Thursday, February 19, 2009

Think Genealogy Predictions for 2009

What awaits genealogy in 2009. In coming up with this list, I have no insider information. I simply looked at the information publically available and tried to determine what is possible or likely for the upcoming year.

So here is my list of 9 genealogy predictions for 2009:

1. Two more desktop genealogy applications will support source citation templates from Elizabeth Shown Mills’ Evidence Explained. Currently Legacy 7 and RootsMagic 4 support this. The other two might likely be Family Tree Maker and The Master Genealogist.
2. One major online database (Ancestry, WorldVitalRecords, FamilySearch, Footnote) will announce upcoming support for Evidence Explained source citations. Other sites will soon follow with their own announcements.
3. FamilySearch Research Wiki will grow to over 30,000 content pages (excluding talk and stub pages) by the end of the year. As of 28 December 2008, there were 12,573 content pages.
4. FamilySearch will announce a replacement for GEDCOM. GEDCOM will still be supported for many years as software will support it as well as the newer format. Reasons for the new format will be to better support source citations and media.
5. I hope I am wrong about this one, but with the current economic downturn we could see financial pressure force one of the more-recently-started genealogy companies to merge with or be acquired by another company. Worse case scenario, it could go bankrupt.
6. Many more genealogy societies will join the social networking site, Facebook, by adding a group page. Searching groups today for “genealogical society | genealogy society” (the pipe symbol “|” means “OR”) returns 80 results. I wouldn’t be surprised if by the end of 2009 the total was over 200.
7. More genealogy applications will be available for the iPod Touch and the iPhone. Currently the iTunes App Store only lists three applications: MobileFamilyTree, FamViewer, and Shrubs. This last holiday season, the iPod Touch was a hot item. I wonder how many genealogists own one now.
8. Through blogs and podcasts, genealogists will hear more about the benefits of Web 3.0 (also called the Semantic Web) and how it applies to genealogy.
9. Genealogists are puzzle solvers when it comes to researching their family history, but do they play games? I expect to see a genealogy-related game released in 2009. It could be a casual game for Facebook or something more interactive for the Wii. How about a Mii Familii Trii? The game might teach research-related concepts (citation, transcription, etc) or (via GEDCOM import) put your ancestors in the game.

What's Comming Soon to

Look at all the history ahead. asked members what kind of historical content thy thought would add the most value to their membership. Thanks to all the feedback they received, they’ll be adding more than ever before to the world’s largest online collection of historical records in the coming years.

Learn about the U.S. and international collections to come by clicking here: Comming Soon

Monday, February 16, 2009

Navigating Research : Genealogical Proof Standard

Check out this SlideShare Presentation: At the Mesa Family History Expo 2008 held in November, Mark Tucker presented “Navigating Research with the Genealogical Proof Standard.” On February 27, he will be presenting it again at the 5th Annual St. George Family History Expo 2009. He is seeking feedback from those who attended the class in November as well as those who have viewed the presentation slides online:

Library of Congress Map Collections

The Geography and Map Division of the Library of Congress holds more than 4.5 million items, of which Map Collections represents only a small fraction, those that have been converted to digital form.

The focus of Map Collections is Americana and Cartographic Treasures of the Library of Congress. These images were created from maps and atlases and, in general, are restricted to items that are not covered by copyright protection.

Map Collections is organized according to seven major categories. Because a map will be assigned to only one category, unless it is part of more than one core collection, searching Map Collections at this level will provide the most complete results since the indexes for all categories are searched simultaneously.

1914 County Maps

This is posted on RootsWeb and is from a book found while tearing down an old shed. There was no cover, and the last page was missing, which it is believed was Nevada and Washington. The maps are dated 1910-1914. That is why they are called 1914 maps, that's when it ended. The name at the top says Atlas of the World.