I need YOUR advice please

I need YOUR advice please
December 05 22:58 2018 Print This Article

My history of crypto portfolio tracking is a long and complicated one

When I first started dabbling in more than just one or two altcoins, I created an Excel spreadsheet to track my portfolio. The early spreadsheets look very funny to me now, the oldest ones had hardly any cryptos on them!

It’s hard for me to believe that my portfolio (now over 70 coins/tokens – most of which are worth very nearly nothing thanks to the bears!) was once only 12 strong.

I need YOUR advice please

After creating my initial portfolio trackers I also experimented with creating Excel crypto price prediction tools. This is what my price prediction tools looked like:

…and an earlier version:

They were pretty tricky to do, and sort of worked, but every day of the approximately four month period they covered required several cells that looked something like this in order to work:

They were an absolute nightmare to keep running trouble free, and ultimately they were not useful enough to justify the effort of maintaining them. They also took a while to load and a surprising amount of computer processing ability.

The era of automation

Working with crypto prediction in Excel allowed me to realise that I could automate my portfolio trackers far more.

I’ve never been afraid of getting my hands dirty in Excel. I’ve made some rather complex spreadsheets, but almost always for work. I like Excel, but it’s not the kind of thing that I do for fun at home. Not normally anyway.

{ Quick off the topic point: does anyone remember the hidden flight simulator style thing that was built into Excel 97? I STILL think that was pretty cool, especially the text they had scrolling on the wall that you could find in the centre of the area! Excel isn’t fun like that these days. 😢 }

Long story short; slowly I started to automate my portfolio trackers. I let them do more and more of the background calculations and inputs for me and then I started adding nice-to-haves: things like colour changing cells that told me which coins were priorities to buy, multiple fiat currency equivalents and pie charts, lots of pie charts of every increasing complexity!


Sorry, I just love pie charts.

I refuse to link wallet or exchange APIs to any program or app (I’m far too much of a control freak for that), but I realised that as my number of coins continued to grow, I needed a way to input their spot prices automatically. It’s okay to enter 10 prices manually, but 50+ is no joke!

So I started scraping websites, grabbing all the data I needed, filtering and parsing it where necessary. This was a little “clunky”, but it worked well. Unfortunately as the number of coins grew, so did the problems. Little website anomalies would throw my scraping out (especially coins that share the same ticker symbol – which is what I used as a primary key/identifier for each crypto). I realised I would need to automate better. I put it off as long as I could because redesigning a massive multi-sheet spreadsheet from scratch is no joke. (My spreadsheets had about 8 sheets in total.)

At the same time I knew that my MS Office 365 subscription would expire a few months down the line. I’d run it for two years because I got it free with a phone contract, but I didn’t feel like paying that much of my own money for something which I could get a free equivalent of. So I decided to start entirely afresh and migrated my portfolio tracker over to Google Sheets. Google Sheets is obviously very different to Excel and my experience with it was almost zero when I changed over. This meant a steep learning curve. Luckily I soon found the “CRYPTOFINANCE” plug-in, which I eventually got working properly after a few days of fighting it. It worked beautifully, my spreadsheets ran fast and were very stable. They always updated themselves automatically as soon as you opened them. I was delighted.

CRYPTOFINANCE works by running the coinmarketcap API. At least it did until yesterday. Yesterday CMC changed their free API, integrating it into their paid “Pro” version. I am aware that there is a “free” version of the “pro” version, with limited capabilities, but you have to sign up to use it. That kind of thing immediately raises the hairs on the back of my neck. This is the crypto world! You don’t need my name, email address and phone number to tell me the price of Walton or TenX! I just want some crypto information without having to go through an interrogation or handing over any personal data! Is that too much to ask?

So now I sit with a problem: CRYPTOFINANCE is not running like it used to. My Google Sheet has frozen up and can’t update prices. To fix the problem, I considered using another API. I went to @coingecko and checked their API out. It’s great (I love CoinGecko), but I honestly have no idea how to get their API information into my Google Sheet, which is a bit of a show stopper for me. I suppose that I could import it manually (copy and paste the entire API output for instance), but I’m trying to keep things fast and automatic! I also don’t really feel like spending ages reading and watching “how to” guides on the net. I’m getting a bit tired of fighting the same battle over and over again.

I need YOU!

This is where you come in. I need your help and/or expertise. Please.

I managed to somehow avoid the Blockfolio craze, I don’t check my portfolio value all day on my phone, once or twice a day on my PC is good enough for me. I have run a few phone apps on a trial basis, apps like Coinstats, coinmarketcap.io (note the “io”) and Delta. Some are better than others, but I didn’t get too into them because I always had my Excel/Google Sheets portfolio. But now I don’t. I know that there are now literally hundreds of crypto portfolio trackers available and I’ve never even heard of most of them, let alone used them all.

What I am asking you for is your advice wrt what I should use. I have about 70+ coins/tokens and I want something that can tell me the value of my holdings of each coin at any time, as well as the value of my whole portfolio in at least BTC and USD, but preferably in other currencies too. I would like something that I can use on a Windows PC, preferably but not necessarily with the option of having it on Android too. I want to be able to take a screenshot of my holdings if I chose to. The less personal information it wants from me, the better. I don’t need it to track trades on exchanges or wallet balances. Oh, and I don’t want to pay to use it. Ever. (I’m so poor right now that I can’t even pay attention.)

I have a few ideas, but I’d really like to hear from you if you know of any great trackers that work. Feel free to also mention if you know any popular trackers that do not work well, I can blacklist them in my mind!

Please help me with a few good recommendations if you have any. Your assistance would be much appreciated!


Yours in un-tracked crypto

All diagrams made by Bit Brain with Excel


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Bit Brain
Bit Brain

A walking crypto encyclopedia. Honest, Realistic, Opinionated. Futurist, Autodidact, Polymath.

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1 Comment

  1. Bit Brain
    December 10, 14:09 #1 Bit Brain Author

    Using the CoinGecko API, I have successfully come up with creative ways to import and process the data that I require in Google Sheets. I’m up and running again!

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