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Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 4 Aug 2011 5:19PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 4 Aug 2011 5:24PM GMT
I tried to search the boards for an answer but couldn't search for a phrase like " no death date ". So I had to start by posting a request, instead of finding an existing answer.

I'd like to mark people in my database who are over a certain age, say 111 years, but who have no death date, as dead.

But there is a lot of them and I want to find a program or "macro" that can go thru a file, like a GEDCOM file, and find people over the "trigger" age and mark them as dead somehow. Possibilities are adding a death date of maybe 111 years after their birth, or putting a "Y" in the death date or event field. Of course, I'm not sure what criteria the various programs and web sites use to filter out the personal data of living persons, either.

Two possibilities I've looked at and discarded so far:
Note Tab Light, the text editor with a "Clips" scripting language to modify a GEDCOM file, and the essentially DOS based program LifeLines, which also has numerous possibilities with its "Reports" script programs. Note Tab's clips were a bit too complicated for me, and I couldn't make LifeLines work on my Vista machine. It ran, but wouldn't save a database or find an existing one.

I've set up a filter in PAF to find the people for me easily enough, but need a way to modify those records to show somehow that the person is dead.

Any help would be appreciated.

This is for the online privacy concerns, so these people will show up and not be considered still living and be filtered out of display results.

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 4 Aug 2011 8:44PM GMT
Classification: Query
4 Aug. 2011

Most of the time when you're posting your data to an Internet site you do so via a gedcom.

PAF allows you to privatize a gedcom two ways: anyone living is shown without a birth date, but their name is include; or living people are eliminated completely.

I believe that the rule used for determining if someone is dead or to be considered dead is having a death date given, or over 95 years of age. The help files in PAF should give the correct answer.

There once was a program called Res Privata that allowed you to privatize a gedcom where you set the guidelines, but I don't know whether it is still available.

Dave

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 4 Aug 2011 11:53PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thanks for the reply.

I've posted gedcoms several times already, and emailed some to relatives. I understand about gedcoms - that's why I was looking for a way to modify one.

I use PAF, and have several other programs. I think they will all privatize. And I have ViewGed, which will also privatize, and it has some parameter settings.

But I want to do the privatizing myself. In fact, what I want is to avoid over-privatizing, be privatizing out people who may be dead but I don't have their death date.

Unfortunately, putting in an arbitrary death date is a poor quality solution because it's false data. I considered using a date of Feb. 29th in an odd-numbered year to make it obvious that the date is wrong. But no matter how I choose to do it, I can't with the tools I have.

Doug

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 5 Aug 2011 11:21AM GMT
Classification: Query
5 Aug. 2011

From what you posted earlier, I gather that you need to do modifications for a number of people.

PAF does allow you use a non-precise date using forms such as ABT 1990 (about 1990), AFT 1990 (after 1990), BEF 1990 (before 1990), or EST 1990 (estimated 1990).

It would probably be a bit of work for you to go back and add dates like that to your existing database, but keep it in mind for future entries.

Dave

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 5 Aug 2011 3:14PM GMT
Classification: Query
I'm sorry to take up your time.

I'm trying to find a way to change my existing data with the computer doing the work and not changing every record by hand.

This doesn't seem to be the place to ask such a question. I only did because my primary program is PAF.

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 5 Aug 2011 3:56PM GMT
Classification: Query
5 Aug. 2011

I understand what you're trying to do. I had the same type of problem with trying to find out what events were missing sources. My primary database is at about 3400 people, so like your problem, it wasn't one that would be easy to do record by record.

I went ahead a wrote a computer program that went through the gedcom looking for events that were not sourced and flagged them to print in an output file. Then I went back and cleaned up the database.

Unfortunately, I no longer have access to the Fortran compiler that I used, so until I learn another programming language, I won't be able to do that sort of thing for a while.

Short of writing a computer program or using a scripting language such as Perl, I don't see an easy solution for the problem.

I hope that you can work something out.

Dave

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 5 Aug 2011 7:08PM GMT
Classification: Query
Yup, exactly. A computer language or scripting system. NoteTab and LifeLines look like they would do it.

But it's more complication than I'm willing to deal with.

On reflection, I realized I should have initially emphasized DEprivatizing or NONprivatizing as my goal.

Since I won't know any other site or program's privatizing algorithms, I wanted to be sure my older people, like say my mother's maternal great uncle, is recognized as dead even though there's no proof and more importantly no documentation of the fact in my file.

That's in the hope of sharing data with other potential relatives. I just want to be sure that people who should show up actually can. Still wouldn't mean for sure that they would, but they could.

Oh, well. If I could get Excel to keep all the notes, sources, etc., I could do it that way. Even AutoCad added VBA for scripting several years ago. Maybe a genealogy program will too, eventually. Maybe I'll suggest that to a couple of them. I like GenBox and Family Historianl.

Doug

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 6 Aug 2011 5:37PM GMT
Classification: Query
In my individual list I have a column listed as Death Date and another as Death Place. It is easy then to go through the list and check missing death dates. Instead of an actual date or a guess I just write deceased. it is just a matter of right click-edit-write "deceased"-save. Then when you reach the next missing entry you just hade to write a "D" and the program writes the rest of the word for you.
Of course you have to format the template first to show this on the individual list.
I hope I have explained this clearly. I realize that you were looking for a program to do this.

Re: Need a way to mark people with no death date as dead

Posted: 6 Aug 2011 5:59PM GMT
Classification: Query
Thanks. That may be something to try, if no program methods turns up.

I have a way to find the appropriate individuals with a focus/filter list. I set it up to find persons born before 1915 and with no death date. I could export them to a GED, but after editing I'd have to go thru a lot of individual merging again, and it doesn't seem worth the effort.

Doug
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