expected behaviour for any editable text field. Changing that
behaviour so that a double click would expand the splits would certainly
cause a lot of other reactions ("double click doesn't work anymore !").
Did you consider this ?

On the other hand, I am open for improvements, so your comment did make
me consider if we can do better. I think we can. A possible improvement
I see here is changing the behaviour of double-clicking (or even
single-clicking in the transfer column if the transaction is multi-split
(by which I mean having more than 2 splits). In such situation, the
splits could be shown automatically. If you like this, I propose you
make a new feature request in either bugzilla or on the GnuCash'
uservoice page [2] so the idea doesn't get lost.

6. There was a moment in the video where you had trouble correcting a
transaction you entered wrongly. You had entered 50 in the deposit
column instead of the withdrawal column. The first issue you raise here
is that while the splits are expanded, you can't change the transaction
amount anymore, but instead you first have to collapse the split list again.

In my opinion, this is mostly a matter of misunderstanding the input
dynamics of GnuCash, again linked to the double-entry concept that is
the basis for all. First off, there is no such thing as a "transaction
total" in GnuCash. This is a concept that you find in qif files and
likely in Skrooge as well in one form or the other. In GNuCash, each
transaction's total equals 0, or they wouldn't be balanced according to
the double-entry principle. So what you see in the deposit or withdrawal
column is not a "transaction total", but the part of the transaction
that is relevant for the account at hand (TSB-00 in your example). For
simple transactions (with only two splits), this equation is simple.
What flows out of one account, flows into the other account. For
multi-split transactions, this becomes less obvious and impossible to
display on one line. Hence an extended view of the whole transaction is
offered in the split transaction view. Once the split list is expanded,
all transaction details other than date and description are in the split
list. At this point you can directly edit each split that is part of the
transaction, including the one in the account at hand, TSB-00 in your
example (third split). There is no need to close the split list first.

Perhaps this can be improved, by allowing to change this value both on
the split level and on the transaction line itself in split view. I
don't know if that would be an improvement or confuse things more and
how hard it would be to implement such a feature. I have no strong
opinion here.

7. Next complaint you make when you enter 50 in the withdrawal column to
correct your mistake. You seem to have to do it twice.

I'm not sure you understand what happened there and why. At first sight
you seem to be misunderstanding the power of GnuCash' data entry model.
There is a column for deposits and one for withdrawals. This double
column notation could also have been done with only one column in which
you enter positive or negative numbers, which is closer to what Skrooge
does. This is a design decision that was made way before I got involved
in GnuCash. The reason why is not relevant here.

But having two columns enables the user to enter a value in both
columns. If you enter a transaction with say 50 deposit and 30
withdrawal, what would you think should GnuCash do with that ? The
choice was made to let GnuCash simplify such a transaction to net 20
deposit. This fits well in the philosophy that each amount field in
GnuCash can do and does calculations. So if you enter a value in both
columns, GnuCash will calculate the difference and retain that as net value.

I deliberately chose two differing amounts in the example. In your
video, you entered 50 deposit (first time) and then 50 withdrawal in an
attempt to correct the transaction, but you left the 50 deposit in
place. So you told GnuCash the transaction split for TSB-00 is now 50
deposit and 50 withdrawal, which it diligently recalculates to 0 (no
value in either column). At that point you enter 50 again in withdrawal
which is then the end result, because no further calculations have to be
done.

8. The main point you wanted to make though was that GnuCash doesn't
save percentages or more generally formulas, when reusing a previous
split transaction.

This is true and could be considered a missing feature in GnuCash. I'm
not sure if this is something that can easily be implemented. I would
fear not, because at first sight it would require changes straight down
into the file format and all the core accounting logic.

9. GnuCash can only export accounts to xml.

Not quite, but close. You can also export reports to html (when the
report is open, there will be a menu item somewhere and a button on the
toolbar).

Other than that, there are not many export options indeed. I guess
nobody volunteered to implement additional exporters. Help is welcome.

10. Similarly, the import options are limited, though there are more
options than for export already.

The same goes here. Notable absent are importers for Skrooge, KMymoney
and other open source finance and accounting programs. Again, nobody
sent in patches to implement this. Help is welcome.

11. You mention (but don't demonstrate) that csv import was not working
well. It's hard to comment on that without additional detail. But here's
a sneak preview: the csv importer has been rewritten in development, so
hopefully this will be a thing of the past once the next major release
is out. (I don't know when that will be, no).

12. Early in the video you make a statement in the line of "Both are
open-source programs, which means you don't have to pay for them". I'm
afraid you are doing the whole open source community a disservice by
phrasing it like that. Both statements are correct independently.
GnuCash is open source (or technically free software, but I deliberately
skip over the difference here). And GnuCash is available free of charge.
But one is not the consequence of the other, by no means. The true value
is that the *source* is freely available, allowing anyone to modify it
at will, review it, send in patches,... That the binary application
itself can be used without having to pay for it is an added bonus, but
not necessarily always like that. It would have been more correct if you
formulated it that way. That would help other new users to make this
distinction correctly early on.

13. Some comments on these statements from your mail:
 > 3..GNUcash does not accept standards keys. For example when you have
a tab
 > open the usual way to close it would be Ctrl-F4, but you must use the
close
 > button! This inconsistency is consistent through GNUcash and IMHO a bad
 > decision from the programmers as its very easy to implement a user
friendly
 > interface, which would make a real difference to user experience.

On what system is Ctrl-F4 "the usual way to close a tab" ? Never mind, I
looked it up [3]. It seems more like a browser convention than a
universally standard key. And even as a browser "standard" it does not
work on Linux/KDE by the way. Ctrl-F4 switches virtual screens in
Linux/KDE and it has been like that as long as I can remember. According
to the same wiki page, a more general default key combination is Ctrl-W.
Have you tried that ?

What other non-standard keys does GnuCash not accept ? Perhaps some of
them can be improved.

 > Derek. The point of the video is to demonstrate what most new users would
 > expect from an accounting program <u>mainly with the user interface</u>.
 > Unfortunately sometimes programmers ideas can be fixated on how
<u>they</u>
 > consider the user should work, not on how the user would find it
easiest.

I dislike the "user knows best" mantra as much as "developer knows
best". GnuCash is a community project in which both users and developers
can formulate ideas and suggestions, which can then be openly discussed.
Both are valuable.

And can I kindly ask you to be careful with using generalizations such
as "most new users" when you are expressing your personal opinion ? I do
value your opinion especially as a new user, but stick to calling it as
such. Let other users chime in if they support it.

 > This is an area of GNUcash and I have commented on several times
lately and
 > in the past, and as an ex programmer myself I know just how easy it is to
 > change the user interface.

The last part of your statement can be considered very arrogant (unless
you meant it jokingly, which I couldn't determine from the sentence
alone). I had to rewrite my answer several times in an attempt to answer
as neutrally as possible.

I'm glad you know how easy it is to change the user interface. If you
are serious about that then I equally seriously invite you to write some
patches for the easy fixes. You will be doing all users a favor.

Geert

[1] http://wiki.gnucash.org/wiki/Bugzilla
[2] http://gnucash.uservoice.com/
[3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Table_of_keyboard_shortcuts
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

John Ralls-2
In reply to this post by Michael Leone

On Sep 27, 2012, at 6:50 AM, Michael Leone <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 9:33 AM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close a
>> window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
>> know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.
>
> GnuCash is not a "Linux" program (in the sense that Linux is the only
> platform it runs on). It is multi-platform. On a Windows platform, at
> least, Control-F4 or Control-W is the "standard" UI command to close a
> window, but may not be the same on all the other platforms that
> GnuCash runs on (Linux, Mac, etc)..
>
> Ideally, if possible, a multi-platform program should have a
> consistent UI. The problem is that (generically speaking)  a UI is not
> the same on all platforms. And hence, some keyboard shortcuts (such as
> the Control-F4 mentioned) are not going to give the same result on all
> platforms. But as long as the menus are the same on all platforms,
> that's more important (for consistency). IMO.

Which is why I said "respective Human Interface Guidelines".

On OS X, the standard shortcut for close is Command-W, and that's what Gnucash uses.

Regards,
John Ralls
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Derek Atkins
In reply to this post by Michael Leone
Michael Leone <[hidden email]> writes:

> On Thu, Sep 27, 2012 at 9:33 AM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> Define "standard" here.  Gnome-Terminal uses Shift-Control-Q to close a
>> window.  Firefox uses Control-W.  Evolution uses Control-W.  I don't
>> know anything that uses Control-F4 on Linux.
>
> GnuCash is not a "Linux" program (in the sense that Linux is the only
> platform it runs on). It is multi-platform. On a Windows platform, at

True.  It started as a Unix-only program.  Then got ported to Mac.  And
then finally, much later, over to Windows.  But it still has roots in
Unix/Linix, and is definitely a GTK/Gnome program and follows the Gnome
HIG.

-derek
--
       Derek Atkins, SB '93 MIT EE, SM '95 MIT Media Laboratory
       Member, MIT Student Information Processing Board  (SIPB)
       URL: http://web.mit.edu/warlord/    PP-ASEL-IA     N1NWH
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

Algeorge
In reply to this post by Geert Janssens
Hi thanks for the succinct reply. I guessed that some might be a tad annoyed, but you should not be, the review is an expression of one persons view - not an exact synopsis.
You are quite correct in suggesting that involvement in the project rather than commenting would make sense and 30 years ago I would already be in boots and all, but my programming ran out about 10 years ago due to health issues.  I have over the years contributed in the public domain however. EG google alistair george software to see some of my stuff if you like.
 
Indeed Ctrl-W works and is a fine substitute for Ctrl-F4 which is used from a Windows base and several programs in Linux eg Firefox, Thunderbird etc. What Im getting at, is many of your adoptees will be ex-windows users who 'expect' things to happen in a certain way. If your interface is systems compliant with Linux GUI, and these methods dont align with windows then a mouseover close button hint for the keystroke combo would be a big help. I used to put hints everywhere in my software which could be disabled later within options. Helps newbies get over the learning curve in a big way.

Doing reports there seems no gear icon visible V2.4.2.
http://www.mediafire.com/view/?5358qe8w9fa932e
But I am aware that reports can be adjusted very slightly from the Edit menu, but for users not to be able to customise their reports and save them is a problem.

You seem to have used Skrooge for some time and like it.  But,
for some reason, you would prefer to use GC.  However, you seem to want
to make GC to be like Skrooge.  They are two different approaches to
doing personal accounting.  If you like the approach that Skrooge takes,
why change?

As mentioned in the review, Skrooge is not good for multi-o/s. When one version wont work with another version thats not good. I omitted to mention that Skrooge is slow. Conversely GNUc is fast and works very well with Win/Mac/Linux without any great ado. I used GNUcash several years ago and really liked it, but found data entry too cumbersome FOR ME so after using it for a couple of months found Skrooge and have used that since. I came back to GNUcash recently because I had liked it, and was hoping that over the years that improvements would have made it better than before.
I have tried almost every accounting program that is freeware/public domain (my oops there too) and personally believe that Skrooge and GNUcash are the best of the bunch.

How do you know what most new users expect?
Point taken. From a Windows GUI perspective I should have said.

Sorry, I'm not going watch the video.  Can you explain this "formula
option" and how it is different or improved from GnuCash's current
formula evaluation?

In Skrooge splits you can enter a formula which works off the total amount entered eg =total*.25  and =total*.75

This is true and could be considered a missing feature in GnuCash. I'm
not sure if this is something that can easily be implemented. I would
fear not, because at first sight it would require changes straight down
into the file format and all the core accounting logic.

You already have a lookup function with Description field, whats to stop same lookup applying a temporary formula to the splits, so that after the new total is entered the splits match the ratio of previous entry? EG you are getting your formula from the previous entries ratios.

The video is my point of view/individual expressed as coming from a Windows platform. Dont take offence, rather glean what usefulness you can out of it.

The reason for my OP was to ensure accuracy in my video, which currently is not. Accordingly, I will edit the video to make it more accurate.
Kind regards,
Alistair.
prl
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Re: My comparison between GNUcash and Skrooge (if anyone is interested)

prl
In reply to this post by Dustin Henning
On 27/09/12 20:17, Dustin Henning wrote:
> ... an animal called a gnu (see gnu.org).  That gnu is
> pronounced new, not gu-new, ...
> Dustin
Anyone who thinks that the "g" in gnu (the animal) isn't pronounced,
clearly hasn't heard Flanders & Swann's The Gnu Song
(http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YqgPyqyh4X4). But then they also sing
about it being "quite the g-nicest piece of g-nature in the zoo". ;)

Peter

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