In our current accounting software, it takes several steps to reconcile a bank account. First, you open the window for the account or its transactions. Then you choose Reconcile from the Bank menu. It shows a modal dialog: you can’t do anything else until it’s closed. You fill in a reconcile period, then click a button to load items that haven’t yet cleared.
To get the list, the app must check every bank transaction. It may take minutes if it reads them from a hard disk. Even with an SSD it may take many seconds.
One the list is filled, you mark off items that have cleared. The screen calculates an end balance. Most likely you didn’t enter everything that’s on the statement. So, you hit the Reconcile button to save current changes. Close the dialog and add more stuff. Then repeat until the end balance matches the bank statement.
When we wrote that code in the 90s, 9″ to 13″ screens were still the norm. Not many pixels to work with. Computers had 4 to 16 megabytes of RAM: also pretty tight. We used a framework (PowerPlant) which was very limited. We did what we could, using the tools at hand.
TurtleSoft Pro is a chance to redesign the entire interface, thanks to a better framework and much better hardware. Reconciling bank statements will be a whole lot easier.
The Reconcile dialog is now non-modal. If you’re interrupted, you can do something else and come back to finish later. You can reconcile several statements at once without closing the dialog. Just switch to a different period, or hit the Bank Account popup and switch over to a different account.
We also improved the way bank accounts store their data. It makes record loading much faster.
Right now, the new Reconcile dialog is close to completion. It probably needs a couple more days work to finish off all the details.
There are a eleven more action dialogs to do, but most them are very similar. They’ll go faster. The first is always the hardest.
Once Pay Bills and Deposit Funds are working, we can start to use TurtleSoft Pro for our own accounting. At first, we’ll run it side-by-side with the current Goldenseal. It’s a good way to test the app. We can see whether both versions produce the same numbers, and act the same.