Monday, July 9, 2007

First FTM Class today at CVGS

We had our first two-hour class on FamilyTreeMaker (FTM) for our CVGS members today. We had 23 members sign up for the class, plus the two instructors (Gary and I) - remember, CVGS has about 80 members (so we had over 30%). The experience level ranged from none on FTM to fairly knowledgeable on FTM. We have two more classes scheduled.

Our plan was to go through the FTM tutorial showing the features of the software, eliciting questions along the way, and then demonstrating the solutions to the questions. I prepared a handout with URLs for the FTM web site, FTM16 features, the Knowledge Base, the FTM message board, etc. We didn't exactly follow the plan.

Gary has FTM 2006 and his genealogy database on his laptop, and we used that. The attendees use everything from FTM version 5 to 2006/16. 13 of the 25 have FTM 2005/15 or 2006/16. One person just bought FTM 2006 and installed it on her Mac (with Windows XP). Two other attendees have old software (not FTM) and want to transfer their data.

During the presentation, Gary visited each of the items on the FTM Menu bar and then on the FTM Button bar. In this process, the capabilities of the FTM software was revealed. He spent a lot of time on the Charts and Reports menus and not much time on the File and Edit menus. Gary showed the Family View and Pedigree View formats. Everyone learned something new.

We had asked the attendees to give us their questions about FTM and their problems. Gary found answers to these questions on the Knowledge Base and demonstrated the solutions.

Next week, we will go into the basic functionality of the program - importing and exporting a GEDCOM, adding children and spouses to the Family View, moving forward and backward through generations, correcting errors, making notes, adding facts and sources, adding Scrapbook items, etc.

This was a very lively two hour session - it's amazing how varied the experience of each researcher is - each is a bit different from everybody else's experience.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the FTM class, I came home turned on my computer and the next thing I knew my husband was coming home from work. A big Thank You to you and Gary.