Thursday, December 22, 2011

Checking Out the Mocavo Tree Connections

I received an email from the other day saying:

"Thank you for uploading your family tree to Your connections are now ready to be viewed! 

"Our vision of sending your family tree matches by email has expanded, and now you're able to see all of them in one place, right on While we'll still be sending you notifications of new connections via email, you can see yours right now by logging into and clicking on "My Connections" in the top navigation bar on the home page.

"From here, you'll be able to explore all current and past connections that we've found for you. Additionally, in the upcoming weeks & months, we'll be making many improvements, including the ability to track what pages you've looked at already and to rate our connections for future reference."
That sounded promising, so I went to and signed in to their Mocavo Plus service.
Here is the Home Page screen:

The top menu row has links to "Search," "Company," "Blog," "Contact," "FAQ," and "My Connections."

The large buttons on the top right of the screen are for "Home," "Advanced Search," "Upload," and "Contact."

A user can now Upload a GEDCOM file to Mocavo using the "Upload" button.  Here is the Upload screen:

This screen says:

"Get the best results from Mocavo and the open web by uploading your family tree today. Mocavo will begin sending out fully-automated search results and will publish family trees in to the search index to help out the community. Make sure you have a GEDCOM file ready with all of your family tree data."

A user can browse for their GEDCOM file in their computer file folders, name their tree, describe their tree, and check the box if they want their tree results to be found by the Mocavo search engine.  I do, so I checked the box.

I did this back in June, so now I am ready to go exploring in my own tree.  I clicked on the "My Connections" link and saw:

The title of my Family Tree is at the top of the page, below the Mocavo banner.  On the left is a little information box that says:

"Here are advanced search results for people in your family tree. We add more results as they become available."

On the right is a "Family Tree Connections" list of all of the people in my Mocavo Family Tree with advanced search results found by Mocavo for each person in my tree.  I scrolled down a bit further, and clicked on one of the search results for Peter Adams (1621-1690).  A screen for a Peter Adams entry in another Family Tree appeared:

As an aside, I love that the Western Michigan Genealogical Society has put the family trees of many of their members into a "The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding" database and made it available on their website.
Back to my Mocavo family tree... back on the "My Connections" page, I clicked on the link for the "Family Tree Profile" for Hannah Adams, and saw (two screens):

This Person screen has the person's name, birth information, death information, father's name, mother's name, spouse's name, and children's name(s).  The father, mother, spouse(s) and children names are buttons that can be used to navigate from one person to another in the Mocavo tree.
I noted that there are no Notes or Sources for these Persons.  There are placeholders for pictures of the Persons, although they are not active links yet.  
As best I can tell, the purpose of the Mocavo Family Connection feature is to enable searchers to find your information in a Search and not as a family tree pedigree chart, family group sheet or narrative report generator.
I went to the "Advanced Search" button and entered the name of Amos Plimpton (1735-1808) into the Search fields:

He is in my Mocavo Tree, so he should be found in the Search if the Trees are searched by Mocavo. 

Here are the search results.

There are seven matches for my search terms, but none of them are the Amos Plimpton in my Mocavo Family Tree.  It appears that the Search feature for the Mocavo Trees is not working yet, or at least it hasn't added my Persons to the Search list yet.
I will report further when the Mocavo Search finds the people in my Mocavo Family Tree.
Disclosure:  I was given a Mocavo Plus account by Mocavo so that I could test their Search and Tree system.  That did not affect the descriptions and opinions expressed in this blog post.


John Cobleigh said...

Alright Randy, on your recommendation I've uploaded my file. My experience (Ancestry and Heritage) has been that no one in my most recent ancestral lines is looking or researching. Ten generations back I'm related to half the planet, but I'm most interested in finding those that preceded my in the 18th and 19th centuries. But here's hoping.

Chuck Seyferth said...

At Mocavo's suggestion last summer I too, uploaded my family tree to Mocavo. There was the promise that it would make it much easier to find links to relevant information related to my ancestors. No mention was ever made that come December I would be expected to pay for a service called Mocavo Premium in order to get any benefit from uploading my tree. I'm now wondering if it's possible to remove my family tree from Mocavo's database.