Roots Tech Simpatico

Goodbye Provo Canyon!

Provo Canyon

Carry on, carry on, carry on!

Back home in Florida, I will flesh out the Roots Tech 2014 blog-a-rama with Day 2, which I haven’t yet written about.

Keynotes blew me away: Judy Russell, the Legal Genealogist, talked about Scots-Irish ancestors and their propensity for story telling. And the possibilities of searching in places where the chances are slim that you’ll find a gold nugget of info, then you do! I attended her Thursday class on Black Sheep (the one about ancestors who were in prison). Awesome! Dr. Spencer Wells, who does population migration studies for National Geographic, utilizing DNA samples, gave such a fascinating talk that I realized I had to jump on the DNA bandwagon.

A short interview après-speech: does his face look like Sundance might have been on his agenda recently?

ancestry.com DNA test kit

ancestry.com DNA test kit

I went to 2 Mac genealogy classes that day. Crazy, huh? I’m a neophyte Mac user and I took advantage of the chance to learn some arcane Apple tricks to supplement what I do on my PC. The most appealing thing I want to take back from Jimmy Zimmerman’s class is Alfred. Batman has Alfred, everyone needs an Alfred! The other class was by taught by Nancy E. Loe of Sassy Jane Genealogy.com. From that class I learned an easy tip for adding the accent grave in the above après: all you do is hold down the e key for a few seconds, and a pop-up menu with diacritical mark options will show up.

The other class I attended was Cartography for Genealogists by Pamela Weisberger, who also taught the Jewish Roots class. Weisberger showed many great sites and sources, including her Gesher Galicia Map Room and the amazing David Rumsey Collection.

I found a sewing book that is simpatico with this conference.

fashion patterns c. 1900

Historical Costumes

Mastering Genealogical Proof

Dr. Jones’ book

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I went to Dr. Jones’ class Thursday, and was so impressed with his work I snagged a copy of his recent book.

Roots and Hearts

Crazy to think that Roots Tech 2014 is already over. I’ve been doing some in-depth consciousness-raising the past three days. So many resources! It’s been like sunlight breaking through the cloud cover and illuminating fascinating new discoveries.

The last day of the conference started with a keynote from Todd Hansen, the guy who hosts Story Trek television show.

I watched his presentation with tears overflowing, as he talked about the origins of his show. Most people he interviews say at first they don’t have a story to tell, or that their story wouldn’t be interesting to other people. Then Hansen, using his unique and strange talents, starts tugging and plucking away at the heart-strings of everyone involved in the story until the brick walls of remorse, denial, and despair are torn away, and what remains is a beautiful spiritual sibling, to whom we can now no longer be indifferent, increasing our level of compassion.

And after Hansen’s address, I had the opportunity to weep openly for more extended moments as Stephanie Nielson took the stage. Nielson is a mommy blogger who was badly burned in a plane crash four years ago. Her story of recovery and hope are deeply inspirational to anyone who has ever doubted if they could overcome a personal challenge.

I went to some fantastic classes today:

Facial Detection and Recognition for Genealogy by Charley Smart, marketing VP for Eclipse Identity Recognition Corp.

Finding Biographical Information Online by Kelly Summers

DNA Match-Maker, Make Me a Match by Anna Swayne of Ancestry.com. (to name a few!)

Got to hang out all day with cherished people.

And ended a fabulous day by having dinner at Sawadee, a Thai restaurant in Salt Lake City that was highly recommended by missionary friends.

Roots Tech Techie

Temple Square, Salt Lake City view

Greetings from Salt Lake City

Guess what the “object” is here for Weekly Photo challenge? This photo might also be considered for the next day Weekly Photo Challenge theme “Selfie.” Selfie being rather loosely, creatively defined…

I greet you from the tenth floor of the Joseph Smith building on Temple Square in Salt Lake City, with the stunningly beautiful Salt Lake City temple in the background.

I’ve been enjoying Roots Tech 2014, a genealogy conference with 11,000 attendees on site at the Salt Palace Convention Center, and thousands more attending each of the 3 days via webcast. Go to rootstech.org for info if you’d like to tune in to the daily courses that are being streamed live, and for recordings coming up.

So far I’ve seen some terrific presentations and had fun with friends. Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, gave a heart-warming talk at yesterday’s keynote, relating how she got started blogging and how she developed her blog as a tool for doing family history.
Inspiration for all us tiny cogs in the blogiverse-machine! She started as a mom blogging day-to-day events on her farm with her family, and moved up to authoring cook books, children’s books, and starring in her own television show on the Food Network.

At the keynote address, Dennis Brimhall, the CEO of Family Search, gave a rousing speech about future upgrades to the program. Technology is rolling ahead like never before. Another speaker, Anneliese Van den Belt, CEO of findmypast.org, spoke of “happy moments” that drive and fulfill us as we search for our relatives.

ON the agenda: a class on internet genealogy by Tom Jones, author of Mastering Genealogical Proof and lecturer at Boston U; a little exploring Jewish Roots with Pamela Weisberger, program chair for the Jewish Genealogical Society of Los Angeles; and searching for records of ancestors who may have been in prison, with Judy Russell, The Legal Genealogist. All were excellent presentations with much audience participation.

A couple of great receptions. First, a welcome with food and entertainment by Voice Male, a beat-box ensemble. Second night was another beat-boxing group from BYU, Vocal Point.

(this is not what Vocal Point sang for us, but a recent you tube)

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