User Help

Introduction

There are two parts to this site –  an Articles section and a family tree. They are driven by two applications – WordPress for the Articles and TNG for the tree – that have been integrated to provide the complete solution.

Navigating the Articles should needs no explanation.  It’s a blog.

Navigating the tree is also very intuitive but as this is a genealogy  app there will be some features you may not have seen before.  Some of you may also be familiar with the way that the Ancestry.co.uk / .com sites work and may find some of what you see here unfamiliar. This page will help you with the unfamiliar.

Access

The site is compatible with the largest desktop to the smallest smartphone but the bigger the screen the better the experience, especially when viewing charts.

Browsing the content requires no special access but you will not have access to full details of living people. If you find anything wrong  you can leave comments without logging in.

Accessing details of living people or editing information requires registration and you will find a link on the top menu – under Help. Only family members will be granted access.

Finding your way around

There are lots of pages for you to explore and it’s easy to become disoriented. so before you dive deep into the content let’s just deal with how you find your way home if you get lost.  Click the logo at the top of the page and you will be taken straight to the Home Page.

If you find yourself on a page that has no name cloud, don’t panic!  This just means the system had to open a new browser tab to display a page. Clicking the Save button (if there is one) or closing the tab will get you back to a page with the name cloud.

On the left and right of the screen you’ll see two tabs.  Clcik these and menus will appear

The left menu contains Articles navigation – the right menu contains shortcuts into the tree, and searches, login and subscription capabilities.

For a family member, the best place to start is by searching for your own name – there’s a place to do that at the top of the right flyout menu. Do that and then look for these menus:

Then just follow your instincts.  Remember, if you get lost, just click on the name cloud, top left.

There are four pulldown menus which provide links to other tree related functions. On This Day is a ‘fun’ item that let’s you take  a glimpse into the past from a different perspective.

To the right of those menus there are four more

Feel free to explore these at your leisure.  Some of these have not been populated yet but they will all help you gain familiarity with the system.

Bookmarking pages in your browser is a common practice and you can do that with pages from Our Family Tree.  But you can do something very similar in the Family Tree software too.  It’s a really useful facility if you need to keep returning to a key individual in your ancestry and it’s very easy to use.  Just bear in mind the bookmark is specific to the computer you create it on, it won’t follow you from device to device.

 

The Charts

This wouldn’t be a family history web site if it didn’t have charts.  Let’s take a look at the different types available, concentrating on the graphical charts. (The text based charts are for specialist purposes and to be honest they are a bit ‘dry’.)

If you are not already in a chart view you can get there in one click from a person’s page by choosing the chart type:

Ancestors Charts

These start with a named individual and proceed backwards through the generations.

Descendants Charts

These start with a named individual and proceed forwards through the generations.  Note: If you are not logged in you will not see full details of Living Individuals.

Once you have chosen a basic chart type you will see different variations on the row beneath:

Read on for a brief view of each of the graphical chart types

Ancestor – Standard (Horizontal)

Ancestor – Vertical

As the name implies this view is rotated 90° – but it differs in other ways:

  1. it doesn’t have the ability to progress up and down through the generations, or skip to another track.
  2. It doesn’t show an individual’s summary on mouse over.

Technical Note for TNG Admins browsing this site:- The presence of people portraits in this view is dependent on  TNG Mod – “Verticalchart_Photos” 

Ancestor – Compact

This one allows you to see more generations per screen.

Ancestor – Box

Allows you to visualise the tree while seeing the summary information for each individual.  It needs more screen space than the other types.

Ancestor – Fan

This is a relatively new chart form but is a great way to visualise the track of each line of ancestors.

Descendant – Standard (Horizontal)

(There is no vertical version)

Descendant – Compact

You can calculate the relationship between any two individuals in the tree.  The method is described in this post.

 

How can I help?

Most of us know our grandparents, parents, siblings and children.  We know their birthdays and have pictures of them.

What we ask is that you share this information.  If we we all do this, then our family tree will be much more complete and rewarding.

To add or correct information on your immediate family, use the Suggest tab (A) or Contact Us option (B) in the Info pull down menu. To submit, update or change pictures, use the Submit Photo/Doc Tab (C).

We are always looking for  new editors to to take on or share responsibility for a branch of a tree.  If you want to volunteer please use either of the Contact options described above or the one that follows this section.

 

Paul Barrett

Contact

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