Why I like iFamily and what I would like more of

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Joined: Mon Feb 11, 2013 5:44 pm

Why I like iFamily and what I would like more of

Post by Rhys » Wed Jun 24, 2015 5:08 pm

Before asking for enhancements, I want to sing the praises of iFamily. I'm a 'grass is always' greener kind of person, so I've paid for multiple genealogy applications. I have four for Mac and two for Windows that I run using Parallels Desktop. I've used iFamily for years, but check out new releases of the others to see if there is something there that will make we switch. I've just finished my review of three new releases. I won't name names, but one is now on version 11, one is version 7, and one is a version for 2015. There are always features in the other packages that are extremely useful, but I keep coming back to iFamily.

Others may have some whiz-bang UI features and flashy reports, but they pay for this in terms of speed. iFamily is quick and nimble and lets you get on with your work. Others may enforce good habits when it comes to documenting sources and recording event locations, but that comes at the cost of forcing structures on the data. Unfortunately, genealogy tends to be a bit messy. iFamily let's you record items as you find them, and provides excellent search tools to find them again! Where iFamily really excels for me is in analysis of my family tree. With the bloat of features in other programs, I find I'm constantly drilling into dialogs to find anything. iFamily manages to elegantly present a tremendous amount of information into a small space, allowing me to see the big picture and the details at the same time. In short, the I find the flexibility, speed and user interface of iFamily are much more conducive to getting the work of genealogy done, which is what software is supposed to do.

I will be more than happy to just have iFamily updated to be compatible with new versions of OS X. However, if Warwick is willing and able to add some new features, here are the top tree things I would like to see:
  • Event Participants - This has a similar purpose to shared events (below) - the ability to associate related and unrelated people to a particular event. This would be for things like witnesses to a marriage, informants on death records, executors on wills... I recently found an ancestor after they appeared three times as a participant in family events. I just happened to remember the individual and it would be great if this was integrated into iFamily to make these relationships more apparent and not dependent upon my memory. I would also like the Event Participants to be an option to display in the Relatives Tab of iFamily. Yes, I've tried the 'Associated Person', which tends to clutter up the graphical tree and there is now way I've found to see all of the individuals someone is associated with.

    Shared Events - this has been requested before and would be both a time saver and a way to ensure that everyone in a multiple person event has been accounted for. I would like to be able to make changes or additions to the event, and have it apply to everyone. I've used the 'clone' function, but it's a bit kludgy.

    Place Variants - this would provide the ability to track changing geographic names and boundaries over time. I have ancestors who never moved, but appear in two counties in Maryland and one county in Delaware between 1720 and 1770. I would like to record the actual place where a document was found, but also know that that place had a different name at a particular point in time.
Thanks for listening!

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