Showing posts with label Legacy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Legacy. Show all posts

Monday, 14 April 2014

A-Z Challenge 2014: L is for Legacy

www.a-to-zchallenge.com
You have a computer.  Well, you at least have access to one - that's how you are reading this!  So do you keep all your genealogical information on sticky notes or pieces of paper, scattered around the room?  Do you have a binder, with archival-quality plastic pockets?  Well, the second one may be OK when you only have a few names and dates - and the first one is often, I'm afraid, how most genealogists end up.

But to really organise things you need a computer - and a computer standalone program.  When I say 'standalone', I mean a program which sits on your computer at home and keeps your records, independent of online family trees.  They may be great for 'cousin bait', but I would not put my tree 'up there' and keep it as my only record.  What happens when there is an electrical storm and the Internet is down?

So which program do you choose?  It is down to personal preference.  Try before you buy - most of the genealogy software sites have a free trial copy for you to experiment with. Some people swear by RootsMagic Essentials (free).  Some like Ancestral Quest Basics (also free; Personal Ancestral File or PAF was developed from this one).  But my favourite is LEGACY.  You can download it - and it's another free one - and keep your records in it.  If you want the DeLuxe version, you can spend money on upgrading later on.  I prefer it to the other two I have mentioned because AQ looks a little flat and isn't so colourful, and RM doesn't show stepchildren in one family group (and for me, there was a noticeable learning curve).  Legacy is colourful, shows stepchildren, and does so much more, it is delightful. 

I would thoroughly recommend Legacy (and I'm not getting paid to recommend them, either.  At least, not at the time of writing, I'm not).  And once you have downloaded it, check out their free webinars as well!

Saturday, 9 April 2011

Research Toolbox, creation of

Last Wednesday (6th April) I attended another of Legacy's webinars, where the speaker was Thomas McEntee.  The subject of the webinar was 'Building a Research Toolbox', and it was excellent.  Thomas went through the different types of container for your toolbox (which essentially holds your Useful Links that you frequently use and forget!).  There are all sorts of ways to keep yourself organised, and these range from documents on your desktop to containers in the cloud.

Although I have quite a few containers with useful links, I decided to put them all in one place.  Mine ranged from 'that email from so-and-so, yes, that one, now where did I put it, hope I didn't delete it' - which are usually totally unfindable (is that a word?) to browser bookmarks.  Then, because I use Firefox 4 as my browser, I have a useful little add-on to it called Speed Dial, which shows even more of my bookmarks as tiny web pages about an inch high. But both these would be useless if, say, I were researching at the local Family History Library and was sat in front of their computer and wanted to use a particular site whose URL I couldn't remember...

So I chose Evernote.  This is a program of notebooks much like OneNote, but it has an advantage.  Evernote resides on the web AND on your desktop (well, it will if you download it).  It is free (one of my favourite words), and will not only capture URLs, but whole web pages if you want.  You can then build up your list of useful links/pictures of web pages when on your PC at home, the desktop version will sync to the web version when you are connected to the Internet, and then if you are at that computer on the other side of town, you can just log into your account at Evernote and all your useful links will be there!  You can also put your links and images into your web version, and it will sync to your desktop version.  There is no limit to how many notes you can have there, but there is a limit on the free version of 60Mb-of-uploading per month.  I somehow don't think I will get anywhere near that!  There is a paid-for version as well.

And you don't just have to keep your genealogy research toolbox there, either.  I have a notebook on Star Trek useful links, and people use it to compose songs, write novels - all sorts of things.

Now, other people might prefer other ways of building their own research toolbox.  They may want to put other things in it; after all, how many out there (apart from me, that is) are interested in a town museum in the depths of the Southwest of England, or a small local Cornish newspaper when your family comes from America?

But I'm thrilled with my choices - both of container and content.  And if you think "I haven't got much to put in there", like I did, you may be pleasantly surprised.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

1841 census - Ottery St Mary

Well, the CD has arrived (the CD of the 1841 census for Ottery St Mary).  I can hardly wait to begin to transcribe it for FreeCEN.  Wait - I can wait.  Or at least, I know I should wait.  Because once I dive into it, I will need hours and hours because I will become so fascinated with the process (and the census itself), and the evenings after a hard day's work just won't suffice.

So I will grit my teeth and think hard about something else, and leave the 1841 census until the weekend.

I listened to a Legacy webinar tonight.  Next week is the second part of a series of 'Blogging for Beginners' by DEARMyrtle (or is she DearMYRTLE?).  Legacy have kindly put the first part (which I missed) back into their viewable webinar archives, which has prompted me to come here.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Tech Tuesday: Rootsmagic 4 v Legacy

I love them both. A family history program is only your favourite when it does something for you that no other program can do.  In this case, Legacy wins out ever-so-slightly over RM because of this one thing: it shows the blended families you meet in the censuses.

To give an example: John Haywood marries Johanna in 1869.  She produces three boys in quick succession, then dies in childbirth with the third.  With three small boys under 6, John remarries a lady called Eliza.  So in the 1881, 1891, 1901 and 1911 censuses, John appears with his second wife (Eliza), the three small boys, and another two small girls.  In Legacy, in the Family View, you can see John as the husband, Eliza as his wife, the three small boys and the two small girls as a single family unit, with 1/2 in front of the stepchildren and the name of their mother in brackets after their name. In RootsMagic, it looks as though John's family ended when Johanna died.  Unless you change the view so that John was married to Eliza, but they only had two small girls.  Johanna and the three small boys don't exist (except as files buried in your database).

In a census (and at the time!) the family unit was comprised of John, Eliza, 3 boys and 2 girls.  Legacy shows this.  RootsMagic does not. 

Families don't live in neat little databases.  And that's why I prefer Legacy - to see the whole family.  There may well be some people who prefer RootsMagic's database approach.  Me, I prefer the family approach.

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