16 October 2016
Phew! That was a lot of work. I spent today drawing up an ER diagram for the database to power the site and building all of the tables. I think everything is ready to go, but the only way to find out is to start using the database and hope that I didn't forget something or set one of the fields to be too small. It's always a challenge trying to build out a database because there's so many unknown factors. The next stage is going to be writing the PHP to get everything working. First I'll target the basic account management aspects and hopefully get those working. If things keep moving like this I might have a working prototype by Thanksgiving.
9 October 2016
Man, it's been a busy day. I've built out all of the static content pages in the site and even gone so far as to develop custom error pages. If you want to see a custom error page, go to https://scoutmoney.org/badpage.html, or any other random page you can think of.
I do still have a lot of work to do on the site though. At the moment the only thing here is a framework to build on. I still have to build all of the MySQL databases for the site and code all of the PHP necessary to utilize the databases. The good news is that the holidays are coming up, so hopefully I'll have some free time on the weekends to work on this.
I think I'm going to go enjoy the last few hours of my weekend
8 October 2016
Development has begun on scoutmoney.org. My vision for this website is to create a site that can support the needs of Scout Units across the US for tracking the unit funds.
Through my years of working with the Boy Scouts I have found that units are always in need of some sort of financial management software to track funds. There are options out there, such as Quickbooks, but they can really be cost prohibitive for smaller units. Then there are things like custom Excel spreadsheets, but those are local files that aren't accessbile from anywhere and don't allow leaders in the unit to look at the finances at any time, they have to reach out to the treasurer for the information. With a website, the information is readily available to everyone at any time, from anywhere.
Another downside to other solutions is that they don't allow for the special use cases that scout units typically need. For instance, typically a scout unit will have account information for the unit itself, but will also maintain a sub-account for each scout in the unit where money earned from fundraising activities is credited. My plan for this site is to eventually support all of these special cases and even be able to track inventory of things like popcorn and camp cards.
Have patience, this is a hobby, not a full-time job, so it's going to take some time to complete.