Alan calculates that this is a great little notepad for simple number work
If you often find yourself doing calculations in Spotlight, maybe you stretch its usefulness beyond what is reasonable, as I do, to avoid working in an app like Excel. I’ve got into the habit of using Soulver, which is a neat notepad for dealing with numbers. Like a full-blown spreadsheet app, Soulver can keep a running total of numbers (it does so automatically in the righthand column of a document). You then write in the left-hand side, mixing numbers and words in fairly natural language, or at least similar to the way you might jot things down on paper, rather than expressing things as arcane functions found in Numbers or other spreadsheet apps.
You can store values in variables to use throughout your document, which enables experimentation with different scenarios. Alternatively, you might duplicate a document and then adjust variables at the top of each copy to work out, side by side, the total cost of a holiday with a variety of hotel and flight costs. Different currencies can be used in a calculation, and the result expressed even in some other currency; that could come in handy if you’re keeping track of expenses incurred during a business trip around Europe, for example.
Soulver is not just for financial data; like a spreadsheet app, many more mathematical features are there if you need them. Both the Mac version (£8.99) and the iOS version (£3.99) sync to iCloud, so you can use it to track payments on iPhone and then do more with those figures on your Mac.
Soulver is ideal if you regularly need to run quick and simple calculations.