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Member Since 01 Feb 2008
Offline Last Active May 07 2019 12:15 PM

Topics I've Started

Odd citation when importing a source

06 May 2019 - 02:00 PM

I was importing a source into RM from FS for a person using the FSPT screen, Sources tab.

After importing the Source the sides of the screen went blank briefly and redisplayed, as expected.

But on the left side (RM side) there was an odd citation shown. I'll type it here instead of trying to insert a screen clip in this message.


RootsMagic Sources


□ ◘ Ane Fredericksen in household of Niels Christensen, "Denmark Census of 1860"

      Citation: Census

      Citation: Susan Smith-1

□ ◘ .... more sources and citations


The issue is the citation to Susan Smith-1. Yes, this is the root person of the database, but Ane Fredericksen is her 4th cousin 4 times removed and was not explicitly referenced at any point since the source import was started. I had just imported that 1860 Census source from FS and attached it to a Census fact in RM.


I then imported some other source from FS to RM and, when the screen redisplayed, this odd citation was gone. And in checking, there is nothing in Susan Smith that references this source, so far as I can see.


So nothing got stored where it shouldn't have been, the data is OK, but the logic behind the display in FSPT is making mistakes - not consistently, so I realize how hard that is to locate!


Better transfer of Sources from FSFT to RM

15 March 2019 - 01:29 PM

If you have matched your RM person to a FSFT person you can look at the data and transfer event facts from FSFT to RM, and you can look at the sources/citations and transfer them as well. For the sources, the mechanism could be much improved.


Right now you have to scroll through a possibly LONG list of sources (I have seen a 6 page list of 60 sources) to find the next one you want to transfer to RM, click it, select the RM event fact to apply it to and wait for an update and scroll down the list again to where you previously were. It seems that the update re-reads the updated list from RM and the entire "possibly updated, but probably not" list from FSFT. That is a long and repetitive process. What if ....


1 - there were 2 screens, one optimized to transfer to RM, and the other optimzed to transfer to FSFT? The rest of the points below are written from the perspective of the one optimized for transfer to RM, but they can easily be viewed for transfers in the opposite direction.


2 - the left side shows the RM event facts with the sources they currently use listed under them (example, a birth event fact and indented under it are two sources, one from a birth record and one from a census record). And the right side shows the FSFT sources in whatever order FSFT provides them to RM (see comment below).


3 - if an FSFT source is ALREADY in use for any fact in the RM person then it is greyed out. It can still be copied if you want to, but the greying out makes it SO much easier to see if there are sources that you have not already copied over. Perhaps the list could even be sorted with the "so far not used" sources at the top.


4 - and now to transfer sources over to RM ... no more of the click, select, wait and scroll process. Simply drag and drop from the FSFT source to the RM event fact. Could also then drag that same source to another event fact if that makes sense. Can drag and drop multiple different sources to multiple different event facts one by one. DO NOT refresh or re-sort the FSFT list because it is not expected to have changed. If you had previously scrolled down 3 screens to get to some lower listed FSFT source, you want the list to stay in that same place so you know where you are and you can continue working through the list.


5 - once ALL of the drag and drops you want are done there is an APPLY button that does all the copies from one place to the other and then re-requests and re-displays (with greying and sorting) the 2 sides so that you can decide if you are done or want to make more changes.


6 - for all scrolling through the list in both panels, make the screen sensitive to the mouse position so that if my mouse is over the FSFT side I can use the mouse wheel to move that list, and same on the other side.


6 - you should also be able to click on a source under an event fact in RM and then hit the delete key which greys it out and it will be deleted at the next APPLY. Hitting delete again will un-delete and un-grey it. Nothing actually happens till you hit APPLY.


Master Source List mess

01 March 2019 - 03:39 PM

I have been working with the Family Tree capability of adding people and citations for events to my database and now my master source list is a MESS!


It is not really a Family Tree interface problem. Whenever you import citations from any other people they are going to be a mess since I don't think most people know how to use citations.


Here's one simple example:

Master Source: Leah Olsen in household of Stephen Olsen, "United States Census, 1910"

and the footnote, short footnote and bibliography ALL say the same thing: "United States Census, 1910," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch...03/1:1:M5XS-BC7 : accessed 12 February 2019), Leah Olsen in household of Stephen Olsen, Castle Dale, Emery, Utah, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 42, sheet 15A, family 251, NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 1603; FHL microfilm 1,375,616.


I can live with the 3 long entries as the details of the citation, but the Master Source seriously needs work! Maybe it is just me, but I would rather that such a Master Source said only: "Census, United States, 1910".

It is attached to Leah Olsen and likely also attached to Stephen Olsen and others in the family group. They all have the same source and it is not necessary or proper to put their names in the Master Source.


Doing it as they have done results in one Master Source record per person per event and kind of removes the ability to know what all your sources are. The source in this case is a Census and it is from the United States (not Canada or the UK or ...) and it is from 1910 (not any other year). That is a unique source and the specific citation of that source identifies it in terms of the person / people and the exact place within that source where the information may be found. Can you imagine how nice your Master Source List would be:

Census, UK and Wales, 1881

Census, UK and Wales, 1901

Census, United States, 1910

Census, United States, 1920


Maybe some of you don't agree with my sense of Sources and Citations. It is open enough in RM& that you can do it almost any way you want.


Given that, what may be needed is some way to massage thousands of Master Source records to conform to the style that the user wants. Consistency has value - but my list is now a MESS!

Cleaning up FS data

15 October 2018 - 02:07 PM

This is mainly an SQLite question (TomH are you here?).


I had downloaded a lot of info from FS into RM. Then I developed a query to identify the ones that I did NOT need to keep and gave them all a particular colour coding. Then I used an SQLite query (Delete Many) that deleted every person with that colour coding and cleaned up all the unused fact types and places and sources etc etc etc (Delete Phantoms3). After all that, run all the database tools and RM is happy with the results, and it looks like what I was intending.


The SQLite script was developed before the FS integration and so it does not know how to cleanup the references in the tables that were added when FS integration was added. In particular, there are some entries in some table that indicates that a PersonID (which no longer exists) is matched to a particular FS ID. So I'm looking for a script that can clean up those references.  I'll go poke around in SQLite Spy and see if I can figure anything out but, if you know how to do this, please respond here!

Sometimes RM thinks there are no FS Sources

02 July 2018 - 05:34 PM

I have mentioned in other communications that FS Person Tools sometimes thinks there are no Sources when in fact there are some, maybe even many.


After every copy of one Source from FS to RM it seems to requery FS and regenerate the lists on both sides. That's mostly an annoying wait time and I can't think what potential problem that helps to avoid. As long as you're still working on the same person, I think we just hope that no one in FS is adding/deleting the sources for that person and the list originally queried remains. If someone were editing it, we might miss a Source (small error, low probability versus the amount of time wasted waiting for the requery). Suggestion: only requery FS if the RM user changed, added or deleted an FS source, otherwise work with the last list you retrieved from FS.


It has happened to me several times that the requery brings back zero results. If there were 22 before it didn't just gain or lose one or two, it got nothing. I wait, and wait, 15 or 30 or 60 seconds for the list to repopulate but nothing. It's exceedingly improbable that this is true and that something deleted all 22 Sources in the last few seconds. If I exit from Person Tools and go back to the RM Explorer and find that same person and click on the icon to start Person Tools from there it finds all 22 of them as expected and I can add the few I had not yet finished adding. Happens lots.

The second instance where I have seen this happen is not on a requery in the middle of moving sources from FS to RM - it is on the initial callup for a person I selected in the FS Person Tools from the list where RM tells me that FS has new information for some number of people. I was only able to prove this today (though long suspected) because some of the facts on a person were very specific and I wondered why there were no sources for them. So I jotted down the RINs, left Person Tools, went to RM Explorer, found those people and - lo and behold - there were sources, many sources, for these people. No idea why they didn't appear before. There were too many sources on several people for something in FS to have suddenly added them in the 10 seconds it took me to get back to that person and check again.

In this latter instance it happened for several people in a row, not all of whom were in the same family (so even less likely that some FS process or person was doing something to that same group at the same time). It is as though Person Tools gets "stuck" and no longer sees any Sources until I get out of it. If you can figure out what got stuck and fix that, then maybe an idea is to immediately requery anytime FS says no sources, or provide a button for the user to force a requery. That button might also be useful in the description above where I'm suggesting that you NOT automatically requery after every single copy of a source from FS to RM.