Monday, August 27, 2007

FamilySearch Labs Updated

Two updates have occurred in as many days on the FamilySearch Labs website.

Record Search

"In case you have not seen it there is new information posted in the past week on Record Search," says product manager, Bill Mangum. The new material includes Massachusetts and New York for the 1900 Census and updates to the Ontario Death Records.

Mangum says, "keep watching...for additional data updates and for additional changes in the system."

Life Browser

"Sorry it has taken us so long to publish this update to the Life Browser prototype," says Dan Lawyer. "We'll be more diligent at publishing the updates in the future."

We’ve done a pretty major overhaul to the Life Browser. There are still many features that are ‘stubbed out’ but hopefully you can get a feel for where we are going. Here’s what’s new:
  • You can create your own life pages! Be aware however that they won’t be saved after your session. This means that if you leave the site and come back any work you did before will be gone. We hope to be able to store life pages in the future. We’ve also considered a version that let’s you save them on your own computer.
  • Artifact Palette. We’ve reworked the page and placed a palette of artifacts on the left hand side of the page.
  • Add Artifacts. From the Artifact Palette, you can add more artifacts. Give it a try.
  • Artifact Viewer. The artifact viewer lives on the right hand side of the screen. The idea is that anytime you want to view an artifact (no matter what context you’re in) the viewer slides out from the right and slides back to the right when you’re finished.
  • Evidence. Once an artifact has been added, it can also be used as supporting evidence for genealogical conclusions about a person. Just drag and click the artifact from the artifact palette and drop it on the conclusion it supports.
  • Placeholders. We’ve put in placeholders for timelines, maps, and discussion boards about a person. These are currently just images but hopefully will give you a feel for our general direction.
These are just some of the additions to the life browser. There is still a lot we’d like to do. We also have a lot of questions about the additions to this version so PLEASE use the feedback link to tell us what you think.
Visit http://labs.familysearch.org to see these and other projects. For the latest information about FamilySearch Labs projects, visit the FamilySearch Labs blog.

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