FamilySearch.org New Features
FamilySearch is offering ever more innovative ways to engage interest in family history, simplifying their website search, and offering helpful tips to assist users, according to Brian Edwards of FamilySearch in his presentation at the BYU Genealogy Conference in July. Some of these features are in place while others are still being developed.
The personalized homepage of FamilySearch, is a treasure-trove of innovation with boxes of information feeds selected specifically for the user. Try it out at familysearch.org/lihp-arches, and if you like, you can make it your homepage.
Information boxes include:
- Educational information provides help for doing your family history.
- Updates to people in your family tree include recently added pictures and stories of your relatives.
- The Recommended Task box provides suggestions from FamilySearch that could relate to your ancestors’ records. Each suggestion has the option to review and attach the information to an ancestor’s record, dismiss the suggestion, or look through other suggestions. The Review and Attach function will help clean up data issues and records by comparing the suggestions with your records, and then you can choose to merge the suggested information or reject it as a non-match. The Review and Attach items are distributed by difficulty based on how often a user visits FamilySearch. The Dismiss button neither rejects nor deletes hints; it simply drops the suggestion from your list.
- Recent Searches lists the last 50 names you looked at on FamilySearch.
- The To-Do List is a customizable space where you can add items you would like to remember as you work on your family history.
- The obituary section lists names of family members found in obituaries. You can look through them and attach those records to your ancestors.
Improved Family History Apps
Two improved mobile apps for Family Tree and Memories have been sized and arranged for Android or IOS devices. Audio is a new feature in the Memory app. You can now take your phone to an older relative, record memories, and save them directly to FamilySearch. You can take photos using the app and upload them directly to the cloud or website. Once the photos are uploaded to the website, you can make some adjustments within the website.
New Family Discovery Centers
The Family Discovery Center located in the Joseph Smith Building on Temple Square has been so popular that it is expanding to other venues—the bottom floor of the Family History Library is being remodeled to create a similar center to provide engaging and interactive experiences to youth and those who are dabbling in, interested in, or slightly curious about their family tree, time periods of their ancestors. People can also learn about new opportunities to contribute to family history work. Smaller discovery units will be placed in various family history centers around the world, and a mobile version is being packaged to take to stake centers for activities.