52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Week 2 – Challenge

Roger : January 15, 2019 6:44 pm : 52Ancestors, Dewar, Houliston, Lineham, Moffat, Scarlett

This week’s prompt for the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks is “Challenge”. That opens up lots of possibilities – the first is which is the challenge of me getting it done in time. In that I failed – it’s a couple of days into week 3 already…

I decided for this that I’d explore some of the challenges my ancestors faced when deciding to uproot themselves from England and Scotland, and make their way to New Zealand – clear around the other side of the world.

Dad’s Side – Moffat, Houliston, Stoddart, Monfries, Dewar, Bringans, Mitchell

The first ones to leave were William Moffat and his new bride Ellen Houliston. They married in Scotland in 1857, and then immediately after departed on the ship “Titan” to Victoria Australia, where William got a job working in the Victoria Goldfields. What a challenge that must have been to sail almost halfway around the world in search of a dream. A family history compiled in 1960 contains this quote: more »

Leave a response »

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Week 1 – Firsts

Roger : January 7, 2019 9:05 am : 52Ancestors, Genealogy

For the last year I had been following Amy Johnson Crow’s series of prompts for blogging about your ancestors and genealogy research – 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks – but never quite managed to get started, and almost before I knew it the prompt for Week 52 was upon us, and I hadn’t yet done Week 1. So here we are almost at the end of Week 1 of 2019, and this is my start. This is what Amy sent out for January:

The January Prompts
Week 1 (January 1-7): First
Week 2 (January 8-14): Challenge
Week 3 (January 15-21): Unusual Name
Week 4 (January 22-28): I’d Like to Meet
Week 5 (January 29-February 4): At the Library

Week 1: First
Who was the first ancestor you found who you didn’t personally know? Who was the first ancestor to arrive in the country? Who was the first child in one of your ancestral families? First to go to college? First husband out of a string of many?

I decided not to answer any of those questions, but rather just get my first post completed and published before Week 1 had ended. more »

Leave a response »

RootsTech 2016 – Day One – Innovator Showdown

Roger : February 4, 2016 2:18 am : Announcements, Genealogy

The main feature on Wednesday was the Innovator Showdown with its prize of $100,000 at stake. The 12 semi-finalists had been chosen from the 40 teams that entered, and today in front of 5 judges they presented the technology ideas they’ve come up with to the Judges and the audience in the room. Each contestant was given 2 minutes to make their pitch, and then faced a few minutes each of questioning by the Judges on matters such as how do they see their idea growing, how it might be scaleable, how it might make money.

There were some quite interesting ideas, although a number of them seemed to be all related around the theme of journaling and recording family history.

1 – famicity [website | presentation] – presented by a French developer as a way to preserve family pictures and legacies

2 – GenSoup [website | presentation] – presented by an Austrian development team as a way to research and document Central and Eastern European family history. (One tidbit from this was that Captain Von Trapp – yes, that one from The Sound of Music – was not Austrian, but was Italian?!)

3 – JRNL [website | presentation] – a way to bring together blog posts, twitter, Facebook posts into a curated environment where the user can choose what to put in to a journal that will record a person’s life

4 – Kindex [website | presentation] – a service that will offer scanning and transcription of a person’s memorabilia – photos, letters and other items with a view to creating a journal – family members can work together to create the journal, but Kindex does the scanning and transcription.

5 – Tap Genes [website | presentation] – Health legacy and family future can be analysed – the example given was the preventative surgery (double mastectomy) Angela had, where so many of her other family members have died of cancer.

6 – The History Project [website | presentation] – Connect, Inspire, Delight – another method of collecting and curating to publish the record of a person’s life.

7 – Ancestor Cloud [website | presentation] – a market place that will match people looking for information in distant places to those able to provide the information others are looking for. Not dis-similar to an entry last year called RootsBid.

8 – Legacy Scribes [website | presentation] – if you inherits a collection of journals from an ancestor Legacy Scribes will preserve and make relevant the contents of them by scanning, indexing and storing in the cloud.

9 – Scribbitt [website | presentation] – social media has changed how people record their lives – Facebook, Twitter, blogs. Scribbitt will help bring this all together in a subscription based service.

10 – Studio (by Legacy Republic) [website | presentation] – have developed a scanner and software capable of scanning album pages, including those under shiny plastic and being able to remove the glare and distortion as it goes automatically, taking 20 minutes to scan and clean up an album rather than many many hours it might currently take

11 – The Family History Guide [website | presentation] – a website offering a lot of resources to help with family history. Currently have users in 88 countries

12 – Twile [website | presentation] – creates a timeline of a person’s family history, or a timeline of your entire genealogy if you feed it a GEDCOM file of your family. Then along that timeline are shown the major events, as well as links to any images or other media you link (by date derived from metadata in images, or manually entered) to the timeline.

After today’s presentation and judging, the 6 finalists for Friday’s Showdown have been chosen. They are Ancestor Cloud, JRNL, Studio (by Legacy Republic), Tap Genes, The History Project and Twile.

My two favourite as Studio (by Legacy Republic) and Twile. If the album scanner is as good as it was said to be it will be some smart technology, and the presentation shown by Twile was very intriguing.

The Innovator Showdown is described on the RootsTech site






RootsTech 2016 – Day One – Wednesday

Roger : February 4, 2016 1:33 am : Announcements, Genealogy

Wednesday 3 February 2016 – RootsTech 2016 – Innovator Summit Day

The day started out shortly after 7am with the trek through the huge Salt Palace convention centre from the entrance right by the Radisson hotel to the far south end where Registration was taking place. Luckily at that hour, on the first day of RootsTech the crowds hadn’t yet formed, so I was able to get in and registered in just a few minutes – the fact that I have only this evening discovered that I was given the wrong Lisa Christensen’s registration ticket and bag not withstanding. (First order of business tomorrow will be to go and return that and try and get the right information for Lisa to attend a couple of the evening social functions.)

First up at 9am was Shipley Munson of Family Search with a welcome and introduction of the day’s two keynote speakers:

Steve Rockwood – CEO of FamilySearch International

Steve talked about his work before coming to FamilySearch with a company that altered the call centre business by coming up with the idea of having the call centre staff work from their homes. He helped develop the “Bidirectional Offsite Phonecall Generator” – the BOPG – or “Bunch of Phone Guts” that allowed offsite call centre workers to answer phones from their homes. Moving on to where family history is now he talked about transitioning from “Facts of the Chart” to “Stories of the Heart”, and instead of trying to bring people in to the family history world, take the family history world to them. Once example he gave would see a personal assistant like Siri being aware of a person’s family history and so able to tell them as they’re travelling that grandfather is buried just a few miles from where we are now, so that family history can enhance travel and other normal activities.

Ken Krogue – Founder and President of InsideSales

Ken Krogue talked about his experience going “from Startup to Unicorn” with his company and outlined a set of steps that can make your business better focussed and more successful. For one example he showed a picture of a Makita cordless drill and asked what that picture was selling – it wasn’t power tools, or a drill – it was selling a hole – the end result of using the drill. He talked about the “price-quality-speed – pick 2 dilemma”, and noted that Costco seem to have managed to pick all 3. He also had some good points to make on the relative successes of different message media, with blogging now being one of the most successful means of getting a message out, and he talked about the expectations in this modern web connected age of response times – a 39 hour response time doesn’t work any more, but if you can shorten it to 5 minutes you’ll have a 92% closure rate. Ken also talked of the story behind the movie “MoneyBall” about the Oakland A’s baseball team and their turn around in management style to managing almost solely based on player stats and numbers. The top media is blogging, and Content and Distribution are King.

The session ended with an outline of the rest of the day, and everyone dispersing to the first classes, or to just hang around and socialise.

Leave a response »

FGS 2015 and RootsTech – Friday

Roger : March 9, 2015 5:39 pm : Genealogy, Salt Lake City 2015

Seventh day in Salt Lake City – it’s almost been a week already…

On Thursday I had been given an “FGS Ambassador” ribbon for my name tag by some of the team at the FGS Booth, and Friday morning a message from Laurie Desmarais informed me that I could sit in the Media and Ambassadors area in the Keynote Hall – quite the honour as we’re talking about a block of seats within 10-15 rows of the front right in front of centre stage, and a huge improvement from about 10 rows from the back where I’d sat the previous day. So I made my way in and ended up sitting with Dick Eastman, J Paul Hawthorne, Thomas MacEntee and others with a much improved view of the stage.

Today’s keynote speakers were D Joshua Taylor – President of FGS and Director of Family History at FindMyPast, and then former First Lady Laura Bush and her daughter Jenna Bush Hager.

Josh talked about some of the things FindMyPast is doing, including digitising the records behind PERSI (PERiodical Source Index), and then taking us on a wee trip back in his past, including the tale of how as a young boy he would take the cheese grater and cheese in to his bedroom because he loved grated cheese, and then a connection to a distant relative – one William Heaps –  who was transported to Australia for stealing cheese!!

Dennis Brimhall of FamilySearch introduced former First Lady Laura Bush, and quipped that if he messed up in front of the First Lady it will be recorded in the Presidential Library. (For some reason Friday’s Keynote was NOT streamed live as Thursday’s had been, and Saturday’s would be.)

Laura Bush took the stage next with an interesting address that talked about the years her family spent in the White House – both as a son and daughter-in-law of a President, and then 8 years later as President and First Lady – and the importance of family to their family. Her and President Bush are proud grandparents now, and she noted that Grandpa and Grandma seem to be going out of fashion now – she’s “Mimi Maxwell” and George wants the baby to call him “Sir”.

She talked about the events of September 11, 2001 and noted that they were taken to a location beneath the White House furnished “during the Truman years”. One other thing I scribbled down as she spoke was that she’s had to tell George “Turmoil in East Timor is no longer an excuse to not pick up your socks”. And at the first baseball game at Yankee Stadium after September 11, where President Bush threw out the first pitch, Derek Jeter told President Bush to “be a man – throw from the mound, but don’t bounce it or they’ll boo you”.

The second part of the session saw Jenna Bush Hager come to the stage and interview Laura Bush in a more informal manner that also had a few family tales thrown in.

After the Keynote session was over there was a mad crush to leave the hall and descend on the Vendor/Exhibitor Hall.

I spent a short while in the Exhibits Hall, and then went back into the main Keynote Hall to watch the finals of the “Innovator Showdown“. more »

« Page 1 »

Lisa and I are both actively researching our genealogy, and we both have our genealogy online…

Roger’s Genealogy Online

Lisa’s Genealogy Online

Other items of genealogical interest on this site include a set of indexes I made to the Slave Schedules of the 1850 and 1860 Censuses of Copiah Co., Mississippi. They can be found here

1850 Copiah Co., Mississippi – Slave Owners Alphabetical

1850 Copiah Co., Mississippi – Slave Owners Enumeration Order

1860 Copiah Co., Mississippi – Slave Owners Alphabetical

1860 Copiah Co., Mississippi – Slave Owners Enumeration Order

and described here

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

© 2000 – 2019 Roger’s Ramblings Powered by WordPress Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha
%d bloggers like this:

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.