scheduled transactions

Derek Atkins warlord@MIT.EDU
24 Apr 2002 13:14:35 -0400

Aaron Peromsik <> writes:

> Derek Atkins wrote...
> da> I think the major differences are whether the values are fixed or
> da> variable.  Fixed-value transactions should probably be auto-posted
> da> (maybe with a configuration option to turn it off?) and variable-value
> da> transactions should require user-input.
> da> 
> da> Don't forget that variable-value transactions probably need to allow
> da> the user to set the actual transaction date, too (to catch those
> da> pesky procrastinators ;)
> Derek,
> So what you're saying is, I need to know in advance that I plan to
> procrastinate with respect to a specific bill, so I can make the date
> a variable, and then I need to use a considerably more complicated
> entry UI just so that I can put in the right date. Did I read you right?

No, that's not (quite) what I'm saying.  What I'm saying is that there
are two types of bills, fixed bills and variable bills.  A fixed bill
is, in my mind, an 'automated payment' of the same amount every month.
For example, a mortgage or rent payment, cable bill, monthly parking
permit, etc.  A variable bill is a recurring bill that might have a
different value every month, such as a phone bill, credit card
payment, etc.

In my mind, a fixed bill should be automatically posted unless you
turn off automatic posting.  If you plan to procrastinate on a fixed
bill, then you either need to tell Gnucash ahead of time, or you need
to go and change the date manually after the fact.  A variable bill
cannot be automatically posted, because you need to specify the amount
being posted.

When you post the scheduled transactions, you should have the ability
to set the post date (it should default to either "today" or the
scheduled date, most likely).  Obviously the fixed, auto-post
transactions should post with the scheduled date, and you can go
change it in the register.

> My local phone bill is also exactly the same every month, but when I
> get around to actually paying it depends on a variety of
> factors. Still, entry should be as simple as "yes, do it" and then
> maybe editing the date in the register.

That's fine.  You would turn off auto-post, so you can specify
manually when to post this transaction.  It would also supply you a
date-chooser so you can specify the posting date.  If you choose to
ignore the post date, you can reset manually in the register.  So,
yes, this is still a simple "yes, do it" because you manually turned
off the auto-post feature.

> (My paycheck is almost exactly the same every two weeks, and I agree
> with Tim that it should auto-enter since I have direct deposit.)

What do you mean, "almost exactly the same"?  If it's not exactly the
same then it CANNOT auto-post, because it needs user-input to figure
out _how much_ to post.  That's my point: if you have a variable
transaction, it cannot auto post.  Auto-post means "no user


       Derek Atkins, SB '93 MIT EE, SM '95 MIT Media Laboratory
       Member, MIT Student Information Processing Board  (SIPB)
       URL:    PP-ASEL-IA     N1NWH
       warlord@MIT.EDU                        PGP key available