Saturday, June 12, 2010

52 Weeks To Better Genealogy - Challenge 23

Come up with a personal genealogy challenge of your own. Each person has different research goals and experiences. Use this week to come up with your own challenge, and then take the steps to accomplish it. Genealogy bloggers are encouraged to share their ideas and challenge their own readers.


When I first read the entry for Week 23, I thought "nooooooo, I don't need challenges to my challenges!"  But after thinking about it, I realized I was actually going to have a hard time deciding which of my challenges to blog about.

My challenge for this installment is to clean up my data in my genealogy database.  Initially, this sounded like a huge endeavor that would take weeks and weeks to complete not just one.  Not necessarily so if you are using a genealogy software that can create a Potential Problems Report for you.  Currently my genealogy data is housed in Legacy and I do have the option of generating just such a report.

When creating this report, you have the option of specifying what potential problems you want the program to look for.  You may only be interested in looking at potential problems with birth dates.  In that case, on the problems tab you would only select items that relate to birth dates.  The same goes for name standardization issues.  You may not care, at this point, that a middle name does not have a period after an initial.  Just uncheck that line on the standardization tab to turn off that check feature.

There are a total of four tabs with criteria you can select or unselect for review.  This can make your database clean up more manageable.  You could review all date type issues one week.  The next week you could review all standardization issues etc.  However you choose to run the reports, just be sure you do.  Having invalid dates and/or minor discrepancies in our data can create a lot of wasted hours of research.