Thursday, February 25, 2021

My Day 1 At RootsTech Connect 2021

 Day 1 at RootsTech Connect 2021 started at 4 p.m. PST on Wednesday for me when the Expo Hall opened and the pre-recorded Sessions could be viewed.

I started in the Expo Hall and reviewed the profiles of each of the sponsors and some of the exhibitors.  Each sponsor and exhibitor has a page that lists their booth demos, promotions, sponsored sessions, downloadable resources, etc.  The number of exhibitors is greatly reduced from previous in-person RootsTech conferences.

I moved on to Sessions that I had added to My Playlist and watched off and on until bedtime:

*  Kitty Cooper's talk on "The Basics of Unknown Parentage Research Using DNA, Part 1" and "Part 2."   This really helped me understand the process and the available tools.

*  Robert J. Estes talk on "DNA Triangulation: What, Why and How."  This talk also helped with understand the methodology and the available tools.

*  Duff Wilson's talk on "FamilySearch and Family Tree Maker: The Road Ahead"  I learned more about how Family Tree Maker can interact with Ancestry and FamilySearch.

*  Nicole Dyer's talk on "How to Use Airtable for a DNA Research Log"  This looks useful but was pretty complex - I need to try it out to better understand the process.

This morning, I was online by 8 a.m. PST and found that I had over 67,000 "Relatives at RootsTech."  At 1 p.m. PST, it is up to 85,199 - but there are no new cousins closer than 3rd cousin once removed.  

This morning, I watched several more presentations including:

*  The Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Keynote address - which was excellent and inspirational.  

*  Crista Cowan's "What's New On Ancestry" Keynote talk, which summarized new tools for record hints, family trees, and DNA.

*  Stanley Kinsey's Demo Theater presentation about "Collectionaire: Curate a 'Best Memories' Collection" - a tool to collect and organize your family photos and video, your genealogy research, and family stories. 

*  Diahan Southard's presentation on "4 Next Steps for Your DNA" - this is pretty basic for me but excellent for beginners.

*  Several  presentations on the "Innovators Portal"  - I watched 3D Charts, Goldie May, and The DNA Matrix.

*  Several presentations in the Expo Hall exhibitors - I watched Bright Branches and Permanent Legacy Foundation.

In between, I wrote two blog posts about RootsTech features.

I explored the "Chat" feature in the "Connect" button on the bottom right of my pages.  In addition to Exhibitor and Sessions chat rooms that you can access from their pages, you can create or find user-created chat rooms.  I finally figured out I could search for Chat rooms using the "Search" icon at the top of the Chat feature ("duh").  I found the "GeneaBloggers at RootsTech" user-created chat room, and the "Surnames and One-Name Studies" user-created chat room.   There are many more.  

Frankly, this is not as much "fun" as being at RootsTech.  It is pretty quiet in my genea-cave and none of my friends are coming by the Media Hub to say hello or share stories, and I can't get any exercise (besides for my fingers) sitting in my cave-chair and watching and typing.  I miss the buzz, the excitement, seeing friends and colleagues, or sharing a lunch.

I need to do some of my "regular genealogy work" for awhile, so I'll  stop here.


Disclosure:  I am a RootsTech Connect 2021 Ambassador and have committed to providing regular publicity about the conference.  I have received free registration, snacks, meals and other benefits from FamilySearch over the 11 years of RootsTech.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2021, Randall J. Seaver

Please comment on this post on the website by clicking the URL above and then the "Comments" link at the bottom of each post. Share it on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest using the icons below. Or contact me by email at

No comments: