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The paper is about developing a budgeting application which is enhanced with a receipt scanning feature. Budgeting is an important tool for anyone wishing to control and track their expenses and the addition of a receipt scanning feature encourages a user to continue using the application, as it reduces the amount of manual data entry required. Since the study is about developing a software artifact design and creation research strategy will be used which consists of five steps awareness, suggestion, development, evaluation and conclusion. It is hoped the application will reduce the burden of manually entering items in the application which will increase the usage of the application.
In a population there’s a certain group of people who care about how much money they spend, because of the inflation and increasing living cost.
Therefore they draw up monthly budgets to keep track and see how they are going to spend their money to prevent them from falling into unwanted debits . Some of the benefits of budgeting are reducing financial stress by providing a financial plan, showing you areas where you can reduce spending and increase savings to achieve your goals. As such because of the benefits that drawing up a budget or keeping a house hold account book, it would be greatly beneficial to consumers to have an app which would help them to budget and automatically capture information from receipts which would be used to help them keep track of their expenses. According to a survey done by Kerbal et al. 90. 8% of the participants stated that they would use a household account book (budget) if the receipt capturing could be done automatically.
The focus of this research is to develop a budget application (App) focused on the budget oriented people, targeting few supermarkets in Windhoek with a receipt scanner which would help to keep track of expenses. This proposed budget app would help people to draw up monthly budgets and allow them to see whether they are sticking to their budgets or not. Background of the studyFinancial education has existed for years but a large portion of the population is still financially illiterate and because of this they end up falling into debt. In America one of the world’s largest economies 1. 5 million consumers filed for personal bankruptcy and in Namibia According to the latest private sector credit extension (PSCE) report, household debt has increased by 195% over a decade. As we can see debt exists in any country but if people have some financial education they will be better at managing their finances and thereby enable them to get out of debt or prevent them from falling in debt.
One of those tools that can be used to help with this is budgeting. According to the document “Towards Economic and Financial Literacy: A Final Report” a person can build a better financial future for oneself and for their family by budgeting. Budgeting can be as simple as using pen and paper or using budgeting software. Budgeting should be simple so that it can be repeated daily but the earliest budgeting software require users to enter data manually every day and because of that some users would stop using it after a couple of days.
The latest budgeting applications however have reduced some of the need for manual data entry, for example if a person purchases items with their phone those items are added to the budgeting application. Statement of the problemIn the beginning when people used to budget they would use a pen and paper to draw up their budget which entails writing down their income, expenses and how they expect to spend their money but this was a lengthy and arduous process because of this many people choose not to budget and in turn missed out in the benefits of budgeting. Nowadays there are budgeting applications which help with this process but even with these applications there is still a lot of manual data entry. In Summary there is a need for a budgeting application which can reduce the manual data entry as much as possible which would increase the usage of such an application.
To develop a web application that will help users to easily create and maintain a budget. The application will have two main components: The first will function as a normal traditional budgeting tool with these core features: A user can enter their monthly income· Purchases can be entered and assigned to categories The second component targets the entering of purchase information based on the phones camera and computer vision (API), the system will offer automatic receipt capturing. Significance of the studyBudgeting has many benefits it can help prevent an individual from falling into unwanted debt, it can help them save money in order for them to go on their dream vacation etc. The aim of this study is to encourage users to budget or for those who budget to continue budgeting by reducing some of the manual data entry required in a budgeting application with a receipt scanner which would increase the usage of such an application. Limitation of the studyOCR depends on many factors in order to get good results, these are quality of the paper, how the text is printed, quality of the printed text and the quality of the image taken. This is especially true for receipts where different supermarkets use different kinds of paper and where the quality of the printed text also differs. So because of the limitations of OCR and the unique challenges presented by receipts it might not be possible to capture all receipts or for some poor results might be returned.
Back in 2008 Augusto et al  presented a budgeting tool which allows users to enter their income and expenses into 10 predefined monthly expenditures and a bar graph illustrates visually the user’s expenditures. The Budgeting tool is also used as a debit card to make purchases, and by doing so keeping track of all the user’s expenses automatically. However what it doesn’t have is automatic receipt capturing which would also help with keeping track of the user’s expenses automatically. On the other hand Janssen et al show the basic feasibility of extracting information from single sided documents captured by a cellphone camera. They illustrate their approach using a grocery store receipt but only certain elements were considered whereas individual items and their associated prices were not. Marco Ziegaus shows the development of a proof of concept system that can recognize text on supermarket receipts and extract the information printed on the receipts. This information can then be used for consumer oriented applications such as for automatic budgeting and categorizing everyday expenses. They however use a flatbed scanner instead of a phones camera which is what is used in this proposed study.
Finally, the closest work to this study is by Kerber et al where they present a digital household account book which is enhanced with automatic receipt capturing. As receipts have no uniform format they analyzed German receipts in order to capture the content of receipts. This is different from this papers approach where Namibian receipts are analyzed in order to capture their content.
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