20 April 2014

Social Media for Family Historians, 2nd edition

The second edition of my book, Social Media for Family Historians, is now out. It explains what social media is; what use it is; and introduces you to more than 25 social media sites that can help family historians to communicate, share and collaborate with other family historians and with their own families. It has been expanded and updated, with some sites removed that I no longer consider useful, and new ones added, such as Google+. The section on getting started with Facebook in … [Read more...]

Tumblr for Family History Societies and Libraries

I think Tumblr is a great platform for a blog. You can share enormous photos, links and news, and the format is large and easy to read. It's perfect for a family historian who doesn't want to do a lot of writing, or only occasionally. Here is an example of a Tumblr blog (mine): If you click on the picture you will go to my Tumblr blog. What does this have to do with family history? Now this is a personal blog and it's not just about genealogy, so I need you to use your imagination a … [Read more...]

First look at Google+

Google+ is Google's new experiment in the world of social networks. I say 'experiment' because it is only in limited release; you have to wait for someone to be able to invite you, and then you have to accept the invitation during one of the brief, unpredictable periods when new members are being accepted. I also call it an 'experiment' because Google have tried something similar before. It was called Google Wave and it didn't catch on. Google Wave was removed from circulation. It is … [Read more...]

We have wedding photos, but what about anniversary photos?

Last night my husband and I celebrated our 24th wedding anniversary. We are expecting very many more anniversaries after this one. We try to do something special for our anniversary every year. Some years we go away for the weekend, and I seem to think they are in the majority. They are probably just more memorable. Most years we just go out somewhere and have a good dinner and drink champagne and eat too much, like last night. What we didn't do is take a picture of ourselves having … [Read more...]

My own mini-scanfests

When you come back home after a productive research trip to an archive or library do you often end up with a stack of photocopies? Yes, me too. I use my digital camera whenever I can but sometimes it just isn't possible to take photos. Sometimes the repository doesn't allow it, and other times the documents are folded up so well that it is just easier to get the experts to photocopy them. When I get home I tend to leave them for a while in the 'filing' pile, and the longer they stay there … [Read more...]

Picasa face-recognition scan conclusions

I have posted previously about letting Picasa 3 scan for faces so I can identify them. I had hoped to publish the results at the time but I was caught up with other things and didn't get a chance. Unfortunately I don't have an accurate record of how long it took. I started it on about the 1st October with 14,000 photos to process. On the 4th it was 50% completed after I had added an additional 5000 photos because I added some of the folders under Documents. On the 5th it was saying all day that … [Read more...]

Social Media for Family Historians – my first book!

Social Media for Family Historians, my first book, was published on Friday 22nd October 2010. It was launched at the Unlock The Past History and Genealogy Expo in Sydney. It contains 76 pages in full colour to explain what social media is and why it is of use to family historians. It introduces more than 25 websites that can help family historians, and anyone with families, to communicate, share and collaborate with each other. I think social media could have been designed specifically … [Read more...]

Whose face is that? – Picasa 3

I have recently upgraded my Picasa to version 3 and let it start running through my photos looking for faces so I could tag them. Picasa is photoorganising, editing and sharing software from the Google people. It's free. The scan started two days ago, and it's now 32% of the way there. Yes, I have a lot of photos. I have restricted to photos in the My Pictures folder for the present, which it says contains about 14,000 photos. Despite the slowness of it, and the fact that it uses up to … [Read more...]

When is a substandard photo a great photo?

I've recently updated my Facebook photo from the Christmas version to my normal one. The normal one is taken from an unusual angle, and it's a bit fuzzy. I love it, though, because of the photographer and the circumstances in which it was taken. My niece turned 13 early last year, and for her birthday her parents had approved a mobile phone. This is no ordinary 13-year-old - she looks after her things amid the chaos of living in a small house full of teenage girls. So the day this photo was … [Read more...]

Useful software

Not directly related to genealogy, perhaps, but you might be surprised by how useful these programs can be. Mindmapping Mindmapping is a way of organising information or ideas. It is fantastic when when you are at the planning stage of a project for getting all your ideas down and organised. It's very helpful for making decisions - you can get all the information you need down, all the fors and againsts, and everything becomes clearer. I don't know why it works better than writing straight … [Read more...]

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