11 August 2013

State of the Blog: Fourth Blogiversary!

Wow! Four years can fly by, can't it?

What is the state of the blog?  While my database was out of commission unexpectedly from April 2012 to April 2013, I had a self-imposed moratorium on any new research.  Since last blogiversary, 20 of the 22 posts in the last 12 months were written just since last April.  If I'm not researching, I couldn't justify blogging.  I tried to spend all my extra time figuring out the database problem.

I used to post annual goals for my research, and maybe I'll go back to that now that I'm back researching.  I did accomplish two of my oldest goals: attending a national genealogy conference (NGS) and visiting a new-to-me genealogy library (Carlsbad Public Library).

Giving back: I've made a concerted effort to give back to the genealogy community.  I volunteer for Souther California Genealogy Society, Find A Grave, and at least once a year for British Isles Family History Society.  To celebrate this blogiversay, I have made a proposal (and it was just accepted yesterday!) to lead a series of 4 introductory sessions at my local branch library as part of National Family History Month in October.

Database ramblings  ---  The question is not so much what features a different software package has, but "How well will all the details in an existing database transfer?"  My research was extensively and thoroughly sourced with detailed citations...not one of the dozen new programs I tried fully accepted all my citation detail. There were other problems varying from program to program.  I forced myself to pick a program and began using it to enter new names and other data, thinking I just needed to get used to it.  While doing so, I discovered the depth of the missing citation data.  Long talks with customer service...repeat attempts with previously rejected products...growing frustration with missing features and screen/print appearance....  My solution: give in, run Parallels on my new Mac and go back to Ancestral Quest.  I am happy again.  New Goal: find someone else who uses AQ with Parallels...I know I can refine the process some more!

Newest project:  To support my efforts at verifying ancestors of Isabella Shaw, I am reconstituting family groups of Millers and Shaws in Knox/Morrow County Ohio from 1800 to 1860.  So far, I'm using the numerous county history books and making a database of every Miller and Shaw.  We'll see...more on this one as it develops.

So, Happy Blogiversary to everyone!