Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Problem Solving Presenter

My head is swimming after nine days at sea on the 4th Unlock the Past Genealogy Cruise.

I had every intention of joining this cruise so after I booked when I found that one of the presenters was to be Family Historian expert and FHUG Site Administrator, Jane Taubman, I was especially chuffed. As a relatively new convert to the Family Historian  software package I am still a novice and need all the help I can get.

I learnt lots about the program from Jane in the six workshops I attended at sea and two subsequent ones on land but I doubt that I will retain much of this. More importantly I was convinced that I made the right decision in moving over to  Family Historian. A software package that contains lots of data must give users many ways to retrieve and massage the data it contains. Some programs make it very easy to input data but extracting data in a palatable format can be a trial.  Family Historian  is excellent in this regard.
Jane Taubman at work on Voyager of the Seas

Jane knows the  Family Historian  package inside out. Her style of presentation that wasn't scripted except for a short introduction was excellent. Jane taught us how to use the program with live demonstrations of the software's capabilities, she coped admirably with questions from participants and happily went off on tangents to address their particular needs.

Jane was a patient and knowledgeable teacher with super problem solving skills and this is where she shone for me. Many people are able to teach but often they don't have the knack of taking a student's issue on board, mulling it over and coming back with a workaround or solution.  There are one or two features that I miss from my old program. Jane went away, thought about them and returned the next day with solutions. What a lifesaver!

I am anxious to get stuck into my research once more and further explore Family Historian. Mr GeniAus has agreed that I can take some time out of our trip to the UK later in the year to attend some of Jane's workshops at Dillington House in Somerset. By then I should have lots of further questions and may be even ready to start retrieving info from my database. For the moment I will concentrate on data entry and editing.

Jane gave one of the most talked about sessions on the cruise to a nearly packed house. In her Snapshots to Photographs presentation she gave all the budding photographers present many tips to improve their images. As a snap happy person I really enjoyed the advice Jane proffered by using examples from her collection of photographs. What a visual treat we had.

I am sure that I would have enjoyed the cruise without Jane but her presence was just the icing on the cake.


Shelley Crawford said...

The cruise sounds like it was fantastic. I wish I could have gone! One day, one day...
What do you think was the most useful Family Historian tip you picked up?

GeniAus said...

I didn't know that one create a chart with one person and then add extra people by clicking and drsgging sideways,upwards or downwards.

Jane suggests using this method when interviewing relatives, She suggests creating a chart that one can later compare with one's own data might elicit more information from relatives than one could glean by presenting them wih a completed pedigree.

Jane Taubman said...

Thanks for the lovely write up. Just back in the UK as of yesterday and catching up with everything which happened while I was "Down Under". I enjoyed giving the talks and attending many of the other lectures, off to the "Who Do You Think You Are" on Saturday, to see what else I can pick up.


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