Last Call – SCGS Jamboree 2012!

SCGS Jamboree

If you want to attend one of the best genealogy events on the West Coast (and in the United States in my opinion), make sure you register for this year’s Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree by end of day on Sunday, May 28, 2012!

The 43rd annual Jamboree will take place from Thursday, June 7 through Sunday, June 10 in Burbank, California, and includes the following events:

  • Family History Writer’s Conference
  • Tech Tracks
  • Kid’s Camp
  • Movie Night
  • Research Morning at the SCGS Library
  • Autry National Center Tour
  • Genealogy World Discussions
  • Genealogy Society Development Workshop
  • Beginners Genealogy First Steps
  • Beginners Genealogy Next Steps
  • Librarians’ Genealogy Boot Camp
  • Hollywood Gala – What are you wearing? Jeans, T-shirts, Evening wear!, Fancy hair styles? You will see it all!
  • Saturday Breakfast And the Rockets’ Red Glare: Online Resources for War of 1812 Research
  • Saturday Breakfast – Jamboree Genealogy Idol
  • Saturday Banquet – How “Psychic Roots” Became an Unsolved Mystery
  • Sunday Breakfast – The Strange and Unexpected, Dealing with Research Surprises
  • Sunday Breakfast – Cigars, Murder and Women: Reconstructing A Signature Quilt’s Community

In addition you can select from over 130 presentations delivered by 63 speakers! And there will be over 60 members of GeneaBloggers in attendance – see here for more details.

SCGS 2012 Jamboree – Don’t miss it!

Disclosure: Please see Disclosure Statements for more information on my material connection with the Southern California Genealogical Society, SCGS Jamboree and other genealogy vendors.

©2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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Who’ll Be At NGS 2012?

NGS 2012 Family History Conference

Many genealogy bloggers are expected to attend NGS 2012 Family History Conference conference May 9-12, 2012 in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Below is a list of bloggers who have indicated they will be attending.  Stay tuned here at GeneaBloggers where we’ll be listing the latest RootsTech news and posts (and tweets with the #NGS2012 hash tag).

Note: if you are a member of GeneaBloggers and your name does not appear below but you will be at NGS 2012 please let us know!

Total Count:  47

Alzo, Lisa
The Accidental Genealogist

Barnes, Biff and Nancy
Stories to Tell

Bennett, Karen
Karen’s Chatt

Bishop, Shelley
A Sense of Family

Blackmore, Karen
Karen’s Genealogy Oasis

Blair, Ruth
The Passionate Genealogist

Brenner, Bart
Stardust N’ Roots

Butler, Claire
Mahogany Box

Buzbee, Bruce
RootsMagic Blog

Chastain, Kathy
James County, Tennessee Historical Society

Clark, Susan
Nolichucky Roots

Cooke, Lisa Louise
Genealogy Gems Podcast

Cowan, Christa
Family History in Real Life

Crow, Amy Johnson
Technology and Genealogy Services 

Daniels, Cheri
Journeys Past

Davey, Derek
Genealogy Southeast Michigan

Ellam, Lisa Swanson
The Faces of My Family

Fishman, Stephanie
Corn and Cotton

Hait, Michael
Planting the Seeds

Henderson, Harold
Midwestern Microhistory: A Genealogy Blog

Holik, Jennifer

Laabs-Klauer, Chris
Remembering the Family

Langel, Julia

Lisson, Lisa
Are You My Cousin?

Lorenzana, Laura Cosgrove
The Last Leaf on This Branch

Lowe. J. Mark
Keeping the Story Alive

Lyons, Tina
Gen Wish List

MacEntee, Thomas

Matthews, Barbara
The Demanding Genealogist

McCauley, Linda
Documenting the Details

McPherson, Sandy
The Frugal Genealogist

Meitzler, Leland
Genealogy Blog

Moughty, Donna
Donna Moughty’s Genealogy Resources

Ol’ Myrt
Dear Myrtle

Perrine, Amanda
Amanda’s Athenaeum

Reed, Kathy
Family Matters

Richmond, Denise
Root Cellar Ramblings

Russell, Judy G.
The Legal Genealogist

Schaffner, Pam
Digging Down East

Soderberg, Margel
2338 W. Washington Blvd.

Stuart-Warren, Paula
Paula’s Genealogical Eclectica

Taylor, Maureen
Maureen Taylor Blog

The Ancestry Insider
The Ancestry Insider

Thornton, Lori
Smoky Mountain Family Historian

Wiseman, Becky

Disclosure: I am a speaker at NGS 2012 which entitles me to a  free registration, speaker compensation and more. Please see Disclosure Statements for more information on my material connection with all genealogy vendors, genealogy events and genealogical societies.

©2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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RootsTech 2012 Review: My Perspective

RootsTech 2012

[Editor's Note: this post is part of an Open Thread Thursday conversation at GeneaBloggers.]

RootsTech – Hype and Expectations

Did RootsTech live up to your expectations or the hype, especially if you were a first time attendee (in person or online)?

My perspective is different since it seems that I’ve been involved with several aspects of RootsTech for several months including social media, planning and trying to get the word out to the genealogy community.  And since this is my second RootsTech, my perspective is a bit skewed.

My hope is that for all those first-timers, RootsTech did live up to or exceeded expectations.

RootsTech – The Home Game

If you “played along at home” via the RootsTech website, how was the quality of the content? Were there any technical problems in watching the live stream?  Are video clips and handouts easy to find?

The feedback I’ve seen on Facebook and other areas of social media is that the ability to participate in RootsTech from afar was a blessing for many.  In fact, the RootsTech staff told me there were over 3,500 nodes on the live streaming at one point on Thursday morning.  Genealogists and family historians from as far away as Europe, Australia and New Zealand were participating.

I appreciate the daily recaps on the RootsTech site and I am looking forward to the individual videos.  I did find the syllabus materials difficult to find however – visit the Downloads section for various materials.

RootsTech – The Tech Genealogy Mix

What about the mix of genealogy and technology?  Was it too “techie” or perhaps not enough tech?

The tech vs. genealogy conversation was a huge one, even before RootsTech.  I heard from many techies that it wasn’t techie enough.  I heard from many genealogists that some of the technology was “over my head.”  I believe RootsTech will work, and even struggle, to find the right mix.  The attempt in late 2011 to not have booksellers was part of this struggle. [Note: I am not mentioning this to bring up "old news" - I think the way the genealogy community helped bring resolution to this issue was a success for all involved.  I'm just stating a fact.]

Just like a fine engine, RootsTech will need constant tweaking in this area.  Perhaps there should be more than just a User and a Developer track for next year’s event.  Also a pre-RootsTech survey to help attendees determine their tech comfort zone and then perhaps let them know what sessions might be best for them to attend.

RootsTech – The Venue

If you attended in person, anything about the logistics or the facilities that you would change? Does RootsTech need a larger section of the Salt Palace Convention Center next year?

I despise the elevators in the section of the Salt Palace where RootsTech was held.  I call each one a “bread box of death.” They don’t serve the venue well and as a speaker I found it difficult to get from one place to another.

With a 35% increase in attendance this year, I wonder if RootsTech will need to expand to another part of the Salt Palace which is actually quite cavernous.

Oh, and lower the volume on the overhead system.  Many times it was like a passing jumbo jet – I had to sit there and wait until I could continue a conversation with someone.

If I Were King of RootsTech

If you were King or Queen of RootsTech and planning for 2013, what would you do differently?

  • Bring in the young folks.  I know this is the big challenge for genealogy overall, but we still have far to go to make sure that the under 50 crowd is finding the genealogy industry.
  • More industry-related events and focus.  For me, I spend quite a bit of time talking about the “business of genealogy” with vendors and others.  RootsTech would do well to have events or sessions that discuss where the genealogy industry is and the future.
  • Bigger venue.  See above.
  • Refine the tech mix. Bring in new vendors but don’t abandon our genealogy traditions of booksellers at conferences.  Remember the best way to introduce technology, especially to an older demographic like genealogy, is to walk that balance beam.
  • Use a conference manager for 2013.  RootsTech didn’t fool anyone with its attempt to run an event with lots of committees and no conference manager.

My RootsTech Elevator Speech

What would your elevator speech be for RootsTech if someone unfamiliar with the event were to ask you “What’s RootsTech?”

During RootsTech, the FamilySearch video crew had the chance to interview me and ask my thoughts about RootsTech.  This is basically my elevator speech about RootsTech:

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Disclosure statement: I was a RootsTech Official Blogger and I also served as a judge on the Rootstech Developer Challenge. To review the other material connections I have with genealogy vendors, please see Disclosure Statements.

©2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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