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Starting data entry from oldest ancestor?


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#1 Fleetz

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Posted 11 April 2017 - 06:51 AM

Ready to start putting about 230 odd family history into RootsMagic. I am putting in our family name history and would like to start from our earliest couple and build from there. Is there any trick to starting off with earliest records?

This will be the first time I use RM so apologies if it is a silly question.

I also have two seperate cases family line case where there are two marriages and again in both cases children where produced from both marriages. How do you record theses events?

Regards,
Ian

#2 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 11 April 2017 - 07:15 AM

When working from earliest to latest, I usually find it helpful to be in Descendant View in the main view and to be in Family View in the sidebar. Doing it this way, highlight the principle and do an Add Spouse to add a spouse, and highlight the spouse and do an Add Child to be sure the children are added to the correct spouse.

 

It can still be useful to work in Family View in the main view at least part of the time. For example, doing so makes it easier to sort the children into birth order, something that RM doesn't do automatically. So I find myself going back and forth between Descendant View and Family VIew when doing data entry from earliest to latest, but I spend more time in Descendant View.

 

Jerry



#3 Fleetz

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 02:43 AM

Thanks Jerry,

Thanks for the advice.

I am surprised RM doesn't sort child into birth order? Would have thought if you put them in soon as the date is added it would look at where there chronologically should be. Nice to know I need to do it. Hope that is something RM are working on, would not have been difficult I would have thought?

Regards,

Ian

#4 TomH

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 12:11 PM

We don't know why RootsMagic doesn't do the seemingly obvious and sort children by date of birth by default. It isn't difficult but there are issues that arise if one or more children lack DoB.

I tried to address this shortcoming of RM with this SQLite script: http://sqlitetoolsfo... Birth SortDate

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.


#5 Fleetz

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 03:32 PM

Hi Tom,

Thanks for that and taking the time do a SQLite script work around.

I understand that finding some children's birth dates are impossible. I think I have 2 which the best I have is circa having worked back from an age at death or burial. I get without a date it becomes more difficult to manage a database BUT and I Underline the BUT as a new user I am gob smacked that RM and indeed a version 7 has not addressed this issue. I have no doubt it has been thrown around a number of times by the programmers.

RM as a minimum should handle date sorting if indeed a few dats are circa.
RM as a minimum should allow a menu selection of what to do with children who don't have any dates. Put them at the top of the children's tree or at the bottom of the tree with some flag/s highlighting there is no known date.

Having to expect the user to manage (and new users) because <1% of children's birth dates are not known verses the 99% that are in my particular case that are know doesn't seem to make sense to me. Not sure how people deal manually as one seems forced to have to enter children's names in when it comes to a child without a birthdate?

Whilst I get it's not ideal from a programmers perspective because all they want to deal with is hard imperial data the reality is dates are not always available. Surely if a date is missing or not complete enough to pigeonhole the child in order a pop up menu asking do you want the child positioned at the top, bottom of the children's database would suffice?

The fact that Tom has felt the need to write a SQLite script to do the sorting outside RM should be ringing bells at RM.

Well done again Tom for writing the script.

Regards,

Ian

#6 Ken Funk

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 08:14 PM

I suspect we all have our own "at a minimum" lists.  In my world the autosort of children isn't on it.  I don't find clicking on a parent then clicking Edit -> Rearrange -> Children to be overly inconvenient.  I would truly prefer updates mobile versions that work.  The iPad version doesn't if you have too many files in your RM Dropbox folder because the .rmgc file it at the very bottom of the list which hides behind the bottom bar where you select from Files, Tools etc.  I would also prefer a version of Rootsmagic that doesn't use those damn modal windows.  It makes several tasks much harder to do in my particular workflow.  I am also waiting for the day that the RM user interface gets updated to UWP instead of the Windows 7 and before interface.

 

Maybe if we were all willing to pay $59.99 for our software instead of $19.99 then we would get all of these "at a minimum" ideas faster.  I suspect most of us are not willing to pay that so we get things more slowly than we would like.



#7 John_of_Ross_County

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Posted 12 April 2017 - 09:38 PM

There is a function to sort births in order as Ken mentioned, but it places those children with no birth date at the top of the list.  Or you can manually move individual children up or down in birth order.

 

Please do not make RM do an automatic birth order sort.  I have several families researched by a now deceased relative.  She placed the children in a particular order and some do not have a birth date.

 

If the sort were automatic, I would have to make estimates of birth dates for those children with blank entries.



#8 Fleetz

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Posted 13 April 2017 - 12:21 AM

Seems I have opened a can or worms...

#9 zhangrau

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Posted 13 April 2017 - 07:36 AM

 I am also waiting for the day that the RM user interface gets updated to UWP instead of the Windows 7 and before interface.

 

 

I see this an overly simplistic view of design. Not just software, but ALL design. Everything is easy once you already know it. Very few things are easy before that.

 

Some people love the one-mouse functionality if the Mac OS. Others find it a bit obtuse, because they are unfamiliar with its quirks.

 

Some people get confused when traveling from state to state (or to different countries) because the style and placement of road signage varies.

 

Claiming that there is just ONE way to solve a design problem? Futile. People are far too complex for that to work universally.



#10 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 13 April 2017 - 01:34 PM

We don't know why RootsMagic doesn't do the seemingly obvious and sort children by date of birth by default. It isn't difficult but there are issues that arise if one or more children lack DoB.

 

I certainly wish that RM had at least the option to sort children automatically by date of birth, but there are problems. Tom pointed out one such problem. Let me elaborate a little further.

 

There are problems that would occur if there are children that lack a date of birth or if there are children that have multiple birth dates. For example, suppose child #1 was born in 1850, child #2 does not have a birth date, child #3 has two birth dates  of 1852 and 1855, and child #4 has a birth date of 1854. The child numbers are they way they appear in your database. You have put them that order and you want them to stay in that order. So add a new child with a birth date of 1858. Presumably, this would trigger a new sorting of all the children. In a new sort, what would guarantee that child #2 and child #3 would stay in the order that you intend?

 

There would  be problems that would occur if there are children with identical birth dates such as twins or triplets. Suppose child #1 and child #2 were twins that were born in 1850 and you added a child #3 that was born in 1852. Presumably, this would trigger a new sorting of all the children. What would guarantee that child #1 and child #2 would stay in the order that you intend with respect to each other?

 

I don't regard these problems as unsolvable, but it certainly makes things tricky.

 

Jerry



#11 Fleetz

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Posted 13 April 2017 - 05:32 PM

Interesting to see the variables that are being presented some of which apply to my database I am about to start entering up in RM7.

Think I might do a bit more digging to find out if there are any other anomalies in the way in which RM requires the data to be entered before I begin? Looks like I have assumed incorrectly that RM7 will take whatever likely data scenarios it is presented with.

I have a number of birth, and deaths that I have had to calculate a circa year therefore no day date or month date, just a year. I have been entering these in my text database as c.1742. So how does RM7 handle these in their sorting or a re-sort?

Would there be any other data processing anomaly I should be aware of before I head down a data entry path with RM7? As I mentioned in my opening post I would be entering my eldest decendants first and following my family blood name, of course listing spouses of both males and females family members. Following female family members until the family name disappears, I recorded names of any of their siblings where records exist. Not sure if what I am doing is common that is following the family name and ignoring all the other branches which would take me years to track. Anyways nice to know if there are other data entry things to be aware of.

Better to ask before starting, appreciate the feedback you have all provided to date from my opening thread. It has been constructive.

Regards,

Ian

#12 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 13 April 2017 - 06:39 PM

RM gives you total control over dates, but that means that sometimes RM will not default the way you wish and you will have to take responsibility for ordering. For ordering purposes, all dates can be overridden by sort dates. The sort dates don't print, but they control ordering. For valid dates, default sort dates are created, and the defaults are usually reasonable. For approximate dates, I use "about 1742". RM will also accept "c.1742" and will convert it to "ca 1742".

 

Jerry