Software

Best Tax Software for 2014: TaxACT vs TurboTax vs H&R Block

All the best tax preparation software companies have released their 2014 versions. After reviewing 15 online tax software programs and using the top products, I found three products worth recommending this year. The three best tax software products for 2014 are: 1. TurboTax 2. H&R Block 3. TaxACT Quick Update: I just filed my 2013 tax return for …

So, What Free Software Do You Use?

On Sunday, I reviewed the worthwhile book Getting Organized in the Google Era by Douglas C. Merrill, during which I mentioned that most of the productivity software I use for my work is free. A few people emailed me and asked about them, including this one (which made me smile) from Dot: As much writing …

Categories: Software

Amazon’s 25 Software Bestsellers – And Their Free Equivalents

A few days ago, I was browsing through Amazon’s software category when I stumbled upon the

Categories: Frugality, Software

Nine Pieces of Free Software I Use Every Day

I spend hours each day at one of my two computers – either my desktop Mac (a Mac Mini – the most cost-effective type of Mac) or my Linux laptop. As a result, finding a core set of software to use for the things that I do every day is vital. Also important to me …

25 Useful Pieces Of Free (and Open) Software for Macs

About two years ago, I wrote a very popular piece for The Simple Dollar called 30 useful Pieces Of Free (and Open) Software for Windows. In it, I talked about how I had a new Dell laptop and that I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on additional software for it, so I …

Categories: Computers, Software

Online Personal Finance Analysis Tools: Some Thoughts on Quicken Online, Mint, and Wesabe

There’s been a lot of discussion lately about web-based personal finance tracking tools, especially since Intuit launched Quicken Online and Mint won the TechCrunch 40 award. These conversations have led in many directions – clearly these tools are useful, but are they worth the security concerns? Let’s take a look at what these tools have …

Categories: Software, Websites

Ten Things I Think I Think About Quicken 2008

After my recent discussion about why I’d rather use a spreadsheet rather than Quicken or Microsoft Money, several readers challenged me to actually fire up both packages and see if they’re really as cumbersome as I thought. So I installed and fired up Quicken Premier 2008 and started making a list of my thoughts as …

Categories: Software

The Good And Bad Of Microsoft Money And Quicken – And Why I Usually Point People Towards A Spreadsheet Instead

Perhaps the most common question I get from readers is what about Microsoft Money and/or Quicken? Do I recommend them to people, and if so, which one of the two do I really recommend? First of all, Money and Quicken are both excellent packages for what they do. If you want to track your personal …

Categories: Software

How To Calculate APR And APY In A Spreadsheet – And Why You Would Want To

In the past, I gave a brief discussion about the difference between APR and APY when talking about simple and compound interest. What I didn’t explain, however, is why the difference is important and how you can use Microsoft Excel to calculate one from the other. First, let’s define the two: APR (annual percentage rate) …

Thoughts On Personal Finance Software Packages – And Why I Don’t Use Them

I recently had a lengthy IM conversation with a reader who asked me what financial software I use to keep my finances in order. I responded with the truth: I use Microsoft Excel (I received Office as a gift – otherwise, I would use OpenOffice Calc). This launched a lengthy discussion about various software packages …

Categories: Software

Live Free: Seven Pieces Of Open Source Software That Transformed My Life

As I’ve become more and more interested in the open source movement, I’ve gradually replaced almost all of my closed source software with open source applications. At first, I bought in because of the “free your money” aspect. Open source software doesn’t cost a penny – just go download it. It’s also reasonably safe, given …

Categories: Frugality, Software

How Dave DeSmidt Lost $179,000 Out Of His Retirement Account In One Day – And Why A Few Reforms Are Needed At Brokerages

On the morning of October 23, 2006, Dave DeSmidt had $179,000.23 in his 401(k). He was on a business trip to China when the unthinkable happened: someone logged onto his brokerage account, registered a new checking account, and then requested a distribution into that account. By the time Dave checked his brokerage account a few …

Categories: Investing, Software

30 Essential Pieces Of Free (and Open) Software for Windows

Recently, I received a fresh new laptop from Dell. Upon receiving it, I did the traditional “installation of Windows from scratch” on it to remove a lot of the garbage that is preinstalled on Dells. Then I got really busy installing tons of great software that takes care of pretty much every software need I …

What’s Wrong – And What’s Right – With Wesabe

On Friday, Wesabe was launched to the public. For those unaware, Wesabe is a community-based (meaning similar to flickr or 43things) personal finance site that allows people to track financial information and share money ideas. From their extensive: Wesabe is a community of people who share our experiences with our money so we can help …

Categories: Computers, Software

How I Saved $300 On Software This Year

I used to be an active follower of Microsoft Office and McAfee, but the constant upgrade cycle and payments to continue getting antivirus updates got old. So I did some research and discovered free, top-notch alternatives to these money hogs for use at home. Instead of using Microsoft Office, I’ve switched to using Open Office. …

Categories: Saving Money, Software

14 Ways Your Computer Can Put Money In Your Pocket

If you’re reading this, you likely have ready access to a computer with an internet connection. Most people are aware of a few ways that a personal computer can save them money, but there really are a plethora of simple, ethical ways that anyone can use a computer to make a few dollars. Here is …