Sunday, April 06, 2008

Adventures in FamilySearch Indexing - Week 37

It was conference weekend and I felt so lazy and slow about getting anything done. Must be all the sitting around and watching conference. Ok, I actually slept in and listened to the morning sessions while in bed. By Sunday afternoon session I was ready to do some FamilySearch Indexing while I listened to conference.

I always look for any messages from Headquarters and I was not disappointed.
From: Headquarters
Subject: Semimonthly Message
Date: 01 Apr 2008


This message is the first of many we will be sending out on the 1st and 15th of each month. We may include tips on using the indexing program, general indexing information, instructions for specific projects, and answers to situations show up in arbitration.
  • Batches in the Philadelphia 1885-1051 Marriage Indexes are set for eighty lines per image, but many batches will have more than eighty records. Please index all of the names on the image by adding lines as needed
  • There are quite a few Chinese and American Indian names in the 1870 census. If you cannot determine which name is the surname and which is the given name, do not separate the names into the Given Name and Surname fields. Instead, keep each name in the same order as it was written in the record and type all of the information in the Given Name field and mark the Surname field as blank. If the name contains any hyphens (-) or apostrophes ('), please include them with the name.
  • Wisconsin State Censuses: Please remember to add any recorded designations (village, town, city, etc) to the names of the localities. The designation can be capitalized or not, it does not matter. For example, Arlington Town and Arlington town are considered identical in the system.
  • Irish indexes: Be sure to look at the Previous or Next image for the year and quarter if this information is not on the page you are indexing. Also, remember to add they y in the Age field in the Irish death indexes.
  • Indexing Tip: If you do not see the field helps while you are indexing, look for the two little black arrows on the right side of your data entry screen. Click on the top arrow that points to the left to show these valuable instructions that explain what to index in each field.
We greatly appreciate all of your indexing and arbitration efforts.
It's nice to know they will be giving us regular updates. I can't tell you how long I sat and agonized over whether or not I actually put the "y" after the age on the Irish death indexes. I'm really good about reading the project instructions so I could only hope the notice to put the "y" was included on the instructions. As you can see those little reminders are going to be very useful for everyone.

Here is the other message for us:
From: Headquarters
Subject: System Response to Update
Date: 02 April 2008

We thank you for your patience as our system adjusts to the update that occurred on Monday. If you have not restarted the indexing program since Monday, March 31st, please close the program and restart it using the Start Indexing button on the FamilySearch indexing home page,

Some projects may be temporarily unavailable and there are currently fewer than normal arbitration batches ready for download. We are working to remedy this situation.

We hope you will not become discouraged if any of these issues have affected you. We truly appreciate your understanding and dedication.
I didn't have any problems getting in today so everything must be up and running ok now. It did take a long time to get signed in then I realized that the program was updating and doing just what it was suppose to be doing.

I looked, as usual to see if any New York projects where available. There wasn't so I decided I would give the Irish Birth Indexes a try. That way I have worked on all the Irish vital records indexes. I picked the Irish Birth Indexes 1942-1958 and I don't know what the deal was but it took me over 2 hours to index 242 actual individuals. I got credit for doing 310 and this time I felt like I deserved the credit.

The system seemed to be running really slow when I would get to the last column in the row. There would be this long pause before it would start on the next line. It made me wonder if there were a lot of members indexing while watching conference? I wanted to try getting off line while I worked on it to see if that would speed things up. I just couldn't make myself stop to test out the theory. I was going to give it a go as soon as I finished that batch and went to do the next one. The next one never came. I was to tired to work on another batch. Either it's the system pauses that wore me out or I'm under the weather and it hasn't totally caught up with me yet.

I finish this article with nothing exciting to note other than I am almost at the 6,000 records indexed mark - 5,986 to be exact. It was so unlike me to not push myself to get a few more done so I could round the numbers up. It's just been an incredibly slow day and now I'm ready for bed again. Just dragging my feet to get up and move. Wow, that sounds so depressing! Maybe I need to good dose of cod liver oil or sulpher and molasses. Just the thoughts of that make me want to get up a run for the hills or duck under the covers! Come to think of it I guess I will go do the later.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

1 comment:

Sue Anne said...

Hi. I found your blog last week while doing a search for why the system was offline.

Irish Birth Indexes seem to take longer than the Irish Death or Marriage Indexes because instead of just entering an age you're entering the mother's maiden name. It takes just long enough that cumulative the page seems like it takes much longer.

With the new update, things on the software seemed to get a little stalled. Unlike the old program where it would catch up, the new update doesn't.