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FamilySearch, FamilySearch, FamilySearch - I'm so sick of FamilySearch


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#1 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 16 August 2013 - 06:56 PM

With the release of 6.1, we were told that the near-exclusive use of programmers for FamilySearch features was at at end, and that we could expect a return to "normal" programming efforts on long-overdue non-FamilySearch items.

Obviously, that hasn't happened. Do you people realize that you have customers who couldn't care one whit about FamilySearch? Did I mention that I'm sick to death of hearing about nothing but FamilySearch?

#2 Laura

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Posted 17 August 2013 - 10:40 AM

Some of us can understand that FamilySearch Family Tree keeps changing their API therefore RootsMagic keeps having to adjust taking time and effort away from other things they would rather be doing.

I suspect Bruce and Michael are even more frustrated or more so than you are as they are the ones who must deal with it.

Plus, we have no idea what other work on RM is being done that Bruce is not ready to release yet.

And changes to RM other than syncing to Family Tree are being made, i. e. Groups in Color coding for one and some other minor enhancements that were not announced that I have seen while working in my database.

I will never use the ordanance part of the sync with Family Tree as I am not a member of LDS. But I did copy my database and am using that new database to Match people with Family Tree. While I must be wary of the data entered on Family Tree, I have found some promising research leads.

#3 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 05:00 PM

Some of us can understand that FamilySearch Family Tree keeps changing their API therefore RootsMagic keeps having to adjust taking time and effort away from other things they would rather be doing.

I suspect Bruce and Michael are even more frustrated or more so than you are as they are the ones who must deal with it.

Plus, we have no idea what other work on RM is being done that Bruce is not ready to release yet.

And changes to RM other than syncing to Family Tree are being made, i. e. Groups in Color coding for one and some other minor enhancements that were not announced that I have seen while working in my database.

I will never use the ordanance part of the sync with Family Tree as I am not a member of LDS. But I did copy my database and am using that new database to Match people with Family Tree. While I must be wary of the data entered on Family Tree, I have found some promising research leads.


Thanks, Laura - as always - for your In Defense of RootsMagic response. Of course I understand what is happening - I just don't agree with the choice of priorities that has been made over the past several years. We have been suffering for far too long at the expense of FamilySearch and its half-baked, incomplete and ill-conceived FamilyTree web application. It is obvious (if the statements made by RootsMagic can be believed) that FamilySearch does not value their "partners" (what a stretch!) enough to keep them in the loop with the myriad of changes that are being made - and will continue to be made for years to come. All RootsMagic is doing at this point is playing catch-up/keep-up with FamilySearch. If FamilySearch continues on its same path, and RootsMagic continues on its same path, we'll see nothing from RootsMagic but the meager output that we've seen for the past few years.

When a staff member/family member makes comments such as "I don't have much interest in inheriting the business." and "I'm not a strong RootsMagic user myself" it speaks volumes. When that same person says "I'm involved in a few new features that will show up sooner or later", it's a clear sign that employees are working with a lack of short-terms goals and cohesiveness. (Sure, let's spend our time working on something that "will show up soon or later" - don't worry about the essential stuff!") Those comments, and that attitude, reek of nepotism - which may be just another of RootsMagic's many weaknesses.


RootsMagic is woefully under-crewed, lacks a charted course, and is sailing without a compass. Without major changes - and quick - RootsMagic will sink. Whether blame will go to the crew, the design of the ship, or the captain at the helm, remains to be seen.


(By the way, it is absolutely laughable that you could suggest that group color-coding and other "minor enhancements" are in some way worthy of an "atta boy" for a job well done).

#4 Alfred

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 08:07 PM

I cannot imagine why you are still here with this woefully understaffed genealogy program when about all you do is complain about it not having your wants added instantly.

Now, if you want one done by a larger company, maybe you should move to Family Tree Maker.
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#5 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 08:37 AM

I cannot imagine why you are still here with this woefully understaffed genealogy program when about all you do is complain about it not having your wants added instantly.

Now, if you want one done by a larger company, maybe you should move to Family Tree Maker.


Yeah, instantly. Right on, Alfred.

#6 alansogd

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 11:06 AM

Wow, I appreciate the personal attacks. And you wonder why developers don't visit the forums.

I'm a web developer. I don't make decisions about the direction of the company. I don't care much for business. A person can be good at his job without having the ambition to take over the company, can't he?

Can I also be a competent web developer without knowing the ins and outs of RootsMagic? I'm not tech support and I don't develop for the program itself. I work on server APIs, and I manage the website. I know little of the direction RootsMagic the product is going because it isn't my department. I have another job managing websites for quilters, but I don't know how to quilt. Turns out quilters are pretty happy with the websites anyway.

When I say I am working on features that will show up "sooner or later", it is because I develop the server API, and I am not involved with the way RootsMagic connects to it. They prioritize that how they will, and yes, their side has been pushed back a little bit because of FamilySearch issues, which is why I'm being ambiguous about when the features will arrive. The primary RM developers *do* have a long term plan, and you're mistaking hiccups in the flow as company-wide incompetence. It isn't helping anybody.

Now everybody knows why I didn't publicize my last name. Suddenly it is called into question whether I can do my job right or not. This is what I get for trying to be helpful and showing up in the forums to answer questions in the first place. I'm not much inclined to do so now.

It is acceptable to raise concerns, but what you are doing is completely out of line, Ludlow Bay. You're damaging the relationship between the developers and the forum users and making nasty, harmful assumptions about things you don't understand.

#7 Jack

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 01:11 PM

Mr. Bay has long been a super critic of Roots Magic. Those of us who have felt his wrath before pay little to no attention to his rants.

Others here might be well advised to do the same.
Jack

a posteriori

#8 Laura

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 01:37 PM

It is never been clear that Ludlow Bay even uses RootsMagic.

Alan, please don't take his posts personally. The other posters on this board appreciate your input.

When I agree to the license agreement, I agree to use that version as it is when I click the agree box. The license does not commit RootsMagic to making any updates to the programs or give me the rights to tell Bruce how to run his business, dictate what changes to RootsMagic he should make or who he should hire.

#9 TomH

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 02:09 PM

In a rare show of sympathy for Ludlow Bay, who as rarely exhibits much in the way of tactfulness and diplomacy, his complaint about perceived neglect of other matters as or more important than FSFT is shared by some users (maybe many). Having hitched our wagon to the RootsMagic horse and only able to influence its progress and direction by talking to it (we have no reins, no whip, no carrot), we are understandably concerned that it head steadily on a course favourable to our well-being and that relief horses with the same sensibilities will be available so that we do not fall short. Like the settlers we may be researching, some of us in the wagon have differing visions about where we want to go and how best to get there and that gives rise to sometimes lively debate. Some of us are horse whisperers (none very successful) - others bray at it (no more successfully). It goes where it goes. End of analogy!

Alan, I hope you won't be deterred by the braying from participating in the forums. Renee has learned how to cope with the odd "shoot the messenger" posts and provides us with a valuable service. I'm certain that the parts of the RootsMagic system for which you are responsible and your personal satisfaction from getting them right can only benefit from discourse with users.

Tom user of RM7550 FTM2017 Ancestry.ca FamilySearch.org FindMyPast.com
SQLite_Tools_For_Roots_Magic_in_PR_Celti wiki, exploiting the database in special ways >>> Rmtrix_tiny.png app, a bundle of RootsMagic utilities.


#10 kbens0n

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 02:25 PM

I certainly authorize whomever to take down my post where I unfortunately revealed this information. I'm definitely sorry for it's misuse.

---
--- "GENEALOGY, n. An account of one's descent from an ancestor who did not particularly care to trace his own." - Ambrose Bierce
--- "The trouble ain't what people don't know, it's what they know that ain't so." - Josh Billings
---Ô¿Ô---
K e V i N


#11 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 04:03 PM

Disclaimers, denials and attempts to silence my opinion aside, time tells no lies.

#12 alansogd

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 04:51 PM

attempts to silence my opinion


Don't pretend like anybody is trampling on your rights here. First of all, your posts are rarely if ever moderated. You say what you want all the time. RootsMagic is very lax about its forum moderation. Second, we don't owe you a soapbox to antagonize forum members and developers. If it were my responsibility to moderate this forum I wouldn't be as forgiving. I think the forums would be a better place with more heavy-handed moderation than we have right now.

I appreciate everyone else's comments, but it's disappointing to hear everyone say "yeah, people say nasty things in the forums and everyone learns not to take it personally." It shouldn't have to be this way.

I already said it is perfectly acceptable to raise concerns and talk about them, but throwing out malignant rumors and prophesying about how "RootsMagic will sink" due to a series of poorly-founded conjectures is not productive. Personal criticism of forum members and developers is not productive. Posts like this foster a negative attitude through the entire forum. Maybe that's your goal. I can't imagine what delusion might convince you that what you are doing is actually constructive for the community or for the product.

It's not my place to address your initial concern. I'm not involved in FSFT at all. I have to be careful not to step outside the bounds of my non-disclosure. I'll just say this about it: Laura's original comment is quite accurate from what I have heard. There's a lot of internal frustration with the way FSFT has been progressing. The LDS market isn't the majority, but it's still significant, and FSFT support is time-sensitive. I assure you that both Mike and Bruce would love to have FSFT behind them and work on other things. They are aware that non-LDS people are not thrilled with the larger-than-expected hiatus in non-FSFT development. Hopefully we are near the light at the end of the tunnel on this one but I can't make any promises about it. There are other things currently in the works that have not been announced. Some which I know about, and others which I don't.

kbens0n, no hard feelings about the disclosure. I figured it would come up sooner or later. There's not any going back at this point but that's okay. I am an honest person. It's one of my biggest weaknesses. I like full disclosure and I like frank, honest discussion. I'd rather have the knowledge out there anyway than keep secrets about it. I'll deal with the haters.

#13 Roy

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 06:03 PM

I am a 'certified' new person in documenting my research though I have been buying RM and the book since at least version 3. Until recently, my efforts have been entering people, dates, etc.; little of the hard stuff like sources. The webinars have been pretty trivial; lots of conversation, not much in 'nuts and bolts'.

I am not LDS and have zero interest in Family Search or in online family tree stuff; my experience with online information from their files has not been good, largely full of errors. I have had good luck with Ancestry; not a current subscriber though. I am 20 minutes away from the Library of Virginia and most of my ancestors were Virginians.

As I get more into really using RM6, I am more and more dissapointed by what I consider to be glaring errors and oversights in a top quality program. I fell into the 'memorize and paste trap' recently when I was expecting to be able to use the multiple citation feature. Had to throw away many hours of work. Was trying to do the citations for 1809-1811 court cases to settle the estate of a 4thggmother who died intestate. Nine children, plus 2 husbands of female children, is 12 people need citation for the same five court appearences; lots of 'memorize and paste' only to learn it did not print as expected in a report and could not be globally corrected for one CR/LF.

Now, as a novice' I am poking around in the guts of things trying to come up with workable alternate methods. Fortunately, there is some benefit from an engineering education, many years of experience, having done some 'home brew' dBase/Clipper programs, and dumb luck. The etremely high level conversation by the guys on 'extreme splitting' has also been a big help.

I would like for them to return to optimizing a fine program.

#14 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 06:35 PM


I spoke my mind; you've spoken yours. End of discussion.

#15 Jack

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 06:53 PM

I spoke my mind; you've spoken yours. End of discussion.


Alansogd - sounds like Ludlow Bay surrendered.

BTW, we - meaning me and I suspect a few others - "don't take it personally." We just don't take it. I used to reply to some of his/her rants. This is the first in a very long time.

I suspect he/or she just hasn't socialized much with polite society.
Jack

a posteriori

#16 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 07:03 PM

No, Jack - no surrender. I meant just exactly what I wrote. I didn't post to start an argument; I merely voiced my opinion, and I don't have a problem with you having an opinion that differs from mine.

#17 Vyger

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 03:47 AM

One of these threads pops up every now and then and I would say not without reason but the personal stuff can certainly be left out.

Firstly I have to say when I read the release notes I was disappointed to see nothing other than FamilySearch related updates while so many other valuable updates (to non LDS) remain in the tracking system. It is also disappointing that FamilySearch keep making changes that the Rootsmagician feels duty bound to chase after, so is LDS a giver or a taker? - both I would say, which user base is bigger or more important to Rootsmagic? - I have no idea.

I have often thought about the future of Rootsmagic after the Rootsmagician decides to retire but I believe he has a valuable business to sell, has achieved a great deal for a relatively small business and once that day comes I believe we will all regret it (if we are still around).

It often disappoints me when I see that many tasks that essentially should be done within RM take much longer than necessary and could be easily improved and I feel for the mass who are restricted within the capabilities of the program. From a point of providing what is easily possible, utilizing all modern methods and increasing research productivity for every user would be of great benefit to the genealogy community.

I would still hope that Rootsmagic have returned to the yearly tick tock of version releases and new features need to be held for that new version release to make it a desirable purchase for new and current version users, minor updates would not provide that. Yes it is nice to receive little enhancements and fixes in the early part of the year and as eluded to by an earlier post this is a bonus and not an entitlement.

Aside from the hard core reality of business needs and running a successful company I find Rootsmagic a great program and something the company can be proud of. However there are many things which could be much improved and maybe this thread came out of the frustration that they are not forthcoming, or at least not forthcoming quickly enough.

I will try to continue with constructive suggestions and discussion and would hope that other forward thinking critical thinkers can take time to do the same.

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#18 GeoffB

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 04:59 AM

I have no wish to become embroiled in what is clearly developing into a sniping match. But to my mind the issue behind this - that is to say, is the current development of Rootsmagic appropriately focused? - is worth examining.

It goes without saying that as purchasers of the product, we each have our own views on what it does well, those things that we believe could be improved and those that we consider that it should do but which it doesn't yet offer.

Whilst we cannot expect to make demands on the developers to deliver any enhancements or to have an expectation that our own views should be heeded, Rootsmagic sells itself on the pretext that it actively listens to and reacts to the views of its users. Most, if not all of us, very much welcome this approach - though the benefit is surely decidedly two-way with the developers gleening substantially from valuable and expert feedback as well as free product support! However, this rather symbiotic relationship does show signs of falling apart.

Recent upgrades have promised much on the back of the program's inter-operability with FamilySearch/Tree which - no doubt for reasons beyond the developers' control have actually taken far too long to roll out and, it seems,continue to require on-going attention.

In parallel many program issues have been highlighted (often some time ago), some which can be lived with but others that are more glaring omission which, despite apparently being put on the list for attention, seem to be on the perpetual back burner.

Personally, I place little importance on FamilySearch whose results experience has shown need to be taken with a hefty pinch of salt! But I acknowledge that others are more enthusiastic. I do though recognise growing frustration that a range of other issues raised by Forum members may be being kicked into the long grass.

I have no doubt that Rootsmagic staggers the release of program enhancements so as to provide the Company with future upgrades - indeed not to do so would undermine its commercial viability. But it must surely be wary: other competing products are available that in some regards fills gaps in Rootsmagic's capabilities. These products are also under constant development and no doubt access this Forum.

The fact that we chose to use Rootsmagic as our primary software (or at least one of them) is testament to the quality of the program. But complacency from the developers may change this.

#19 Renee Zamora

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 09:38 AM

I am locking this forum thread. I think we have beaten this issue to death and can now move on.
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