Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Digital tools, Open Data, Rockstar Genealogists & Other News - Genealogy Notes 11-18 Oct 2017

It's been a soggy week in south east Queensland which means lots of time indoors. I've now got my family history database on the new laptop and brought all my photographs across. It would have been easier to just copy everything across but it is amazing how many programs I have that I no longer use or there are newer and better versions. I am also tidying up my file directory and deleting things that I don't need anymore. A true spring clean and of course a nice little list of things to do later. 

The professional development day of the Queensland Professional Historians Association in Brisbane was a great success and I learnt about some digital tools for organising research so that you can find it again later. Of course Evernote was one that was mentioned, Air Table and also Zotero which I had forgotten about and how you can use it with Trove. The Department of Natural Resources and Mines has a new Queensland historical map viewer coming soon which will allow us to use the historical digital maps already in open data easier. It looks fantastic and here's hoping that the testing phase is completed soon.

My talk was on social media for historians and how it can be used for finding and sharing information as well as networking. It was a long day but good catching up with some people I've known for decades - I guess that's when we realise the years are passing. The venue was the Queensland Art Gallery theatre and I really must get down to Brisbane and spend some time in the Gallery, Library and Museum as they have all changed greatly since I worked there in the 1990s.

In the small world category, one of the attendees who I have known for years, had just spent time with a friend who is my distant cousin on the Carnegie side of the family and while she was visiting, they Googled some of the family names and found my blogs.  Naturally I said please have her contact me and we can share more family stories but I was also fascinated by the personal recollections she had of Toorbul. When you start to share your family stories online you really do start to connect up with others.

John and Helen Carnegie's grave
at Toorbul (my GGG grandparents)
Going to U3A twice a week for advanced family history and local Bribie history takes up time but it is also another opportunity to share information and learn from others. My talk on the Carnegies of Pumicestone Passage went well at the Bribie Island Historical Society Meeting and everyone was amazed at how much additional information I had found over the last three years. How I solved the brick wall with so many people using aliases left some just shaking their heads but it was something that took me years to solve and only 45 minutes to explain. It's always easier in hindsight.

I have just accepted my first talk for 2018 with Caloundra Family History Research, apart from my two talks at the Bridging the Past & Future Congress in Sydney in March. Speaking of talks, John D Reid (Canada's Anglo Celtic Connections) is again hosting his annual Rockstar Genealogist survey and voting is now open. I'm honoured to be nominated and there is a great line up of Australasian genealogists as well as some of the overseas genealogists who have visited our shores in the last few years. Check out their websites/blogs and be prepared to learn lots.

Talk of Christmas parties seems to be everywhere at the moment but I also like this time of year as I don't have any talks, so no travel and just time to catch up on projects and do some writing. Of course it helps that it is raining so no garden, pool or walks along the beach to distract me. The bookshelves need a tidy up with all my new books (some still to be read) plus print copies of journals and magazines.

We have been here 5 years in January so that means quite a few boxes have magically appeared in the study cupboards. The only time I find it easy to weed my magazines and journals is when I am moving house and then it's a necessity. Now that I am staying put, I'm hoarding again. It might be time to bundle some of them up and take them along to those Christmas parties!

I'm looking forward to a nice quiet week of research and writing and perhaps weeding those magazines. Have a great genealogy week and until next time, happy searching.

1 comment:

  1. I always enjoy your posts. You fit so much into your life, I am in awe. I, too have transitioned to a new laptop and was surprised how long it took to find licence keys etc.