I have been using Family Historian now for over 2 months as my primary
Genealogy program and must say that I have found it to be *_superb_*.
I do have a few items that I would like to add to the "Wish List" for
future developments - mainly things that will make FH easier to use:
1) Property Dialog for Individuals: can you have an option to always
open this out in the fully expanded state (spouse and children) every
time, including Source details. I always work in this mode and find the
extra button clicks a little inconvenient (perhaps this should be
remembered from the last session?)
2) Individual Records window: can you make the search for individuals
"incremental" - that is to say that the selection will continue to be
refined if you type a series of characters, rather than simply move to
the first instance of the character.
3) Can you always offer the "families" and "multimedia" tabs on the
records window - rather than having to select these from the main menu.
4) Can you offer a tool to capitalise surnames automatically - I like
the convention of capitalised surnames, but if I import GEDCOM files I
sometimes have to laboriously capitalise these.
5) I would love to see a diagram where the reliability of data can be
assessed at a glance (hence helping to plan future researches). What I
have in mind is a diagram where the source status ("primary evidence,
Secondary evidence, Questionable and Unreliable") associated with a
particular Fact (e.g. "whole record, birth, death" etc) would provide a
diagram with the individuals' boxes highlighted in different colours
based on the status (e.g. green, amber, yellow, red?). At a glance I
could assess the strength of the data!
6) I would love to see the multimedia properties to be able to display
the content of *.rtf, *.doc, *.pdf files which are associated with
multimedia records (e.g. by using OLE or by launching the appropriate
application on double-click).
7) I would love the capability of saving diagrams to a document type
(e.g. .pdf, .jpeg or .tif). On a couple of occasions I have wanted to
share my researches with friends and found that my only solution was to
print out a hard copy. In the future I would like to put some diagram up
on a web site.
For anyone who reads this and is considering using FH, these are my top
ten reasons why I like this software:
1) It does seem to be 100% GEDCOM compatible - as this is the dominant
standard then I think it is most likely to be future-proof
2) Its capability of merging GEDCOM data sources is absolutely awesome
and under complete user control
3) Its diagramming facilities are the best I have ever seen - I
especially love the capability of linking photos and the way in which
the diagrams are "interactive", i.e. you can add or delete individuals
within the diagram.
4) It is very fast
5) The query capabilities are superb
6) The display of all elements of a record and associated links in a
grid structure (see the individual properties dialog and choose the
"all" tab), which can be "drilled into" offers complete access to all
the facts in the system at a glance
7) Automatic Source Citation is a real boon - few genealogy applications
assist source references in the way that FH does, yet it is widely known
that a family history is only as good as the sources provided
8) The manual written in the form of a tutorial rather than a features
list got me up and running quickly (although it is essential that the
new user goes through tutorial as FH is less than intuitive for users
more accustomed to applications like Family Tree Maker)
9) It is very stable (I am running windows XP)
10) The on-line discussion group offers a good environment for feedback
and suggests that the authors are open to ideas and meeting the needs of
Apart from the suggestions above I do suggest that new users are aware
1) The power of FH does lead to a greater learning curve than some of
the other applications on the market - if you don't make the investment
of some time to learn how to use the software, then you may find it hard
2) FH more probably suits people with a reasonable level of confidence
in computing as some areas (such as creating new queries) are more akin
to a data analysis paradigm than a document/reporting approach
3) The reporting capabilities are fairly poor - with standard
individual, family reports etc being absent. This is being addressed in
a free upgrade to all users, but if you must have this capability today
then just be aware that it isn't there yet!
Being in the software application business myself I can appreciate the
work involved in creating FH and the elegance of the solution provided.
Enviros Software Solutions
Manchester M50 3XW
Tel: +44 (0) 161 874 3611
Fax: +44 (0) 161 848 0181
Mob: +44 (0) 7976 263 716
From: John Hanson [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: 29 August 2002 06:36
Subject: [FHU] Problem with queries
I have set up a query to try and find from my file all of those people
that should be alive in 1901. This includes the names of the spouses as
well. I have a question.
1 I have included a line in the query to exclude people who died
(It doesn't seem worth looking for them) but there are still some
included. The query specifies only the year and not an exact date These
appear to be people where the date shows as something like "before 1881"
which obviously means that I have found the family on the 1881 census
and the persons spouse was shown as a widow(er). Is this a problem with
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