Are you regularly backing up your Reunion family files? Making a backup is important for more than protecting your precious research in the event of hard drive failures and catastrophes. Be sure to make a copy of your family file before making significant changes to your family file. Reunion for Mac’s creator, Leister Productions, even recommends making a backup before you make any changes. Whether you’re that cautious or not, you’ll eventually want to make a backup. There are basically two ways to make a backup copy of a family file.
Comparing features helps when you’re choosing a new genealogy application. Seeing which ones support the features essential to your genealogy workflow and practice is also helpful.
I just compiled a set of tables I hope you’ll find helpful in comparing features of Mac genealogy software. I published it on the Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 buyer’s guide page.
I was able to complete this much more quickly than the one for PC genealogy software feature comparison because I had already been maintaining similar tables. I updated the tables where appropriate and made the criteria match those for PC genealogy applications. This way you can compare features not only between Mac genealogy software, but also PC counterparts–it’s a sad tale across the board.
Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 is available for purchase during a pre-sale. See what’s new, the release date, discount coupon code, and more on my Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 Buyer’s Guide page. There’s a link to place your order there too!
Tana Pedersen mentioned the release date of the Family Tree Maker for Mac upgrade in an Ancestry.com blog post about the arrival of Family Tree Maker 2012. She wrote:
For those of you interested in Family Tree Maker for Mac, a new version with TreeSync capability is slated to be released by the end of 2011.
Note that it’s not being called Family Tree Maker 2012 for Mac. This isn’t surprising given the Pc/Mac feature inequality news from Duff Wilson, the Family Tree Maker Product Manager.
In response to a comment on the same post Tana wrote:
Family Tree Maker for Mac with TreeSync is currently in testing and is slated to be released before the end of the year. If you purchased Family Tree Maker for Mac last year and registered your product, you should get an email with an upgrade discount so keep checking your inbox.
This release date contradicts timing information I had from the ancestor Affiliate Manager. I think Tana’s information is more likely to be correct.
Take your time, Ancestry; I want it to be right not rushed.
Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 will include the ability to synchronize your tree with Ancestry.com (a function called TreeSync). This news is according to the Program Manager for Family Tree Maker (FTM). He had more to say in answer to my question about the PC and Mac feature inequality:
We are very committed to the Macintosh platform and as you know, released an initial version based on FTM 2010 last year.
I can say that the new Mac release will include the following:
1. TreeSync–The ability to synchronize a tree in Family Tree Maker with one at Ancestry.com
2. Performance and stability improvements
3. Other features:
- Key features from the PC version of Family Tree Maker (TBD)
- Macintosh-specific features related to the Mac OS that are not in the PC version
We will continue to evaluate features from the PC product to be included in future versions of the Mac product and we will continue to look at opportunities to leverage Mac-specific features and capabilities that are not in the PC version.
At this point we don’t know what other PC functions will be added in FTM for Mac 2. We have confirmation that the most important new feature, TreeSync, is included. That’s great news!
It’s also good news that there will be Mac specific features. This will help Family Tree Maker feel more like a Mac application1. I’m looking forward to the first beta release!2
I’m disappointed that there isn’t yet feature parity. And I’m going to continue to be patient because I see the long-term benefit of a complete version of Family Tree Maker on both PC and Mac. That’s the reason I’m supporting FTM; I’m more interested in a brighter future for genealogy on the Mac than ensuring that my admittedly subjective sense of fairness and desire for immediate gratification are appeased. How about you?
1. It already looks and feels more like a Mac application than Reunion for Mac.
2. I regret that I won’t be able to immediately tell you what’s in or out based on my beta program participation, but I’ll know. I’ll also know what’s out in this release.
I received a correction to the information in my recent article, “Will Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 Features Match Windows?” The Family Tree Maker 2012 Product Manager informed me that even though the features in the Mac version of FTM 2012 are not set, Family Tree Maker for Mac 2 will not include all the features in the PC version.
I have requested more information and will pass on what I can when I get answers.
Since the Family Tree Maker 2012 pre-sale and release date announcement, I’ve been asked whether the Mac version will have all the same features as the Windows version. I asked that question of my contact at Ancestry.com and quickly got the reply that
all the features of the PC version will be in the Mac version [I have since recieved a retraction email from the Family Tree Maker Product Manager; please disregard the optimistic remainder of this post]. Feature parity is great news for Mac genealogists. We made it through the awkward period of Family Tree Maker 2011 on the PC and 2010 on the Mac. We get a sort of double Christmas; we get all the enhancements from the 2011 and 2012 versions with only a four to six week delay. More importantly, it signals an intent to maintain equality between PC and Mac versions. I’m all for this change. Mac genealogy needs some serious competition to move it forward.
The pre-sale has begun. The Family Tree Maker 2012 release date is set. Ancestry is temporarily offering 40% off an upgrade or 20% off a full copy. That makes the upgrade price $23.99 and the full version $31.99. The sale ends September 28th. Click here to learn more and buy Family Tree Maker 2012.
Be sure to click the “Upgrade Info” link under the “Buy Now” button if you need the upgrade.
What else is new in Family Tree Maker 2012 besides the much anticipated TreeSync?
- Blended family view — shows combined families, including stepfamilies and adoptees at a glance
- Improved Smart Stories — give you new tools for adding and editing details
- Chart personalization — lets you personalize charts by adding text and displaying generation labels such as parents, grandparents and great–grandparents
- Index of individuals report — lists every individual in your tree, plus their birth, marriage and death dates
- Customized fact sentences — let you change wording and choose what data is included in sentences that Family Tree Maker generates for certain reports and Smart Stories
- Descendent charts between two people — make it easy to choose two individuals in your tree and create a descendant chart that shows their relationship
P.S. There is now a coupon code for Family Tree Maker 2012 that takes an additional %20 off the pre-sale price.
Today I updated the North American Perspective Events file that I’ve previously modified and shared with you. This brings the Reunion 9 for Mac perspective event set up-to-date with historical events affecting the region since 1968. Specifically, I added these events:
1973 Arab Oil Embargo
1989 Canada-United States Free Trade Agreement
1994 North American Free Trade Agreement
2001 Canada and U.S. assist in military intervention in Afghanistan
2007 Financial crisis in U.S. triggers world-wide recession
This wasn’t as easy as it once was because in the current release of Mac OS X (version 10.7, aka Lion), Apple hid the Library folder from view in the Finder. Perhaps some background is in order.
I got the news yesterday from the company that handles order fulfillment for MacGenealogist CDs is discontinuing CDs on July 30th. These are the CDs containing higher resolution versions of most of the Reunion for Mac videos I published on MacGenealogist.com.
I’ve done some research and haven’t found any alternatives that would enable me maintain the low price. I want to keep these videos available because people have been helped greatly by having them handy, regardless of whether they have a fast Internet connection or not.
I’ve been racking my brain thinking of alternatives. Then it hit me! What I really need is to know how you want the hours of videos available if not on CD or DVD. Right now I’m leaning toward making them available for download as another benefit for Premium Members. That may be a fine idea, but I really want your opinion.
Also, this serves as your warning that if you want MacGenealogist CDs, buy them now.
P.S. Leave a comment with your ideas for how you would like these high quality videos delivered or available to you.