One more thing…. Browser Snapshot and file attachments

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There’s one feature of the new Wesabe Firefox Uploader that’s worth a separate mention: Browser Snapshot.

If you’ve ever bought anything or paid any bill online, you know that at the end of the checkout process, you get a page with a confirmation number that says, “Please print this page for your records.” Like a fool, I used to do that all the time, and now I have a closet full of folded-up printouts that I almost never look at again — unless a dispute comes up, I need to file an expense report, or when tax time rolls around. The times when I have needed those printouts, they’ve been invaluable, but printing them, storing them, and finding them again has always been a huge pain.

snapshotThe Firefox Uploader adds a new feature to Wesabe designed to make storing receipts and confirmation pages much easier. In the Firefox Uploader, you can select the Browser Snapshot feature whenever you land on one of those receipt pages. The Uploader will take a full screenshot for you, then let you upload the screenshot directly to your Wesabe account. Once the transaction hits your account, you can attach the screenshot to the transaction with a single click, and it will be stored along with your account records. If you ever need that receipt, just search your accounts and there the full receipt page is.

Of course, you shouldn’t have to be using Firefox to do this, so we’ve added file attachments to every transaction. Just click “Advanced” under the transaction edit, and you can upload any file related to that transaction to the site (2MB max per file, 1GB max per user). During testing, we’ve found great uses for this — travel receipts to make expense reports easier, product manuals in PDF form, even menus from the restaurants you visited.

(Because of the way our privacy wall works, attachments are currently stored on disk in unencrypted form. We’re planning an update shortly to correct this, and when we launch it, any attachments you’ve uploaded will automatically be encrypted. We wanted to make sure to get this out with the Firefox Uploader release, but we also want to build the encryption feature taking full advantage of the protections the privacy wall offers, and that will take a little more time.)

We’ve been using file attachments internally for a while now, and it’s a great feature for cleaning up clutter and making it dead simple to get organized. Give it a try, either with the Firefox Uploader or just using the web site directly, and you’ll see how helpful it can be.

7 Responses to “One more thing…. Browser Snapshot and file attachments”

  1. Woody Says:

    How about making it save to PNG? The JPG quality looks ok, but “muddy”. just a thought?

  2. Dan Peterson Says:

    The whole package is just awesome guys, thank you soooo much for doing this! I was already really excited after reading about the FF plugin for uploading (and watching the video of course) and this just put the cherry on top. I currently print as PDF all my online receipts rather than printing on paper so I already have them all ready to upload and attach :), this just makes it sooo much easier from now on. I think I’ll wait until they get encrypted but just knowing it’s there makes me a very happy camper.

  3. Dan Peterson Says:

    Also, have you considered doing the “browser snapshots” as PDFs instead of JPGs? That would reproduce a whole lot better for when we do need to print one, it would make the files a bit larger but not so much that I can see it becoming an issue for anyone. I’d greatly appreciate it.

  4. Dan Peterson Says:

    Really sorry for the multiple posts, I keep thinking of things to add and you don’t support editing of comments. The other great advantage to PDFs is that you can make them searchable so if I need to find something and it’s either not named or tagged properly in the entry we could still find it with a simple search. I think that would be another “killer” feature for Wesabe.

  5. Chris Roos Says:

    Excellent work guys. I’ve wanted something like this for ever. I was even intending to create it myself at some point. Luckily, you just saved me some work. Grand.

  6. Marc Hedlund Says:

    @Woody: We’ve added support for PNG snapshots. If you go to Tools -> Add-Ons in Firefox, then choose “Find Updates,” you’ll be prompted to install the 1.0.1 version of the Uploader. PNG is a selection in the Options pane.

    @Dan: PDFs are a great idea, especially since they would make it easy to search, as you say. It looks like there isn’t a quick and easy way to add this (like there was for PNG), but we’ll look into what it would take.

    Thanks for the suggestions!

  7. Eugene Says:

    How about just storing the page as an *.MHT web-archive? I never print out the invoices. I save the confirmation pages as MHT archives. So basically anyone can do that, however, I admit that not everyone knows of their browser features and prefer following the instructions from the screen. To make it even easier, the “Print Screen” key has always been on the keybord since the 80’s. It captures to the clipboard the BMP image of watever is on the screen, and all you have to do is paste the BMP file into the Paint application.

    As a businessman, however, I agree that’s a good marketing solution, anyway.

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