Monday, August 17, 2009

File Organization - Filenameing Convention - Individuals

Among the Genealogy Blogging community, there have been a number of Bloggers talking about 'Getting Organized". There have also been a couple of PodCasts talking about the same topic.

Please see my earlier Blog on this topic: http://ftmuser.blogspot.com/search/label/Organization. This link will bring up any blog entries that I have posted on Organization.

In my first post on this topic, I talked about what file naming convention I used in a specifc file. I have given this some serious thought, but in a more generic, not file specific file naming.

In the Family Tree Maker program, all Images are, by default, are stored in a Media Folder based on the File Name of the family file.

For example: The family file is located in:

My Documents\Family Tree Maker\MasterFile.FTM

The Media Items are in:

My Documents\Family Tree Maker\MasterFile Media

Here is what the filenames look like using Windows Explorer:



Figure 220

This JPG files are a results of a Web Merge.

There is no meaningful information in the names of these files. For example, the second filename on that list is:

08061202192718.JPG


Figure 221

It is a Registration Report. Looking at the Image with any photo editor doesn't really say what time of Registration Report it is. Of interest, for entry into Family Tree Maker is his Occupation.

So, looking at the Files, external to the Family Tree Maker is of little help.

The view within the Family Tree Maker is a little clearer:



Figure 222

From the People Workspace, Person tab, selecting the Occupation FACT, Farmer in 1918 (signature line on 2nd page) there is a Source Citation Image of this World War I Registration Report.

Figure 222 shows the Source-Citation information, the Filename and the Location of the file. That agrees with what is seen in Figure 220.

The task here is to have the ability to look externally to Family Tree Maker and Internally to Family Tree Maker to know what image is.

The format of Filenames that is under consideration is:

Surname_FirstnameMiddlename-year-Event

The Surname followed by an Underscore, followed by the Firstname, followed by the Middlename (if appropriate), followed by a Dash and Year, followed by a Dash and the Event.

In this case:

Worrell_JosephWilson-1918-WWI-Registration

In the External view, all images for Joseph Wilson Worrell will be sorted together with Windows Explorer, then sotret by Year, followed by the Event. For sorting purposes, the plan is to keep an individuals images together, then by years. The Event sorting isn't that important for this user at this time.

Will have another blog post on other types of Records.

22 comments:

  1. How do you set this up so FTM can find it?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Addendum to previous question: If you are syncing with online Ancestry.com tree in FTM 2012, the sync won't recognize the media file if you change its name, will it? The files that download seem to have a generic name such as 1880 US Census, without anything that specifically identifies the content of the file. Any ideas on this?

    ReplyDelete
  3. miZ-mdk,

    Sorry, don't understand the question. Find what?

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  4. miZ-mdk,

    The AMT (Ancestry Member Tree) does NOT use Filenames from FTM2012.

    As to filenames in FTM2012 that are downloaded, you are correct, but you can always rename them.

    If you look at the Tags in the message, it is from FTM2009. Having said that, what has been described here will work on versions FTM2009 - FTM2012.

    If you read this blog post, what I think you are asking is that:

    08061202192718.JPG

    Is one of those generic filenames that you might see.

    Again, the FTM2012 TreeSync™ is not impacted by this blog post.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  5. Russ,
    Let me try to clarify my question. I download an ancestry member tree to FTM2012. The media files (by this I mean record images generated by ancestry that are attached to facts) that come down with it to FTM2012 have names like "1830 United States Census.jpg", with numbers added at the end of the name/before.jpg, to distinguish different images from the same census. I change the media file names from within FTM2012 as you suggest, then sync the FTM tree with the ancestry tree. Will the ancestry tree recognize those renamed files as the same images and compare/attach them to the correct records or facts? How will the ancestry database know what to do with them if the names are changed?

    I am new to FTM and already had a problem where I downloaded an ancestry tree, unlinked it, played around with it to learn the program, uploaded it with a new name, synced a few times and then discovered that none of the record images were in the online version. I can't tell you now exactly what I did. I chalked it up to a learning experience, deleted the new one and started over a few times.

    My setup is complicated by the fact that I am running FTM in Windows in Parallels on a Mac computer, and didn't know how to set that up so FTM could access everything. I think I have that straightened out, FTM has found all the missing media files, I think I'm good to go now.

    Back to my question: I thought that you and some other knowledgeable bloggers had said that most genealogy programs should be able to find image files from a gedcom if the file names match what is in the gedcom, but not if you change the file names, so I am nervous about changing them. And my experience with databases syncing is that they are easily messed up by little details. Why isn't it a problem to rename them?

    Once I am clear about how the sync works with renamed files, how do I go about the renaming process systematically? Going in through the media workspace/collection tab and opening them up one by one starting at the top doesn't seem like an option. Some of the old census images don't even have the date or important location information on the page. When I save them on ancestry, I usually put notes in the fact as to the information in that record that I thought was pertinent, but that doesn't show up in the media workspace. Looking at the images without the notes, I'm not always sure why I saved them. I think I have to start in the people workspace, pick somebody, and go into each fact>source citation>media>media details or rename media.

    So it sounds like you change the filename AND the caption - do you set the tools/options to "use caption rather than filename for media display"? The lady who developed the Clooz program says to just name things by the file type with a number, e.g. marriage record 1, because there may be a number of people with different names associated with it, and you just link them all to it. It looks like ancestry is naming the image files in this way, but then you can't find them outside the program, which I would like to be able to do. Tana Pederson said in her book that she uses the captions rather than the filenames to organize media files, but she doesn't really address the issue of finding/working with the files outside of FTM.

    I have a lot of files. It is a daunting task to look into and rename all of them, but a fruitful one - I seem to notice so many interesting connections whenever I work on sorting out these little details. I am hoping you can point me to an efficient way to set about this. I would like to have a simple system so that I can work on it bit by bit as I have time, be consistent and not get lost in the process.

    I appreciate the time and attention you take to help others navigate these waters.

    miZ_mdk

    ReplyDelete
  6. nkZ_mdk,

    It's a shame you don't sign with your name. It's more helpful.

    Wow, lots of questions to answer, but that's OK. However, I will try to answer them one at a time.

    The first paragraph you said:

    "Will the ancestry tree recognize those renamed files as the same images and compare/attach them to the correct records or facts? How will the ancestry database know what to do with them if the names are changed? "

    The AMT "doesn't care" about filenames. It uses the Caption on the Media File.

    Also, I think that you will find that the images are attached to the Citation and not directly attached to a Fact. Yes, you can see the image there, but I think you linked the media file to a Citation.

    Photos are attached to the Person, in the Media Workspace, in the Left side of the People Workspace, Person tab.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  7. nkZ_mdk,

    Your second paragraph:

    "I am new to FTM and already had a problem where I downloaded an ancestry tree, unlinked it, played around with it to learn the program, uploaded it with a new name, synced a few times and then discovered that none of the record images were in the online version. I can't tell you now exactly what I did. I chalked it up to a learning experience, deleted the new one and started over a few times. "

    If the Media file, associated with a Citation comes from Ancestry.com, it will not be uploaded to your AMT, because in reality, there is already a link, from the Citation in your AMT to that image on Ancestry.com.

    No reason to have the media file in your AMT twice.

    Does that help?

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  8. mlZ_mdk,

    You said:

    "My setup is complicated by the fact that I am running FTM in Windows in Parallels on a Mac computer, and didn't know how to set that up so FTM could access everything. I think I have that straightened out, FTM has found all the missing media files, I think I'm good to go now. "

    Can't help you with Parallels on the Mac. There is a Mac version of Family Tree Maker, and Version 2012 should be out for the Mac by the end of the year, from what I have read.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  9. ml_mdk,

    You said:

    "Back to my question: I thought that you and some other knowledgeable bloggers had said that most genealogy programs should be able to find image files from a gedcom if the file names match what is in the gedcom, but not if you change the file names, so I am nervous about changing them. And my experience with databases syncing is that they are easily messed up by little details. Why isn't it a problem to rename them?"

    Sorry, I never said "most genealogy programs should be able to find image files from a GEDCOM ...."

    The issue that I think you are talking about is for those Genealogy Programs that Generate a GEDCOM 5.5.1 file (with links to a media file) and those that can understand those links.

    AFTER you generate the GEDCOM file, you must then get those media files to the other users. That files would already be re-named, so the links would point to the renamed files.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  10. mlZ_mdk,

    You said:

    Once I am clear about how the sync works with renamed files, how do I go about the renaming process systematically? Going in through the media workspace/collection tab and opening them up one by one starting at the top doesn't seem like an option. Some of the old census images don't even have the date or important location information on the page. When I save them on ancestry, I usually put notes in the fact as to the information in that record that I thought was pertinent, but that doesn't show up in the media workspace. Looking at the images without the notes, I'm not always sure why I saved them. I think I have to start in the people workspace, pick somebody, and go into each fact>source citation>media>media details or rename media.

    You can do what ever works for you, but you are now talking about a CITATION Media file. (Census Record). So you might consider using the information in the Citation to rename the file to.

    Here is the format that I use for a Census Record

    YYYY_Fed_ST_City_Jusidiction-Surname-FirstName-MiddleName

    YYYY = Census Year

    Fed = Federal (not used for a State Census Record

    ST = 2 letter State abbreviation

    City = What ever the next level of jurisdiction might be, like Baltimore

    Jurisdiction = Ward 3, for example, or it could be a township

    Then the name is added for the Head of Household.

    But the details, Image Number, Page Number, Dates are in the Citation information associated with the Image. Look at the bottom of the Printer Friendly View of the Citation for that Image.

    That is the information you would put in the Citation Detail for that Citation. The Head of Household's name might be put into the Citation Text.

    This would make what you see in your AMT much like what you see in FTM2012.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  11. mlZ_mdk,

    You then said:

    "So it sounds like you change the filename AND the caption - do you set the tools/options to "use caption rather than filename for media display"?"

    You went on to talk about Clooz, etc. You can use what Elizabeth (If I am remembering correctly) has suggested, that is up to you.

    Again, remember AMT does NOT use filenames, it using Caption.

    I explained the Caption in the Blog post and how I use it.

    My default in FTM2012 is Sort by Caption.

    Taking my Census format for Filename to Caption, I use the same format.

    I replace the "_" with space and I re-order the format of the name.

    1850 Federal Census, Baltimore, Ward 10 - John Eager Howard

    This way, in the Media Workspace, all of my census records, in a Census Category, would be listed by Census year, and state, etc, then I get into the people listing within that census record.

    The bottom line here, is that I rarely have to go back to the Media file to do anything directly because it will be linked to the Citation, which is linked to the Fact.

    SO, if I want to look at the Image, I would normally be on the People Workspace, Person Tab, and selecting a Fact, then looking at the Citation in the RH Panel and the Media Tab.

    I can easily find the Media files within Family Tree Maker (sorted by Caption) and the system (works for me) is also organized outside of Family Tree Maker, like in Windows Explorer.

    It's the SYSTEM that counts, and what works for you.

    I have tried to explain what works for me.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  12. You said:

    "I have a lot of files. It is a daunting task to look into and rename all of them, but a fruitful one - I seem to notice so many interesting connections whenever I work on sorting out these little details. I am hoping you can point me to an efficient way to set about this. I would like to have a simple system so that I can work on it bit by bit as I have time, be consistent and not get lost in the process. "

    I have only shared how I handle this. It works for me. What works for you may be different. Just take a minute to think about how best to use Filenames and Captions.

    I look at it this way.

    Filenames are for finding file outside of Family Tree Maker

    Captions are for finding fies within Family Tree Maker.

    OH, every once in a while I change FTM to Filename sorting to see how that looks, then back to Caption. When I return to the Sort by Caption, I look very carefully for JPG in the Caption. When I see that, it will find that I don't have a Caption.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  13. Wow, thanks for composing such a detailed response so quickly! All very helpful. Your final comments about how you look at filenames vs. captions really brought it all into focus for me.

    I will mull it over and try some things out. I will start using my name, but this comment is as miZ_mdk for continuity on this thread.

    Margaret M.

    ReplyDelete
  14. miZ_mdk,

    You are most welcome.

    You need to pick what works for you. I have developed this way over time and have changed how I have done this task over time, especially when I went from Version 16 to Version 2008. It has worked well and I now have most of my media files using this format.

    Good luck,

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  15. I just found you blog and snooping around I found this thread. I recently did a process similar to yours. I am searching through collections of church records and was saving the images of the pages, fortunately giving them the subjects name for the filename, but not necessarily surname first middle. As I went along I then started using that format, using a comma instead of your underscore. Works for me (remember when filenames were limited to a certain number of characters?). I then went through the media files and used the caption. My system is if it is the birth/baptism then just the name is used. For other events I add the event and if the name is the same as another in a different generation I add the year. For marriages I use both names, although this does not affect the sort as it is by the first name given.

    I use Firefox as my browser and am using the Zotero add-on. Although it is designed for academic reasearch I am figuring out how to use the various fields for my purposes. The benefit of this is that it saves the webpage in its entirety and after I have gone through a collection I can edit, adjust and modify the entries. I change the image file saved to the above format and transfer it to FTM, attaching to the event. The data saved in Zotero, or reopening the webpage allows me to make the appropriate citation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bernie,

      Thank you for sharing your experience.

      I had tried the comma, but when back to the underscore, it sorts better, either within Family Tree Maker or outside of FTM as in Windows Explorer. For me at least. Looking at the Filename in the Media Workspace, sorted by Filename, again for me, the filename is clear for me.

      I am aware of Zotero, but when you use the Web Merge feature, within Family Tree Maker, you will have a link directly back to the Online Image.

      So far, I haven't had to use Zotero, that doesn't mean I won't.


      There USED to be a filenaming character length, limitation, but that no longer exists.

      Also, I update or make my Caption, to be a clear description of that Media file. When I sort by Caption, all of the media files for a person are together, all of my Census Files are together, no matter if I sort by Filename or Caption.

      Thank you,

      Russ

      Delete
  16. Hmm...didn't have the foggiest idea that Web Merge could do anything with a site that was not one of the automatically listed ones. Will have to play with that for a while.
    I did one and am not entirely pleased with the result. First problem is that FTM2011 seems to only want to use IExplorer as a browser, even though it is not the default system browser. So I set the privacy allowances for the site and nothing happens. It will not open the archived site, just the instructions on how to set privacy allowances for various browsers.

    Will consider your comments re: naming. Will have to make a decision while I am only dealing with 200 document images.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Bernie,

    FTM does use some of the applications in MSIE, but I keep Firefox as my Default Browser and have no issued.

    Please be a little more specific as to what the issue is.

    What do you mean by "archived site".

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The site that I was at was FamilySearch. This morning I found one of your other blogs that showed how to extract the info. I did that and it worked well. I probably need to few the lesson in how to get all of the information out of a marriage or census record that has more than one person in it.

      Anyway, back to the main question. I had done the above and wanted to create archive. I did this. When I go to open the archive it opens in IExplorer and not Firefox, which is system default browser. Would it have something to do with file extension being .mhtml?

      I have to say that I find a lot of your blog lessons very helpful. Once I figure out some of the basic stuff, things I have never used in 5 or 6 editions of FTM, I will try some of the more in depth, such as Source and Citations.

      Delete
  18. Bernie,

    An archive of What?

    If I want to capture a screen, on another website, I DO NOT use my browser to do that, which is what I think you are trying to do. I use a Screen Capture program, that I have used for years, hi-light what I want and save it.

    It's the same screen capture application that I used for screen captures that I post on this blog.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete
  19. Using FTM WebSearch, bottom right panel, "create page archive" button. Makes an .mht file. Changed defaults to Firefox to open this file type and it opened tabs by the score. Changed it back to Word and document is ok.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Bernie,

    Please do what works for you. I can only tell you what I do.

    What do you do with that .MHT file?

    I attach the image to the Citation Media Tab so that I can see it, within FTM2012 and / or my AMT.

    Russ

    ReplyDelete

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