Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Dear Randy: How Do You Update All Your Online Trees?

Genea-Musings reader Joan asked in email:  "I have often wondered how you update all your trees on the different programs you use.  Since Family Tree Maker is the only one that presently syncs with Ancestry and you have said that your main tree is on RootsMagic, I can't imagine that you re-enter all your data by hand for each one. Do you create a new GEDCOM  or tree file every time?"

My response was:

I don't update my online trees very often.  I occasionally add a family to my July 2014 Ancestry tree, or I create a new Ancestry tree for a specific family line in order to get Hints for that line.  Same for MyHeritage - my tree there is from 2011.  I have a tree on Findmypast also, and it generates some Hints.  

I do add data into FamilySearch Family Tree from RootsMagic, and often add content to RootsMagic from the FSFT.  I submitted some ancestral family data to WikiTree, Geni and WeRelate years ago, but not the entire database.  I don't update the information on those trees, unless there is an error.

The purpose of the online trees is twofold:

1) To create Hints so I can add content to my RootsMagic database.  I work through Hints almost every day and add content and sources to the RootsMagic database.  Ancestry is still providing Hints to my 2014 tree - 10 to 100 new Hints a day for several persons in the tree - they don't do them all at once.  MyHeritage did all the Record Matches for all of my tree persons some time ago, and they occasionally update them when they add new databases.  I'm working through the MyHeritage Matches one database at a time. 

2)  To serve as cousin bait so that other researchers might find information and, hopefully, be willing to share information with me about their ancestral family lines.  Since I have over 4,500 Seaver persons in my online family trees, many of the queries I get via email and blog comments are for Seaver persons.  This gives me an opportunity to share information about their Seaver line, and often they share descendant information and correct errors I might have about their ancestral families. This occurs less often for my other ancestral surnames like Carringer, Vaux, Auble, Dill and Buck. 

When RootsMagic can synchronize my tree with an Ancestry Member Tree, then I will upload a new tree and sync with it, but I will keep my older Hint tree because it is still sprouting Hints.  I plan to use RootsMagic as my master tree software program, at least until something better comes along.  If I can search Ancestry from within RootsMagic and easily capture the record image, that will be a big help, although I don't want to crap up the RootsMagic tree with Ancestry source citations.  

I would also welcome the ability to sync my RootsMagic tree with my MyHeritage tree, with my Findmypast tree, with Geni, with WikiTree, etc.  Ideally, there would be one button to push to update all of the online family trees with my RootsMagic tree.  I won't hold my breath for that capability since it is probably years away.

At some time, I anticipate that RootsMagic and other genealogy software programs will be available for a yearly fee in the Cloud on the Internet.  I will move to the cloud-based program when the features are equal or better than the current desktop software programs.  


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1 comment:

Angela said...

When you said "I don't want to crap up the RootsMagic tree with Ancestry source citations." What did you mean? This is probably reveals my naivete, but are Ancestry source citations poorly done? In what ways do they fall short?