Friday, August 7, 2009

Research Practices and NFS

This article is one in a series of session reports from the recent BYU Conference on Family History and Genealogy. I tweeted the session live, but I hate to send you to Twitter to read them because they appear there in reverse chronological order. I’ve straightened them out for you here. Additions are shown in italics.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

I'm attending Janet Hovorka's class, "Basic Research Practices in the age of New FamilySearch." (NFS) (12:35 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
She's the Chart Chick and works for Generation Maps. (12:35 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Among other things about NFS, she states, it has "forced, derivative, or non-existent source citations." (12:37 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
"Ultimately the reliability of the NFS database lies in the sources" (12:38 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
"NFS now is largely conjecture... often derivative sources. It is crucial to your success that you go back to the sources." (12:40 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
This past weekend she was doing research and couldn't find any sources that weren't Ancestral File. (12:41 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Current sources in NFS are lax, spotty transfer of sources from previous databases. (12:43 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
The current source template in NFS is limited, contrived. (12:43 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
You can't go backwards, seeing all the information taken from a particular source. (12:44 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
There is no source import. Help screen says to type your sources into notes. There is no mechanism for reusing sources. Each source entry must be retyped. (12:45 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Janet's now showing source entry window in NFS. (12:45 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
List of available source types is so limited, it almost forces you to put in an incomplete source. (12:47 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
"It is not responsible to submit anything to NFS that you have not personally seen the sources for." (12:47 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
"But NFS is not ready for those sources." (12:48 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
"The solution to sources is the way we approach New FamilySearch." (12:50 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
The Board for the Certification of Genealogists (BCG) defines the Genealogical Proof Standard. (12:51 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
The Gen Proof Stan has these requirements: (12:52 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
1. Exhaustive Search. Drill down to the original source. Minimize chances that undiscovered sources could change your conclusion. (12:52 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
"Sometimes Mormons in their rush to the temple, skip an exhaustive search." (12:54 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
"Good family history research has a higher standard of proof than a court of law." (12:54 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
In court, preponderance of evidence means 51% of evidence known at time of trial supports the conclusion. (12:55 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
2. Well Analyzed. (12:56 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
(Janet is also making the mistake of calling sources primary or secondary. Fortunately, she is now talking primary or secondary information.) (12:57 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Each piece of information can be primary or secondary. A source can contain primary information and secondary information. (12:58 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
(Good. She's distinguishing sources, information, and evidence.) (12:58 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Evidence is direct, indirect, and negative. Evidence is based on our interpretation of the information. (12:59 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Analysis should be based on quality, not quantity of sources. The quality is a spectrum. (1:00 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
3. Conflicting evidence must be resolved. (1:01 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
While courts of law operate on a deadline, genealogy is not. Where conflicts can't be resolved, hold off making a conclusion. (1:02 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
(Sorry; we lost WiFi in the conference center.) (1:25 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
(Sorry, you missed 4. Well documented, and 5. Clearly concluded.) (1:27 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Janet is now taking questions. (1:27 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Janet showed Mark Tucker's fabulous process map. www.thinkgenealogy.com/map/  (1:30 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )
Just saw Ron Tanner leaving after Janet's presentation. He's the NFS product manager. He said he liked it. I like Ron. (1:41 PM Jul 28th from TweetChat )

Remember that tweets are limited to 140 characters. Less the #byugen hashtag, each tweet could not exceed 132 characters. Hence, tweets often use abbreviations, bad grammar, and lack proper punctuation.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed the tweets from you and Mark Tucker enormously during the event. Thank you.
    Sheri

    ReplyDelete