What shall we do with those Outer Rim branches?

+28 votes

In the framework of the 100 Circles research, we have discovered, with the help of a "magic query" developed by Alešthree far-away branches, containing profiles connected to, but very far from, most of the Tree.

WARNING : Check updates, things have been moving quite fast in this space.

The furthest away is Ali Al Maghrawi (this is the best transliteration I could figure, anyone proficient in Arabic is welcome to propose a better one) sitting at the far end of a long branch of profiles with only Arabic script names, no date, no place, no source whatsoever, created from a GEDCOM import back in 2011, by a member of whom account seems to be closed.

As far as possible from Ali, at 165 degrees, lies Philipp Wirtz, and a handful of private cousins extending the branch two degrees further. This branch has been created by GEDCOM import back in 2011, and the PM has been inactive since 2013.

[edited 2020-12-05 : All this branch should be reconnected by tomorrow and brought back by 30-35 to the center]

As far as possible from the path linking the two above, lies among others Seth Lazenby, at 156 degrees from Ali and 142 from Philipp. Seth is an ancestor of his PM, Adam Dennehy who created this branch in May 2020, has not been active since but hopefully might be responsive.

[edited 2020-12-05 : The profile of Seth Lazenby has just been merged and brought much closer to the center, thanks to Karen Lowe. Tomorrow when the Connection Finder data are updated we'll know who is taking his place. Stay tuned!]

To figure how far those three branches are from the bulk of WikiTree, our anchor Henry VIII is 85 degrees from Ali, 83 from Philipp and 78 from Seth. Good old Henry seems to sit quite close to the center of this triangle, at about equal distance from each of the three Outer Rim extensions. Does that mean he's close to the center of the Galaxy? And what does "center" mean, by the way? Tricky questions, about which we had fascinating exchanges in the 100 Circles team. You are welcome to join and bring your input.

For fun, or help us to move forward in this exploration, you can find out your own distances, or the distance of your favourite profile, to/from the Outer Rim using the Connection Finder. Can you beat Henry VIII? If you are closer than him from one summit of the triangle, you are likely to be further from one or two others.  Compute the sum of the three distances, which is 246 for Henry VIII. Can you beat this?

In the due course of tree curation, those three branches could be either brought closer or disconnected by cutting dubious unsourced connections. The latter should certainly be a good idea for Ali's branch at least, if someone knowledgeable can care. As for the two others, they can certainly be brought closer by discovery of new shortcuts. 

If any of this happens, don't worry. Those three Outer Rim landmarks will be replaced by closest ones which will appear on the new horizon, and the fun will go on.

edited 2020-12-06 : After reconnection of Philipp and Seth branches, the new Outer Rim triangle has got smaller, but is now a pentangle pentagon (oops) with the following new summits :

Maurice Berkeley (abt.1271-1326) is the exact center of the new triangle, at distance 78 from the five Outer Rim summits. All other connected profiles are less than 78 degrees from Maurice (check your own!)

edited 2020-12-07 : The Pool branch has been reconnected closer, the triangle has flattened to a single line. Maurice Berkeley is still standing in the middle.

WikiTree profile: Ali al-Hasani
in The Tree House by Bernard Vatant G2G6 Mach 6 (62.7k points)
edited by Bernard Vatant

I've this news from Aleš.

From  19076878 (Living Unknown) 19 steps are unlisted. First visible profile is https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Jani%C5%A1-156

Showing all those small profile groups would be a violation of privacy.To display it inline with privacy, I would need the privacy in ConnectionFinder, but I don't have that info.

I did make a comment here that might pull the Czechs in if we copy a line from Geni:

Karen I'm afraid I don't understand. Which reconnection would you make? And which line of Geni would you copy?

If our Antonín Svoboda-110 represents the same man as this Antonín on Geni then there is a much shorter path through Czech Americans to English Americans that will pull in Tomáš's relatives. But I don't know if they're the same. I left a comment on our profile but it's probably time to start a separate G2G post without all our crazy circles that is tagged to Czech Roots.

The first man here lived in the US and is at Sedlacek-149: 

Michael William Sedlacek

John Sedlacek
his father

Please do that, Karen.

Latest finding. I had the idea (better late that never) to

And bingo, the tip of a new branch appeared in the last circle of Marjory, at distance 79, which contains five profiles:
- Yet another Living Unknown of the Czech branch, given his/her PM.
- Four profiles of a Nueva España branch in the 1750, including José Casimiro  Martín (born 1731).
So, Karen when you have settled the case of the Czech branch, take a break, then a ticket for Mexico.laugh

May I phone a friend? I choose Austin Pérez.
I made a post in the Mexico project's email group.

16 Answers

+7 votes
Wow, my head is spinning trying to imagine this.
by Michelle Enke G2G6 Pilot (281k points)

Yes, it's an usual effect  when you start cosmology. You get used to it after a while - or not - like seasick. smiley

I still think it's a little funny that my path to Henry VIII goes through the US of A if he is so central.

Me, too, Michelle. I need a BC Powder and a cup of coffee.
+6 votes
My Tremblaly ancestors usually connect me to many people and in this instance, it shows ...

الشريف/ علي المغراوي الحسني is 101 Degrees from N Gauthier

Seth Lazenby is 83 Degrees from N Gauthier

Phillipp Wirtz is 92 Degrees from N Gauthier

... for a total of 276
by N Gauthier G2G6 Pilot (151k points)
edited by N Gauthier

The third distance to consider is not from Adam Dennehy, but from Philipp Wirtz. smiley

which one and why are you adding him to the quesioner's comments?
Not sure I understand your question.

What I meant is that the three "Outer Rim" profiles to consider are Ali, Philipp, and Seth (not Adam). I mentioned Adam Dennehy as PM of Seth's profile, but it's the distance to Seth which has to be taken into account. (You will certainly find Adam in the path).
When I searched for the "Philipp Wirtz" you mentioned, there is more than one on wikitree, so I was asking you for the profile number of the one you are putting forth as another branch to consider.

edit: nevermind ... I see the profile is now mentioned above.
+9 votes
The Connection Finder shows me a mere 100 degrees from Ali, although I bet that long chain has a few very weak links.

As for the concept of the center, I suspect our global tree expands like the universe: isotropically.  Which means the expansion looks the same from every viewpoint.  The center of expansion is everywhere and nowhere.  Think of the skin of a balloon.  [Please note: some doubt was cast in scientific circles upon the isotropic expansion of the universe this year.  Because 2020.]
by Herbert Tardy G2G6 Pilot (652k points)

Well, actually, no, and no. smiley

The global tree does not expand as the universe does, in the sense that the distance between galaxies is increasing with time. Actually the mean distance between profiles is decreasing with time, because of new connections making shortcuts. When I joined WikiTree last year, my ancestors and me were at infinite distance to begin with (read : unconnected). My first (dubious) connection put me at something like 45 degrees from Henry VIII. Following connections have reduced this distance to 23. And of course all distances to other profiles decreased in the same proportion.

See : https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Space:100_Circles#How_is_circles_population_changing_over_time.3F for more details.

And no, the graph is not looking the same from any point. Some are in the "bulk" and others in the outskirts. It shows well when you draw the distribution of distances from a given profile. From everywhere you see the "bulk" of the galaxy, but it can be very close or far away.

Matter is not evenly distributed in the universe, rather it is grouped together in clusters. There are billions of galaies with one billion trillion stars which have a birth and death.

Detailed map of our place in the universe ...


Bernard, I said a few months back that, with time and effort, I believe there will come a day when les français will be connected within 30 degrees to most Wikitreers. Slowly, achingly slowly, the non-Anglophone profiles are increasing on Wikitree, each one providing a connection to many millions of others.

Jessica, thanks for the hopeful words. It gives me reasons to live very very old, to see that day.
Forgive me for being a party pooper, but the statistics I've seen (sorry, I completely forgot where they come from) show that the number of French profiles is in fact increasing more slowly than the number of profiles at large (in percentage that is).

One explanation could be that the bulk of French profiles in WikiTree are either immigrant ancestors or (mostly pre-1500) Aristocrats, and those are pretty much all there by now. Very few French people come in and add their family.

Isabelle, I know, hélas, thanks for crying "Le Roi est nu".devil

But actually, this is completely off-topic here. HA HA.

Oops, sorry yes, completely off-topic. I got 280 before Mr Lazenby got merged, in spite of two first cousins twice removed who emigrated and have fairly good connections. Has the new third furthest profile been found?

Apart from that, fascinating topic... Pity I can't join.
What? The Lazenby got merged and nobody told me ?
Looks like I just did ;-)

And it was merged 57 minutes ago as of this writing. (Now, don't tempt me to go off topic again, please!)
Actually Karen had posted the news, but I had not refreshed the page ...
There is a lot of statistics available at WikiTree+,
for countries among other things.

It may (perhaps?) not be so relevant to this particular challenge. But some of it should be relevant to the general effort of getting a handle on the shape of the Global Tree.
+8 votes
I am 107 degrees from Ali, 97 degrees from Philipp and 78 degrees from Seth making a total of 282.

Queen Victoria is 93 degrees from Ali, 77 degrees from Philipp and 75 degrees from Seth making a total of 245, one less than Henry VIII.
by Samantha Thomson G2G6 Pilot (116k points)
edited by Samantha Thomson
Good work, Samantha!

yes Samantha, bonne pioche! 

So now the question is : can you beat Queen Victoria (and Samantha)?

+7 votes
100 from Ali, 92 from Philipp, and 81 from Seth.
Sum = 273.
by Barry Smith G2G6 Pilot (220k points)
+7 votes
I am 102 from Ali, 91 from Phillip, 74 from Seth. Sum of 267. All three connections run through my Mother's side of my family.
by Darren Kellett G2G6 Pilot (165k points)
+7 votes
So far, I seem to be the closest to Ali at a mere 99 degrees. 93 degrees from Wirz and 79 from Seth. Does anyone care that I am 18 degrees from Henry VIII?
by Lucy Selvaggio-Diaz G2G6 Pilot (544k points)

I do :-)

Your path to Ali goes through Agnes d'Evreux, as does mine. I wonder if anyone has a path to Ali not passing by her.

Sorry, N, but since your profile is private only those on your Trusted List can see this path. Maybe you can give a link starting at the first public profile in this path?
The first 65 links are the same and they they separate into 2 different Carcassonne sons. Agnes is at link #72.

Bernard, my path does not go through Agnes.  At that approximate time, my connection is Robert Toeni.  Assuming, of course, that all 28 steps back to Robert and all 72 from Robert to Ali are correct.

Looking at Ali's paths to myself, Bernard and Herb, the last common profile is Ramón Sunifred at step 70. So we all share a bit after the fork after Borrell Carcassonne in step 65.

So, does any active Wikitreer have an earlier fork?

Yes. One of the profile managers of the Prophet Muhemmed has a path from Ali that forks off after Assad ibn Hassim in step 55.

quote> The first 65 links are the same and they they separate into 2 different Carcassonne sons. Agnes is at link #72.

Above I was talking about back from my father. I have since discovered that back from my mother, I go through Agnes also. So after step #65 I go through 2 different Carcassonne sons.

my new steps from pentagon through my father ...
N Gauthier is 101 Degrees from Ali
N Gauthier is 78 Degrees from Casimiro Martín
N Gauthier is 67 Degrees from Tomáš Kratina
N Gauthier is 64 Degrees from Anna Pool
N Gauthier is 64 Degrees from Cecilia Pool
N Gauthier is 62 Degrees from Elisabetha Pool
N Gauthier is 24 Degrees from Maurice de Berkeley

edit: updated
Since we have 2 lines that come down from [[Carcassonne-2|Bellon or Borrell, "Comte de Carcassonne" de Barcelona]], I have been looking at his profile and it seems that his parents are unsourced. I have seen a few different possible parents cited. I think that 2 counts might be confused together, one born c755 and other c780. Looking for sources to verify.

Good to see someone looking into this. smiley Good luck!

Thank you N!

I just love the way this thread is inspiring connection work and sourcing work on weak points.
I tried adopting an orphan profile but it still won't let me add notes and sources to pre 1500 profiles. So I won't be able to extend the family by adding relatives to such early profiles :(
Adopting doesn't help, that's true. You should be able to add your findings in comments. But of course that doesn't help much either, if there is nobody there to act upon it.

(I'm not pre-1500-badged myself)
I think the recommended way is to find a pre-1500-badged member to partner with.
+7 votes
I can just edge out Darren with 265: 98 from Ali, 91 from Phillipp and 76 from Seth. All links are through the same grandparent. I'm 18 degrees from Henry VIII but I don't see strong overlaps with my closest path to him.
by Suzanne Doig G2G6 Mach 3 (30.6k points)
Suzanne, there is no reason why there should be such overlaps.
No, there isn't - I thought that was an interesting demonstration of the 'outer rim' nature of these people. Many of my connections at 15-30 degrees link through a particular family line, a few generations long, which is part of my shortest connection to Henry VIII.
+7 votes

I am 100 degrees from Ali, and of those, 39 descending or extending from Ali--a shocking number--based on those I checked, are unsourced.  I am 89 degrees from Philip, and again, the quality of the profiles I checked was remarkably poor.  Finally, 77 degrees from Seth, for a total of 266. 

So then I checked my Center Profile in the study, my second great grandmother Adaline Carlton (Carlton-1976).  She is 96 degrees from Ali, 90 degrees from Philip, and 78 degrees from Seth.  Adaline's total is 264, almost no different from my own, and two of the three connections were longer, though only slightly.  Yet I've thought of Adaline as quite well-connected.  She is only six degrees from James Garfield, the 20th President of the United States, and only four degrees from William McKinley, another President.

What conclusions to draw from all this?

by Julie Kelts G2G6 Pilot (452k points)

Julie is obviously begging for seeing emerging here the content of some private exchanges we had about all this. wink

So, here goes :

- About the poor quality of profiles of the Outer Rim : it's no coincidence. If they had been seriously cared of, checked and sourced, they would have certainly either been brought closer, or been disconnected as dubious. As said in the introduction, considering one of those two options would be a good idea.

- Regarding the values, a bit of geometry. Distance as defined by the connection finder is really a distance-in-graph, for which theorems such as triangle inequalities apply. I let as exercise for the reader to prove that for any triangle APS (like Ali, Philipp, Seth), for any point M, the sum of distances s=MA+MP+MS is greater or equal to (AP+PS+SA)/2. 

(165+142+156)/2=231.5, but since s is an integer, s is greater or equal to 232. This minimal value is probably never reached.

You can also prove that the greatest value of s is obtained when M=A, 156+165 = 321

The value of s is a cheap way to assess centrality in the graph, but which does not provide a great precision, and differences of a few units are not really significative, even if it's fun to find out the lowest values. And amazing to find that the two smallest values found so far are for Queen Victoria and Henry VIII. 

There are certainly some underlying reasons linked to the high degree of connectivity of those two profiles. 

Thank you, Bernard!  I still wonder if lopping off a few of those "tails," or who knows how many, will affect the shape of the tree, at least a little.

Yes, it will. Generally, trimming a tree makes it healthier and yielding more fruits the next season. smiley

If you follow a couple of narrow (mostly paternal) lineages back and forth through centuries the endpoint profile will be very peripheral no matter how well sourced.

But when Ali's line starts winding through the House of David and Moorish Spain, there will certainly have been some creative work by medieval genealogists. There is an interesting research note on the profile of the prophet Muhammed - who is not in the path to Ali, but, anyway.

There will probably be others of the kind, like Uthman ibn Abu-Musa, who is not only unsourced but seemingly unsourcable. Ah. If I cut him out, I get the dubious line from the son of Muhammed's daughter, down to Alfonso VI.

I found this source : http://www.thelatinlibrary.com/imperialism/notes/tours.html

on the profile of his wife Lampade d'Aquitaine.

The story on this page has a lot of details, but with no reference to other sources.

Lampade is also known as Lampegia, see https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lampegia (in French)

[edited : All French primary school children (by 1960 at least) used to learn this important episode of Histoire de France,  like : En 732, Charles Martel arrête les Arabes à Poitiers. This epic battle was supposed to mark the end of the Islamo-Arabic expansion towards the North. This way to tell the story is now a bit out of fashion and politically incorrect. smiley

I Googled a bit from the latinlibrary text about the marriage of Uthman and Lampade. It is all over the Internet, but hard to tell where it came from.

Easier to tell where it ended up - cited in Anders Behring Breivik's manifesto.

+7 votes
I am 101 degrees from Ali; 89 degrees from Wirtz; and 81 degrees from Lazenby; for a total of 271.
by Michelle Enke G2G6 Pilot (281k points)
Looking at the generational path, it appears that the meandering path for Ali goes all the way back to the 450s; the path for Wirtz goes back to the 1630s; and the path to Lazenby goes no earlier than his birth year of 1700.

Indeed. For Ali, as answered above to Lucy, his meandering path seems (for every one of us around here at least) to pass through Agnès d'Evreux, who, despite her dates (1041-1087) seems pretty close to us, like 24 degrees from Janis Joplin, (25 from my wife). Which means, even in direct line, a mean generation span of about 40 years.

+6 votes
  • 98 Degrees from Ali
  • 88 Degrees from Phillipp Wirtz
  • 80 Degrees from Seth Lazenby
Total: 266
by Eric Weddington G2G6 Pilot (245k points)
+7 votes

الشريف/ علي المغراوي الحسني is 99 Degrees , Phillipp Wirtz is 88 Degrees, Seth Lazenby is 80 Degrees  = 267

by Jennifer Robins G2G6 Pilot (108k points)
+9 votes
I submitted the Lazenby merges so we can fold them in from the edge of our galaxy. I wonder who will be the next furthest?
by Karen Lowe G2G6 Pilot (141k points)
Thanks for noticing, Karen!

Karen, thanks for that. I must admit I did not even had the idea to search for possible duplicates.blush

When will the merge take place? I'm not very familiar with the process, I suppose we have to wait for the green light of the respective PM? For my defense ... I work generally in tree suburbs barely explored by other Wikitreers, so I rarely stumble on duplicates.

And yes, looking forward for the next triangle summit! 

On my long path from Philipp Wirtz, I found the furthest profile recently created by a very active PM, Jayme Arrington

Jan Mathias  Verkissen is only 20 degrees from Philipp, (and 69 from me). If we could bring this guy closer to the bulk, the rest of the branch would follow. 

One of you knowing Jayme (better than I do) could try to draw her attention towards here?

The merges are already done, so we'll need to find a new profile from the outer rim to replace Seth.

Just learnt from Isabelle (above comment) that the Lazenby merge has been done. Thanks Karen! smiley

Now we have to wait until tomorrow for the Connection Finder data to update to find out the new furthest profile replacing the Lazenby. 

Sorry Karen I missed your message (had to refresh the page). I added a red bold edit at the top of the page. Until tomorrow to see who takes the place of Seth. What a thrill !
Uh oh, should we time the merges to be later in the day so we can enjoy playing before we wacky Connectors start messing up the game?
Or can we see who has the greatest sum between two legs? It's not quite as cool as the triangle.

Yeah, you Connectors are game spoilers.laugh

The one who gets the greatest sum from Ali and Philipp will actually be the next summit of the triangle ...

No, actually I use Sophie Johansdatter  Rantzau who sits halfway between Ali and Philipp (not exactly, because 165 is odd, so it's 82 on one side and 83 on the other), and she was at 85 from Seth and 22 other tips of the same branch. That was before you reshuffle the cards.

The magic query will tell us tomorrow who is the furthest from Sophie ...

Hey Bernard, I just read your message. :) The Verkissen profile was actually one that I created in order to connect a fairly large unconnected branch that someone imported in 2011. It took a lot of time and following rabbit holes to even make that connection. I welcome anyone who wants to help to being that branch in closer, but it's not actually a family branch that I'm overly familiar with. :)

Edit: Just saw your email about a potential additional connection and I'm very excited to look into that later today! Maybe we'll have this branch closer by tomorrow. :)

Welcome to the game, Jayme. smiley

Just saw your second message. So by tomorrow the Verkissen connection should be made through Joseph Hubert who seems to be the grandson of Martinus, the missing link being Franciscus Josephus (source openarch.nl) This will bring back all the branch beyond the Verkissen family by about 30-35 degrees towards the center.

I created and connected all the profiles you mentioned. All of the connections for this branch should look a lot closer tomorrow. :)
Great work, Karen and Jayme!


And this morning we have the new, smaller, Outer Rim triangle which is a pentangle (see last edit at the end of the question description). The diameter of the Galaxy is down from 167 to 156, and Maurice Berkeley has dethroned Henry VIII and Victoria as the most central node, distance 78 from all points of the Rim.

Now the challenge is to bring back (or cut) Ali's branch, which is drawing the center further and further off.

If we continue like this the center will soon be Agnes d'Evreux.

Yes ... I suspect Karen to be on the track to reconnect the Pool branch. 

I'd rather see proposals to reconnect or disconnect Ali's branch for good.wink

+5 votes
192 for me, 99 for Ali, 29 for Seth and 64 for Phillip. I wonder if that is becasuse I have more possible connections than Henry the 8th. My connection to Ali goes through the Tudor line.

I tried to add an unsourced tag to
Ali's profile but could not as his names have spaces.
by Kurt Driver G2G6 Mach 1 (10.4k points)

Kurt, please read the last updates. Seth and Philipp have been reconnected, so of course you beat everyone with the new distances.

The Outer Rim is not today what it was yesterday.smiley

Thanks Bernard.
+7 votes
Just a note on the Arabic profiles I've connected over the last couple of years, I've taken to using the English translation of the first name and last name so that should anyone come across the profile and doesn't have an understanding of the Arabic script then they have an idea who the individual is/was
by Richard Shelley G2G6 Pilot (220k points)
That's indeed a good thing, with the above said caveat about the non unique transliteration. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romanization_of_Arabic#Romanization_standards_and_systems

There is this joke in standardization groups : I love standards, there are so many of them!
+4 votes

Ali 97    Phillip 63    Seth 22     = 182     Maurice  21st ggPa. Now what do I do?..........Maybe figure out what I'm doing here?enlightened 

by John Thompson G2G6 Pilot (156k points)

Maybe read the updates saying that Philipp and Seth are now disqualified, courtesy Karen and Jayme.smiley

Elisabetha 58 degrees.......am I on the right track?

Yes, on the right track but still one step behind. smiley

Elisabetha has also been reconnected by Karen ... 

So we're currently stuck with Ali and the Living Unknown at each end of the Outer Rim, and your 21st ggPa right in the middle. See the last comments up the thread, and stay tuned for new developmments!

I see said the blind man!cheeky

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