Tuesday's Tip - Custom Event Sentences (Advanced)

Custom Event Sentences

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Custom Event Sentences (Advanced)

It would be pretty hard for me to write a step-by-step tutorial for this topic because there are so many different ways you can go with the event definitions. Instead, I have listed some tips that will make the entire process go smoother. So why would you want to edit the default sentences anyway? This is a VERY powerful way to get your reports to read out exactly like you want. The default sentences are pretty generic but you can customize them to make your reports more interesting to read.

There are two ways to get to the Edit screen. The first is to go to View > Master Lists > Event Definition. Highlight the event you want to work with and click Edit over on the right.

Add/Edit an Event Definition screen
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The second way is to access it from an individual's Edit Event screen. This is a bit of a shortcut in that it will bypass the Event Master List and take you directly to the Edit screen for that specific event. Simply click the Edit Event Sentence Definition button.

Edit Event screen
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Now that you know where to find the Edit screen, here are the tips:

The Help File
There is a Help button on each of the edit screens that will take you to the appropriate topic in the Help File. Make sure that you also click the links in each of these articles to access the related topics. The Creating Event Sentences article is the meat and potatoes one but you must read all of the related topics as well.

Backup Your File
Before you get started, backup your file. I would backup your file after each event is customized. You can then go back to a certain restore point if you decide to go in a different direction with your sentences. You can change the names of the backups to reflect where you are in the process.
 
Trial and Error
Until you get good at this there will be a lot of trial and error involved. You will need to create and preview reports to test your sentences. One way to make your reports load faster is limit them to 2 generations, deselect the Table of Contents, Indexes, and Title Page, and untick every option on every tab EXCEPT the event boxes. Don't forget to click the Event Options button and tick every box there. On the Format tab click the Event Narrative Format button. You will need to run your sentences through different scenarios to make sure they work everywhere. This is easier if you always use the exact same event options but I don't so this is important to me. If you need help with the Report Options you can refer to Legacy 101 - Reports.
 
Options on the Include tab
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Options on the Format tab
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Consistency is Key
For your sentences to work right you need to be consistent with how you enter your data. You can build in some if-then scenarios which will take into consideration any unavoidable inconsistencies but as a general rule you should be entering each event type in a consistent manner.
 
Events and Roles
You can customize both Events and Roles using the same "codes." When you customize a role, that customization will be specific to the role that is tied to the event you are working with. This is important to understand if you have the same role name connected to multiple events. For example, you might have the role "Witness" for several different events. Customizing one does not effect the others.  As with events, you can get to the roles in two ways. The first is from the Add/Edit an Event Definition screen. Click the Roles for those Sharing this Event tab, highlight the role you want to edit, and then click the Edit Role button at the bottom.
 
Edit Role from the Event edit screen
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This will bring you to the Add/Edit Event Role screen which looks very much like the Add/Edit an Event Definition screen.
 
Add/Edit Event Role screen
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The other way is to access it after you have shared an event with someone and have assigned a roll to them. 
 
Edit Role Step 1 and 2
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Edit Role Step 3 and 4
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The Reset Button
You will see a Reset button on the Edit screen. If you click that you will see two options. One will reset your sentences back to the Legacy defaults but the other option will allow you to load the sentences from another event. This is a great time saver. Once you get one event just the way you like it, you can use those sentences as a template so that all you have to do is minor tweaking instead of starting from scratch every time. You can of course do this with roles as well.
 
Tagging
On the Master Event Definition screen you will see that you can tag events  I like to tag an event when I have finished constructing the sentences for that event so that I can see at a glance which ones have been done. This is just the way I use the Tags. You might already be using them for something else.

Give Yourself a Head Start
It is very likely that there are unused default events on your Master Event Definition List. You don't want to create sentences for events that you don't even use. You can purge these unused events. While on the Master Event Definition List screen, go to Options > Purge Unused. UNcheck the box that says Restore all original Event Types to this list.
 
Purge Unused Records
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If you don't uncheck this box you will get all of the default events you are trying to purge re-added. You will also get a a second dialog box that says, WARNING! WARNING! WARNING!  Pay attention to this box! You need to click NO here or all of your sentences will be changed back to the default which means all of your hard work will have been for naught (did you backup your file?)  Better yet, if you get this dialog box that means you have made a mistake. You are better off clicking Cancel and starting over. 
 
Reset Sentences? dialog box
(click image to enlarge)
 
 
More "Codes"
In the drop down box you will see most of the codes but this isn't all of them. The rest are in the Help File (you might want to print out the list). 
 
Some Codes Only Work in Certain Places
For example, you can only use [CoupleNames] in Marriage Events and not in Individual Events. Why? If you were to try and use this code for an individual event Legacy would have no way to know which spouse you mean if the person has been married more than once. 
 
Font Attributes
The Windows formatting codes work here and the code will be visible so that you know exactly what you have done. Highlight the text you want to give an attribute to and then...
 
CTRL+B = Bold
CTRL+I= Italics
CTRL+U=Underline
CTRL+SHIFT++(the plus sign)=Superscript
 
You can also add the code manually (the text you want formatted goes BETWEEN the two codes)

Bold   «b» «/b»
Italics   «i» «/i»
Underline   «u» «/u»
Superscript   «sup» «/sup»

The Event Override
When you enter an event for someone you will notice that there is an Override tab. You can actually use the codes here but I wouldn't because it is a lot of work for something that will apply just to this one event. The only way it would be worth your while is if you are planning to change some of the details and you want the sentence to update itself. What I do instead is I simply type the sentence exactly the way I want it to read out. The override works well for unusual events that need to be worded in a way that the event definitions won't be able to do.
 
CAUTION #2
I already warned you about purging unused events to make sure that you don't accidentally reset everything back to the defaults but there is another place you need to be careful and that is in the List Cleanup (File > File Maintenance > List Cleanup). Make sure that the box next to Event Definitions is NOT checked!
 
List Cleanup
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The good news is, if you accidentally check this box you will get the WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! just like you did when you purged your unused events. You will want to say NO.
 
Reset Sentences? dialog box
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Caution #3
If you change languages you will lose your custom sentences. If you need to change languages, please work on a copy of your file (my preference) or backup your file and then restore that backup when you are done. Many of our reports allow you to change the report language without changing the underlying language of Legacy itself.

Language warning
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Fun Bonus Feature!
Unless you are one of those people that REALLY pays attention to the Help File this is a feature that you might miss. You can customize the sample sentences that Legacy displays! Notice that the sample sentence has Seattle as a place name. I am a southern girl so Seattle has to go. If you click the little blue box a simple text file will pop up and you can make edits (for more info, please click the Help button on this screen). 

Bonus feature!
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I only made a simple change to the location for this screenshot but you can completely customize the sentences. You will have to do this for the male individual event, female individual event, and the marriage event (there is a drop down box for these).

Location has been changed
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I hope these tips will help you get started in customizing your event/role sentences without too much fear. Your reports will thank you.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.


Tuesday's Tip - Research Guidance and the To-Do List (Intermediate)

Research Guidance and the To-Do-List

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Research Guidance and the To-Do List (Intermediate)

I tried so hard not to miss anything when I did the series on the To-Do List but I missed one very important feature. First, here are the previous installments in this series. 

To-Do List Part I - How to access the To-Do List and general information
To Do List Part II - Entering a task
To Do List Part III - Filtering, Sorting, and Printing
Using the To-Do List with DNA

So what did I miss? There is a very handy feature in the Research Guidance. To access the Research Guidance go to Tools > Other Tools > Research Tools > Research Guidance. You will find some general information about the Research Guidance module in the article, Legacy 101 - Help With Your Research: Hints, Resesarch Guidance, Internet Searches.

Highlight the Source you want work with and then click Plan to Search.

Select the source
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Now pick the Repository, if there is more than one listed, and then click Select.

Choose the Repository
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The first time you do this you will get a popup box telling you that the item has been added to the To-Do List. You can tick the box on the screen to not see this popup again if you wish. Now open the person's To-Do List and you will see that a To-Do has been added! It has entered the repository information and it has started the source citation for you. The source citation will be in the Basic format so if you use SourceWriter you will need to replace this once you have done the search. If you use the Basic Style format all you will have to do is add the detail once you do the search. You can tweak this by adding a Locality which will give you more filtering options. You might want to change the category if you have your categories set up differently. You can also add more info on the Task Description tab. Even with this tweaking Legacy has done the bulk of the work for you.

To-Do Task
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I am pretty sure that I have now covered everything to do with the To-Dos!

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.

 


Tuesday's Tip - Using the To-Do List with DNA (Intermediate)

TT - Using the To-Do List With DNA

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Using the To-Do List with DNA (Intermediate)

 Previously: 

To-Do List Part I - How to access the To-Do List and general information
To Do List Part II - Entering a task
To Do List Part III - Filtering, Sorting, and Printing

This article on how to enter DNA tasks was a bit of an afterthought so I didn't make it part of the series. DNA is a specialized area and not all researchers use DNA evidence (though they should, if possible).

I am going to give you some examples of different DNA tasks that I use. One of the biggest things I use it for is correspondence. I contact so many people that it is hard for me to remember everything and keep it all straight. In a previous article, Recording DNA Matches, I showed you how I keep track of DNA correspondence as an event. I record this in both places, events and the To-Do List. Do I need to do it in both? I think so. I can run specialized DNA reports using a filtered To-Do List. On the Event List I can see just that person's DNA research which is also important to me. I can also run different sorts of reports using Search Lists of the events so recording it in both gives me a lot of flexibility.

HOWEVER, once I get a positive response I will delete that part of the correspondence from the event. For example, let's say I have sent an email to someone asking them to upload to GEDmatch. I will have that request recorded in both locations, as a To-Do Task and in an event. If they tested with MyHeritage it will be in the notes for their MyHeritage DNA event. If they write back and they tell me that they have uploaded to GEDmatch (THANK YOU!) I will close out the To-Do Task and I will erase that part of the notes in their MyHeritage DNA event. I have it permanently recorded in the To-Do List so at this point I don't need it in both places. I will also create a new GEDmatch event with their GEDmatch number. 

The below screenshots are made up tasks because most of my DNA tasks involve living people. I have a mixture of General and Individual To-Dos. The General To-Do's are things like running updates (for example, the "Snavely Tool") and reminders to watch certain DNA webinars. I also add resources that I need to check out but haven't yet (articles, blog posts, new websites, etc). I have a General To-Do that reminds me to check for new matches on GEDMatch every two weeks (I just keep changing the reminder date). The testing companies will send you an email alerting you of new matches but GEDmatch doesn't have this capability. Bonus info — On GEDmatch your new matches will be in green. They are green for 30 days but the green starts to fade over time so you can tell the newest ones from the ones that were uploaded a couple of weeks ago. These are very easy to spot when you scan your One To Many List.

The Individual tasks are where most of the work is done. I have several DNA categories that I use so that I can filter better and you will need to come up with categories that make sense to you (that is true for the To-Do List in general). I am still tweaking the way I enter tasks for DNA so my mindset might change. I do not enter a Location or a Repository for these tasks. I haven't found it to be necessary.

Example 1
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Example 2
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Example 3
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Example 4
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Did you notice that the first two examples are tagged but the last two are not? I explained why in To Do List Part II - Entering a task. Nutshell version - The first two tasks I have started working on but the second two I have not.

Here is a recap of the benefits of the To-Do List:

  • You will be creating a comprehensive Research Plan and Research/Correspondence Log which means you are more likely to accomplish your goals
  • You will have all of your results recorded, both positive and negative, which will help you re-evaluate your plan and further your research
  • You won't duplicate your efforts because you have forgotten what you have already done
  • You will be able to pick up right where you left off if you take a break from researching a particular ancestor
  • You can print out filtered lists of tasks that you can take with you to any repository that you visit
  • You can print out filtered lists for other researchers also working on the same ancestors so that they know exactly what you are working on and they won't duplicate your efforts

 I hope this series on the To-Do List has convinced you that entering these tasks is well worth the time and effort. 

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.


Tuesday's Tip - The To-Do List Part III (Intermediate)

The To-Do List Part III

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

The To-Do List Part III (Intermediate)

Previously: 

To-Do List Part I - How to access the To-Do List and general information
To Do List Part II - Entering a task

In Part III of this series we are going to look at the different tabs on the main screen and how to use sorting and filtering to your advantage.

To-Do Tab
When you are on this tab you can go up and down your list and see a synopsis of each task. Notice that there is a tag button here so that you can tag or untag tasks on the fly. Also notice the button at the bottom which will take you to the current person highlighted in the list. If you double click the highlighted task it will open the task so that you can edit it. The number of tasks listed in the top bar are the number of your filtered tasks. I have mine set to only show open tasks so I have 18 that are still open.

To-Do tab
(click image to enlarge)

Description Tab
This tab will show you whatever you have entered in the Description box. You can go up and down the list with the tab selected and read all of your descriptions.

Results Tab
This tab will show the results of your searches. Since my list is filtered to only show open tasks none of the listed tasks will have results. Notice that the To-Do tab, the Description tab and the Repository tab have asterisks on them. That means there is information entered there. The Results tab does not have an asterisk which means there is no information entered. The last two tabs, Filter Options and Sort Order don't have asterisks because these are global tabs that don't apply to individuals. You will see these asterisks in other places in Legacy, namely the Merge screen and the Name List. 

Repository Tab
This will show the repositories that I have entered for each task

Filter Options Tab
The filter options give you complete control over what you see. I have mine filtered to only show Open tasks to include all categories, all localities, all types, tagged and untagged, and all priorities.  You can change your filtering to drill down to exactly where you need to see. If you change the filtering make sure you click the Apply Filter button. Also notice the Apply Filter Options when opening this To-Do List. You do NOT want to check this box if you are doing a temporary filter. If you then exit the To-Do List, Legacy will remember the last filtering you set using this box. Filtering become very important when you want to print a list and we will get to that.

Filter Options Tab
(click image to enlarge)

Sort Order Tab
The Sort Order governs the hierarchy of how you want your To-Do List to sort on your screen. This is independent of how your filter is set. For example, in this screenshot you see that I have the list to first sort by status which will bring all of my open tasks to the top of the list but I have the filtering set to only show open tasks so it is a bit moot. If I were to change my filtering to include closed tasks then this would kick in pushing the closed tasks to the bottom. Between filtering and sorting you can have your main To-Do List set show just the tasks you are interested in. The filtering also applies to the Individual task lists for each person.

SO

Printing

Now we are at the fun part, printing! You can print a specialized task list to use as a worksheet when you visit a specific repository or location. You can print a priority list of open tasks which you can use as a check off sheet to make sure you are getting those tasks done in a timely manner. You can print off the task list for a specific individual to get an overview of where you are in their research. You could narrow it to a specific category to see what you have done and what you still need to do to find a specific record for that person. There are so many possibilities here! This is where you can see a true research log and a true correspondence log (if you like to keep these separate).

And, you aren't limited to printing. You can export as a PDF or a CSV. This means you can share tasks with other researchers. They will be able to see what things you have planned to do so they can plan other things to avoid duplication. You can also show them everything that you have already done, again so that they don't duplicate your efforts. Or, maybe you have a friend that lives near a courthouse or state archive that is willing to do some leg work for you. You can send them a worksheet of tasks tailored to what they can do. Again, for this to work well you must be entering your tasks in a consistent manner. 

A couple of general things. This report functions much like any of the other reports so a familiarity with reports in general helps. Make sure that you look at the Change Fonts, Page Setup, and Printer Setup buttons over on the right. If you make a change such as printing Duplex don't forget that you have to tell Legacy in the Page Setup and you must also tell your printer in the Printer Setup. The Preview button is your friend. It is going to take you time to get your report exactly like you want, especially when it comes to formatting. For example, you might need to change your formatting to help tighten up the report so that it isn't as many pages or you might want to play around with how much note space you want to add depending on why you are printing this report.

On the main To-Do List click Print over on the right side. You can also access this from an Individual's To-Do List. 

Record Selection Tab

This is where you are going to tell Legacy who you want to include and which types of tasks; general, individual, or both. You can limit to a single person, tagged persons, a Focus Group(s), or everyone. You can also order and print by repository instead of by person. 

Record Selection tab
(click image to enlarge)


What to Include Tab

You will really need to pay attention to this screen because there is a lot of info here and you may not want everything to print so that you can save space. Notice that there is an option to add notes, both lined or unlined (blank box). You can make this as big as you need. This is great for taking to a repository so that you can write notes on each person. There are some places that will not let you bring your computer or a camera in while doing research.

Include tab
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Filter Options Tab

The Filter Options work the exact same way as they do when you are filtering your To-Do List but it is completely independent of those settings. This screen governs the report only.

Filter Options Tab
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Sort Order Tab

The same goes for the Sort Order tab. This governs your report only. Remember that filtering and sorting work together to get the results you need.

Sort Order tab
(click image to enlarge)

 

Sources Tab

You can include the sources that are attached to your tasks. If you have pictures attached to your Master Sources and/or Source Details you can include those too but this is better suited to PDF exports.

Sources tab
(click image to enlarge)

 

Congratulations!  You are now recording all of your research steps. There is one more thing I would like to mention because this is a frequent question. Should you record all of your internet searches? The answer is YES!  Why? All of the same reasons for any other search but with internet searches you will be recording your search parameters. The date you searched will become very important as well. For example, let's say you do a search at FamilySearch looking for Benjamin Simmons' Civil War compiled service record. You will want to know when you did the search and what name parameters you used to conduct the search. If the search is negative, I  keep the task open and give it a reminder date of 6 months. FamilySearch adds records all the time. If you watch their blog and see that they have updated this database then you are one step ahead. Also, let's say that you find out that Benjamin was known by Bennie. Did you search the name Bennie when you did your initial search? You won't know unless you have been keeping track. Maybe you thought Bennie was born in 1836 but he was really born in 1832. Did you search a range of dates? Different websites have some of the same databases but their indexes are different. If you search at more than one website for the same person in the same general database you will want to know this. I will say, if I am doing some internet searches on the fly and the results are POSITIVE (I find the record) I don't bother entering a task for that. However, if the results are NEGATIVE you can bet I am going to add one. Is seems like a lot of work but it will save you unnecessary work and frustration in the long run. Pretty soon entering To-Do tasks will be come so routine you won't even think about it.

Next week will be a bit of a bonus article on the To-Do List. I am going to show you some examples of how to enter DNA specific tasks.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.

 


Tuesday's Tip - The To-Do List Part II (Intermediate)

  The To-Do List Part II

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

The To-Do List Part II (Intermediate)

Previously: 

To-Do List Part I - How to access the To-Do List and general information

 

In Part II we will go through how to enter a task. I am going to go over every field/button on the entry screen.


To-Do Item entry screen

(click image to enlarge)

 

When you are filling out these fields, think in terms of filtering.

1 - Category
This is where you enter what you are looking for. Here are some of my Categories:
Birth Record
Marriage Record
Death Record
Immigration Record
Tax Record
Probate Record
Cemetery Record
etc.

How you word this is up to you but be consistent. You don't want to have a Cemetery category, Cemeteries category, Cemetery Records category, and a Burial Location category. You want to have ONE category for this type of record or filtering will never work for you.

Once you enter a Category it will be on the list for you to pick from again. You can start typing and it will auto fill. When you click the drop down arrow to the right of this field you will be taken to the Master To-Do Category List. This works like any of the other Master Lists. You can add, edit, purge unused, combine etc. 

2 - Locality
This is for the location of where the event occurred and not for the repository for where the record might be found. This is an optional field but I use it. If I have a ton of things occurring in Lamar County, Mississippi I might want to concentrate my efforts in that county. I can consult my Locality Guide to see what resources are available and come up with a plan to knock out some of these tasks. This too has a Master List associated with it as described above.

You need to make a decision here. Do you want to format these locations the same way as how you format your Master Location List or not? I personally do not. I enter my locations like this:

Aiken County, SC
East Baton Rouge Parish, LA
Lamar County, MS
Perry County, MS
Richmond County, GA

I normally look at my research based on which county events occurred and I want to use the auto fill to my advantage. Even if I am going to be searching at a state level (e.g. the Mississippi State Department of Health) I still put the location where the event occurred. For example, if I am looking for a death certificate for someone that died in Lamar County, MS I will put Lamar County, MS. The death certificates are kept at the Mississippi State Department of Health (state level) but I will enter that as a Repository. This gives me more filtering options. Even if I know the person died in Purvis (town) specifically, I keep this at the county level. I also do a lot of research in Germany. For those locations I DO drill down to the town because their jurisdictions and recordkeeping/storage is totally different. I need to see things attached to specific towns/cities. By the way, I like to see the word county spelled out but the state abbreviated. This is all personal preference.

Another decision you need to make, do you record the location as it was at the time of the event or what it is now? This is the one time that I record what it is now, specifically, where the record should be located. I can add notes to clarify anything that isn't clear such as, "The event occurred in Marion County but Lamar County holds the marriage records from the 2nd District of Marion County," or, "This event occurred in Marion County, but this section became Lamar County, in 1904." Most of this I have in my brain but you never know who might read your notes so it is always safer to spell things out.

3 - Task Needing to be Done
This is a free form field and there is no filtering associated with it so you can word this however you want. I just put a short synopsis of what I am looking for and many times this will be in the form of a question.

Harold was born in Lamar County, did he also marry there?
No probate found in Pearl River County, need to check in Stone.

I have tried to standardize my wording a bit but so far I haven't had much success with that. I just type what I am thinking at that moment. This field is what you will see on the actual To-Do List so I like to word it in a way that makes sense to me.

4 - Open Date, Reminder Date, Close Date, and the Open and Closed radio buttons
The Open Date will automatically default in when you begin a new task though you can change it. The Reminder Date field is optional but if you use it, you will see a list of tasks drawing close to that date on the Legacy Home tab. You can set how far in advance you want to be reminded by going to Options > Options > Reminder Options tab on the Legacy Home screen. I do use this and I will tell you why when I get down to number 7.

If you click the Closed radio button, today's date will automatically default in. If you manually input the date into the Close Date field the radio button will change automatically. If there is a date in the Close Date field and you click the Open radio button it will erase the date. Just little shortcuts so that you don't have to type and erase as much by hand.

5 - Type
This is one of the filtering categories. It is pretty self-explanatory. I use the Other category for some of the general To-Do tasks I have entered, but most of my tasks are split between Research and Correspondence

6 - Priority
This is a filtering category and I do use it. It helps me divide up my tasks in reasonable chunks so that I don't get overwhelmed. There are also some tasks that I need to do before others because the results of the first might affect the second.

7 - Tag
This one of the filtering categories and it is VERY important to me. If I am actively working on something, I tag it. I can filter so that I can see all of the tasks that are in progress. For example, if I have sent a request for a marriage record I need to see how much time has passed since I made the request. Some of my general To-Dos are things that will take several sessions and I need to keep track of where I am the process. I can also filter by Untagged to give me an overview of all the things I need to do that I haven't started on yet. This feature has been very useful to me. Tagging can be used however you want to use it. I just wanted to show you how I use it as an example.

8 - Sources
This source icon works exactly the same as the source icons located in other areas of Legacy. It is always important to create sources for everything you consult, even if the search had negative results. You can start creating the source at the time you create the task or you can wait until you have finished the task. It is perfectly okay to leave the source citation halfway complete if you want to get a head start. Once you have finished the task you can finish the citation. You can then copy this citation and paste it wherever you need it in Legacy. You can also attach multiple citations to a single task.This is written with the assumption that you already know how to work with sources. If not, you can watch Geoff's excellent webinar (free), Sources and Citations Made Simple, Standard, and Power

9 - File ID
If you use a File ID system for your physical files/items you have at home, you can continue to use this here and it works exactly like it does anywhere else. I do not use the File ID field but many Legacy users do and this gives them an extra layer or organization. For more information, click the little binoculars icon to the right of the field and then click the Help button on the File ID Assistant dialog box. If you go to Reports > Other Reports > File IDs to run customizable reports of your File IDs.

10a - Task Description
This is where you can write whatever you want and you have 1 million characters to do that. I usually expand the information that I put in the Task Needing to be Done field. I talk about what I am looking for and what I hope to find. I record some theories here. Any information that impacts this task, such as past negative searches, I record here. Notice that you have access to your Special Character ribbon. You can also use special formatting such as Bold, Italics, and Underline by using the standard Windows commands (CTRL-B, CTRL-I, CTRL-U). You will see the formatting codes in the dialog box but they will preview/print correctly. I personally do not add any special formatting. There is also a Strip HTML button that you can use to get rid of all of the hidden formatting codes that are embedded in text that you have copied and pasted from a web site. 

10b - Results
This one is important. When you close a task, you need to record your findings, both positive and negative. You don't want to forget about those negatives searches. When you go back to review everything that you have done to try and obtain a certain piece of evidence, you want to be able to see what all you have already done. This will keep you from repeating yourself and it will help you decide what your next move will be.  This dialog box is set up identically to the Task Description box and it has all of the same capabilities.

10c - Repository
This screen is set up differently. It is very important to add the repository because this is an important filter that you will use when you want to create a list of everything you need to do at a specific library, archive, courthouse, etc.

Repository tab
(click image to enlarge)

 

You only need to add a repository once. You can then go to the Select button and you will be taken to the Master Repository List, the same list used by Master Sources, both SourceWriter and Basic. Once that Master Repository List is open, you have all the options available to you that you have on the other Master Lists. You can also add Media here but so far I haven't used this option.  You can also add a new repository and it will be added to the Master Repository List. Here is what it looks like once you have selected a repository. I have used one out of the Sample File because Geoff added a nice picture of the Family History Library.

Repository filled in
(click image to enlarge)

 

11 - Copy, Paste, Load, and Save
These buttons should be familiar to you. You can Copy a To-Do Task to the To-Do Clipboard and then Paste it to another person which saves you typing when you are doing searches that apply to more than one person. This also helps you keep your entries uniform so that your filtering will effective. You can also Save up to 10 different To-Do Tasks and then Load them as needed. Again, this saves you time when you have some tasks that you do routinely and it keeps your tasks uniform. This works the same way as the Event clipboard.

 

Here is a task that has been completely filled out.

Completed Task Description
(click image to enlarge)

 

I want to point out a couple of things. I consider this a Correspondence task and not a Research task. If I had gone to the courthouse in person I would have made this a Research task. At the time I thought this was a high priority. I don't remember why but I am guessing that the results of this search would impact something else. The task is not tagged because I only tag those tasks that I am actively working on. It was tagged when I sent the letter and stayed tagged until I received a response. 

I try to keep things short and sweet and I did in this case. I wrote a one liner description that shows what I was thinking. I also recorded that I had sent a letter. Notice that I actually opened this task an entire month before I sent the letter (so much for that high priority!). 

The source icon is colored in because I have attached my source citation. 

Here is the Results tab:

Results tab
(click image to enlarge)

 

Again, short and sweet. How much I write has a lot to do with what sort of task it is. If this had been a negative search I would have written my thoughts on where I should go next and I would have created new tasks to follow through. I put the book and page number of the record as a quick reference but this is not my full citation. My full citation looks like this:

Marion County, Mississippi, Marriage Book D: 208, Simmons-Entrekin, 1880; Circuit Court, Columbia.

Here is the Repository tab:

Repository tab
(click image to enlarge)

 

You will see that I have used privacy brackets in the name of the repository. I explain why in Tuesday's Tip - Working with Addresses Part III (Intermediate)

The To-Do List Part III will show you how to use sorting and filtering to your advantage.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.

 


Tuesday's Tip - The To-Do List Part I (Intermediate)

TT - The To-Do List Part I

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

The To-Do List Part I (Intermediate)

I wanted to give this topic plenty of discussion so I decided to break it down into three parts. After this basic three part series there will be a 4th installment that deals specifically with entering DNA related tasks.

In my opinion, the To-Do List is one of the most underutilized tools in Legacy. It may seem like a lot of "work" to enter these but if you do, you will have a comprehensive research log and a comprehensive correspondence log. You can generate research plans with all of the tasks you plan to do toward specific goals. It will also save you from duplicating your work because you had forgotten that you had already done something. The trick to using the To-Do List is filling in all of fields so that you can use the filtering options and being consistent with how you enter tasks.

You can get to the To-Do List in two ways. On the main toolbar go to View > To-Do List. Notice that you have several options.

View > To-Do List
(click image to enlarge)

 There are two different kinds of To-Dos. You can have tasks that are attached to a specific person in your file (Individual) and you can have tasks that are more global in nature (General). If you click All To-Do's you will be presented with an unfiltered list. If you click General To-Do's you will be presented with a filtered list showing only these tasks. You can also choose to see the tasks assigned specifically to the husband or to the wife of the couple displayed in the screen.

The second way to access the To-Do List is to click the To-Do icon under a person. This will take you to a filtered list of just their assigned tasks.

To-Do List icon
(click image to enlarge)

If someone has a specific task assigned to them, their To-Do task icon will colored in. If they have any open tasks you will see an O next to the icon. Notice in the screenshot that Isaac has open tasks. Diannah has tasks but they are all closed.

And here is what the To-Do List looks like:

To-Do List
(click image to enlarge)

 

I want to talk a bit about General To-Do's now because in the next articles I will be focusing on the Individual To-Do's. I use the General To-Do's for three different things. Here are some examples:

  • General file maintenance
    Search and replace month abbreviations in source citations with full month names. 
    Go through the DNA Hashtags and make the wording uniform.

  • Global search ideas
    Search the Hessische Truppen in Amerika database for any Glaentzers.
    Search the Poole Funeral Home Records for any Granthams that died and/or was buried in St. Tammany Parish.

  • General reminders
    Send Christina the death certificates I received from the Lodz Archives.
    Print off a roster with phone numbers and email addresses for the CCGS.

I also want to mention that if  I do one of the global searches I will add an Individual To-Do for each person that I search for so that I can record the results, positive or negative. I need that search to be part of their research log. I will copy the General To-Do onto the To-Do Clipboard (I will show you how to do this later) and then paste the task as an Individual To-Do. I will leave the task on my clipboard for as long as I need it. I can also save up to 10 different clipboard for later use. Again, I will be going over this in more detail later but I just wanted you to see some of the time saving features that are built in.

The second installment in this series will show you how to fill out a To-Do task.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.

 


Tuesday's Tip - The Publishing Center (Intermediate)

TT - The Publishing Center

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

The Publishing Center (Intermediate)

This article is not a comprehensive tutorial for the Publishing Center but rather some tips and tricks to help you use this feature to your advantage. It is assumed that you are already familiar with the different reports in Legacy. To open the Publishing Center go to Reports > Publishing Center.

  • HELP!
    There is a Help button on every screen that will take you to the correct location in the Help File.

  • It's not just for books
    Do not look at the Publishing Center just as a book creator, though it can certainly do that. You can also use it to create multi-part reports that are still quite simple.

  • The individual parts
    Be very familiar with the individual reports that can be used in the Publishing Center. You need to know what they are and what options they have for formatting.

  • A single cohesive report with multiple "chapters"
    The Publishing Center will take multiple report components and format them into a single cohesive report. You pull individual reports in as "chapters" and then there are settings that govern the report as a whole. Some options for the individual "chapters" will now be greyed out because those options are now controlled by the main Publishing Center options. For an overview of the options that will govern the entire book/report, go to Help > Help Index and then over on the right click Tutorial Lessons > How to Print a Book > Publishing Center

  • A work in progress
    The default file name for your work in progress is CurrentBook.bkh but you can also save the book under a different name and you can have several reports/books going at one time. When you save a book it is saving your layout and options. If you make any changes in your family file, the next time you open the book you are working on those changes will be reflected and that is the beauty of the Publishing Center. It reloads the data but keeps the layout and settings you have already chosen.

  • You can go in and edit individual chapters
    For some reason a lot of people miss the Edit Settings for Current Chapter button. Highlight the chapter you want to work on before clicking the button. Just remember that some of your options will now be greyed out because they are being controlled by the overall "book" settings. On this same screenshot you will see the Set Order arrows which you can use to change the order of your chapters. This is another feature people seem to overlook.
Editing chapters
(click image to enlarge)

 

  • Same report, different options
    If you have 4 different Family Group Reports (4 chapters) each one can have different formatting options. You simply click the Edit Settings for Current Chapter for each one.

  • The Picture Scrapbook
    Many people use the Publishing Center just so that they can include a Picture Scrapbook in their report. The Picture Scrapbook works much better with reports if you have entered captions for your photos.

  • The Preview button is your friend
    Use the Preview button often. This is true for any report you do but even more so for the Publishing Center because each chapter has its own formatting and then there is the overall formatting for the "book."

  • Exporting
    You have several options for exporting the file so that you can work with it in other programs for advanced editing. I wanted to give you a couple of hints. If you plan to export, don't use page numbering. Your page numbers will be off if you do any major editing. Use the page numbering option in the word processing program that you are using when you are finished editing. If you are using a recent version of MS Word to do your editing, export the file as a PDF and not as an RTF. An RTF is very generic so that any word processor can read the file. You will get much better formatting if you export as a PDF. The newer versions of MS Word can open PDF files. When you are done editing, you can either save as a .docx file or you can re-save it as a .pdf.

  • Printing your book
    If you plan to send your book to a professional printer, or you plan to self-publish using a company such as Lulu, don't use the internal PDF creator. Instead, you will want to export to a virtual PDF driver. These PDF drivers format the PDF in a way that is more friendly to outside printers/publishers. The internal PDF creator also has a size limit. The instructions on how to do this are in Tuesday's Tip - PDF Trick.

  • Another printing issue
    This applies to all reports and not just the Publishing Center. If you make any changes in Page Setup you will need to make a corresponding change in Printer Setup. For example, if you tell Legacy to print Duplex then you also need to tell your printer to print Duplex. I am going to show you screenshots from my computer. Your printer options dialog box will look different. This is an example of printing Duplex but there are other formatting choices that you will have to format in both places.
Legacy settings
(click image to enlarge)

 

Printer settings
(click image to enlarge)

 

I hope these tips will help you work in the Publishing Center with confidence.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.

 


Tuesday's Tip - Batch Printing (Beginner)

TT - Batch Printing

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Batch Printing (Beginner)

There are two reports in Legacy that will allow you to "batch print," the Family Group Report and the Individual Chart Report

Go to Reports > Family Group. You can work on either report from this screen but for now leave it on the Family tab.

Family Group Report
(click image to enlarge)

 

Click the Record Selection button at the bottom of the screen and you will get this dialog box:

Report Record Selection
(click image to enlarge)

 

Look at all of the choices you have! You can print groups of reports based on Focus Groups, Individual Tags, Marriage Tags or all of the Individuals in your file. If you switch to the Individual Chart Report the Record Selection screen looks slightly different.

Report Record Selection 2
(click image to enlarge)

 

Some people like to batch print all of their Family Group Reports or their Individual Chart Reports to add to their paper filing system. For example, if you have file folders set up for your family groups you might want to add their Family Group Report to the front of each folder. Same thing if you have file folders for all of your individuals. Other people like to print these out and keep them in a binder so that family members can browse through them. If you have a group of tagged individuals that you are working with you can print these out as worksheets, You can write on and then later transfer the information to Legacy. 

This is a very helpful feature that many users aren't aware of.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.

 


Tuesday's Tip - Moving Tagged Non-Location Entries (Intermediate)

TT - Moving Tagged Non-Location Entries

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Moving Tagged Non-Location Entries (Intermediate)

If you do a lot of importing from gedcoms or direct downloads from FamilySearch, you will notice that your Master Location List will have non-location entries (for example, "died at birth" or "married her first cousin")

Legacy has a built in system for moving these non-locations to a notes field. These will be global changes to your file so before you get started you need to make sure that you backup your file.

Go to View > Master Lists > Location. It is very important that you start out with NO tagged locations. Now you are going to go down your list and tag any location that isn't a location. Notice that I have tagged two locations.

Tagged locations
(click image to enlarge)

 

Now go to Options > Options for Non-Locations.  You have a choice to Move or Copy. I prefer to move which means the entries will be removed from the Master Location List. You also have a choice of having the entries go to the associated event note (Birth Notes, Death Notes, Marriage Notes, etc.) or to the General Notes. If you think that the entries are are actually related to the field where they are entered then the first option is what you want. If the entries have nothing to do with the field where they are entered then go with the General Notes.

Moving Tagged Non-Locations Entries
(click image to enlarge)

 

When you click Apply you will get a warning box asking you if this is really what you want to do. Assuming you say Yes, you will get a second warning box asking you if you want to remove the tagged entries from the Location List. This gives you a second chance to keep the entries on your Master Location List. You will only get this second dialog box if you chose to Move the entries. Once you click Yes the second time it is all over. This is why you need to make a backup because if you change your mind there is no going back. 

Here is an example of someone that had something moved from their death location to their death notes.

Death Notes
(click image to enlarge)

 

This is one of those not-so-well-known features in Legacy that can save you a lot of time.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.

 


Tuesday's Tip - How to Work With a Tagged Group (Intermediate)

TT - How to Work With a Tagged Group

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

How to Work With a Tagged Group (Intermediate)

This article assumes that you already know how to use the Advanced Tagging screen and how to tag groups of people via a Search. So now that you have a group of people tagged, what is the best way to work with them? I am going to show you two ways.

The first way is to simply create a Search List of your tagged people. 

Search
(click image to enlarge)

 

You can work with your tagged people directly on the Search List by using the tabs over on the right. When you are done with someone you can simply untag them from this screen. The next time you need to work with this group you will create a new Search List and it will show your remaining people.

Search List
(click image to enlarge)

 

The second way is to use the navigational arrows at the bottom right of the screen. The screenshot below shows that mine is already set to Tag 2 (I:2 means Individual Tag 2). To set the Tag, RIGHT click in the middle of the box and you will see the list of tags to choose from. This is available on every view.

Navigational arrows
(click image to enlarge)

 

In the above screenshot you will see left and right arrows next to the I:2 that you can use to go forward and backward between your tagged individuals. When you are done working with someone, untag them. When you get to the end of your tagged list you will get this message:

Reached the End message
(click image to enlarge)

 

If you are going to be moving back and forth a lot you will probably want to turn this message off by unchecking the box. You can also do this by going to Options > Customize > Other Setting > Option 12.5 Message Boxes (gbl). Click the button that says Turn on or off Optional Reminder Messages and then click the Messages tab. This is also how you would turn the feature back on.

Optional Reminder Messages
(click image to enlarge)

 

Searching and Tagging is one of Legacy's most powerful tools. I hope today's tip will help you easily navigate and edit your tagged persons.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips check out the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis, CG® is part of the Legacy Family Tree team at MyHeritage. She handles the enhancement suggestions that come in from our users as well as writing for Legacy News. You can usually find her hanging out on the Legacy User Group Facebook page answering questions and posting tips.