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Release Date for RM8


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#41 Rooty

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 01:55 PM

We mac users don't need a future feature list. We need working software and failing that we go elsewhere. I am now happily using family tree maker from MacKiev on my mac with none of the garbage crossover errors and feature failures to work. I do watch for a native RM8 but without bated breath (2 years from Tuesday 20??).



#42 Ludlow Bay

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 02:55 PM

If I may say so, I think it's an error to lay one's frustrations on the heads of small specialized software companies. I know nothing of the economics of software publishing, but it's clear that if one wants to hire a full-time programmer at, say, $50,000 per annum, that one has to sell 1000 copies of a $50 software package every year just to pay the programmer alone -- and one hasn't even begun to pay for overhead, taxes, food for the family, a roof over one's head, and the services of a charming and technically adept person who has to write "confirming this is on the enhancement request list" on the forum, probably more often than she cares to.

 

 

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#43 TomH

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 03:30 PM

I'd like to see a lift in the tone of this discussion. If that means lifting the tone arm off of the broken record, so be it. It is doing nobody any good and is not going to make a whit of difference in the outcome. What we will see in RM8 was set long before now, I'm sure. And the uphill struggle at this point is delivering it to an eager audience before the year is out, not throwing in other additions and directions.


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#44 Vyger

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 08:20 PM

I'd like to see a lift in the tone of this discussion. If that means lifting the tone arm off of the broken record, so be it. It is doing nobody any good and is not going to make a whit of difference in the outcome. What we will see in RM8 was set long before now, I'm sure. And the uphill struggle at this point is delivering it to an eager audience before the year is out, not throwing in other additions and directions.

 

I am also disappointed to realize the tone of this thread but unfortunately that tone has been set by the actions or lack or actions by Rootsmagic development over several years in my opinion.

 

As a long time user I sincerely hope Rootsmagic do not lose touch with the needs of loyal users with valid research and reporting needs in favour of new glossy features of little use in the real research world. I do wish the best for the future of the company and product but I must put my research needs in terms of the clever enhancement of computing power and productivity programming ahead of past loyalty.

 

Another 4 years of wasted time wishing for valid enhancement requests is not a path I am willing to take, all that effort on my part was put into trying to help Rootsmagic make a better product. So unless I see a sincere and robust commitment towards closing valid past wishes and overcoming the ongoing program operational problems I will be jumping ship and investing all my efforts and ideas elsewhere.


“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” -Bill Gates

 

 

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#45 BradleyinDC

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Posted 19 March 2019 - 12:00 PM

I'm a long-time Reunion program user, but as I've got more "serious" about my research past few years, I've been running up against limitations in Reunion that they seem unwilling to address (hostility to GEDCOM standards, insane indifference to include features common in RM and other programs necessary for cluster research, unsatisfactory sourcing/citations). All of that said, Reunion has great features (native Mac, incredible charting capabilities, and great ease of flexibility to fix some problems with GEDCOM tags, sources, etc.). But RM7 already had strengths where Reunion was lacking (cluster research, etc.).

 

I've been working on on a "go-over" reviewing and fixing my research, getting better about sourcing, etc. I was planning on making that commitment with a new program. RM--once native Mac--looked like the best candidate, but as the years have progressed without RM8 other programs have picked up the slack. I'll always keep Reunion for charts, etc., but really hoping RM8 comes sooner rather than later or Heredis or something else might be better.

 

At RootsTech, the RM booth showed a video preview of RM8. The video is not publicly available because it didn't mask Personally Identifiable Information on living people (huge mistake, and I get that), but could RM at least finally post the list of new features it publicly announced at RootsTech?

 

Knowing what features are now, maybe, really, finally, around the corner might help some of us know if it's worth still sticking around waiting or migrating to something else.

 

Edit: example of editable charts on Reunion, my research "cheat sheet" fan chart:
https://www.dropbox....Chart.jpeg?dl=0



#46 Rooty

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Posted 19 March 2019 - 03:07 PM

BradleyinDC:

 
After MacKiev took over Family Tree Maker and spent a solid year doing performance and bug fixes it has been a solid mac program. I switched my small RM7 file over and like the ancestry sync features using the new API. People with a large database would have greater transfer problems. I looked at Reunion several times but found it clunky and dated despite being a mac program. I also wanted easier interaction with Ancestry and FamilySearch. I looked at Heredis but it is eurocentric and francophile with little help available.
 
RM7 crossover mac is fraught with issues and getting worse. The last update broke important FamilySearch features. I think treeshare issues have consumed RM tech people and delayed or killed RM8 mac. There has been little attention given to fixing the wrapper version.


#47 BradleyinDC

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 06:46 PM

 

BradleyinDC:

 
After MacKiev took over Family Tree Maker and spent a solid year doing performance and bug fixes it has been a solid mac program. I switched my small RM7 file over and like the ancestry sync features using the new API. People with a large database would have greater transfer problems. I looked at Reunion several times but found it clunky and dated despite being a mac program. I also wanted easier interaction with Ancestry and FamilySearch. I looked at Heredis but it is eurocentric and francophile with little help available.
 
RM7 crossover mac is fraught with issues and getting worse. The last update broke important FamilySearch features. I think treeshare issues have consumed RM tech people and delayed or killed RM8 mac. There has been little attention given to fixing the wrapper version.

 

 

Thanks, Rooty,

 

If FTM had a free/trial version, I'd give it a whirl, but I started a discussion on the Mac genealogy group page on FB a while ago listing what I wanted and inviting discussion on what programs had. No one program is going to have everything, but I disqualified FTM then (can't remember why offhand--but the criteria were subjective to my wants).

The benefits I saw in RM years ago are now long in the tooth, and other programs (I'm looking at Heredis) keep rushing forward not only catching up but far surpassing RM. There will always be things I love about Reunion, but the developers are irrationally hostile to some important and serious research tools that are already in RM7.



#48 Rooty

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Posted 25 March 2019 - 08:18 PM

BradleyinDC:

 

FTM should have a trial or demo version especially at their price point. If you say you owned a prior version they give you a discount without any proof. My wife started with FTM about 1999 but we had no receipt nor any idea of the version but got the discount anyway.

 

Revisit FTM if you rejected it before 2017. It is a very different program and ancestry/familysearch api interface.

 

Heredis does have a good demo model and is appealing initially. There is a downloadable basic manual but no other help. I believe they store all media inside your database file contrary to all other genealogy programs. 

 

I am hoping RM8 mac finally shows up and is functional. Reunion seems to be stuck in the past and out of touch.



#49 skypilota72

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Posted 26 March 2019 - 04:49 AM

I agree with TheRev on much of his post, however, the pricing of RM is not an issue for me. I would gladly pay twice the price if current updates rolled out quickly (RM8), if compatibility for MacOS (Mojave) and future builds were moved to the forefront with Windows versions, if the vale of secrecy regarding their ongoing build changes (alpha/beta) were made known to their customers so we may follow their progress and expected rollout), and if RM actually answered directed requests to them.

 

I'm sure staffing, costs and a myriad of similar issues are in play, but if RM charged a little more for their product while providing better service, support, and compatibility within an acceptable time frame, then it would definitely be worth it. One usually gets what they pay for, IMHO.



#50 JCK74656

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Posted 26 March 2019 - 06:37 AM

I'm sure staffing, costs and a myriad of similar issues are in play, but if RM charged a little more for their product while providing better service, support, and compatibility within an acceptable time frame, then it would definitely be worth it. One usually gets what they pay for, IMHO.

 

I was gifted Rootsmagic just over a year ago, liked some of the features, tried to get involved in the development program with wishes and am now completely frustrated. What I didn’t realise is that many good knowledgeable long term users had been beating their heads off the wall for much longer than I had been a user and failed. Whilst a native Mac version is a secondary consideration for me I very much doubt I will continue with Rootsmagic. That is fact unless version 8 is a true leap ahead and not some window dressing to paste over many long terms gaps and cracks which have been present for many years in many versions.

 

Whilst I find the current program dysfunctional in many ways in terms of reporting and navigating easily between relational data sets I also find the user group on Facebook dysfunctional. I say that as my personal experience is that a small number of semi-skilled apologists appear to be favoured by Rootsmagic in their willingness to prop up the product and describe work arounds which should not be necessary and where there is favouritism there is by definition discrimination. Rootsmagic boast of over 20,000 members on their Rootsmagic Users Group but since the majority of those members appear to join looking for help in doing something which is either not possible or not intuitive I don’t believe it’s a boast worth making.

 

Being relatively new to Rootsmagic I did a lot of reading to learn about the community I was now part of and Rootsmagic appear to have had a very good reputation more than 10 years ago for moving with their customer needs and delivering in a timely fashion. I don’t believe that reputation is valid today or has been for quite some years so firmly a thing of the past. Whilst favouring some users on the Facebook Users Group who are very happy to describe how to fit a square peg into a round hole I do wonder about the methodology and standards accepted within the company. This post may well get deleted as the company now seem to be actively partaking in censorship by deleting truthful user observations on Facebook. If that becomes the case I already have screen captures and will simply move on to air my views on non Rootsmagic moderated sites.

 

All products are limited by the expertise of the development team and their ability to deliver, Rootsmagic is no different. However I have also read that all the programming will be done “in house” and I believe that then falls to the expertise and abilities of only two programmers, I could be wrong. However, that being so I would just like to say I no longer compete in the 100 meters freestyle, it’s not that I no longer enjoy swimming it’s just that I always come last with the younger fitter swimmers reminding me my days of being competitive have past.

 

I believe the future of my genealogy research will be with Family Historian, there is no Ancestry sharing and it’s not currently native Mac but I tried it and then bought it based on the experience of another Rootsmagic user. I find it streets ahead of Rootsmagic in terms of productivity, charting, filtering and mapping, also the current version was released around the same time as Rootsmagic 7. It also supports the running ‘in program’ of user defined scripts like those provided offline for Rootsmagic making it very flexible.

 

For the record, I would love to see Rootsmagic jump well ahead of the competition as there are still many features I do like, however I must be honest that based on history and where the product is now I am far from confident. For now I use both Family Historian and Rootsmagic side by side making the most of both, I will wait for the release of RM8 and I do hope the company succeeds in their goals.

 

Family historian provide a full unlocked 30 day trial so do not try and hide between the “powerful features unlocked in the full version” promise which then turn out to be dead ducks. I believe if Rootsmagic have full confidence in the next version they should be more than happy to provide a full version time limited trial reverting to the Essential version after the trial expires. That would allow users to fully assess the complete program without wasting their money and if they find the premium features a waste of time simply revert to the free version.

 

That’s what I call product confidence.



#51 Trebor22

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Posted 26 March 2019 - 10:05 AM

I agree with TheRev on much of his post, however, the pricing of RM is not an issue for me. I would gladly pay twice the price if current updates rolled out quickly (RM8), if compatibility for MacOS (Mojave) and future builds were moved to the forefront with Windows versions, if the vale of secrecy regarding their ongoing build changes (alpha/beta) were made known to their customers so we may follow their progress and expected rollout), and if RM actually answered directed requests to them.

 

I'm sure staffing, costs and a myriad of similar issues are in play, but if RM charged a little more for their product while providing better service, support, and compatibility within an acceptable time frame, then it would definitely be worth it. One usually gets what they pay for, IMHO.

I agree in principle but am also mindful of being careful what I wish for. I would  pay more than the current price of RM for software that suited my needs - RM or something else! But higher cost is a factor in the equation, what if 3 times the price or 10 times? I do use other software and would shift my main programme if I felt price outstripped value or if RM8 fell behind other offerings.

 

I am also well aware that some software has moved to a 'subscription service' (eg. Office 365) with gradual evolution of the product rather than periodic updates, good for a companies revenue stream but personally I'm not a fan of this model and would probably move elsewhere if this was the future of RM.

 

Given that there was a Demo of RM8 at Rootstech I'm a little disappointed that there has not been some solid news from RM of what we will see in RM8 on this forum, I want to be a loyal, happy RM user but its not so easy at the moment :-(



#52 Kamolga

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Posted 26 April 2019 - 06:48 AM

I am  new to RM, bought version 7 about 3 weeks ago (I received a free activation key for RM8 with RM7 as it is supposed to come out this year, that is nice).

 

I am not advanced in genealogy but after building a database on other online trees, I am not happy with the end result. As my IT manager would say when a querry does not reflect reality "Shit in, shit out". I go for a 100% manual and sourced input, I don't care about Ancestry or FamilySearch, those contain the same errors I had in my previous database...I tested with my "pure registrations" (birth, marriage and death) and neither Ancestry or FamilySearch is reliable for my Belgian family even though this database (above 100 years) is officially available online for free. So I don't care if they facilitate MyHeritage importation or any other online tree.

 

I read somewhere RM8 would integrate facebook somehow. That would be nice to connect family to the tree and add photos.

 

I work with my clients databases and while I started my tree and when I get used to the forms, I could not deny RM has been well thought through. I felt it was a version 7, with quite a lot of "nice to have" too. I also like the control they offer me...there are even a lot of external SQL queries available out there.

 

RM has all the "must have" but one for me: a full tree view from where we can edit. I searched around and Family Historian seems to understand what I am looking for. They should upgrade the design and give some quick shortcuts for user to control how the tree looks like -e.g. size of the box, colors, elements to show, space between boxes, etc-, like Visio for hierarchy in organisations. I prefer RM to FH on plenty of elements. If RM8 could integrate something like this (or improve database merging with FH), it would be perfect me.

 

Still no final date announced for RM8?


Rootsmagic 7.5.9.0 with a lot of SQL queries (SQLiteSpy) and a bit of Family Historian 6.2 (tree view and map)


#53 Vyger

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Posted 26 April 2019 - 07:29 AM

RM has all the "must have" but one for me: a full tree view from where we can edit. I searched around and Family Historian seems to understand what I am looking for. They should upgrade the design and give some quick shortcuts for user to control how the tree looks like -e.g. size of the box, colors, elements to show, space between boxes, etc-, like Visio for hierarchy in organisations. I prefer RM to FH on plenty of elements. If RM8 could integrate something like this (or improve database merging with FH), it would be perfect me.

 

Still no final date announced for RM8?

 

No date and I am happy to be patient for a more complete and stable program.

 

I have been with this program since the mid 90's but this year I am also using Family Historian as a side program as many of the features are tempting me in that direction. I find Family Historian superior in terms of the full tree view you mention and the lesser ancestor and descendants views, the fact that these stack as tabs down the side enabling easy switching is also appealing. The data view (like RM People View) is also superior in terms of including Family Facts and enabling right arrow expansion to compare one or many entries and multiple same type facts like census. Working this morning with RM People View the one thing I miss most as opposed to Family Historian is the data filtering as I have a large database. The abilily to filter bu partial Surname and Given name entries and restrict to a timeframe is such a simple feature to add to RM and what database application does not provide data such filtering?

 

As research clues often depend on geographic clues I also find Family Historian superior in terms of mapping and visual geographic indicators which can also be retstricted by timeframe, you also mention SQL queries which are the preserve of the few but are you aware Family Historian facilitates the running of their user scripts 'in program'? and there are various offerings available to download from their plugin store.

 

I am not jumping ship just yet as I would prefer to stay with Rootsmagic but there is lots to learn from competitor offerings and the genuine user needs which fill the Wish List. Whilst it might also look like Family Historian could be due an upgrade I will decide by the end of this year which way to proceed with my research, all that is required is a fully functional modern program and UI facilitating valid user and database needs, I'm happy to wait to give development the best chance of delivering that.


“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” -Bill Gates

 

 

User of Family Historian 6.2.7, Rootsmagic 7.5.9, Family Tree Maker 2014 & Legacy 7.5 (in order of preference)

 

Excel to Gedcom conversion - simple getting started tutorials here

 

Root


#54 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 26 April 2019 - 07:34 AM

There has never really been a date announced for RM8. The closest we have is the special deal that mentions "when RM8 is delivered in 2019", Even that is more of an announcement date than RM usually provides. Usually, RM products are announced and ship on the same day. (Well, at RootsTech in March RM8 was hyped as "coming soon".)

 

Jerry



#55 Renee Zamora

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Posted 26 April 2019 - 09:41 AM

I read somewhere RM8 would integrate facebook somehow. That would be nice to connect family to the tree and add photos.

 

Personal Historian 3 now has the ability to import from Facebook, perhaps that is what you saw. I haven't seen any announcements made that RM8 will have Facebook integration, so I can't confirm that. We will have to wait and see. 


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#56 Don Newcomb

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Posted 28 April 2019 - 09:35 AM

 

I read somewhere RM8 would integrate facebook somehow. 

 

I hope that is not the sort of thing that RM8 is going to emphasize. There is so much fundamental genealogy that needs to be implemented (e.g. surname prefixes, doing something with proof analysis, etc) that it seems like a waste of time to worry about integrating with Facebook. 

 

I stayed with RM6 because I saw nothing worthwhile added in RM7. I'll pretty much have to update to RM8 but I hope it's not just for the sake of keeping up-to-date.



#57 Vyger

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Posted 28 April 2019 - 12:38 PM

 

I hope that is not the sort of thing that RM8 is going to emphasize. There is so much fundamental genealogy that needs to be implemented (e.g. surname prefixes, doing something with proof analysis, etc) that it seems like a waste of time to worry about integrating with Facebook. 

 

I stayed with RM6 because I saw nothing worthwhile added in RM7. I'll pretty much have to update to RM8 but I hope it's not just for the sake of keeping up-to-date.

 

It would seem the genealogy world is at a crossroad alongside the programs which are mainly stuck in the 90's foundations.

 

1. The millenials want instant fixes from online sources regardless of whether they are accurate or not, genealogy in a weekend and the market seems huge.

 

2. Genuine researchers want more analytical and proofing tools to prove and strengthen their years of hard mostly manual work, they are few like dinosaurs.

 

So where does a developer pitch their next offering? we alreay have enough online interaction in my opinion so I hope the programming efforts go towards utilities to manage duplication (brought about by online interaction), proofing and analytical tools. Just the opinion of one who I would guess is firmly in the minority, I blame TV programs where you get back to Kings and Queens in a TV hour for the unrealistic expectations of the millenials  :unsure: 


“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” -Bill Gates

 

 

User of Family Historian 6.2.7, Rootsmagic 7.5.9, Family Tree Maker 2014 & Legacy 7.5 (in order of preference)

 

Excel to Gedcom conversion - simple getting started tutorials here

 

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#58 Rooty

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Posted 28 April 2019 - 01:03 PM

1. Don: people need to keep their software current. Even if a new version does not seem to have winning new features it will be full of hidden bug and security fixes. Facebook integration is a useless and dangerous "feature".

 

2. Vyger: more people than you think probably want good error checking and analytical tools. Easy online "information" which is full of obvious errors makes this more essential. Ancestry and FamilySearch have lots of information that while unsourced and often wrong does point you in the right direction for clues to real data with sources. I am just past the beginner stage and but am disenchanted with easy downloading/merging from the internet. Real gold is there but you are better off getting it manually and avoiding all the cleanup effort. Rootsmagic treeshare and FTM synching are the wrong focus for software.

 

3. How can so many people use a computer for years and yet not understand files, folders, programs/apps and the risks of local and cloud data loss? So many posts are someone who has no clue where a file they have spent years building is located. They need a simple basic computer book like Teach Yourself Macbook/Windows 10 (and actually read it). Backup is only real if you know what you backed up, where and that you can recover it from multiple locations.



#59 Vyger

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Posted 28 April 2019 - 01:37 PM

2. Vyger: more people than you think probably want good error checking and analytical tools. Easy online "information" which is full of obvious errors makes this more essential. Ancestry and FamilySearch have lots of information that while unsourced and often wrong does point you in the right direction for clues to real data with sources. I am just past the beginner stage and but am disenchanted with easy downloading/merging from the internet. Real gold is there but you are better off getting it manually and avoiding all the cleanup effort. Rootsmagic treeshare and FTM synching are the wrong focus for software.

 

3. How can so many people use a computer for years and yet not understand files, folders, programs/apps and the risks of local and cloud data loss? So many posts are someone who has no clue where a file they have spent years building is located. They need a simple basic computer book like Teach Yourself Macbook/Windows 10 (and actually read it). Backup is only real if you know what you backed up, where and that you can recover it from multiple locations.

 

Fairly competent on technology, fairly long in the tooth as regards pre internet research. I do hope you are correct about there being more genuine researchers than I think, perhaps the posts are disproportional but I have seen considerable changes in tone and expectations over the years.

 

Sadly smartphones and tablets and partly operating systems have made people more ignorant of what goes on in the background imo, getting a modern OS to boot to a command prompt is even getting difficult, for myself coming from a DOS background I believe I have good foundations.


“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” -Bill Gates

 

 

User of Family Historian 6.2.7, Rootsmagic 7.5.9, Family Tree Maker 2014 & Legacy 7.5 (in order of preference)

 

Excel to Gedcom conversion - simple getting started tutorials here

 

Root


#60 Rooty

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Posted 28 April 2019 - 04:14 PM

Vyger: I too remenber those awful early DOS days when Bill dumped his unfinished OS on us. On current mac OS versions the command line is alive and well via the Terminal app. If you know the syntax you can easily bypass the pretty interface (I do not). 

 

The modern internet has made it easier to get on and to whine about problems which are basic personal ignorance. The rootsmagic forums have many folks like you who are very experienced programmers and genealogists. I am neither but as a former scientist/computer modeler do understand data quality and find the related forum comments informative.

 

I switched to family tree maker after MacKiev fixed it but would really like to return to Rootsmagic if Bruce ever puts out a native mac version. The crossover version is very buggy and getting little corrective support. Bruce does an excellent job with his $10 manuals--no depth but clear coverage of all the features to get you started.