Wednesday, March 14, 2007

New FamilySearch Beta 2 - Sources

New FamilySearch is near the end of the Beta2 testing cycle. When it will be released has not been announced. I have had a chance to review some of its features. The first version 0.9 will be released just to Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. The next version 1.0 will be for the general public and will give similar fuctions without the Temple Ordinance areas. Then a later version 2.0 will include linking to the images from the scanned documents from the microfilms stored in the Granite Vaults.

New FamilySearch will be released in smaller Temple districts first, so Utah will be the last to get use of the new web site. The new version of FamilySearch will include all of FamilySearch's major databases all linked together into families and pedigrees. The main purpose of this first release is to replace TempleReady. The hope is that this new program will eliminate duplication of Temple work. The main family view shows the selected individual and Spouse Highlighted, with children to the left, and a pedigree to the right which shows the parents and grandparents of both the husband and wife.

Sources are important in this new web site. Uploaded GEDCOM files can include Sources and Notes. The Notes and Sources from the Pedigree Resource File will also be included. All contributions to the file can be reviewed with thier sources and notes.

You can update any information you have submitted and add comments about other peoples submissions. You can add new individuals online and add sources. To add a source you first click on "Select a source" and choose the source type from the drop down list.

You then select the "Source Details" button. A window pops up showing the information about the source you can enter. I am not sure how or if the program ranks some sources higher than other, but I sure hope that in the final version we will be able to rank sources in some way. For example if there are two submissions listing sources, and one lists "Personal Knowlege" as a Source and the other lists a "Death Certificate", it would be nice if we can go in and rank the Death Certificate as a better source then the Personal Knowlege. We will have to wait and see what the final version does in this area. I did not see any user method of ranking sources in the Beta2 version. So get your sources in line so you will be ready for new FamilySearch.

I congratulate the FamilySearch developers for a wonderful job, and hope to see the site available soon.

I plan to do more reviews on different elements of new FamilySearch so check back.
Here is a link to my New Family History site which has a link to 50 screen shots of new FamilySearch beta2.

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