About Ben Sayer+

Father and husband. Family historian. Founder, Mint Yogi LLC. Creator, GenealogyTools.com, PracticalCitation,com, and Lineascope.com.

Posts by Ben Sayer

Ancestry iOS App Version 4.0

Dynamic Family TreeVersion 4.0 of the Ancestry.com companion genealogy app for iOS is available as a free update in the App Store.

The change log states the following:

  • Dynamic family tree that shows more family members.
  • See grandchildren, siblings, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews & cousins in your family tree.
  • Ability to change your tree to display direct ancestors only.
  • Purchase monthly memberships via In App Purchase.
  • An updated look and feel that’s both beautiful and functional.

That seems like a good list for a 4.0 version! The dynamic family tree is pictured to the left. Handy buttons at the top enable you to switch on or off the direct ancestors only feature.

Family Tree Maker 2013 Availability

News came from Ancestry.com today that there won’t be a Family Tree Maker 2013. The firm is focused on enhancing the existing version. They’ve already released updates with the following enhancements (listed in their blog announcing the direction):

  • Numerous enhancements to TreeSync so syncing your tree to Ancestry.com is faster and more reliable
  • A new Family View Report that displays a person’s ancestors, spouse, and children together (similar to the Family View in the People workspace)
  • A new Undocumented Facts Report that lists people’s facts that have no source documentation
  • The ability to merge info from multiple versions of the same fact
  • New source templates for the 1940 U.S. census and improved support for city directories
  • Dozens of report enhancements including performance improvements and new options in the relationship chart, family group sheet, Individual Report, Notes Report, Data Errors Report, Outline Descendant Report, Media Item Report, photo albums, Media Usage Report, Documented Facts Report, and calendar

And more enhancements are promised.

[Read more...]

Reunion for Mac 10.0.3 Update Available

A new maintenance release is available for Reunion 10. Besides a slew of fixes, this version includes an overhaul of the web search feature.

The choices on the context menu that appears when you select Search the Web on a person button has been rearranged for efficiency. Search Favorites now appears at the top. You can also search custom groups of sites–a feature introduced in this release.

The preference pane for web search received an overhaul to support creation of custom groups as well as editing the same and the favorites group.

Finally, there’s a button on the Web Preferences pane that you can use to update search sites similarly to the way you can check for updates to the whole application.

I updated the original article on this topic, Using Reunion to Search the Web, and re-recorded the video.

Your Source and Citation Information Is In Danger

Today I finished methodically testing which source and citation information reliably survives GEDCOM import and export. It’s not a pretty picture! A mere five of fourteen key GEDCOM tags are safe across the nine leading genealogy software packages I tested.[1] Fortunately, the ones I previously identified as essential to source citations are among them.

Why You Should Care

The ability to move your family history data from one application to another is important. Even if you have no intention of changing software or sharing your research you ought to be concerned. It’s entirely possible that the person or people that inherit your research will choose a different package. They may load your data and probably won’t even know they lost anything in the transfer. Well, that fate needn’t be yours if you know where you can safely store information.

What You Can Do

This research is part of the work I’ve been doing to create the very first GenealogyTools ebook and video course: Practical Citation. After completing the course, you will be able to safely and confidently record sources, citations, and quality in your genealogy software without having to consult a book or quick sheet. Say “goodbye” to uncertainty about citation templates and formats.

Notes

[1] I tested Family Historian 5, Family Tree Maker 2012, Family Tree Maker for Mac 2, GEDitCOM II, Legacy 7.5, MacFamilyTree 6, Reunion 10, RootsMagic 5, and The Master Genealogist 7.

Reunion 10.0.2 Update Available

The second maintenance update for the new Mac genealogy software Reunion 10, was released today. There are many fixes included. See the release notes for details. Here are the highlights:

  • Get precise coordinates in the geo code place window by moving the pin
  • Find relationships between two people feature now shows multiple blood relationships if they exist
  • Search favorites selection is now at the top of the list of resources when searching the web
  • Additions to the web search resources: Ancestry.com.au, Ancestry.ca, FindMyPast.co.uk, GuildOfOneNameStudies
  • Pressing the left or right arrow key in family view moves to the previous or next marked person
  • Crash fixes
  • Performance improvements
  • Updates to the manual

Family View Report in Family Tree Maker 2012

Miniature Family View Report SampleWant a Family Tree Maker 2012 family group sheet with a pedigree chart at the top instead of a family picture? Your wish just came true.

What You Need to Know

Like the family group sheet report on which it is based, it has the option to included children from other unions[1], lines for extra children[2], individual thumbnail images, and preparer information.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t have the option to include other spouses. Nor does it give you the option of including an LDS section or section dividers.

How to Create a Family View Report

  1. Navigate to the family you want to be the subject of the report
  2. Switch to the publish workspace
  3. Select Relationship Reports from the list of publication types
  4. Double-click the Family View Report (or click once then click the Create Report button)
  5. Configure the settings
  6. Click the Generate Report button
  7. Click the Print or Share button

Load up your copy of Family Tree Maker 2012 and follow along with this video to create a one of these for your relatives.

GenealogyTools Members, download this video to your computer for your private use.

Notes

[1] FTM calls this option blended families.

[2] Extra lines for children make this a handy report to take on a visit to collect data.

Merging Duplicate Facts in Family Tree Maker 2012

Context Menu Showing Merge Duplicate Facts OptionOccasionally in Family Tree Maker 2012 you’re going to end up with duplicate facts. Actually, it will happen with any genealogy software; it’s not a situation peculiar to FTM.

What You Need to Know

Duplicate facts can appear up in your file by mistake and perhaps even from problems with TreeSync. I don’t have any hard evidence of that, I simply know from my experience with computers and programming that it’s possible. It doesn’t really matter why the duplicates are in there anyway. If you want them gone Family Tree Maker can help you merge them.[1]

[Read more...]

Family Tree Maker 2012 Updated

Ancestry released an update to Family Tree Maker 2012 today. Here’s a rundown of what’s in it for you.

Of highest importance if you’re having problems synching your FTM file with your Ancestry member tree (AMT), is TreeSync stability improvements. Those come with performance improvements too according to the release notes.

The update include bug fixes and improvements in several areas:

  • Added support for media, notes, and sources during file merges
  • Improved handling of media during Web merges
  • Bug fixes for tasks, media items, and window resizing issues (on computers running Windows 7)

[Read more...]

Reunion 10 for Mac Hits Amazon.com

You can order Reunion 10on Amazon.com now. Right now there are three sellers. Well, two really. The third has the ridiculous price of $184.50 plus $3.50 shipping!

As with version 9, Leister Productions sells through Amazon at the full retail price, plus $5.00 shipping, for a total of $104.00. Small Dog Electronics[1] is currently offering it at a discount: $89.99, plus $6.99 shipping for a total of $96.98.

Notes

[1] For what it’s worth, Small Dog Electronics is a company I’ve purchased Mac gear through in the past.