Monday, January 5, 2015

First Look at FindMyPast Hints in My Tree

I posted FindMyPast Introduces Hints in Family Trees - UPDATED on 17 December 2014, but have not had time since to explore the Hints provided by FindMyPast in my FindMyPast Family Tree.

In my Family Tree on FindMyPast, I clicked on the "Family Trees" tab, selected my tree, and saw the Family View chart (it went to the last person I looked at):

I clicked on the orange "My Hints" link in the upper right-hand corner and saw:

At this time, I have 3,924 Hints to process.  Each one is listed on the page above, with more appearing as I scroll down.  I could have looked at each one from this list, but they were for a range of persons and record types.

I prefer to look at Hints one person at a time, so I went back to the first screen above (the Family view screen) and noted that several of the persons in that view had orange circles (with numbers in them).  I clicked on the orange Hints circle for Shubael Seaver.  The screen showed the three Hints for Shubael Seaver:

Users have to click on them one at a time.  I clicked on the blue "Review" button for the first one, and saw:

The information from the Hint is shown on the left, and the information for the person in my free is on the right.  Down at the bottom of the screen above are blue action links next to "Are these the same people?" for "No, reject," "Maybe" and "Yes, next step."

I wanted to check the resource provided, so I clicked on the "View record" link (in the Hint summary).  This brought up the record summary for this Hint (in this case, from the "Massachusetts Vital Records to 1850" collection):

I can view the record using the blue "View image" link on the right-hand side of the screen above:

The page from the record is shown.  This is my Shubael Seaver, son of Robert, born 31 11th month 1639.  I could attach the record to the person using the blue "Attach to tree" button on the screen above.

I chose to go back to the record to tree comparison page, and clicked on the "Yes, next step" link.  I saw:

The screen above notes "This record has been attached to your tree" at the bottom of the screen.

I clicked on Shubael Seaver's name to go to his profile, and saw that the record summary was now in the "Media" section:

All in all, this process is intuitive, works reliably, and adds very useful information to profiles in my family tree.  I like the use of color for different functions.

Users should take the time to go through the steps above to Review the Hints and accept or reject them and not automatically accept the Hints.  

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Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver

1 comment:

Jan Murphy said...

Things I like about the Find My Past hints so far:

1) They rank the hints by relevance and give a score. The algorithm isn't transparent, but at least the user gets some idea about the computer's confidence in the quality of the hint.
2) They allow you to sort the hints into a 'maybe' category when you aren't sure yet.
3) FMP seems much more willing to take feedback from users and engage with them than Ancestry does.

I'm trying to do more focused research instead of being distracted by hints, but for the users who really want them, I think FMP has made a promising start.