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#1 RWells1938

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 08:51 AM

Is there a way to make a master to do list then copy the master list to an individual/family?

Usually when I start researching for an individual or family I have a standard set of places to search to start like Census, FamilySearch, Ancestry Family Tree, and others. This kinda like a check list so that I will not forget to look at some of the remote areas that may lead to clues.

Once I finish the to do then I can copy it over to the research log.

Thanks
Roger

#2 Renee Zamora

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 04:02 PM

Confirming enhancement request is in our tracking system.

Besides a copy feature for the To-Do's, personally I would like a copy feature for an entire Research Log with all the Research Items for sites you typically want to search. I am finding I'm skipping the To-Do's more and more and just working from the Research Log.

With the To-Do items you could make generic ones and reuse them by sending them to a research log and edit from there. You can keep sending the same To-Do item to different Research logs. So if you skip the part of filling out the To-Do item and just send it to the Research Log you could already do what your wanting to do.
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#3 Vyger

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 05:17 PM

Besides a copy feature for the To-Do's, personally I would like a copy feature for an entire Research Log with all the Research Items for sites you typically want to search. I am finding I'm skipping the To-Do's more and more and just working from the Research Log.


Evolution, although we still need a task list of some sort.

And agreement from me, just hope you make that point at the next staff meeting ;)

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research


#4 c24m48

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 07:41 AM

Besides a copy feature for the To-Do's, personally I would like a copy feature for an entire Research Log with all the Research Items for sites you typically want to search. I am finding I'm skipping the To-Do's more and more and just working from the Research Log.


I've never used the RM To-Do's (nor the FamilyOrigins To-Do's) except just to play with them to see how they work. They just don't work for me. But to tell you the truth, there is a lot of To-Do list software in the world, and not just for genealogy. None if it works for me. I've always assumed the fault was with me, not with the various To-Do software. In the case of RM, my To-Do's are really Named Groups and color coded people and SQLite queries - that sort of thing - where I can metaphorically make a list of missing or needed data.

On the other hand, I'm very much warming up to the Research Log. It has a great deal of value. I would just as soon see the Research Log beefed up and see the existing To-Do list deprecated. I don't think the two of them should be merged or integrated or anything like that. I wish I could define better just what it is about the To-Do's that doesn't work. I apologize that I can't. But I would hate to see whatever it is that's wrong with it to infect the much better design of the Research Log.

Jerry

#5 Vyger

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 11:49 AM

I've never used the RM To-Do's (nor the FamilyOrigins To-Do's) except just to play with them to see how they work. They just don't work for me.


I have used a lot of To-Do software and I do love that type of software but to be honest it does need to manage me rather than the other way round. In other words I make a lot of notes (to-do's) and too many for me to keep on top of through any sort of memory.

I did propose a Rootsmagic Dashboard View some time back which I would have showing hyperlinked statistics of things needing done within the database and linking to the solution utility, that's the kind of management I need. Such a view could show number of open to-do's, problem count, unlinked media count etc etc, the list goes on. I would have seen this as an additional tab presenting a one stop report of file statistics and counts of problems to be resolved or moved forward.

At times when active research and entering of new information is not ongoing such a view would present ones homework for some constructive activity on the database, the list of what could be presented is pretty extensive.

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research


#6 Laura

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 11:56 AM

I would like to be able to copy Research logs and also be able to copy or move individual Research Items. Then I wouldn't need to make a ToDo to copy it to multiple research logs.

I would also like to be able to rename columns in a specific research log.

And, perhaps Research Items could have a box and sortable column, P# for heading, for Priority. Maybe allow 2 characters, number or alphabetical, to be entered by the user in the Priority box. A user could assign a Priority number greater than 9 or enter a code F or S for Found or Search or G for Get or P for problem.

ToDo's have never worked very well for me either.
Laura

The following was overheard at a recent high society party...
"My ancestry goes all the way back to Alexander the Great," said one lady. She then turned to a second woman and asked, "How far does your family go back?"
"I don't know," was the reply. "All of our records were lost in the flood."
-on various web sites-

#7 Renee Zamora

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 01:09 PM

Confirming enhancement requests are in our tracking system.
Renee
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#8 Vyger

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 02:12 PM

I am going to change my terminology away from "To-Do" which maybe infers the existing task system in RM and may be liked or disliked. A To-Do is basically a Task and all research is broken down into tasks so within the Research Manager I believe we do still need a Task Manager.

I have to admit I have not fully embraced the Research Manager as it is, so either I have missed something or simply not found it to be the tool I would desire. I'm am going to share my opinion on how I might see it working and maybe in conjunction with others we can build a better concept. I would look forward to the day I would make serious moves towards bringing existing To-Do's and Correspondence into Research Manager but that day is not here yet.

My first thought was "when am I going to click that button?", well primarily when I need to do more research on an individual and at that point GenSmarts came to mind and the wishes expressed so far for copying functionality. One users default copy list will be completely different from anothers and probably based on geography, local knowledge and whether one is looking for a Birth, Life or Death event.

If I clicked the Research Manager button and wanted to further my research into a Birth event I would like to select from my own personalised list of Bith Registrations, Church Baptisms, Ancestry.com. For a Life event, Marriage Registrations, Census Returns, Employment records would be my consideration and for a Death event, Death registrations, Burial Records, Newspaper Obituaries. Where I would check and research in Ireland would be completely different from someone in England or USA so each of these Task lists would need to be personalised.

For those who have wished for copy functionality would such customised Task lists provide what is desired?

Laura's post looks like suggesting some sort of merge between the To-Do functionality and Research Manager by adding priorities, please feel free to correct me or elaborate on this Laura. Really any research is a series of Tasks like "Visit Newspaper Library" and how I have used the existing To-Do list was to update the Item with the results of that visit, what was checked and what was found.

Where that often fell down for me was producing a distillation of results in the future and maybe only within a certain date span. So if a Task was "Walk Ballyclare Cemetery" and the results were "Walked the complete Cemetery and found many Smith and Jones headstones, all have been photographed and added to file" which would be date stamped with Ballyclare Cemetery as the Repository then I would probably wish to recall the results of that visit maybe in many years to come to save repeated work.

I mentioned Correspondence earlier and this brings about one of my very few workarounds as I believe in fixing the problem rather than working around it. I would be interested in knowing how others handle Correspondence which within the current RM functionality cannot be linked to a Person or Place. I have read that some users have been copying Correspondence into Research Manager which makes good sense as Research Manager has a Search facility. What I did many years ago was to create a custom event called "Email", the Description field would be the subject and the Notes would be the Email content. This works better after the introduction of Find Everywhere but is not ideal as it is either an Individual or Family event where many individuals may have been referred to in the correspondence.

Apart from the Correspondence List becoming part of Research Manager it would also seem logical that tagging of all those individuals mentioned in any correspondence be facilitated. This should become another relational link within Rootsmagic whereas the existing Correspondence List is completely detached from the database.

I look forward to hearing the views of others and hopefully further discussion will eventually bring about a true Research Manager which manages Tasks well, has a degree of user customization and allows tagging of all individuals concerned.

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research


#9 John_of_Ross_County

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 05:18 PM

This is probably a really dumb question, but here it goes. First I have never tried the research logs or To Do lists.

Imagine early 1800 courthouse record books with poor name indexes. Some Ross County [Ohio] books just have court index entries such as Smith vs. Brown and not even the reverse index where Brown was sued by Smith. The index does not even have first names. Other parties to the suit are not in the index at all. Indexing improved after 1850.

I have found great data by doing a brute force search page by page looking for names not in the poor index. But I can't imagine any computer scheme that would help in a future search for other family names not of interest in the initial search.

#10 Vyger

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 05:54 PM

I have found great data by doing a brute force search page by page looking for names not in the poor index. But I can't imagine any computer scheme that would help in a future search for other family names not of interest in the initial search.


John, for me I have been logging more general details which might help me in future searches like confusing microfilm reel numbers and reel entries not as card index which was maybe confusing at the time and eventually worked out. I have entered these details in the To-Do item and then marked the To-Do item completed, thing is I still have that note from years ago existing within my database to help in the future.

Below is a real life entry from Ahoghill 2nd Presbyterian Church- Microfilm MIC.1P/136 which I entered back in 1999.

"Baptisms 1835 to 1901 and Marriages 1836 to 1920, just one reel in this collection.

The baptism records from 1835 to 1861 had no mothers maiden surname noted, but from 1862 both names are noted in the register. No baptism was found previous to the first at 1882.

The 1836 to 1845 marriages were checked thoroughly for parties and witness' and no mention was found of any Surgeoner.

Marriages ended at 6 August 1920, the end of register 7"



Edit: There is a very good argument that such information should be with the Source or Citation depending on how you lean on Source/Citation logging but I still feel there is also a place for like information in the Research Manager. However this being a NIL return search no Source exists within my database but it is useful to know if I later felt the urge to go through those records again.

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research


#11 Laura

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 07:59 PM

I am using the research logs for much more than just research logs for individual people or families.

One drawback to using the To Do feature is it is set up to only track persons and families research to be done. The source report will give you only the people that have that source linked in their record. The Correspondence feature has no way to group correspondence by subject or all emails received from or sent to one researcher or grouped by family groups.

When I started playing with Research logs and got over the idea of just using them for individuals and family logs, I realized I was no longer limited to the drawbacks of the To Do's, Source reports or Correspondence list.

I have a log for emails about a family group. I have the Research Items set up where I can sort various columns to give me who sent the email, who the email was about, etc. I also put the emails about individual in the person's personal Research log.

I have a log for the 1940 census with Research Items for people that I have found or need to look for. It is a great help when I research that census year and keeping track of my progress.

I have a log for obituaries which is a great place to record those general research obituaries for people I don't yet have in my database.

When I finally get it done, I will have all the data in my general research database in Research logs in my main database and will delete that database when I finish.

I also have a log for the various genealogy books and other resources at my town's public library and another with the genealogy sources in my personal library, books, CD's, photocopies, etc.

To me, the Research log is a general purpose database within the more specific lineage database, and I am glad to have it wiithin RootsMagic. The Research logs are more than just another version of the limited To Do list.

Any improvements made to it like coping research logs, copy or move research items, renaming columns or having a priority box just makes it better.


Laura

The following was overheard at a recent high society party...
"My ancestry goes all the way back to Alexander the Great," said one lady. She then turned to a second woman and asked, "How far does your family go back?"
"I don't know," was the reply. "All of our records were lost in the flood."
-on various web sites-

#12 Vyger

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 10:04 AM

I am using the research logs for much more than just research logs for individual people or families.


Laura, thank you for your contribution, I have now decided to embrace Research Manager and I would question whether To-Do's are still necessary. Tasks are necessary but after watching Webinar #32 I now feel that Research Items should have an Open or Completed status and therefore replace To-Do's.

That prompts the printing of Open Research Items with selectable repository and of course the priority you suggested earlier, I don't see the need now for both Research Manager and To-Do Lists.

Since this thread has moved direction I am going to resurrect a well supported Research Management System thread which I don't believe you contributed to before.

It is interesting, having just watched Webinar #32 that the questions posed at the end are so close to what we are discussing today and that was 2 years ago. The Rootsmagician did indicate support for some of those ideas so lets hope he still has those in mind.

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research


#13 c24m48

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 10:55 AM

I have now decided to embrace Research Manager and I would question whether To-Do's are still necessary. Tasks are necessary but after watching Webinar #32 I now feel that Research Items should have an Open or Completed status and therefore replace To-Do's.


I'm finding that I can use the Research Manager to create and track "To-Do's" more or less as it is now. It's probably the case that an Open or Completed status would be helpful, but I'm getting by without it. Here's a real example where the only thing I've changed is the person's name.
  • The name of the research log is "Find John Doe's obit".
  • The first log entry is dated 31 Dec 2013. For "What am I trying to find?" I entered "John Doe's obit". It's a little redundant from the title, but it's accurate nonetheless. This is the part of the Research Log that I already think of as a To-Do, even though it isn't called that.
  • Still in the first log entry: for "What source did you check?", I entered "Jefferson County Public Library". As you can see, this really isn't right because "Jefferson County Public Library" should have been entered as the repository. I really should have put something about newspaper micro-film as the answer to the "What source did you check?" question. But I tend to be very literal and this little exercise was a square peg into a round hole for me. The Research Manager's round questions didn't match my square answers because the answer is that the Jefferson County Public Library had no newspaper microfilm. So if my specified source was microfilm, then in fact I didn't look at the specified source.
  • Still in the first log entry: for the "What were the results of your search?" question, the answer is "The library recommended contacting the Carson-Newman University library".
  • So I made a second log entry. For the "What were you trying to find?" question, I entered "John Doe's obit" again. Notice that the tense is wrong in the question because it's in past tense but I haven't done it yet. Also, the "Date of your search" question is still blank because I haven't done it yet. Square pegs and round holes again, but still very useful.
  • For the second log entry and for the "What source did you check?" question, I entered "Carson-Newman University Library". Again, we have the wrong tense and square pegs in round holes because the university library is a repository rather than a source. But it's very useful and it works well for me.
I note the other following glitches.
  • There is no way to click anywhere in the Research Log and go straight to John Doe where John Doe could be in any of the main program views or maybe I could be in the Edit Person for John Doe. This kind of navigational capability would be a huge plus.
  • From the main program views I can get to the Research Log entry for John Doe with one click by clicking on the little icon in the upper left hand corner of the screen. But in all truth, those little icons in the upper left hand corner of the screen are almost completely useless because they are so invisible - hiding in plain sight. By contrast, the icon that says that there is a Problem List entry for a person appears directly on the name of the person in the main view, and is very visible. It's great.
  • RM Explorer cannot search on people who have Research Logs associated with them. Wouldn't that be really neat? Then you could find such people easily with Search, and you could make Named Groups out of them or color code them.
  • Finally, how in the world did I know to create the Research Log entry for John Doe in first place? Well, I created a "Missing Obituary" report with SQLite. My SQLite report is smart enough to know which people are living and which people are not. My SQLite report is smart enough to know the years for which I am likely to find an obit (I'm not likely to find an obit for 1703, for example). My SQLite report is smart enough to know know for which individuals I already have an obit and for which I do not. My SQLite report is smart enough to know which family lines I'm currently researching (by testing color codes or Named Group membership). My SQLite report is smart enough to remove an individual from the report when an obit appears (it's dynamic). And my SQLite report runs in a window that is independent of RM so that I can have both open on the screeen at the same time and I can move back and forth between the two windows without losing my place in either Window.
So even with the really nice Research Log facility that I like a lot and that I find very useful, RM still puts a lot of the bookkeeping burden on me that surely could be somewhat automated.

Jerry

#14 Vyger

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 12:39 PM

So even with the really nice Research Log facility that I like a lot and that I find very useful, RM still puts a lot of the bookkeeping burden on me that surely could be somewhat automated.


Some excellent food for thought in your post which I for one hope the Rootsmagician takes on board.

RM Explorer cannot search on people who have Research Logs associated with them. Wouldn't that be really neat? Then you could find such people easily with Search, and you could make Named Groups out of them or color code them.


I agree completely although I would generally only want to find those with Research Items outstanding (Open) and if I was heading down to "Jefferson County Public Library" I would like a list of all Research Items "Open" for that Repository.

I hope Renee pulls these posts together under the RMS topic, for now I am transferring my completed General research To-Do's from the To-Do list to Research Manager under the Parish name for the Research Log name and happy with the results it gives me.

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research


#15 Laura

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 01:56 PM

Jerry, I create only one Research log for a person as I want all research I did for them in one Research log.

Reference number is Birth or Census, Marriage, Obituary, etc. Then Found or Search, i.e. Obituary, Found or Obituary, Search. I can also enter the date as 0001 for any subjects I haven't searched for at all. Or the date could be 0002, 0003, etc. for priority numbers until I actually search and enter a date.

Goal is surname, given names, obituary, death date or death date range.

Icould put all the sources to check or checked in the Source box with dates I checked and yes or no for found or not found.

Repository would be the source(s) I found the data in.

I would also have a Research log for the Jefferson Library. REF#= Obituary, Found or Search. Goal= Surname, given or perhaps Doe surname. Source would be the sources to check or sources checked. Repository would be the library. Or you might want each individual source to be seperate research item with people to look for in Goal or Results which is what do in my Reseach log for our public library

The more I work with Research logs, the easier I find it to change my mind set from using ToDo's to the much broader places and way to enter data in Reasearch logs.

In any particular research item, we can use any box for any data we wish regardless of the box's name. I decide what box I am goiing to use for what data and then put a guide in the note for the Research log to keep me consistant on where to enter data and what format to enter it in.
Laura

The following was overheard at a recent high society party...
"My ancestry goes all the way back to Alexander the Great," said one lady. She then turned to a second woman and asked, "How far does your family go back?"
"I don't know," was the reply. "All of our records were lost in the flood."
-on various web sites-

#16 Laura

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 02:21 PM

Vyger, create a Research log for the Repository. If you already have a open ToDo go to that ToDo on the ToDo list and transfer it to a Research log.

As RM is now without the ability to move or copy Research items, we have some choices to make. We can then delete the ToDo or leave it until the research is done and then transfer the ToDo to other Research logs.
Laura

The following was overheard at a recent high society party...
"My ancestry goes all the way back to Alexander the Great," said one lady. She then turned to a second woman and asked, "How far does your family go back?"
"I don't know," was the reply. "All of our records were lost in the flood."
-on various web sites-

#17 Vyger

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 05:14 PM

Vyger, create a Research log for the Repository. If you already have a open ToDo go to that ToDo on the ToDo list and transfer it to a Research log.

As RM is now without the ability to move or copy Research items, we have some choices to make. We can then delete the ToDo or leave it until the research is done and then transfer the ToDo to other Research logs.


Laura, thank you for your insight and suggestions. Research Manager is not quite the tool I would like it to be at present but moving some of my completed To-Do's over seems to be a wise choice. A lot of my General Research has been within Repositories so I will follow your suggestion, other bodies of past research work (mainly Church records) can be brought together in Research Manager by Parish which will work well for me in the future.

You have much more experience of using Research Manager than I do so your opinions and suggestions on the thread below would be valuable input for the Rootsmagician.

http://forums.rootsm...search manager

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research


#18 Renee Zamora

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 12:43 PM

I was experimenting this weekend with copying To-Do Items and Research Logs. I thought I would share my findings.

I am now moving all my To-Do Items to Research Logs and working strictly from there to record results.

I am using the To-Do List to only store templates of typical searches I like to do on people - this becomes a Task List. Then I can "copy" that To-Do item to the log as needed. I went through all the Federal Census, New York State Census (main research area), Wars and added them as template To-Do items. For the task I entered the date first. This way everything sorted in chronological order so I didn't overlook a time period sensitive search prompt. I have other types of searches I also like to do as To-Do items so they are also in there as templates.

Here are the fields and what I enter on the To-Do item.
Task field: 1790 US Federal Census
Task Detail:
Find: John Henry Weatherwax, Jr. Family
Check: United States 1790 Census
Repository: FamilySearch.org, etc.

When I move the To-Do item to the Research Log I will cut and paste the Find and Check lines under Task Detail to the matching field on the Research Log.

I then created a dummy person in RootsMagic and attached all those To-Do item templates to that person. This allows me to drag n drop all those templates to another database if needed.

Next, I created a Research Log template (actually several). I added all the applicable To-Do items to the Research Log templates I wanted them in. I then attached the Research Logs to a second dummy person. I made the two dummy people, one for To-Do's and the other for Research Logs as a couple in my database.

This allows me to drag n drop all my Research Log and To-Do item Templates to a new database as needed. I would really only need to drag the dummy To-Do item person to a file once, because those can be reused. If I want to reuse my Research Log template I can just drag n drop that person over to a database as needed.

I found a bug when you drag n drop and select the option that the person is the same to cause a merge. The Research Log attached to the person being dragged over will go from a Person Log to a General Log. So, you loose the connection. That has been reported in our tracking system. It took a lot of work but I now have a system for reusing Research Logs or moving standard Research Items as needed from the To-Do item templates.

It's a good practice to have a generic Research Log available all the time because you can't move a To-Do item to a log if it doesn't already exist. If you keep a blank on in there you can select that as the need arises. We already had that issue noted in our tracking system.

Hopefully, this is all a work around because I've added in the tracking system all the ways we could have simplified this process with a copy, move feature, etc.
Renee
RootsMagic

#19 Renee Zamora

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 01:24 PM

On Jerry's comment:

From the main program views I can get to the Research Log entry for John Doe with one click by clicking on the little icon in the upper left hand corner of the screen. But in all truth, those little icons in the upper left hand corner of the screen are almost completely useless because they are so invisible - hiding in plain sight. By contrast, the icon that says that there is a Problem List entry for a person appears directly on the name of the person in the main view, and is very visible. It's great.



You can customize the toolbar menu to include the To-Do and Research Log icon. This will give easier access. On the Edit Person screen you also have a To-Do and Research Log button. I noticed we don't have an indicator like the WebTags button does to show how many items a person has, so I added that in our tracking system.

As for the request for an icon on the person's name I added it to Flik but I wouldn't use it. I already use up to much real estate in that area with the LDS Ordinance, and FamilySearch Family Tree icon in that area with Problem Alerts.
Renee
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#20 Vyger

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 01:26 PM

Renee,

Nice comments and good to read.

Having taken the time to do all this work did you have any thoughts on reporting, I find Research Log lacking here in producing what I would want.

Another recent thought is that since a log, by definition, is a record of something which has happened rather than a task list it seems logical all completed To-Do items should then get transferred. That is the work I am happy to be doing at the moment and it is working well and will leave only "Open" Tasks in the To-Do list with its reporting capabilities by Priority, Repository etc. Research Manager and To-Do could be merged into one utility but that may become messy so maybe a better correlation between the two would be better.

I am not sure if you personally use Correspondence Log, with few exceptions I don't as I can't Tag individuals mentioned or easily search the log. I believe some users are copying corespondence into Research Manager but did you have any thoughts on how Correspondence Log could be better incorporated through tagging and searchable?

Software Comparisons - Place Management - How other software packages stack up.
Media Gallery (a critical look) - Written when RM4 was introduced but still applies today.

Relaxation is the key to life and this is where I get some time to relax and catch up on my hobby and research s the key to life and this is where I get some time to catch up on me genealogy work and research