Technology news November 2008 | AccountingWEB

Technology news November 2008


BlackBerry Storm takes on the iPhone

Will Apple's iPhone still be the must-have mobile phone next year? The release of the new BlackBerry Storm is creating quite a ... storm! Many are tipping it to become the iPhone killer, especially for business users. Our sister site, provides this report.

Windows 7 beta is due in early 2009

The Windows 7 bandwagon is up and running following recent public appearances of a prototype version at Microsoft developer and hardware conferences in Los Angeles.

Excel Tip: Add visuals to your headers and footers

Since Excel XP it has been possible to insert a picture into a custom header or footer. Our sister site, investigated some potential uses for this facility.Excel's View-Header/Footer menu option will take you to the Header/Footer section of the Page Setup screen. Clicking on the Custom Header or Custom Footer button presents you with three sections: Left, Center and Right.

Office Accounting 2009 is a free upgrade for existing users

Microsoft Office Accounting 2009 is now available for immediate download. Office Accounting is a relatively new addition to the Microsoft Office family, and shares the same look and feel as Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, and other Office applications. Office Accounting 2009 is available in Express and Professional versions for both the United States and United Kingdom markets.

Use add-ons to expand QuickBooks and add to your bottom line

Although QuickBooks is the top choice of accounting software for small businesses, users often discover that the software can't meet all of their financial or business-management needs.
AccountingWEB Life

Sleeter Group honors seven technologies as Awesome Add-Ons

The Sleeter Group network of QuickBooks consultants has announced its selections for the "2009 Awesome Add-ons for QuickBooks." The Sleeter Group presents the awards annually to recognize technologies that help enhance the functionality of the QuickBooks business management software.

Chicago area accounting firm enters alliance with Web designer

Porte Brown LLC and have announced a strategic alliance to drive new growth opportunities for both companies. The alliance enables both firms to improve productivity while reducing costs for clients by combining the expertise of an accounting firm and IT provider with Web design professionals. CPA firm Porte Brown LLC, located in Elk Grove Village, IL, expanded its accounting services recently to include an IT consulting branch to aid in the selection of technology to support the business needs of new and existing clients throughout the Chicago area.

Excel 2007: Use these three techniques to turbo charge filtering

By David Ringstrom, CPADid you know Excel 2007 has a hidden command that enables you to filter a list with just one mouse click? And that there are two ways to sum just the visible rows in your filtered list? Read on to discover these time saving techniques.Not sure how to filter? Read Excel Filtering 101. 

Business IT tips: Five ways to make your reports stand out

Simple and short are best when it comes to reports, according to the advice in our latest technology tips from Business IT Guides, courtesy of our sister site, Use color sparingly: A report is about content, so bear this in mind. Use color to enhance the report but remember that the presentation will be a distant memory if it is not well written.2. Cut, cut, and cut again.

Five Business IT tips to make your firm a green champion

Our sister site,, has shared with us some suggestions for greener use of technology from Business IT Guide.1. Install Local Cooling, a freeware application that lowers your computer's power consumption and allows you to customize the amount of power you want to save. It tells you how much KWh you save and even the equivalent of trees.2. Use a laptop rather than a desktop. Desktops, especially Intel P4 computers shipped between 2003 and 2005, are notorious for being power drains.

BigTime wins top award from the Sleeter Group of QuickBooks professionals

BigTime, a web-based time and billing system for small businesses, has been selected to receive this year's "Awesome Add-On" award by the Sleeter Group, the nation's largest community of QuickBooks professionals. BigTime is the flagship product for Edison's Attic in Chicago."We continually study the marketplace of add-on solutions," said Doug Sleeter, founder of The Sleeter Group. "BigTime was chosen this year as one of the best add-ons because of its superior integration with QuickBooks, its overall design, outstanding features, and ease of implementation," he added.

Product analysis: IntelliTax

The tax preparation software world just got a little smaller, as CCH Small Firm Services (SFS) has purchased Intellitax. All renewing Intellitax users will be transitioned to TaxWise at no additional cost for the 2009 tax season. While IntelliTax had about 4,000 users, TaxWise and ATX have over 45,000 users. SFS stands ready to help all Intellitax users migrate by immediately providing a free copy of the 2007 version of the software, as well as the 2008 program when available.

Product analysis: Great Tax

Enhancements to Great Tax in 2008 bolster the application's speed and efficiency, and include an Auto Upgrade feature that allows users to set up their own schedule to receive program upgrades. Numerous other features have been added to improve functionality and make data entry easier, according to Cathy LaViolette, Product Manager at Greatland Corporation, maker of the software.

Product analysis: GoSystem Tax ES

Part of the Enterprise Suite from Thomson Reuters, GoSystem Tax ES is a browser-based tax preparation software that you can access from anywhere that you have an Internet connection. However, brower-based doesn't mean limited functionality. GoSystem includes more than 2,500 federal and state forms, and allows you to import client data from general ledger programs such as QuickBooks, balances from Engagement ES, and spreadsheets.

Product analysis: ATX 1040

This CCH Small Firm Services offering is perfect for CPAs on a budget, as well as anyone who likes to work directly with tax forms. The $410 program allows unlimited federal returns, and returns for up to three states. E-filing is available on an a la carte basis for $3 per federal return and $2 per state return. However, you may prefer ATX 1040 Office for $635, which includes all states, cities, and municipalities. This version also includes includes 100 e-filed returns, plus integration with Kleinrock reference materials.

Product analysis: Lacerte

Lacerte seems to be focusing attention on making its product as user friendly as possible. Installing the program is easy, even for newcomers. The screens and the workflow feel natural, following the logical order that would ordinarily occur in the process of preparing a return. Intuit seems focused on ways to help accountants be more productive so they can prepare more returns, with greater accuracy, in less time, and using less paper.What is new this year for Lacerte?

Product analysis: UltraTax CS

The aptly named UltraTax program ($2,200) is part of the CS Professional Suite offered by Thomson Reuters. The UltraTax user interface groups related forms and input screens into sets of tabs, so you can quickly navigate through event the most complex returns.

Product review:: Intuit ProSeries

Those of us dinosaurs who've been knocking around the tax field for decades have probably worked with ProSeries off and on since the DOS days when it was still called TurboTax. They were one of the first affordable, in-house products available, while many tax offices were still sending out their batched files to Computax, Unitax and Dynatax. If you recognize those names, shhhh, don't let on. It will give away your age. Like you, I've had a love-hate relationship with ProSeries/TurboTax.

Product analysis: Drake Tax Software

Several years ago, speaking at a Nevada Society of Enrolled Agents seminar, I was privileged to be present when IRS gave out awards for the top e-filing firms in Nevada. Three awards were given – small firms, medium firms and high-volume e-filers.What really impressed me at the time was that each and every winner had been using Drake Software. Consider how impressive that must have been if I still remember it 3 or 4 years later.Since then, I've stayed in touch with their sales manager and referred my EA Exam Review students and other tax professionals to the firm.

Product analysis: TaxWise

New for 2008 in TaxWise from CCH Small Firms Division are e-filing capability for forms 990, new e-filing capabilities for business forms, and an Easy Interview desktop feature that allows staff to input basic information for a simple return which is then sent to a tax professional. IRS Reg. 7216 requirement is automated throughout the program, and users have a choice of automatic or manual updates.


Premium content is currently locked