Thursday, March 23, 2017

National Archives: Digital Edition Publishing Cooperatives Grants

NOTE from DearMYRTLE: The following was jusr received from our friends at the National Archives (US).


The National Archives, through its National Historical Publications and Records Commission, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation today announced a partnership for Digital Edition Publishing Cooperatives planning grants. The purpose of the new grants initiative is to plan for, and build, a sustainable system for the publication and discovery of digital editions that make historical records readily accessible to scholars, students, and the American people.

After two decades of experimentation, individual scholarly editions continue to find it difficult to build and maintain their own digital infrastructure for creating and disseminating their work, and most producers of digital scholarly editions lack access to predictable, affordable, and sustainable publication channels.

Up to $2 million in funding will be provided from the Mellon Foundation, with the National Historical Publications and Records Commission assisting in managing the process, including the selection of grant recipients.

David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States, welcomed the partnership. “We are delighted to join with the Mellon Foundation in addressing a critical need to create long-term sustainable digital editions of historical records. These Cooperatives will allow projects to share resources and best practices and to address the pressing questions of scholarly publishing and online access. It promises to be groundbreaking.”

Donald Waters, Senior Program Officer for Scholarly Communications at the Mellon Foundation concurred.  “The Digital Revolution has produced a torrent of new sources of evidence in digital formats that are critical to an understanding of the human condition.  Scholars have been experimenting since the early 1990s with digital methods of organizing these sources into critical editions that could fuel future research and teaching.  This initiative seeks to identify the best of these experiments and turn them into durable forms of digital publication.”

Developing the Digital Edition Publishing Cooperatives will be a two-stage process for Planning and Implementation. Up to eight planning grants will be awarded in December 2017 for the first stage of this multi-year endeavor. Each project team will consist of a principal investigator and a lead representative from each of at least three participating editions and the host institution(s). During the Planning stage, each team will develop a proposal for implementing a Digital Edition Publishing Cooperative. Planning grants are for one year and up to $100,000.

All planning teams would be eligible to apply for Implementation funding. Three implementation grants of between $350,000 and $500,000, each for up to three years, are expected to be awarded, for a total of up to $1.25 million. Implementation grants will be awarded in September 2019.

The first deadline for project teams is July 6, 2017. More details and full applications for the Digital Edition Publishing Cooperatives are available online.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Evidentia's new "Cousin Tracker" TONIGHT



DearREADERS,
Owing to illness, we are switching our Wednesday night hangouts for the next two sessions. As such, we will be visiting tonight with Cousin Russ and developer Ed Thompson as they explore Evidentia's new "Cousin Tracker." I'm just wondering which of my *very* distant cousins will host, whilst Mr. Myrt takes me out for our usual Wednesday night dinner date. 
Info about Evidentia Cousin Research Tracker - https://evidentiasoftware.com/cousintracker

REGISTRATION
http://hangouts.dearmyrtle.com/ww_evidentiacousintracker.html

WHEN
9pm Eastern US (New York)
8pmam Central US (Chicago)
7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City)
6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles)
UTC-7 hours

If you need a time zone converter, this is the one Ol' Myrt uses:
http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/converter.html

FEE
This DearMYRTLE Hangout is presented at no cost. If you find the information useful, consider the Pay What You Want business model Ol' Myrt employs:
http://blog.dearmyrtle.com/2015/03/hangouts-pay-what-you-want.html

HOW
Now everyone can log in to VIEW and COMMENT on DearMYRTLE Hangouts. YUP! Log in with your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, email or Google account. You'll only need a Google login if you wish to JOIN the panel as an "official" participant. 

We open the "green room" 15 minutes early if you'd like to test out your microphone and webcam. Consider JOINing the panel as an official "participant".  We may even "scramble" to mix up the conversation a bit with new panelists.

VIEW and post COMMENTS before and during the *live* hangout here:
http://hangouts.dearmyrtle.com/ww_evidentiacousintracker.html

CONTINUE THE CONVERSATION here:

https://plus.google.com/b/102461242403735457058/+DearmyrtlePage/posts/DQR4qr4vcJ1
Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:

Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.



Monday, March 20, 2017

Family Tree Maker: Software MacKiev introduces FamilySync™

NOTE from DearMYRTLE: The following was received from Ancestry.com, I merely inserted the graphic to pretty this up.


Last year, we announced the purchase of Family Tree Maker desktop software by Software MacKiev and because we wanted to make the transition to a new owner as smooth as possible, we committed at least a year of customer and product support.  The goal has always been to maintain the capability to share your family tree data between files on your computer with your personal Ancestry online trees. We’ve been hard at work co-developing a new Ancestry gateway with Software MacKiev to use in their Family Tree Maker 2017, which will be available soon We believe Software MacKiev continues to deliver the best value to users of Family Tree Maker with their focus and expertise in software solutions.   

What you should know:

·         TreeSync will be replaced by Software MacKiev’s FamilySync™.  In the new FamilySync, Ancestry’s search, merge, and Ancestry hints will all work as they do now for users who sync with their Ancestry trees and you can also look forward to more exciting new improvements.

·         FamilySync will be available only in Software MacKiev’s Family Tree Maker 2017 edition, which will be released on March 31, 2017.

The upgrade is free for all users who purchased a copy of a MacKiev Family Tree Maker edition since March 1, 2016. Those with previous Ancestry editions, or who got a free copy of Family Tree Maker 2014.1 or Mac 3.1, are eligible for discounted upgrades. The pre-order upgrade is $29.95 for those who sign up for Software MacKiev’s mailing list before March 29 and the upgrade will continue to be a discounted price ($39.95) for a limited time after March 29.

·         Between Wednesday, March 29 and Friday, March 31, there will be a short period where syncing functionality may be interrupted as Software MacKiev rolls out their new syncing technology.  

·         As of March 29, 2017, Ancestry will no longer be supporting TreeSync, given the introduction of Software MacKiev’s FamilySync™.  Software MacKiev will continue to handle all related customer questions for Family Tree Maker.  Visit Software MacKiev’s Family Tree Maker Support Center at support.familytreemaker.com if you have questions.


For additional information, news and discounted upgrade offers for Family Tree Maker, visit www.familytreemaker.com.

Friday, March 17, 2017

FamilySearch personal info workaround is a bandaid not a cure

DearREADERS,
This is follow-up to my post "FamilySearch listed my private phone and I am concerned." It was startling to find my personal cell phone and business email address added to the "Contact Us - Find a Family History Center" page on FamilySearch.org. It's laudable that FamilySearch wants to provide context sensitive help to my local ward members, but there are still problems.

IMAGE: Screen short of "Contact Us - Find a Family History Center" page at FamilySearch,
before I made the change.
BACK STORY
You may recall I have a dedicated cell and email address (MidasCreek6thFH@gmail.com) used strictly for my "calling" as a Temple and Family History Consultant in my LDS Ward. Continuity is provided since both ward consultants have access to the @gmail.com account. I consider it inappropriate use my business email address (____@DearMYRTLE.com).


UPDATE
It is possible to edit my data and insert my preferred but alternate phone number (green box below) and email (blue star burst below) using my LDS Tools app. This app requires logging in with an LDS account, and then the directory of members in my ward are visible, along with stake officers and others who make their directory info available beyond the confines of the ward membership. 

I have kept the "household" info with my personal email address and phone, (blocked out in red) as shown below.

IMAGE: Screen shot from LDS Tools showing the change I made to reference my
preferred alternate phone and email for my Family History Consultant work at church.
I checked the FamilySearch.org "Contact Us - Find a Family History Center" page was apparently immediately updated on FamilySearch.org.

NOTE: This info/procedure does not appear in any printed or online training material to my knowledge. I merely explored the LDS TOOLS app available to LDS Church members and found what I thought was the cure. 

The info that appears on "Contact Us - Find a Family History Center" at FamilySearch.org can rightfully include the "Find a Family History Center" option spotlighted with the green arrow and circle below. Family History Centers are part of FamilySearch, but my personal information is not.

IMAGE: Screenshot from "Contact Us - Find a Family History Center" on FamilySearch.org
after I made the change in my LDS Tools App.
SO WHAT'S THE REAL PROBLEM?
Since I made this change of email and phone number, I processed an online donation for tithing and fast offering. Sadly the receipt for my donation went to the (MidasCreek6thFH@gmail.com) consultant email account not my personal one, also listed in the "household" portion of LDS Tools App. This means:

  • Other ward FHConsultants now know of my donation, when this should be private.
  • My reporting to the IRS will be complicated.

Theoretically, it makes sense *on paper* that a FHConsultant's info to be pulled from the LDS Tools App but Internet standards *require* first asking permission to share one's personal info on a web page. Disregard for this standard is just the behind-the-scenes activity that make privacy advocates cringe. While I willingly added my email and phone to the LDS Tools App, I had *no idea* my personal info would be shared on a web-clipable site. 

Theoretically, having the member update his own info means FamilySearch.org can automatically render the latest contact info. 

HOW CAN THIS BE FIXED?
The following components should be in place if FamilySearch.org wishes to appropriately display a consultant's contact info on the "Contact Us - Find a Family History Center" page.

  • Opt-In - A consultant may prefer name only or nothing at all.
  • Editable - Accommodating a member's decision to have multiple phone numbers and email accounts for whatever reason.
  • Mr. Myrt suggests each ward should have a single dedicated email address for all ward Temple and Family History Consultants to access.

Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:

Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

BOOKSHELF: Ships of our Ancestors




DearREADERS,
Today Ol' Myrt shares Ships of our Ancestors by Michael J. Anuta available from Genealogical Publishing Company. Take a peak and you'll see this is a great tool for family historians who want to illustrate the work their doing. Consider gifting your local public library with this title.


Format: Paper
Size: 7 x 10
Pages: vii + 380 pp.
Published: 1983
Reprinted: 2006
Price: $37.95 + shipping
ISBN: 9780806313818
Item #: GPC125
http://www.genealogical.com/products/Ships%20of%20Our%20Ancestors/125.html




Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:

Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.


What's a Ward Family History Night?



DearREADERS,
Followers may know that I serve as a Temple and Family History Consultant in my local LDS ward (similar to a parish). At the request of our bishop, Mr. Myrt and I hold a monthly Family History Night. A Facebook friend asked me to describe how our meetings are set up, and this is my response:


GOAL
The goal is to provide time for each attendee to share a family history challenge or breakthrough. We brainstorm suggestions for what to do next. When the group is entirely newbies, I may provide more input. This is different from a lecture or a spiritual discussion about why Mormons do genealogy research.

OVERVIEW
Our monthly ward Family History Night is held at our home from 6:30-9pm on a drop-in basis. In this manner it doesn't appear to be an overwhelming commitment. We let curiosity about ancestors do the pushing to continue. 

As many as 12 have attended, but it is usually only 4-5. Participants usually become intrigued and stay until I affectionately boot them out. Even if it's 1 or 2, those who show up are ready to learn.My preparation includes selecting a few mini-lessons that I choose to share based on attendees' brief comments during the welcome-introductions period where we each state our intention for the evening. A good friend brings her fabulous homemade cookies. My laptop is hooked up to our big screen TV so I can demo anything.

If folks bring a laptop, I may have them hook up to the big screen one by one. The group provides advice for figuring out something, like how to merge duplicate individuals in their genealogy program of choice.

AGENDA
  • Opening prayer
    Welcome
  • Individual introductions (perhaps 2-3 sentences on current family history goal)
  • Mini-lesson (solving at least one challenge noted during introductions)
  • 8-10 minutes on each attendee's scenario (all benefit by hearing advice to other researchers.)
  • Closing prayer
  • Refreshments 
TEACHING METHODOLOGY
Although I clearly lead the meetings, it's highly effective to encourage the group to discuss solutions rather than have me lecture. Active participation encourages creativity. My greatest joy has been to observe a participant inspiring another with a practical idea to bust through a genealogical brick wall.

HANDOUTS
Each first-timer receives:
  • Green file folder (to begin gathering notes and documents)
  • Top-loading sheet protector (to encourage preservation) 
  • "Which is more reliable?" (a collage with two derivative and one original document)
  • Clearing names for temple work
  • LDS access to 5 websites (how to sign up)
  • The Genealogical Proof Standard (briefly described at:  http://bcgcertification.org/resources/standard.html
  • Larger "which door" handout (showing family history is also scanning old photos, interviewing elders, ancestor spotlights at Family Home Evening, etc.)
LEADER PREPARATION
Personally, I'm prepared to deliver the context-sensitive mini-lesson and then fly by the seat of my pants, based on newly articulated research challenges. Since we meet in our home, I can pull any reference book off our library shelves, open any website, demo most any program to provide thoughtful suggestions for each attendee.

Ol' Myrt here recognizes it's not about me, it's about the ancestors. We just provide a space where we can hear and feel what to do next when climbing family trees. As we gather for Family History Night, we celebrate our varied ethnic and cultural background. No single lesson manual could cover the different locality research challenges our participants face. In six months, ta participant may jump the pond to discover the ancestral homeland has an entirely different set of laws and record groups to navigate.
Take into account that Family History Night participants come from all walks of life, with varied talents and abilities. They learn in different ways.

Here, the leader's goal must be to encourage progress for each participant from his unique "point A" to his "point B".

COMMITMENT CARDS
These take-home cards printed on 1/3 card stock are fancied up with our "which doors" 2017 theme graphic, and space for the consultant to write the next goal to accomplish.


PRAYER
Relaxing, clearing my mind, and remembering to look at things from a member's point of view is facilitated by personal prayer.

FOLLOW-UP
We've begun scheduling one-on-one consultations using Skype and Google Hangouts.

Being adaptable is the name of the game.


Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.


FamilySearch listed my private phone and I am concerned

UPDATED INFO appears here: http://blog.dearmyrtle.com/2017/03/familysearch-personal-info-workaround.html

DearREADERS,

Shocked that without my permission #FamilySearch decided to divulge my personal telephone number and email address on it's website when a member looks up addresses for local FamilySearch Centers. Yes, I do serve as one of two ward Temple and Family History Consultants. But this is private info. I use a different telephone and a different email for genealogy work in our ward. (Heavens! This had better get worked out!) 

Grrr... #nooneasked



Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:
Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.


Wednesday, March 01, 2017

Google Keep on WACKY Wednesday tonight!




DearREADERS,
Both +Hilary Gadsby and +Cousin Russ  have mentioned using Google Keep as a quick note-taking system, say on par with sticky notes. Several have asked for a deeper look, so tonight's WACKY Wednesday will feature one of my *very* distant cousins who will start from scratch with Google Keep. The live broadcast begins as follows:

9pm Eastern US (New York)
8pm Central US (Chicago)
7pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City)
6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles)
UTC-7 hours
Below you will find the embedded YouTube version of this hangout.
If you wish to register to view the live broadcast with the links and comments, go here:
http://hangouts.dearmyrtle.com/ww-1-mar-2017.html
If you wish to continue the conversation after the live broadcast, head on over to
DearMYRTLE's Google+ Community here:



Hangouts: Pay what you want. So it's simple. If you value the work Ol' Myrt, +Cousin Russ and our beloved panelists do week in and week out on your behalf, please:

Check the DearMYRTLE Hangouts Calendar for upcoming study groups and hangouts. There you'll find links to the GeneaConference (in-person) and the GeneaWebinars Calendar with over over 200 hours of online genealogy classes, webinars, live streams and tweetchats from other hosts and presenters over the next 12 months.