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Plans for financial rewrite in 1.5

Hi all;

I would like to submit my plans for financial rewrite and suggest we discuss any expectations.  Existing areas of testing and what we can do to ensure they are still met will be added below.

The financial rewrite will be done in such a way as to allow 1.5 to be released even if it is not complete.  However, we need to try hard to avoid making it a moving target, so hopefully this will provide some guidance there as well.

I have basically scoped out the work required, and come up with the following requirements:

1.  We need to be able to handle arbitrary two-currency or even three currency transactions.  For example, if one has one's books in USD and transferring money from a GBP to an EUR account, this must be supported.

2.  We need to be able to handle per-transaction exchangerates.

3.  For reporting and referential integrity purposes, we need a more unified database structure.  Some reports have test cases, notably the PNL reports.

4.  For COGS tracking, we need to be able to audit how this is done, so as bugs are reported, we can track full changes of state across time.  I have COGS tests btw.

5.  We need to get rid of the silly restriction that ensures you can't have accounts in different places of the ar/ap transaction screen.

So my plan is basically as follows:

1.  Rewrite currency handling, and provide an opportunity to set per-currency allowed exchangerate variances.  This option would be initially hidden by css.  Initially I will just propagate the changes to the defaults table to avoid messing with the old code.  This will be done in trunk and affect the full release both new and old code.

2.  Write a journal entry module.  Basic test cases would be written including on the db-side posting and reversing a balanced transaction, and on the Perl side, attempting to post an unbalanced transaction (and having it fail).  I am not quite sure how to handle this in terms of save points, but this can be figured out.  Extending our current test framework to add this will not be problematic.  After this point, I would really like new reports to include logic against this db model instead of the old acc_trans tables.

3.  Port the invoice module I wrote using PGObject::Simple::Role from wxpos to Moose and move this area over.  We'd remove payment handling since that would be separate.   I don't expect this to be too hard.

4.  We'd write a new payment object model following this.  Once this is done, wxpos can take over some part of the role of a data insert tool for reports development etc.  I expect that the end result will be some of our current sql will be portable, and a lot of stuff will be rewritten.  This may be one of the harder aspects.

5.  The reconciliation module would need to be ported.  This is not likely to be too hard.  Existing reconciliation tests would be expected to pass.

6.  The financial reports would be gone through and ported over.

7.  At that point we'll branch, switch-over, make sure tests work, and pull the version with the removed code back into 1.5.

With the advancements that have taken place in 1.4, I expect 1-3 to happen fairly quickly.  The real unknowns are 4 and 6.

Any feedback?

Best Wishes,
Chris Travers

Efficito:  Hosted Accounting and ERP.  Robust and Flexible.  No vendor lock-in.