Doing Research in Real Time

From FamilySearch Wiki

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The tables in the conference syllabus use the term ''Tree Results'' instead of ''Aggregator''. The tables here have been corrected. The conference syllabus only includes aggregators that provided their own collaborative tree. However, products certified to update the new FamilySearch Tree may be added to the tables below.  
 
The tables in the conference syllabus use the term ''Tree Results'' instead of ''Aggregator''. The tables here have been corrected. The conference syllabus only includes aggregators that provided their own collaborative tree. However, products certified to update the new FamilySearch Tree may be added to the tables below.  
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| align="center" | Communication, Artifacts<br>  
 
| align="center" | Communication, Artifacts<br>  
 
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| align="center" | Communication, Artifacts<br>  
 
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Revision as of 04:24, 18 November 2012

NGS2010 125.png A presentation given by FamilySearch staff "Doing Research in Real Time-An Exhilarating Collaboration Experience!" (F308), at the National Genealogical Society 2010 conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. , presented by Alan E. Mann, AG®, Robert Raymond, and David E. Rencher, AG®, CGSM, FIGRS, FUGA .


This session illustrates how to do research collaboratively in real time using off-the-shelf products and services to accomplish more in less time and (we think) better results. FamilySearch has produced a video adaptation of this session. In the Learning Center, see "Doing Research in Real Time: A Collaborative Approach."

Contents

Collaboration

While our presentation focuses on the tools and benefits of real-time collaboration, the research process benefits from both real-time and non-real-time collaboration. Consider choosing real-time tools that give all the collaborators time for later absorption and analysis of the results. Hypotheses can then be added, reviewed and discussed asynchronously, leading to richer, fuller analysis, and eventually sounder conclusions. For example, an online research log allows for real-time sharing and assigning of research tasks, but also enables further collaboration.

Tools for Real-time Collaboration

We've divided real-time collaboration tools into three types: communication, artifact storage, and aggregation.

Communication

These tools are used for "command and control" of a real time research session. This allows coordinated research activities. Assignments are given, results are reported, and a research log is produced. With this ability, the group is able to account for expected and unexpected results.

Artifacts

Artifact tools are used to share the documentary evidence that supports the research. These artifacts may include, but are not limited to: original vital records, probate, land, tax and other supporting evidence; photographs of tombstones, newspaper clippings – especially obituaries; summaries of oral interviews, etc. These artifacts need to be organized to tell the story and provide the evidentiary materials in such a way that other researchers have access to the materials for their own interpretation.

Aggregator

To aggregate the information streaming in from the various sources, an aggregation tool is necessary. This allows everyone to see the results of the research and to monitor progress. It also provides a critical analysis function by allowing visibility into the whole of the genealogical problem as it develops.

Tool Tables

Additions and corrections to these tables are encouraged. To qualify for inclusion, a tool must either be free or FamilySearch Certified. Since the printing of the syllabus, MyFamily.com eliminated a free offering, so it has been removed from the table.

The tables in the conference syllabus use the term Tree Results instead of Aggregator. The tables here have been corrected. The conference syllabus only includes aggregators that provided their own collaborative tree. However, products certified to update the new FamilySearch Tree may be added to the tables below.




Collaboration Tools from Google

Tool
Purpose
Cost
Notes
Google Blogger
Communication, Artifacts
Free
HTML and images. Picasa has 1 GB free storage space.
Google Groups
Communication, Artifacts
Free
Provides messaging and a file area for any file type. Uses upload throttling and 100 MB storage space.
Google Drive 
Communication, Artifacts
Free
Store any file type. 5 GB storage space.
Google Gmail
Communication, Artifacts
Free
Messages are private. Free storage space is 10 GB.

Google Blogs
  Blog Communication
Free
Up to 100 blogs per account.
Google Hangouts
Chat, Voice, Video Conferencing
Free
Cloud Storage supplied by Google Drive, YouTube
Google Picasa
Artifacts
Free
1 GB storage space.





Collaboration Tools from FamilySearch

Tool
Purpose
Cost
Notes
FamilySearch Wiki
See notes
Free
Textual information about locations and records can be entered into the wiki. Information about individuals and families can not.
FamilySearch Forums (beta)
Communication, Artifacts
Free
jpeg file size limited to 976 KB, other image formats are limited to 620 x 280 pixels.
new FamilySearch Tree

Aggregation

Free
Gradual release to the general public sometime in 2010.





Collaboration Tools from Certified FamilySearch Affiliates

Tool
Purpose
Cost
Notes
Ancestral Quest NetFam
Aggregation
$29.95
Online tree uses check-in/check-out to a desktop application.
Appletree
Artifacts, Aggregation
$59.40/yr

Arcalife
Artifacts, Aggregation
Free or $250
Limited or 10 GB storage space.
FamilyPursuit
Communication, Artifacts,† Aggregation
Free or
† 59.95/yr
1 GB storage space.
† Storing artifacts requires a subscription of 59.95/yr.
Mobiletree
Artifacts
$9.99
iPhone application. Requires an account for the new FamilySearch tree. Accounts will be available to the general public gradually, starting sometime in 2010.
One Great Family
Artifacts, Aggregation
$80/yr.

Photoloom
Artifacts
Free or $39/yr.
Users may store up to XX photographs for free.
Other affiliates
Aggregation

Needed: Someone needs to add the other NFS update certified programs.





Collaboration Tools from Ancestry.com, Inc. and RootsWeb

Tool
Purpose
Cost
Notes
Ancestry.com Member Trees
Artifacts, Tree results
Free
Collaborators must be invited to make changes to the tree. Files can be up to 15 MB of types: text, MS.doc, PDF, jpg, png, gif, tiff, and bmp. No known storage space limit.
Ancestry.com/ RootsWeb Message Boards
Communication, Artifacts
Free
Supports attachments of GEDCOM and some image files up to 4 MB. No known storage space limit.
GenForum
Communication
Free





Other Collaboration Tools

Tool
Purpose
Cost
Notes
Facebook
Communication, Artifacts (low resolution), Aggregation
Free
Needed: someone to check the storage space available on Facebook. Also see
FamilyLink.com
Communication, Artifacts?, Aggregation
Free
Needed: someone to check this row of the table.
Flickr
Artifacts
Free
100 MB storage space.
Footnote People Pages
Artifacts, Aggregation
Free
File types: jpg, gif, tif, png upto 10 MB in size. No known storage limit.
Photobucket
Artifacts
Free
10 GB/month download bandwidth limit. 500 MB storage space.
Skype
Communication
Free
Needed: someone to check this row of the table.
Twitter
Communication
Free
Text only with 140 character message limit.
Yahoo Groups
Communication, Artifacts, Aggregation
Free

Various free screen sharing and online meeting tools
Communication
Free
Needed: Someone needs to add the various free screen sharing and online meeting tools.
Various online, free collaborative trees
Aggregation
Free
Needed: Someone needs to add the various free online collaborative trees.


Post Project Followup

Following a research project, participants will want to go back through the results of the project, proof reading information, checking conclusions, and offering further research suggestions to the primary participant.

Examples From Our Session


Summary

The desired outcome for this presentation is that you will take away the knowledge that research can be conducted in dramatically different ways than you may be used to doing. More people can participate, producing more artifacts and results in less time, making your valuable research time more productive.