12 February 2014

#RootsTech Thursday

Why does life get in the way when you are trying to get things done? I'm way late on posting my thoughts from RootsTech. What can I say...

After a great opening day at the RootsTech Innovation Summit we started Thursday with great keynote presentations by Dennis Brimhall of FamilySearch, Annelies van de Belt, CEO of DC Thomson Family History (formerly brightsolid), and Ree Drummond of The Pioneer Woman.

Dennis Brimhall spoke, not only at the keynote, but several times during the conference. He reiterated many of the FamilySearch announcements that have occurred over the last few days and months. Throughout RootsTech he stressed the importance of photos and stories, now referred to as Memories on FamilySearch.

I am so loving this feature on FamilySearch. In one of my prior posts I talked about the photos and stories and showed pictures I have uploaded on my grandfather. I actually have more photos connected to my ancestors by cousins I don't know, than I have uploaded myself. I get such a warm feeling being able to "see" these family members. Now, more and more stories are starting to be added to the tree. Where are your memories? Save them to Family Tree so they will be there for your ggg-grandchildren to see.

So often, we think that we don't have any stories in our family, or maybe you are lucky enough to have many. Regardless, you can interpret the events in a person's life and visualize what that person had to go through in order to make a living, emigrate from their homeland, migrate, lose children along the way, and suffer terrible struggles and deaths. Analyzing these events creates memories. Now all you have to do is write it up and add it to Memories in FamilySearch. If you or someone in your family knew my great-grandparent or my cousin, I want to know what you remember or what your family has passed down to you. I so want to know my ancestors when I pass from this life to the next. I want to be able to say "I know about you. I know how you lived your life and the impact it had on my life.

Dennis Brimhall talked again about the partnerships that FamilySearch, Ancestry.com, FindMyPast (DC Thomson Family History), and MyHeritage have formed to benefit all people searching for their families. The big focus was on the fact that these companies will stop duplicating the filming of the same records around the world. They will work together so the records only have to be filmed and indexed one time. This should really speed up the process of getting more unique records out for all of us to use. FamilySearch will continue to forge partnerships in the future.

Dennis gave us a morning laugh with his "top 10 reasons to come to RootsTech" as you can see a few below. So start planning now to attend the RootsTech/FGS conference in Salt Lake starting on February 11, 2015. Yes, FGS (the Federation of Genealogical Societies) will join together for the spring conference (I know, it's really still winter, but I really dislike winter, so I will pretend).

Annelies van de Belt, CEO of DC Thomson Family History (formerly brightsolid) began talking about how she came to DC Thomson. Her appointment as CEO was made last August of 2013. At that time brightsolid was split into two separate entities - one being its online publishing and the other its online technology. Annelies is responsible for the online publishing. By October, the brightsolid company was renamed DC Thomson Family History. This allowed the company to focus on its core business which isits digital family history brands of findmypast and Genes Reunited. 

Annelies wants to expand the genealogical community to about 89 million. However, I don't remember her saying how large she thought it was currently. The point being, the company has plans to expand their business by forming these partnerships with FamilySearch, creating APIs so that others may find ways of creating apps or other programs to enhance DC Thomson's holdings. She talked of new apps for mobile devices to help users access the data easily on-the-go. So if you haven't tried findmypast and want to check it out before deciding to subscribe, go to any LDS Family History Center and give it a try. They have some fantastic British records resides many others around the world.

The last of the keynote addresses was Ree Drummond, author of the blog, The Pioneer Womana New York Times best-selling author, a host of her own cooking show on the Food Network, besides a wife of a cattle rancher and mother of four. She is really much, much more and she knows how to tell a story! I thoroughly enjoyed her tales of life on the farm. The bottom line I got from her message was that you can do whatever you want to in your life, make the most of it, and live to tell about it. Simply write about your life or the lives of your ancestors and other family members and preserve those MEMORIES for your posterity.