28 January 2010

New FamilySearch articles from Mormon Times and Deseret News

"I don't have time!" "I don't know where to start!" "All the work's been done!" "I'll wait until I'm older!" "My cousin is doing the family history."  Do you find yourself making similar statements? If so, take a few minutes and read a series of articles from the MORMON TIMES newspaper.

The first in the series is "New FamilySearch means no more excuses." Find out why it's better to get started now; how to do family history much easier today; and, learn about our ONE big family tree.

Part 2 in the series is "Web site is all about families, temple work."  Gain a perspective of family history and new FamilySearch. Find out how you fit into the process, and, learn what new FamilySearch IS and ISN'T.

Part 3 in the series is "Getting started on the new FamilySearch."  Here is where you learn to register, explore, analyze, clean, connect, and collaborate within new FamilySearch.

If you subscribe to the Deseret News or find someone who does, you can see all the visual examples contained in these articles. Part 3 is located in today's Mormon Times (28 Jan 2010).

In December, 2009, the Church News section of the Deseret News published an article called "Tips for using new FamilySearch".  Many of these tips concern the functions that can easily get us into trouble or confused. Communication is your best bet!

If you want to read other articles that have been published in the Mormon Times about family history, click here for the entire list.

24 January 2010

Why FOLLOW a Blog?

Look way down below in my blog for a little section called “FOLLOW”. This is where you can FOLLOW my blog or any other blog. Well, you ask, why would I want to FOLLOW your blog or any other blog? Well, let’s look at why you might want to FOLLOW a blog, and if so, what methods can be used.

Maybe you have a blog or two, or twenty that you are interested in, but you forget to check to see if the blogger has added any new stories or articles. Maybe you just get tired of checking, so you don’t. You might miss something important to you unless someone or something notifies you of new postings. That’s what the FOLLOW feature is all about. It keeps track of the blogs you are interested in and lets you know when one has been updated by using one of several methods or tools.

One of the tools available to you for reading and keeping track of blogs is the Google Reading List. It’s free and easy by signing up for a Google Account.    All you need is your email address and then create a password. The Google Account will give you access to a variety of Google products, including IGoogle, Picasa, Google Calendar, and access to a free Gmail account. The calendar at the bottom of this blog is made using Google Calendar.

The Google Reading List (above) will keep track of all the blogs you are following and let you read and manage them in one location. If you want to go directly to the blog site, just click on the blog’s link. As you click on a blog on the left, the right side displays all the posts to that site. Clicking on an article’s title will send you to the actual blog site.
If you have a blog of your own hosted on Blogspot, you can also view these blog posts in your Blogger Dashboard which looks like the one below. Subscribing to a blog will add it to your dashboard and then you can also add your “followed” blogs to your dashboard.

IGoogle is another option and can be customized to add the Google Reader.  Create a personalized IGoogle page/homepage. You can add different widgets to personalize your page. One of these is the Google reader. It will automatically display a title and a link  to each of the blogs that you follow. Using IGoogle as your homepage gives you immediate access to blog updates. When you hover over the title the article displays as a popup. Here is a Google Reader widget from an IGoogle page.

The section below, in the middle column, entitled “Genealogy Blogs – News Feed” is one way of following blogs. I set up a blog feed that automatically updates whenever one of the blogs I have added is updated. The most recent post is listed at the top. In this type of feed, only one new post for a blog is displayed at any time. You can click on the header for that blog and the link will take you to that blog where you can see more articles posted.
Followers are also important to bloggers because it helps a blogger know who is reading the blog. Knowing my audience helps me determine what my readers would be most interested in. Posting comments to a blog also helps me understand my readers and give them what they want.
So, if you are interested in my blog, please follow  it. Or click on any of the genealogy blogs in my feeder and follow them. Make following blogs easier!

Final four Fast Track classes for new FamilySearch

We have been busy teaching new FamilySearch classes over the last month or two. We are down to the last four sets of classes that we have planned. Each set consists of two consecutive Wednesdays, either in the morning or the evening. See the calendar below for details. January 27th and February 3rd is one set of classes. Then February 10th and 17th will be the last planned set of  classes.

The classes are open to anyone! So come and bring a friend. This is your chance to participate in the same training here in the south end of the county that you would normally have to travel downtown to the Family History Library for.

If you have questions, contact me below.