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Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Posted: 26 Apr 2006 3:43AM GMT
Classification: Query
Thought FTM users might be interested in my foray into RootsMagic. Here are what I think are the advantages of RM over FTM:

Here are my 14 things I love about RM:

1. The ability to control which parts of a source are printed or exported-- same with notes.

-- as far as I can tell, you can either export your sources or not. there is no way to mark a particular source or part of a given source as private.

2. That you can have multiple copies of the same database open in order to compare different parts of the same database.

-- While FTM allows you to have two *different* files open at the same time (but no more), you cannot open the same file at the same time.

3. Quite a lot of options when one right-clicks on anything. No equiv. in FTM. Very nice. I mean really!

-- only the windows basics of undo, cut, copy, paste, delete.

4. The ability to have to-do's for each person.

-- FTM has a single research journal. You can categorize your to-do items, and give them deadline dates. But it's just one place-- not specific to an individual. I wonder how RM exports these to-do's in a gedcom (if at all)

5. The ability to log one's correspondence. Although I doubt I'll ever use this.

-- I see NOTHING in FTM that comes close.

6. VERY easy to generate a "missing info" list. Also possible to do in FTM, but I don't think it's as easy or obvious.

-- The closest that FTM has is a "Data Errors Report".

7. Oh this is one of my favorites: that you automatically calculate the age of someone at a particular event. I mean, REALLY NICE!!

-- you can do this in FTM but YOU have to do it whhing I use this for (in FTM) is when I have an age at death and want to calculate the birthdate.

8. Love how you can re-write the way sentences are displayed in reports.

-- FTM offers no ability to control the way it structures sentences in reports. (My workaround: I copy/paste into Word and format and edit to my heart's content.)

9. The "re-use duplicate citations" feature for end-notes. HUGE improvement over FTM (although I'm not fond of the "ibid" use.)

-- see separate topic in FTM message board.

10. The internet searching is pretty nice. too.

-- Current version of FTM only searches ancestry.com. Big surprise.

11. counting the number of unique trees in the db

-- only way to do this is the generate an all-in-one tree and count them yourself, manually.

12. Import GEDCOM options such as how a source name for the GEDCOM will be used or not.

-- actually, I think the newest version of FTM allows you to turn this off or on. But there are no other options.

13. Creating a list of people with no parents-- again, probably doable in FTM after jumping through a few hoops.

-- Mmm... i take it back: there is NO way to generate this in FTM.

14. Printing all events that took place in a particular place. Totally cool.

-- you could do a piecemeal variation of this by generating a custom report where a particular place is in a *particular field*. But you can't say: find *all events* that took place in Buffalo.

Mmm... I think I'll post this to the FTM board...

But here's the kicker...
The thing about RM that I like least and simply take for granted in FTM, is that you can edit fields right on whatever non-report screen is being displayed. You can't do that on RM. That would probably drive me insane if I was entering a lot of new information. But given that I've already entered most information, and I'm just cleaning up what I've already got, this may not be a big deal for me.

-- Jillaine

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Christy Underwood (View posts)
Posted: 28 Apr 2006 7:09PM GMT
Classification: Query
Always one step ahead of me, Jillaine. I'm comparing the two software products at the National Genealogical Society conference in Chicago in June. Want to try before I buy. Here's one quick question for you:

Does RootsMagic allow you to give an abbreviated title to a source? I'd like to be able to call something the 1892 Kansas City city directory and have it "point" to the full name which is usually far too long to type. Quite often the city directories have every single suburb listed in their title. When I've put the full title in FTM, I find it difficult to find the master source because the year is so far buried in the title. Likewise, I think it could be valuable for sourcing the census.

I know The Master Genealogist allows a source abbreviation. Just wondering if RM does.

Many thanks!
Christy

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Posted: 29 Apr 2006 1:12AM GMT
Classification: Query
That I don't know; you should go to www.rootsmagic.com and to the discussion forums there (or the Rootsmagic message board here at Rootsweb/Ancestry) and ask there.

-- Jillaine

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Posted: 29 Apr 2006 3:16PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 16 Jun 2007 1:31AM GMT
Christy,

Oh, yes indeed it does!

In RM, there are 5 fields for your Source:
Picklist name (name to display in source list)
Personal file number
Source (enter exactly as you want it printed, or click 'SourceWizard' to write it for you)
Short version of source (optional)
Bibliography version of source (optional)

The "Picklist name" appears *only* in your source list. In the source list, you see the Picklist names on the left and the full details of the highlighted source on the right.

Jackie

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Posted: 29 Apr 2006 4:59PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 16 Jun 2007 1:31AM GMT
wow... dizzy with infatuation over here...

more reasons to love Rootsmagic...

My CD arrived today-- along with the book.
But um... the sun's out and I really should be out working in the garden. ;-)

-- Jillaine

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Posted: 29 Apr 2006 5:03PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 16 Jun 2007 1:31AM GMT
Uh-huh, me too (especially since we were supposed to have rain today...)

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Posted: 29 Apr 2006 5:05PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 16 Jun 2007 1:31AM GMT
I didn't even go into the "Citation Details"!!! Each time you use the Source, you can enter Citation Details specific to THAT citation - including Multimedia files, comments, actual text, etc.

(I hope that doesn't send you into infatuation overload...)

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Christy Underwood (View posts)
Posted: 29 Apr 2006 5:39PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 16 Jun 2007 1:31AM GMT
Thanks, Jackie! I downloaded a trial version today. Figure I'll play around with it with some random gedcoms (rather than my own file) for the next month, then buy it as my "souvenir" when I go to NGS!

Christy

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Christy Underwood (View posts)
Posted: 29 Apr 2006 5:42PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 16 Jun 2007 1:31AM GMT
Well, Missy, go into the Citation Details! Inquiring minds want to know. (Our apologies to any FTM loyalists who may wonder why we're having a conversation here. I think it's valid to address another software in comparison to FTM so that you can make informed decisions about buying. By the way, I am not a shill for RootsMagic! I'm just trying to find what else is out there.)

Christy

Re: Family Treemaker Compared to Rootsmagic

Posted: 29 Apr 2006 6:11PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 16 Jun 2007 1:31AM GMT
Christy,

In addition to the basic Source fields I mentioned previously, Sources also have these fields:
Actual text from this source
Comments or opinions about this source
Multimedia
Primary Repository
Secondary Repository
(plus the lovely Source Wizard to help you write it)

So let's say I enter a Source for KS Death Certificates - which I will use many many times. I'll make the actual Source pretty darn generic (I do the same with Census sources also) and use the Citation Details for the specifics. So, I choose the KS Death Certificates source on my father's death fact and the Citation Details window pops up. Now I have the option of entering:
Film/Volume/Page number
Citation Quality
Actual text
Comments
Multimedia
These should all be specific to the ONE death fact I'm sourcing and will not appear any other time I use the same Source.

Does that make sense?

I'm not a shill for RM, just an enthusiastic user.

Jackie
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