When looking at the upcoming lectures for your local society, do you ever think that you have that information down and understand it fully? My advice to you is this…you can learning something new. Keep an open mind and go anyway.
On 19 Jan, I attended the Dupage Genealogical Society lecture, Visualizing your Genealogical Data: Excel, OneNote, Maps, Blogs by Jennifer Holik. To be honest, I went because Jen is a friend of mine and I wanted to be there to support her. Also, her discussion was based on Windows products and I am a Mac user. What was I really going to learn that would assist my research being a Mac user. The answer is simple, I learned a ton and had my aha moment.
I am definite believer that you need to analyze your research. Sometimes, you need to analyze everything again. One of my goals for this year is organization and it was more for my paper files and my office, I figured the rest could wait for 2013. After last night, I need to analyze me processes.
A large part of the discussion was based around using the information in your database and exporting the data into an excel and creating a spreadsheet. From here, you can actually visualize the wholes in your research and decide what would be your next logical step.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I have utilized Numbers on my Mac to create a spreadsheet so that I could analyze some data. I subscribe to Michael John Neill’s Casefile Clues and he is a uses spreadsheets all the time. My aha moment was when Jen talked about picking the criteria in your database and then exporting it to your spreadsheet application. DUH, why did I not think of this before.
Another program Jen discussed was OneNote, it blew me away. OneNote is software for a pc and is not compatible with a Mac. The good news is that Growlybird.com offers Notes which looks like it will do the same thing, and it is a free download. I have downloaded it already and hope to start using it soon. Once I do, I will let you know what I think about it.
Thanks Jen, for sharing some truly great tips with the Dupage Genealogical Society. I learned a lot and will be implementing some new techniques into how I analyze my data.
If you are interested in hearing Jen lecture, she has a list of engagements here.