Monday, July 28, 2014

Creating a "Problem List" in RootsMagic 6

I've added quite a few records to my RootsMagic database in the past year, and I know that I make typographic errors when I type - they're unavoidable.  I don't know what my error rate is, but it's probably in the 1 to 5% range.  If I make 1,000 entries, that means I may have 10 to 50 errors, or perhaps even more.  Database data entry may be even more error-prone, with dates and unfamiliar place names.

I decided that I should make a "Problem Report" for my RootsMagic database in its current form.

In RootsMagic 6, you can create a "Problem List" from the Tools > Problem Search > Problem List menu:

That opens up the "Problem Search" window where the user can select the problems to look for.

As you can see, I chose:

*  Individuals without sex entered
*  Birth before parent's marriage
*  Birth before parent's birth
*  Birth after mother's death
*  Age at death should be less than 110 years
*  Mother's age should be between 14 and 50.

I clicked the "OK" and the "Problem List" was quickly generated:

I decided to "Save" the list as a PDF file so that I could have it open while I tried to fix all of my errors.

For those six problem types, there were 9 pages - about 350 potential "problems."  With over 42,600 persons and about 130,000 events, "only" 350 problems comes out to be about 0.8% per person.

I corrected quite a few - especially those that were obvious (no sex given, obvious year errors, etc.).  I did more research for all of the Mother under age 14 and over age 50 problems, and corrected what I could feel confident in (many of my dates are "about year" dates).

I didn't do much for most of the "Parents married after person's birth" problems - I checked those that were over age 53 or so.  In some cases, for instance, a child born after a mother's death, a little research showed that a husband had a second wife, who I added to the database.

This was a productive two hours - I wish I had done it a month ago when I uploaded as new Ancestry Member Tree.  Oh well - next time!  We'll see if anyone can find the obvious mistakes in my database!

I know that I didn't catch them all - but I fixed quite a few of the really obvious erroneous mistakes.  As always, my genealogy database is a work in progress!

Have you checked for problems in your genealogy software database or online family tree?  You might want to - just to see if you have some of these types of problems in your family tree.

If you use another genealogy database program (e.g., Legacy Family Tree, Family Tree Maker, Reunion, Family Historian, GRAMPS, etc.), can your program do this type of report?  If so, please show us the process in your own blog posts.

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Copyright (c) 2014, Randall J. Seaver

1 comment:

Brayer said...

How did you save in a pdf file? I don't see a way to do that from the "Problem List."