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Community Involvement

Posted by Ancestry.com on October 25, 2007 in Family Tree Maker

Many of you have offered to help us as we work on Family Tree Maker 2008. We appreciate your willingness. The files, trees, comments, and suggestions submitted so far are very helpful. Thank you! If you are interested in continuing that help by testing the upcoming patch, please let me know.

A quick survey has been set-up to help categorize and sign-up volunteers. If you are interested in testing the update, please fill out the survey. We will likely be taking a dozen or so volunteers. As people are selected for the group, they will be contacted by email with further instructions.

Thank you!

29 comments

Comments
1 Jean-YvesOctober 25, 2007 at 2:45 pm

One of my readers has posted a long comment about his FTM 2008 experience.

Please read it at http://geneasofts.geneanet.org/en/?p=271#comment-20

Best regards,
Jean-Yves Baxter
GeneaSofts
http://geneasofts.geneanet.org/en

2 Renee BentonOctober 25, 2007 at 6:54 pm

There was mention of a survey and 40% discount on the Guide for FTM 2008 during tonight’s webinar. Where is this information found?

3 Rita MortonOctober 25, 2007 at 6:55 pm

During the webseminar on FTM 2008 this evening it was mentioned that the user guide would be offered at 40% off regular price. Where can I order this guide?
Thank you

4 Herb CarterOctober 25, 2007 at 7:02 pm

What is the main difference between the USA V8 and the International V8,
When will the International Versions be ready. (Canadian)

Thanks
Herb.

5 Dan TerryOctober 25, 2007 at 7:10 pm

The webinar ended without the survey or the 40% discount being offered. What happened?

6 DougOctober 25, 2007 at 7:11 pm

I attended the FTM2008 webinar tonight. Well done! The survey at the end never arrived (no link, no nothing) and the link for a discount to the official guide to FTM2008 never arrived. What’s up?

7 Lloyd PearsonOctober 25, 2007 at 7:39 pm

I watched the Webinar and found it very helpful, as I’m still waiting for my UK version of FTM 2008 to arrive in Canada. I was able to get the 40% discount screen after allowing “pop-ups” and I was able to order the book and get the discount.

8 John RichardsonOctober 25, 2007 at 7:41 pm

Where was the survey which was supposed to appear after tonight’s webinar?

9 John RichardsonOctober 25, 2007 at 7:46 pm

If I were new to genealogy and just purchased FTM 2008, I might be able to follow the “Official Guide”. But it seems to have little connection or explanation for the transition from Version 16 to FTM 2008.

10 Roy MittonOctober 25, 2007 at 8:38 pm

The Webinar was excellent. Where does one find the answers to the questions posted on this blog? Also, are questions sent in during the presentation posted somewhere with answers or do we need to send them in again?
Thanks

11 Susan R. BradleyOctober 25, 2007 at 9:45 pm

Well, I was in on the Weborama and re-installed FTm 2008 back on my PC. Tried all your suggestions – Ben – and needless to say – Phew!!! What a mess you have created. I just don’t understand why you would take an incredible product like FTM 16 and give us this thing. This really hurts those of us who have supported you for so long. Please make this thing better…we need a good, strong program base back in operation. Oh….I un-installed it again, even the patch didn’t help.

12 Larry CzarnikOctober 25, 2007 at 10:50 pm

Looking forward to hint as to how to get survey and discount post webinar sinc eit didn’t come up after the webinar finished as was indicated would.

Regards,
Larry
2007OC26 15:50 Sydney, OC25 23:50 UT

13 Mitch RyderOctober 26, 2007 at 12:14 am

I must have mis-understood during the webinar tonight. I thought I heard that the upcoming patch, which supposedly includes desktop publishing ability, will basically give those of us who have been writing books in previous versions a scrapbook. Did I misunderstand? Has a decision been made to toss OUR books into the can?

14 Judith Rabalais ScolaOctober 26, 2007 at 5:16 am

The webinar was good. Learned some stuff and clarified some stuff, but, truth be known, if I had to revert to the preceding FTM version, it would be fine with me. PLEASE fix this thing!! Tell me what was wrong with the old family group sheet. You could see the marriage, all the kids, birth place, etc., and if you wanted the tree, you could get to it.

(1) Where is the 40% discount and the survey?

(2) It is not clear if my book has disappeared forever? Tell us again if, or when, you are fixing that.

(3) I have not seen any mention about the flaw in the kinship report. My families are much intermarried. For instance, a first cousin, who is also a 3rd cousin, 4x removed, etc., etc., is listed as kin to me in the most distant relationship–not as first cousin. The old report listed EVERY relationship.

(4) What about searching for an individual by a key word in any of the fields? Loved that feature. It was in “Edit” as “find Individual” if you don’t remember. As a for instance, you could search for an odd fact when you didn’t remember what person it related to.

15 pcaverlyOctober 26, 2007 at 6:36 am

After flaming you guys with many negative comments at the FTM2008 webinar on-line session I thought about the entire experience last night. What I concluded regarding my experiences is the fact I grew up with FTM and over many years installed numerous upgrades. Usually with each new version/upgrade there were new features enhancing FTM, some useful some not. But, overall FTM continued to get better all the way up to Ver. 16. So, I rethought out my FTM2008 experience and decided the problem was my high expectations for the new 2008 version. After all those years of steady improvements FTM2008 was a big letdown. I know you have indicated the new platform will allow for future advancements that could not be made in the previous version but still I was expecting more. I guess this is why many professional critics gave FTM2008 thumbs down and complained about releasing a product that was not ready or incomplete.
You mentioned comparisons to Microsoft. Since I also grew up with operating systems all the way from DOS to Vista I can understand a little of why you compared FTM to them. Over the years I had to change hardware and buy new software to keep up with those Microsoft releases. Even though Vista was preinstalled on a new machine I purchased I have not upgraded 3 other machines I have from XP to Vista due to the fact as a consumer I see little improvement with Vista. I know programmers sometimes have to take other programmers into consideration when producing upgrade software but, companies selling software products also have to think of the customer. Vista has not achieved what Microsoft hoped for. FTM2008 has not achieved what Generations Network/Spectrum Equity may have thought they were going to do. Yes, I am confident things will improve just like the old version continued to get better but, in the mean time to continue with my genealogy I have reverted to FTM16 and Legacy. Now it Legacy 7.0 is a hit you may find some users that just switch over and forget about FTM.
FTM originally came out as a simple to use genealogy program. Other genealogy programs that some professionals recommended were more complex. FTM became N0.1 because of its ease of use. I think you may have lost sight of this concept with FTM2008.

16 pcaverlyOctober 26, 2007 at 6:46 am

Regarding helping FTM evaluate patches or Beta upgrades. I am very reluctant to get involved with this process. I have been involved with beta testing in the past on various software programs with negative results. I am just a hobbyist who wants to spend his time on genealogy not computer software writing/testing. I am willing to complete surveys and from time to time and provide feedback but prefer to stay away from evaluating new patches that could distract from my genealogy time.

17 Susan ArmstrongOctober 26, 2007 at 7:43 am

I didn’t receive the survey or the offer for the 40% discount on the FTM 2008 Guide either. Where can this be found? There was also mention that the webinar would be available for us to look at again; where can it be found?

Good job on the webinar, although I think comparing yourself to Microsoft is a mistake, most people are very unhappy with the products that Microsoft puts out and their customer service. Please don’t become like them, you will loose your customer base.

18 JoanOctober 26, 2007 at 7:53 am

For those of you that did not receive the survey and the discount, you needed to allow pop-ups on your computer. (They mentioned that during the webinar.) Here is the link for the discount on the Guide.

http://store.ancestry.com/index.aspx?p=MFSKU1026576&o_iid=33588&o_lid=33588&IID=33588&IDD=10/25/2007%2019:34:48

19 Steve FretzOctober 26, 2007 at 8:13 am

The webinar last night was very informative – thank you. I never received the survey nor the discount for the guide. Where may I find them?

20 Larry HirsteinOctober 26, 2007 at 10:36 am

I just ordered the 2008 Guide by phone this morning and all they would give me was 20% discount. My order was #21212290. Hope this can be corrected. I also did not receive the survey.
Hope you can get the update for reports out soon.
Also I noticed that you can not export the entire file out to an older version as you can in Ver. 16.
This is very important to members of my family and friends that depend on me to keep them up to date with my tree information and they only have the older version (7 or 8). This also needs to be fixed.

21 Mark TuckerOctober 26, 2007 at 5:58 pm

I would like more information on how to write plugins for FTM 2008. I have extensive experience with Microsoft’s Composite UI Application Block on which FTM is based. Is plugin development only available for 3rd party companies or will it be open to a plugin community.

Thanks,

Mark

22 FranOctober 28, 2007 at 8:55 am

I reviewed your survey looking for potential beta testers and noted that you did not ask about type of Internet connection. I had a number of problems with FTM 08, but my major one was the speed of connecting to the Internet. I use dial-up with an accelerator. In order to use 08 I have to deactivate my accelerator. Anyway the amount of time it takes to search and then to merge is horrible. It took about 3 or 4 minutes to merge census information into 08. Generally it worked, but on occasion it would lock and I would have to restart the program to use 08. Since this was intolerable, I returned 08 and purchase FTM ver 16. While I am not breaking speed records, the merge occurs in a reasonable amount of time. I am able to use the accelerator, but even without it, the speed is reasonable.

I suspect that I am not the only one that still uses dial-up. You need to make the program merge at a speed that is about the speed of ver 16.

Since you did not ask your potential testers the speed of their dial up connection, I am concerned that you are not considering the needs of those who do not have a higher speed connection in your revision of the program. If you have decided to not take care of this problem, then you need to specifically state that higher speed connections are strongly recommended.

23 TerryNovember 2, 2007 at 9:19 pm

Thank you to Fran (posting #22) for noting that she cannot use FTM 2008 with her dial up internet connection using accelerator. I have spent two weeks trying to register my program and made numeral calls to technical support. I was never asked about my internet connection. I live in a rural area where high speed internet service is unavailable. I disabled my accelerator and was able to register FTM 2008. Now if you will just resolve the instability issue maybe I will be able to use the program.

24 Mary Beth MarchantNovember 3, 2007 at 2:10 pm

After reading all these comments about FTM 2008, I will definitely not be buying or using it. I have a number of books saved in Version 16 and cannot afford to lose them. I hope FTM will discontinue this one and revert to a version without problems.

25 Jean-YvesNovember 4, 2007 at 2:25 am

A very long comment about “Critical Data Losses Associated with Family Tree Maker 2008″ on my blog :
http://geneasofts.geneanet.org/en/?p=207#comment-24

26 Thomas P. BarberNovember 7, 2007 at 7:58 pm

I have seen a few postings that take issue with the new FTM 2008. I would have to agree that this product is not up to the high standards that FTM has developed over the years. I have been a FTM user since the early DOS based version. I would bet that I have used every version thru the years and this is the first time that after I have installed a new version I am seriously thinking about going back to the previous version !

Secondly, since Ancestry.com and Genealogy.com are both owned by the same company it is time that you combine both data bases and hopefully you will use more search engines that preform like the Genealogy.com ones. I get so tried of on Ancestry.com even after I have entered data (name, birth year, location, death year and location,) finding the correct person listed 100 or 200 results deep in the list. I run subscriptions to both.

27 alcides manescoNovember 11, 2007 at 5:32 pm
28 William MangoDecember 22, 2007 at 6:11 pm

Get rid of the “Web Dashboard.” All it does is lessen available screen area.

29 Tony HansenMay 13, 2008 at 1:52 pm

Are details on the plugin interface available to mere mortals? If someone wanted to write their own plugin, or someone wanted to create an open source plugin, where would they get the needed documentation to use the plugin interface? Is there an implemenation guide or software development kit guide available?

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