Monday, July 8, 2013

Ancestry.com Help I Don't Need

I don't complain a lot about Ancestry.com's Search features because I don't find many things that I don't like about them.  There is one "feature" however that I can really do without.

When I'm on the "Search" page with my form selections just the way I want them ("Exact Search," "Given Name" and "Last Name" filters selected, "Location" filter selected), I start to put in a given name - like "isaac."

As I'm typing, Ancestry.com tries to help me by giving me a list of all of the persons named "isaac" in my current Ancestry Member Tree:


While this happens, my mouse sometimes wanders unintentionally over the list and when I hit the "Tab" key to go to the Last Name field in the search box, look what happened:


Without me wanting to search for Isaac Fitz Randolph at the moment, I got the search box filled in for me.  Completely.  Birth and Death facts, with years and places.  The parents, the siblings, the spouses and the children.  How special.

Sometimes I don't even pay attention to what I see (searching on Ancestry has become fairly automatic), and when I hit "Enter" I see the results for the person in the Search fields:



That's all very well and good, but I wanted to search for Isaac Seaver.  not Isaac Fitz Randolph.  Sometimes I see the list before it messes up my train of searching, and look down the list for the right person, but then it fills in the form completely for me.  Which I usually don't want.

The only way to recover back to the search form I want is to click on the "Clear form" link at the top of the search form, or click on the "Search" tab on the top menu.  If I do that, I see:



The system goes to a blank search form - now I have to reset all of my filters ("Exact search," "Given Name" and "Last Name" filters, and "Locality" filter).

It's a pain in the patoot, and I curse almost every time it happens to me (once or twice a night) because it disrupts my train of searching and upsets me.

One thing that does turn it off before it does damage is to use a wild card for the Given Name.  The list disappears!

Is there any way to turn this darn thing off?  Pardon me, disable this darn thing?

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2013/07/ancestrycom-help-i-dont-need.html

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver


16 comments:

Susan Park said...

And here I thought it was just me. I HATE that thing! It covers up the whole screen so you can't even see what you're typing. I would love to know how to turn it off.

Elizabeth H. said...

I agree! I have the same problem. It's really annoying when I happen to be searching for someone not in my tree.
I'm going to subscribe to the comments for this post in the hopes that someone can answer your question - can a user disable this feature?

Geolover said...

Randy, you 'nailed' a great annoyance. The program with the drop-down wrongstuff is just too easy to activate by not even clicking on anything. I try to make sure to keep my mouse pointer away from the messy list, but if moving to a field below it to make an entry it often just implements itself. Grrr.

Shirley said...

Just one of the reasons I can't use New Search.

Christopher Washler said...

I've been looking for a way to turn this off for a while...no luck so far.

Andy Hatchett said...

Randy, I'm in complete agreement.

To mix a metaphore...this is one 'feature' that should have been left on the cutting room floor

Lori Thornton said...

Very annoying feature.

Dr. Bill (William L.) Smith said...

Add another 'totally agree' to the list! ;-(

Celia Lewis said...

Here I thought I was the only person that hated this interfering drop-down box!! So glad to see it's not just me. And, by the way - it isn't new - it's been there for some time now. Maybe someone on Ancestry will read your post, Randy and go ... Ohhhhh!

Dianne Reuby said...

Seems the only way to escape it is to delete your tree, or maybe have a second account that you only for searching. Hardly ideal solutions though!

Leah said...

I agree. The feature annoys me, too!

Cheri Hudson Passey said...

Yep....what he said!

Jill Ball said...

Don't know what a Patoot is but that feature on Ancestry annoys me too.

bgwiehle said...

Ancestry's stated plan is to combine the best of Old Search and New Search and leave behind the faults of both. Last week, Ancestry asked for suggestions on how to improve Old Search. Maybe Ancestry should run a similar survey for New Search!

Steve Hayes said...

And, while it is displaying all that stuff, it interrupts your typing, so that you mis-spell the names of the people you DO want to search for.

T said...

If I wanted all the information filled in for me I would search from that person's page. Since I am not searching for that person, please let me fill in my own blanks. I do know who I'm looking for! I don't need someone I don't know "telling" me who I should be looking for.