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Shameless plug - I wrote a SaaS that's pretty much just a SMS <-> google spreadsheet mapper. https://byobudget.com

That said, yours looks a lot more full-fledged than mine. Mine can only record transactions and then send a response (which it reads calculated from the spreadsheet based on the last transaction, which I'm very proud of for the level of customization it provides), but I've been noodling over how to add custom commands.

FTR, I shameless stole my idea from an earlier HN comment sometime last year; if you're considering implementing a SMS/spreadsheet system yourself, I'd check it out https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=17313321

Edit: I really am happy with my solution because it basically lets you take any google sheets based transaction you have and add SMS as an input method.

Edit 2: Sorry if you encounter any rough edges if you go to use BYOB - I haven't marketed it widely, but my wife and I do use it. Any feedback is very much welcome.

Edit 3: If you don't want the manual import of transactions (but do want the freedom of a spreadsheet) then I'd suggest TillerHQ instead https://tillerhq.com I haven't used em, but I came across them when doing research before launching BYOB.




haha, I actually saw that comment shortly after I wrote the first version of mine. Did some searching on HN to see if anyone else was doing something like this -- it made me feel a little less weird about my idea to know that someone else was, in fact. Cool to know that you are too!

I also like that yours is generic -- I'm curious what other use cases might exist for an SMS based query system for sheets.

Another minor feature I added was lists so that my partner and I could keep our shopping list synchronized -- I could imagine it working well for that too


Well, I like the idea of timer to watch stuff. I could see it being a 3-7 day timer to trigger a text if you haven't updated the spreadsheet in some way.

As for queries, I'd like to add queries to get the categories and query the amount left in a category. But that's more special casing - maybe it's a purist in me. I'm leaning towards letting people define a keywords area with three columns - the first is the word to trigger the command, the second is where anything after the keyword gets put (in some sanitized manner - like stripping whitespace) and the third would be the place to read the response.

I like the shopping list idea.

I haven't really taken the time to polish up some operational bits (we have really good logging/metrics where I work, and I miss it) or to market it though. So it's basically just my wife and I right now. I think the push to get something shipped (and my perfectionism) drained me, but reading this stories comments has been invigorating, and I an probably go about improving things in a more measured manner.


WoW, your app is exactly what I had been looking for, most budgeting apps have gorgeous Graphs and stats but keeping it updated is really annoying, using SMS as the medium is genius. In fact, when I got some free time I'm going to make my own version but with WhatsApp or telegram on top of the SMS.


Yeah, I'm thinking something along the lines of using Bot Framework maybe to maximize the number of possible message platforms. You could also easily see it as a "skill" for Alexa/Cortana/et al, too.


You can make a google form that accepts the same information and then stores it in a sheet. You put a link to the form on your phone. Easy, free, integrated solution.




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