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24 November 2014

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LibraryThing for local and family history societies

I've been saying for a while now that I think LibraryThing is ideal for allowing small societies and libraries to maintain and display their library catalogues. Not only is the software practically free (US$25 one-off fee for unlimited books) but it is online, allowing members and potential members the ability to search their catalogues for free. The Lake Macquarie and District Historical Society has been using LibraryThing¬†to show off its catalogue since 2009. I admit that I didn't know … [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...]

Which is the best family tree program?

I am often asked this question, and it is a difficult one to answer.¬†The answer depends on what you want to get out of the program. There are some things you need to think about: Ease of use - is the layout easy to understand, and is it easy to work out what you are supposed to do to enter and change your data? Output - what do you want to do with the data once you've entered it? Reports, charts, websites and screen display are all ways of seeing the data you have spent all that time … [Read more...]

Top 10 Social Media Sites for Family Historians

I think that social media was made for family historians. We are different from other people - we actually enjoy finding distant relatives and keeping in touch with them! Social media helps us to find relatives and old friends in ways that were not possible in the days of mailing lists and message boards. Here are 10 social media sites that are not directly related to family history (except one) but are nevertheless important for communicating, sharing and collaborating with other family … [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...]

What will you do when your computer crashes?

The longer you work with and read about computers, the more horror stories you read about what went wrong. Whether there is a happy end to the story or not depends on whether the owner of the computer backs up their data and how regularly they do it. Here's my story. This happened late last week. My laptop is almost three years old, so it's getting on for a laptop. Laptops are different from desktops, they are built to be small, not to last. This laptop pretty well contains my life - my … [Read more...]