Saturday, January 1, 2011

Genealogy Goals for 2011 - Maintenance

After covering research, writing and education goals, it's time to think about the grunt work. This is the stuff that is sooooo easy to push to the back burner and forget. Well, maybe not forget, there's always that little nagging voice in your head, but it's not that hard to ignore.

Maintenance Goals:
1. Re-organize digital files.
I haven't been loving my current file structure (which apparently made sense to me several years ago when I set it up but not so much anymore) for a long time. In addition, it's next to impossible to keep files updated and sync'ed on a desktop, laptop and netbook. I think I've decided on a better structure and a solution to keeping every computer updated (Dropbox). Once it's all done, I'll talk about the details. This job is already in progress and needs to be completed by the end of January.

2. Clean-up information and add events for certain people in my database.
I switched to Legacy Family Tree software almost three years ago but I still haven't updated every person in my database to take advantage to some of the features. (I told you back at the start of this series that I'm terrible at finishing things.) Mostly this entails creating specific events for information that was previously just in notes. In my defense, most people have been done but there are still a few hundred left. The good news is they are tagged so I know who needs work. The goal is to complete 10 people each week. 

3. Clean-up sources.
In June 2008, Legacy released version 7 of their software which included source templates based on Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills. You guessed it. I still haven't converted all of the old style sources to the new format - there are 551 of them left. The goal is to convert at least 10 sources each week. 

4. Scan everything that hasn't been scanned.
That probably sounds like a bigger job than it really is. I have always scanned records or anything that's just a few pages and I quit printing records that could be downloaded years ago. What hasn't been scanned is mostly copies of pages from books and legal size documents. There are about 300 legal size pages from court cases to be scanned and several notebooks full of the other documentation from books or hard copy reports received from other researchers. The goal here is really to become completely digital. I can hear the gasping. I won't actually throw away all of the paper but I do intend to store it in the basement and free up some space in my office. 

5. Print out all information in my database.
That probably sounds like a conflict with becoming completely digital but there's a purpose for these printed reports. I wrote "Preserving Your Research for Posterity" in July and came to the conclusion that I really need to have a hard copy of my data. As usual, I started this project off with a bang and printed everything for my paternal grandmother's line by the end of August. That means I've completed roughly 1/4 of this project. 

Whew, I'd better get some rest. I've got a lot of work to do in 2011.

Genealogy Goals for 2011 is a series. Other posts in the series are:


  1. This post really hits home for me, Linda. On the syncing thing - I'm going to be following what you write about this very closely, because I have to figure out what I'm doing. Husband set up my new MacBook Pro yesterday, and before that he set up Time Capsule as our server. Right now the thing is to sync my laptop and desktop to that, and so far (less than a day!) it seems to be working - I'm working off the archive file in the server rather than directly from the Reunion program. But I'm afraid there will be an unsynced file on the desktop that may get copied over what is actually the newer, more complete file. I've also thought about DropBox and will see what you have to say about it.

    Also with you on #4 and #5 - suspenders and a belt, please!

  2. Love the list, I have been trying to get to that fully digitized document things for some years, and still have stuff in the stick built that is not scanned. SIGHHH I keep trying tho. Just last night found something I needed scanned, and you got it, not in Tana, RATS!

    Since I only work from one computer, the Baby HP, I don't need to synch with others, but, will be watching for reports on Dropbox.

  3. Looking forward to what you have to say about syncing and Dropbox. I'm planning to implement Dropbox soon, so I can access RootsMagic on both the laptop and netbook.