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nFS and adding source information

Posted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 1:32 pm
by mikael.ronstrom
Our temple district (Stockholm) went live with nFS in August.
It's really wonderful to be able to start using this system.
I find it easy to use and it's been possible to interest even
people previously not so interested in genealogy.

One thing though that I see many possibilities for improvement is
when wanting to add source information. Currently a big window
with at least 20 fields to fill in comes up. This is simply too unwieldy
to use. In Sweden there are 4-5 common sources.
Church censors, birth books, marriage books, death books. These
four different sources consititute about 90% of the sources used for my
ancestors in Sweden.

It should be possible to simplify this greatly. In the example of Sweden
all of the above information is even available on the Web (with a
subscription to http://www.genline.se). So two ideas pop up in my head.

The long-term solution I think is to describe the source as a web link
extended by a rectangular coordinates of where on the web page
the source is located.

The short-term solution is to have a context-
sensitive add source. So for Sweden a list of the 4-5 popular sources
come up with information on page number in the source. If the source
doesn't fit the standard template then it could be ok to open up a more
diverse window as it is currently.

Mikael Ronstrom

Sources in nFS

Posted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 3:16 pm
by garysturn
The citing of sources is something that is being worked on for future releases of newFamilySearch's FamilyTree application. Take a look at the project at FamilySearch Labs called the Life Browser.

http://labs.familysearch.org/lifebrowser/

A solution similar to the Life browser is planned for FamilyTree, where sources will be linked or attached to a person so that you will be able to click on the source and see the actual document. With this new feature coming, there will probably not be other changes until then.

With the current system I seldom use all of the fields that are presented. This type of source citation comes from the way books and microfilms are often cited. I just use mostly the first field to designate the the source type. Example: Government Record. Then in the Title line I put the name of my source. Example: 1850 US Census. With many of the sources available online it is pretty easy to find the source from that much information. I add more information if I feel it is needed for someone to find that source.

Posted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 10:07 pm
by russellhltn
I'm far from a source citation expert, but I also think there's some interest in some details as to how you referenced the source. To use the example of the 1850 Census, were you looking at just the index/extracted information, or where you looking at the image itself? Even then it's possible that some images expose things missing from another depending on just how they were photographed.

Without that information it may be difficult for someone to figure out just how you got that bit of information from that source.