Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Year-End Update: News, Information, and Dates

The following is from FamilySearch.

Year-End Update: News, Information, and Dates
Dear Family History Consultants, Family History Center and Extraction Directors, and Priesthood Leaders,
As we send you this year-end update, we wish you a merry Christmas and a prosperous new year. Please read this newsletter carefully and help us spread the information it contains.
Don’t Lose Your Online Training History
With the release of new.familysearch.org, which is currently being beta tested, all of you who have not signed in since November 1, 2010, will lose your online training history. To avoid this, simply sign in to new.familysearch.org before the beta testing of the next release ends. Please do this as soon as possible.
A Celebration of Family History DVD
Many of you attended “A Celebration of Family History,” which was held in the Conference Center in Salt Lake City in April 2010. Whether you experienced this uplifting and entertaining program or you missed it, consider purchasing a DVD of the entire evening’s events for yourself or as a wonderful Christmas gift for those you love. To order the DVD, go to celebration.familysearch.org.

RootsTech: A World-Class Conference in Salt Lake City, February 2011
The upcoming RootsTech conference has something for every family historian. Those who want to see the latest technological advances in ancestry discovery will enjoy dozens of classes from world-renowned experts and a free exhibit hall open to the public. In addition, family history consultants will enjoy a free fireside and training classes. To register and see more details, go to rootstech.org. Consultants and family history center workers receive a special conference discount when using registration code CONSULTECH11. No registration is required for the free events.

Searching for Records: Pilot versus Beta
The software developers at FamilySearch are using a new methodology for writing software. In the past, software was developed behind closed doors for a long period of time, and then when it was determined it was ready, it was released to the public. The public would then find all the problems in the program. The new, more open approach is to release small pieces and features of the program a little at a time. This is good for people who like to have a say in what the final product looks like, but it can be very difficult for those who expect to find a stable and unchanged product every time they use it. For many years, most of the changes to record-searching programs were made at the pilot.familysearch.org website, which has become very familiar to many users. But technology has progressed, and the developers at FamilySearch have followed. The next-generation website,beta.familysearch.org, is now available for those who want to try out new search techniques and innovations. The pilot site will remain available until the beta site is finished, but now new collections and innovations are only being added to the beta site. Feel free to use both sites. And if you want to give specific feedback for improving features, make sure to use the beta site often and let the developers know what works and what doesn’t. The web address for the beta site will soon change to familysearch.org.

Newly Certified Products from FamilySearch Affiliates:

Family ChArtist (Web)
FamilySearch Family Tree Access, Print Certified. 
Current details of all FamilySearch-certified products can be found at http://www.familysearch.org/eng/affiliates/index.html or by clicking on the “More Great Products” link found near the bottom right of the New.FamilySearch.org home page.

News on Indexing and Record Availability
We are excited to announce that, with three weeks of the year left, our indexing volunteers have completed over 160 million records. New projects now available include records from Canada, England, Russia, and the United States. Completed collections that will soon be available on beta.familysearch.org include records from these countries as well as from Germany. So far this year, over 100 million new records from countries too numerous to list have been added to the beta search site. Visit beta.familysearch.org and click on the All Record Collectionslink to see how many countries are represented.
We hope this information has been helpful to you, and we appreciate all that you do to help move family history forward.


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