February 14, 2013
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Why I chose WikiTree
- My primary objective of putting my family tree research in the cloud was to enable easy sharing and collaboration with other family members.
- Finding a free system was really important as I didn't want to have to ask people to sign up to an annual sub. Also, it needed to have no limit on the number of people or photos/documents that could be added.
- I found just two online trees, designed for collaboration, that fitted the bill; WeRelate and WikiTree.
- WeRelate is better in many ways (see below) but cannot allow living people to be entered as it has no privacy controls. WikiTree, however, has excellent privacy controls. So, I went for WikiTree as I specifically want to connect up with other living relatives, seeing where they fit in and sharing knowledge of our common heritage.
- So far, the endeavour has been a huge success! I have, so far, mangaged to connect up with eight interested relatives, across different branches of my family, who all now have WikiTree accounts.
- On the downside, WikiTree has no database fields for sources and citations. This has three annoying consequences:
- Data entry is slower and more tedious than it need be with lots of cutting and pasting that could be avoided with database fields.
- If a sourse is updated, it needs to be manually updated in every profile that refers to it - if you can remmeber them all!
- As the source and citation data is held in a text field full of Wiki-tags, you cannot download it in a format understandable by any other genealogy program (it is treated as notes in a GEDCOM file and most systems, not understanding the tags, dump all the information into an error report).
- You can read my conversation with the WikiTree founder about this subject here.
- You can read also read a helpful comparison of WikiTree and WeRelate here.
- I have decided to keep a parallel record in GRAMPS, which adhears to the GEDCOM standard for sources and citations. The double entry is a pain though.
- Despite this, I am enjoying using WikiTree and it has been a huge success as a collaboration platform. I hope you enjoy it too.
- Chris Orme
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