Showing posts with label app. Show all posts
Showing posts with label app. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Phone App Tells Two People How They Are Related

satellite image of Iceland
In Iceland, three software engineering students have written a smartphone app that can immediately tell two people how they are related.  Iceland is probably the only country where such a program could be written, at least for now, because most people descend from the 9th-century Vikings who settled the island, and therefore are distantly related (at least) to each other.

The app is based on the Islendingabok ("Book of Icelanders"), an online database of residents and their family trees that goes back 1,200 years.  The database was created using information from censuses, church records, family records, and other sources.  The company that developed it claims it includes 95% of all Icelanders who have lived in the past 300 years.  The database is available to any Icelandic citizen or resident; the app makes the database accessible from a smartphone.  When two people with the app "bump" their phones, the app tells them their family connection.  There's an article about the app at Huffington Post.

I suppose if we ever get to the point where everyone's family tree is online and connected (pretty much what the LDS Church is aiming for with the new Family Tree) non-Icelanders will be able to do the same thing.  That's probably a long way off for the rest of us, though.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Contest for Premium Subscription to Saving Memories Forever

First, what is Saving Memories Forever?

It's an Internet-based service that allows people to record, share, and save family stories.  It uses an iPhone app, and the recording and uploading processes are easy to use.  The company's site is; you can find the app on iTunes listed as Saving Memories Forever.  There's a demo on the Saving Memories Forever home page that you can try out.

Recordings are focused stories with short (5-10 minute) respones.  They are organized on the site by question and date and are designed to be easy to retrieve and share.  They are maintained in a secure location and remain private.  The premium service allows you to have unlimited stories and storytellers, a search-by-tag feature, and the ability to upload photographs and documents such as recipes.

So what's the contest?

I have a one-year premium subscription to give away to one of my readers.  I want to know what the farthest is that you've gone to get original data for your research.  This could be something like obtaining records from a repository, taking a photo of a tombstone, or visiting a town named for a family member.  To enter, reply to this post with a short description of your journey, including both endpoints of the trip.  If you wish to keep any specific information private, please let me know in the reply so the post can be edited before it is made public.  The deadline is November 14, 2012.  Distance will be judged by Google Maps.  I will make the final decision.

I'm looking forward to some good stories!