Odds & Ends
Now . . . there were some interesting developments while I did not have a reliable computer to use. Many of you know that I enjoy reading. I've been pondering a Kindle purchase for some time. Sony has improved its ebook reader in the last few months, but Barnes & Noble has just come out with the Nook also. I think all of these are interesting. Right now, I've got an ebook reader called Stanza that is an iPhone application. I'm able to download public domain books with it for free. I have also learned that there is a Kindle application for iPhone which is very intriguing. One of these days, I'm sure I'll bite the bullet and get one, but since I had to purchase a new computer 1.5 years before the planned replacement, I simply can't afford one right now.
Another interesting development is the announcement of Footnote.com's interactive census. How many times have those of us researching on Ancestry.com wished that we had a similar feature rather than just the "corrections" feature? At the same time I'm excited about the interactivity of this, I'm also concerned that we'll end up with a lot of problems by persons who jump to erroneous conclusions. These would be the same types of errors that many online trees have. I specifically think back to a case in which most of the data on my Harris family was incorrect in Ancestral File. One brother had lived apart from the rest of the family and really had not kept in touch with his brothers and sisters who had moved on from the family's earlier residence (where he remained). The person who had submitted information was from this brother's line. The erroneous conclusions were reached because the person was searching for full names instead of initials which had been used by the enumerator for the census in which wrong conclusions had been made. While I realize that we will be able to interact and correct those errors, the fact that they may be there before we realize that they are there concerns me. I just don't go back and review online censuses that often. I tend to print a copy for my personal records which is filed for future consultations. If I'm not at home, I may look at an online census using the citation in my database. You also have to realize that until the last few years, most of my census research was done on microfilm. I have tons of print-outs which predate Ancestry.com and HeritageQuest census records. I even still have those 1880 CDs that the LDS issued. About the only time I've used those in the last few years though has been to consult an image which was hard to read in the other sources.
I need to get back to work. I'm working on FGS stuff and on a presentation I'm making in North Carolina next weekend. I also need to write a blog post for the carnival later today. I haven't participated in a long time, and I need to get back on track!