[GNC-dev] New Account Hierarchy Setup Assistant Questions

David T. sunfish62 at yahoo.com
Wed Sep 12 20:18:09 EDT 2018

> On Sep 12, 2018, at 7:03 PM, John Ralls <jralls at ceridwen.us> wrote:
> Most individuals who aren’t familiar with formal accounting should probably be using something other than GnuCash. If all you want to do is keep track of your credit card, demand bank account (“checking account” for us fogies who remember checks), and a couple of mutual funds then GnuCash is swatting flies with a sledgehammer.

I think that’s a little disingenuous; the user base for GnuCash is broad, as reflected in the mailing list archives. Perhaps we should put a banner across the top of the Home page that reads: “Abandon Hope, All Ye Non-CPAs.”  ;)

> That said, I think the only immutable parameter in setting up a new book is the root account currency, and that can be derived from the locale. How about renaming the NAHSA the "Advanced New Book Assistant" with its own menu item and have File>New just create a bare “Common Accounts” book for the current locale? We could pop up a dialog for opening balances on each of the bank accounts, cash-in-wallet, and the credit card.

Well, I imagine the idea behind the NAHSA was to try and streamline at least the creation of basic account hierarchies; shunting this aspect off to this ANBA then puts most users into the bidn of having to create all their accounts manually. If you take out the “New Book Options” step (and optionally the "Choose Currency” step as well) in the existing NAHSA, well, then, you’re giving users a means to create all those accounts automatically—without burdening them with these Advanced settings. Or, as Graham suggests, have the Advanced options be a secondary popup from the main assistant.

I guess in the meantime, I will attempt to write generic help text that will point out to the user that they can defer decisions on these settings, and cross reference them to (as-yet-unwritten) sections in the new Configuring GnuCash chapter.

> Regards,
> John Ralls

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