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BucketWise is a web-based personal finance application, with the lofty goals of simplifying budgeting and avoiding debt. What does this all mean?
- “web-based”. You access the program via your web-browser. Unless someone is hosting the program for you on a server somewhere, this means you’ll need to find a place to actually run the server-side program (it can be run locally; see the README.rdoc file).
- “personal.” This is not for managing your business. It’s for you. Your money. It has no features for managing all the details of your company’s finances, and it never will.
- “finance.” Specially, it’s for tracking your bank accounts, credit-card accounts, and so forth. It currently (v1.0.0) has no features for tracking investment portfolios or other such stuff; maybe it never will. I certainly don’t need those features.
- “application.” This is an application, not a service. Maybe someday someone will run it on a server somewhere and charge people money for it; whatever, that’s fine with me. At that point, they would be providing access to this application as a service. For now, it’s just the application; you have to figure out where to run it.
- “simplifying budgeting”. BucketWise implements a version of the envelope system of budgeting. It’s a very flexible way to discover and constrain your spending habits, without requiring a lot of thinking up front. I like it. Maybe you will, too.
- “avoiding debt”. Too many people wield credit cards as if they were free money. BucketWise tries to discourage that by helping you assign real dollars to each credit card purchase. It helps prevent you from spending money you don’t actually have.
There are two videos that have been made, demonstrating these features:
- Buckets Preview #1 (2:42, 5M, QuickTime) (“Buckets” was what BucketWise was called at the time this video was made.)
- BucketWise Preview #2 (5:30, 10M, QuickTime).
In both cases, note that the UI may be very unlike what BucketWise currently sports, since BucketWise is an eternal work in progress. If nothing else, though, the videos may help you understand BucketWise’s philosophy.
If that all sounds interesting to you, have a read on the Getting Started page for information on getting BucketWise running locally. If you’re interested in contributing to BucketWise, the Development page is for you.