What's Taking so Long on the Buckets Mobile App?
All you Buckets users are very patient! The mobile app has been in development for a long, long time. And it’s fair for you to ask: “what’s taking so long?” Hopefully the post will shed some light on the process.
Buckets is a part-time project. I also have a full-time job, a family, SimpleFIN, a pandemic, etc… I really enjoy the time I get to spend working on making Buckets. And every time my wife and I sit down to use it, I’m reminded how much I like Buckets as a tool for doing our budget. I don’t get as much time as I’d like, though thankfully I do get quite a bit of time, considering all of life’s demands.
When I do spend time on Buckets, the mobile app is at the top of my list. Literally. Here’s the list that’s been on my desk for a while:
I’ve never made a mobile app before, and I’m walking up the app-making learning curve as I work on Buckets mobile. So then…
Why not let someone else make the mobile app?¶
Several generous developers have offered to make or help make a mobile app. I don’t have money to pay another developer, so that leaves two other options:
- An open source, community-built mobile app
- Make the app myself
I’m not opposed to the community-built app, and I’m not opposed to people making tools to interface with Buckets or budget files. It makes me happy to see programmers writing scripts to import transactions or automatically categorize them. But right now it would difficult for an open source app to work with the desktop app in an always-backward-compatible way because, other than the budget file, there’s no shared code to be used as a basis for a mobile app and desktop app.
This lack of desktop-mobile shared code is the biggest reason why progress is slow and where I spend most of my time.
Growing a Shared Basis¶
- Computing your budget’s Rain amount
- Matching imported transactions to existing transactions
- Determining self-debt
The process looks a bit like this now:
It’s slow, but the mobile app is coming!