Web app idea: Stamp mix calculator

2013-01-03 11.05.45

I’ve resolved to send more paper letters. I also have an odd mix of stamps that I want to use up: some with Canada Post’s permanent postage, and various denominations throughout the years. There are different rates for domestic, US, and international letter mail. Naturally, I want to optimize my stamp use so that I use the minimum number of stamps and avoid exceeding the required stamp rate.

Some examples for the $1.80 international rate:

  • 2 x $0.89 + 1 x $0.02
  • 2 x permanent postage (currently valued at $0.61 each) + 3 x $0.02 + 1 x $0.52

And lo, someone has actually built a stamp optimizer. Also, only one in Google Search? What do people call these things?

Next question: Has someone built a stamp optimizer that lets you keep track of your stamp inventory, maybe through bookmarkable parameters? It would be neat to be able to not have to enter in your particular mix of stamps each time. That might be overengineering this, though.

Who knows, I may sit down one day and code this just for fun. It totally fits the profile of the programming competitions we used to do in high school and university.

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