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Roots to the Past with Diana Lynn TibertWiki on the web
What is wiki? In simple terms, it's a data bank which members can enter, edit and share information with members and visitors. Wikis on various subjects are popping up on the web. One that might interest genealogists is WeRelate (http://www.werelate.org/wiki).
WeRelate is not your average, genealogy website. You're not a casual observer. Well, you can be, but it's more fun if you participate. Genealogy websites usually fall into two main categories - one you view without input and one you upload your GEDCOM to share with others. WeRelate is a third kind, a new tree in the forest.
Visitors of WeRelate can search the database for genealogy information and family links. Or, they can upload their GEDCOMs or manually enter genealogical information. But there's something else you can do on WeRelate that I haven't seen anywhere else - edit other people's information.
The first step is to create an account by entering a username, password, e-mail address and your real name (optional). A confirmation message is sent to your inbox. Click on the link within the message to begin creating and editing pages. If you just want to search the database, you don't need an account.
The home page contains a link to tutorial videos, the search engine, and several drop-down menus to help navigate. The help page contains answers to frequently asked questions.
The tutorials are easy to follow and show how to create and edit pages. There are several videos available. I recommend watching the ones in the getting started section to avoid any confusion before you begin. If you're on dial-up, you might want to view the text tutorials instead of waiting for videos to download.
WeRelate doesn't permit information on living individuals in their database. The information is automatically removed and the names replaced with "Living." The number of individuals one person can upload is 5,000. Members must contact administration to add more.
Once a person or family page is created, you have the option of adding additional items such as events, facts, source citations, images, scanned documents, notes, biographies, maps and personal history.
Editing someone else's page is as easy as editing your own. A message is sent to everyone watching the page when an edit is made.
If you change your mind and don't want your family tree posted to the web, you can request to have it deleted with one exception - the pages being watched by other members.
Regardless of what you do, it's all free. The social networking for sharing and researching aims to be the number 1 community on the web for genealogy. So far, it's the world largest genealogy wiki, with more than two million named individuals entered into their database.
The interesting idea behind WeRelate is that every family tree grows into the others in the database. Unlike stand-alone GEDCOMs, researchers can follow branches of their family trees and make connections with a simple click of the mouse.
WeRelate is developed and sponsored by the Foundation for On-Line Genealogy, a non-profit organization and operated in partnership with the Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library.
Seeking information on Henry Lawrence (born Malden, England or Malden, U.S.), an apprenticed bricklayer who served with the British navy, 54th Regiment, Halifax, from the 1750s until 1772. He married Judith Watson (1763, Tracadie, Nova Scotia - 1833, Windsor, Nova Scotia) in 1780. Henry had two brothers - James (Cherryfield, Maine) and Jonathan (or John, "The Windsor Rd." now Mount Uniacke). Contact Kathy Zinck Lawrence, 412 Mines Rd, Falmouth, Nova Scotia, B0P 1L0; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Diana Lynn Tibert is a freelance writer living in Milford, Nova Scotia. Submit a query. It's free! RR#1 Milford, Hants County, Nova Scotia, B0N 1Y0; e-mail email@example.com.
posted on 12/01/09
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