Monday, August 17, 2009

Family Tree Builder 4.0 - Post 5: Adding Unrelated Persons

Previous posts in this series to evaluate Family Tree Builder are found in Family Tree Builder 4.0 - Summary of Posts.

In this post, we will look at adding an unrelated person to the database, and then add a spouse to that person.

Starting from the opening page when the software opens, the only way I found to Add a Person to a family, or add an unrelated person, is to use the "Add Person" button above the large family tree panel (the yellow background area in the screen below):

Using the "Add Person" button, the user can select from the dropdown menu to add a spouse, son, daughter, father, mother, brother, sister, or an unrelated person. If the user chooses anything but the last one, the added person will be related to the current selected person. If the user chooses to add a spouse or a parent, the program asks if you really want to do that.

I wanted to add an unrelated person (although I would love to add a son to my family to carry on the family line, or a sister to my parents family just for more hugs) so I (reluctantly) chose that option.

The "Add Unrelated Person" menu opened as shown below. I added information for Name, Birth Date, and Birth Place, an email address, clicked the check box for "Deceased," and added a Death Date and Death Place, as shown below:

When I was done, I wondered how to add Sources and Photos to this person. I noticed the "More details" button in the lower right-hand corner, so I clicked that. That opened the familiar "Edit Person" menu where I could add Photos, Info, Physical, Contact, Citations, Notes and Facts:

If I had chosen, I could have clicked on the "Notes" tab and written narrative about this person. If I wanted to add a Source to the Birth or Death date, I could have clicked on the "Facts" tab, selected a Fact, and added a source citation and an image of the record.

When I was done, I clicked on the "OK" button and my screen went white for over 30 seconds - presumably this is because the program is adding the person to the database index (and I have a fairly large database to update).

When the screen came back, I saw the family tree of him:

I wanted to add a spouse to my Unrelated Person, since he was a very popular I clicked on the "Add Spouse" link in the potential spouse for him (I could have clicked on the "Add Person" button and selected "Add a Spouse..."

The "Add Spouse of ..." menu came up with the same information fields as before, plus the marriage date, place and status information:

I filled in the fields, and hit the "OK" button and the same thing happened - a "white-out" for about 30 seconds, then the happily married couple showed up on the main family tree screen:

The persons have been added to the Name Index.

If I wanted to add children to this couple, there are links for "Add Son" and "Add Daughter" in the gray area just below the husband's box. I could also have gone to the "Add Person" button and selected "Add Son" or "Add Daughter." I could also have gone to the "Add Father" or "Add Mother" link in the Family Tree area or use the "Add Person" button.

There was no check on the calendar dates I entered, and there was no spell check for the locality information, nor a type-ahead capability for a locality already in the database.

The capability to add persons easily in one of my key requirements for any genealogy software program. It is very easy to do these tasks in Family Tree Builder 4.0, although the means to add a Photo, Notes or Sources is hidden a bit in the "More Details" button. I think that it would be more intuitive if the "Add Unrelated Person" menu opened to the Main tab of the "Edit Person" menu. From there, adding the Photos, Notes and Citations could be done without leaving the "Edit Person" menu.

In the next post, we'll look at the Mapping features offered by Family Tree Builder 4.0.

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