Tips from the Pros: Shorten Your List of Favorites, from Sherry Irvine, CGRS, FSA Scot

What is the state of the “Favorites” or “Bookmarks” in your browser? Is it one long list of links that falls off the bottom of the screen? Is it made up of links you use regularly, that all lead you to what you need, and is the total less than 200?

I suggest you select Favorites for very good reasons; underlying my choices are these three:
– Sites which are always useful.
– Sites very useful for what I am working on now.
– Sites I want to be certain I won’t forget.

Websites qualifying as my favorites tend to be:
– The best of “gateway” sites.
– Great background sites for history, geography, and information about records.
– Data sites I presently need.
– My favorite search engines.

I use Folders, 12 of them, which is a number I can manage; no more than twenty website links are in each one. Here are some of my folder titles: Genealogy General, British Isles, England, Scotland, Ireland, Canada, My Societies, My Research, and Personal Miscellaneous.

Economy and organization in your selection of Favorites will improve your success in finding sites and reduce wasted time. I never forget that those who manage good gateway sites are keeping track of valuable resources for me. Here are my two favorite gateway sites for research in Britain and Ireland:

GENUKI
http://www.genuki.org.uk
(Probably the best known site for UK and Irish research.)

Really Useful Sources
http://www.mts.net/~bydesign/RUS/Guide.htm
(Simple structure and care in selection means this site lives up to its title.)

A printer-friendly version of this article can be found in the Ancestry.com Library.

 

6 thoughts on “Tips from the Pros: Shorten Your List of Favorites, from Sherry Irvine, CGRS, FSA Scot

  1. If you use a social bookmarking service like del.icio.us or MyWeb, you can quickly save and tag (categorize) any links you find interesting. They don’t clog up your browser and not only are they instantly available to you, but can easily be shared with others. Imagine being able to email your collection of links on the family surname to your cousin as one simple Web address . . .

    For example, here’s the link to my collection of genealogy blogs – http://del.icio.us/moultriecreek/genblog

  2. For those of us who live in the UK and subscribe to Ancestry.com it was really good to read at least one article in the newsletter that was not devoted entirely the your American subscribers. As a Brit. I think that you are too parochial in your content, after all a significant number of your American subscribers will have originated from the UK and Europe! Don’t forget, we have paid our subsription too.

    Regards,

    Tony Johns

  3. For those of us who live in the UK and subscribe to Ancestry.com it was really good to read at least one article in the newsletter that was not devoted entirely the your American subscribers. As a Brit. I think that you are too parochial in your content, after all a significant number of your American subscribers will have originated from the UK and Europe! Don’t forget, we have paid our subscription too.

    Regards,

    Tony Johns

  4. Tony, you have really hit the nail on the head.

    Researchers in Australia and New Zealand have even more challenges with CDs and websites which come from the USA.

    In addition, despite the fact that you nominate your interest in a particular country eg “Scotland” all of the results appear headed by the US information.

    In addition, should you decide to answer or comment on a particular matter, how often do you find that only USA “states” are available.

  5. I use an on-line bookmarking web service that is free called ikeepbookmarks.com. It help me keep my bookmarks organized. I can also share them with people easly just by giving them my account name (I keep the password secret so they can’t add or delete things!!). I also use it as a teacher to give my students appropriate websites to visit that I have personally screened for appropriate content. Another benefit is if my computer crashes or if I upgrade I don’t have to worry about losing my favorites. Take a look! Go to http://www.ikeepbookmarks.com
    Typ in my name Cindy Blankenship for personal favorites or type in cblankenship for kid links. The account name is CaSe SenSiTive. Have fun!!

  6. This information you provided is just what I needed. I hope it will be useful to me. Right now I am at a deadlock and it is very frustrating. Do you have any suggestions concerning Gemany?
    Thank you
    Donna

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