Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Ancestry Home and Search Pages - New Beta Views

I posted Ancestry Introduces Beta "Improved Website" - And A First Look this morning, and concentrated on the Ancestry Member Tree look, feel and navigation.  See the statement about the Beta on that post.

NOTE:  Only those with access to the Beta will be able to see the pages shown in this post.  If you want to sign up for access to the Beta, please use the feedback link at

In this post, I want to highlight the changes made, in the Beta, to the Home Page and the Search Page, and the Search process:

1)  Here is my Home Page with the Beta activated:

Comparing the view above with the current Ancestry home page, the print is larger and there is a lot more white space on the page, which means more scrolling down to get to a specific feature not at the top of the screen.  That's not a problem for me, I scroll down every day.

I wondered in the first post how to "get out of" the Beta views, and found the "Leave Beta" link in the dropdown menu under my username in the top right-hand area of the screen (shown on the screen above).

2)  Here is the top of the "Search" screen:

Again, there is more white space and a different typeface.

3)  I entered Isaac's Seaver's name and birth year in the search fields, and received results (after adjusting the sliders):

I clicked on the 1870 U.S. Census match and saw the list of matches:

I  then clicked on the one item on the match list above, and saw the record summary:

The page above has been redesigned a bit, but is very similar (besides typeface and white space) to the previous summary page.  all of the navigation controls are available and functional.

Clicking on the "View" button on the thumbnail image, I saw the 1870 census record:

Other than the look of the screen, this is essentially unchanged from the previous Ancestry screen.

One thing I did notice while performing these tests is that it took significantly longer to get search results to my screen.  My guess is that their system has to go visit the current system to retrieve information, and then direct it to me - an extra step which takes time.

4)  This is going to be the future on - I encourage readers to try it out, learn how to use it to your advantage, and provide feedback about the new features to

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

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