Thursday, November 21, 2013

A couple of thoughts about Sharing / Collaborating with others

I recently had a bad experience, for me, when I shared one of my Ancestry Member Trees (AMT). This other person made some changes in my AMT that I had not expected. Then I realized that we both use different genealogy database management software programs and our approach to our research is different. So, I thought about this a little more, because this person is a great researcher and I would really like their help.

What was I missing?

It wasn't what I was missing but what "they" didn't know, mostly because I hadn't shared some information with them.

In FTM2014, I have a long Task or ToDo List. What I have done in the Plan Workspace, is to have File Notes in my Task List, as Hi-Priority. Notes about how I do things in this file and are in a File Notes Category. I put notes about certain situations. For example, How I handle Unknown Names and why I may do some data entry for my purposes.

As you may see, in the lower left, two people have been invited to this tree, one as Editor and the other as Guest.  Remember they can be changed at any time.

But, THEY can't see this screen. So, how can I deal with that.

What they see in the AMT is a Pedigree View of the tree. I could put information into the Tree Settings Menu Item.

That looks like this:

That Tree Description has limited space to provide the detail that I would like to share.

Returning to that Pull Down Menu and selecting the Tree Overview:

I will see this:

Since I can put notes in the Invitation to someone to join the tree, I can suggest that they go to the Tree Overview and read the "Please Read" Story. I also linked that same story to the Home Person.

Here is that Story:

That "story" is the information that would be clearer to someone else that my Task List has a cryptic version of this Smart Story. So any instructions I can put into this Story for those "helping me out" they will know what I am trying to do and how I have done some things in what they are seeing in my AMT.

For example: I want them to use the Person Comments feature in the AMT so that I can correct the errors, or to let me know that they have found some information that I might want to include in this tree.

Also, there are a number of features within FTM2014 that the AMT does not reflect. For example, I have Research Notes for everyone in this tree. I have Fact Notes and Source Notes that can't be seen in the AMT. These are my notes, my to do lists that help me research that are not available in the AMT. The people I might be inviting may not know FTM2014 as I do, which is great. But I would like their help, especially for those records / resources that I haven't found yet. They may have a Newspaper clipping that isn't online, that they can Add to the person (with the right setting) which I will then be able to download and include in the file to be synchronized. They may have a link that I haven't seen or found yet, so putting that link and related information into the Comment for that person would be wonderful.

A good conversation, face to face, or using online technology would also be very helpful.

That's what I learned from one experience.
Copyright © 2013 by H R Worthington

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