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Progeny Genealogy's Chart Companion

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#1 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 11 April 2014 - 11:52 AM

Based on the discussion of Progeny Genealogy's Chart Companion in the most recent RootsMagic Newsletter and based on Bruces's webinar about the product, I decided to purchase it. Here are some comments.
  • I very much like the product. It's very impressive.
  • I very much like the "idea of the product". What I mean by that is that it's very difficult for any one genealogy package to be the best at everything. Chart Companion makes excellent charts, and it works with every major genealogy package in the Windows world, plus it works with GEDCOM. So the effort and developmental cost that have gone into Chart Companion can be amortized across a much larger user base than the effort and developmental costs that go into charts for RootsMagic or charts for FTM, etc. This seems like a very good model to me. I have the same positive feelings about GenSmarts, for example, except that the GenSmarts product has become sort of moribund and no longer seems to be under active development.
  • Despite #1 and #2, there are some glitches with Chart Companion that have to do with lack of standards for genealogy software and lack of optimum interoperability among genealogy software. Example #A: Chart Companion understands RM nicknames, but it does not process them in a manner which I consider acceptable. Which is to say, Chart Companion lists John David Doe whose nickname was Butch as John David Butch Doe rather than John David (Butch) Doe or as John David "Butch" Doe. This is especially bad when I list John David Doe who was known as David as John David Doe with a nickname of David. Chart Companion lists the name as John David David Doe. So for interoperability, I would have been better off not using RM nicknames and instead I could have included nicknames in as a part of the first name field in RM. Example #B. Chart Companion does not understand RM Place Details. So my Chart Companion reports entirely lose cemetery names and the like. So for interoperability, I would have been better off not using Place Details and keeping my cemetery names in the main place name.
  • I purchased Chart Companion for it's "fancy reports" such as Fan Charts, bow tie charts, hour glass charts, and the like. But Chart Companion also produces more "ordinary reports" such as ancestor reports and descendant reports. I tried a descendant book report to compare it with the same report produced by RM. In general, I like the look and feel and format and sentence structure of the Chart Companion report much more than I like the same report from RM. But the Chart Companion report is useless to me. It includes only basic BMD types of facts, and it does not include any fact notes. To me, fact notes are one of the best features of RM and fact notes seem to be properly supported in GEDCOM. But a lot of genealogy software doesn't seem to support fact notes - very PAF'ish. Yuck.
So I will stick with using Chart Companion only for "fancy reports". And I will deal with the nickname issue and the Place Details issue by making a copy of my RM database and by moving nicknames to the first name field and by moving Place Details to the Place Name field with SQLite.


#2 Renee Zamora

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Posted 14 April 2014 - 09:16 AM

Progeny handles all tech support on their program. Please report your findings directly to them for resolution.

Phone: 902-681-3102

Hours: 9:00-4:00 PT

Email: customersupport@progenygenealogy.com

Online: http://progenygeneal...contact-us.aspx