More on the new MyHeritage Family Tree Builder 3  

Posted by Abba-Dad in , ,

Warning: This is a long post with lots of screenshots. Just thought you should know.

I was able to square away my account with MyHeritage and indeed, when you sign up for a Premium or PremiumPlus account you get access to the Premium features of the new FTB3. So let's go check them out together, shall we?

First off, the most important feature in my book, is SmartMatching. I will use Milton B. Tuggle, my wife's 2nd-Great-Grandfather for this example. When a SmartMatch is found for someone in your tree you will see a little green circle under their name. If you place your mouse over the green circle a little pop-up window will tell you how many matches were found. It says to double-click, but a single-click works too:



When you get the matches page you see your entry at the top and all matches below, sorted by order of quality of match (we'll get to that in a second). Hover over any detail on the screen and you will get a pop-up with more details:



You can also see whether or not you confirmed the match, the tree name and site owner where the match was found. When you hover over Quality you get a pop-up that shows details for the quality of the match, specifically names, dates, ancestors, siblings and descendants:



Not much is new so far, but when you go to the actual match you find the new 'Merge' button in the middle-left of the screen. But first you can see that there is a tree comparison between your tree on top and the other tree on the bottom. On the right hand side are the person's details and as you click through these partial trees (they only show three generations) the matching person in the other tree is automatically selected). So let's click on the 'Merge' button because this is where the fun begins:



So when you start merging you get a list of everyone related to the person in question and whether or not they have any new information to add. You can select to auto-merge the person, which means you don't have to do anything and the software will merge all information intelligently and automatically. Or you can go step-by-step which is what I recommend you do:



When you start the merging process you go one person at a time through the list and decide who you want to merge the information to or whether or not you want to skip that person altogether. You can also add new people, chose to do an auto-merge or just copy all the information. You get a summary of the details from both trees as well:



My biggest issue with this process is that you don't see whether or not this information is properly sourced and cited. But you will see later that any information you add from a SmartMatch merge is deemed secondary evidence in the citation confidence field.

So here's an example of merging options for Milton's father. As you can see the first name doesn't match because of a spelling discrepancy. I spell it Pinckney while the other site spells it Pinkney. I can chose to merge the names, which in this case would just keep my name but in other cases will actually add the other name as a middle name. I can keep my name or take the name from the other site:



The next fact is a little more interesting. I am unsure of the exact marriage date of Milton's parents, but since I have no idea what the source is for the date on the other site, I can add it to my data, but instead of replacing my data I can just choose to add it as a new marriage fact:



The next step is to confirm the match and add a citation for the new information. You can also reject the match or leave it as undetermined:



And finally, you get a summary of the planned merge. You can still cancel at this point if you like or go back and make changes:



So that was very straight forward and simple for anyone to follow. This is in line with FTB3 and MyHeritage's concept of easy-to-use tools.

I wanted to see what happened with that marriage fact that I added. So I went to Pinckney's family information page and checked the facts tab. You can see that there are two marriage facts - one is my original fact with a date range and the other is the alternate marriage fact I just added during the merge process:



You can also check out the details page for Pinckney and under citations you will find the source for this new information - Source, Page, Date as well as Confidence automatically entered as 'Secondary evidence' and a tect comment about this information 'Added by confirming a Smart Match'. All this was added without my intervention:



So to summarize this feature - I think it's great! I only wish there was some way to see the source details before merging new or potentially conflicting data. Hopefully this might be something that will be added in the future.

In future posts I will detail some of the other new features. Any requests?

This entry was posted on Monday, January 19, 2009 at 9:22 AM and is filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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