SOME TIPS IN MAKING YOUR ON LINE GENEALOGICAL EXPERIENCE
MORE PRODUCTIVE AND EASY
INCLUDING URL’s IN EMAILS
When responding to some on line query or posting – or in referencing to someone else some item you saw on line – do them the favor of including the “url” (the web address) of the page you are referring to. Don’t just assume they know what you are talking about. Save them time and frustration and just include the url with your email – then they can click on it and instantly see what you are referring to. Many people seem to not quite know how to do this, But its extremely easy and part of real Internet etiquette. If you simply single click the browser address field (where you see the website address) – usually with one click the entire web address will be auto-selected – and then you can simply right click the same field – and select COPY. And then go to the body of your email – and right luck PASTE and there you have it.
Know the difference between REPLY and REPLY ALL - -and CC(copy), BCC(blind copy) and TO.
One of my pet peeves is when you get an email from some friend who copies the world – (without blind copying) and asks for feedback or something. And then everyone responding with a REPLY ALL – instead of a REPLY and you getting inundated with a bunch of meaningless emails. Like when your office coworker asks the entire group at work – who is “in” for the office lotto tickets. And then you get 20-30 emails of people saying “I am in”. Think about who the recipient of your email message is – and ensure that ONLY they are getting the email. (Don’t REPLY ALL – if your message is only for the sender – and not all the people they copied)
Remember PLEASE and THANK YOU. This is one that I honestly need to work more on. Remember to be courteous when exchanging emails (especially with new contacts) and be aware that email is totally void of tone, volume, body language etc –and things like sarcasm, jokes, double meaning – can often cause the recipient to perceive a “between the lines” message totally polar opposite of the intention.
DOWNLOADING FROM THE WEB
Copies of the vast majority of what you see on line can easily be downloaded to your local computer. One can right click on most images/photos to see a “”save as” option that allows you to download the image to your computer. Most pages you visit can also be “captured” in their entirety – simply by doing a page print – and sending the output to a pdf generating utility instead of to the printer. Many of you will have a computer/printer setup where that is already an option. Or you may look into programs like primopdf.
When you download items to your computer – do it in an organized fashion. Many people will download items to the desktop to make them easy to find (and that does have its advantages) - - but you quickly find yourself with a desktop cluttered with junk.
Organize folders on your computer that you can move items to and keep things organized.
(it can even be a subfolder of your desktop)
ZOOMING IN /OUT
Some time you will want to zoom in or zoom out of something you seen in your web browsing. (you are looking at a photo and you want to see more detail as an example)
Most browsers use the same key strokes to allow for this. With one finger hold down the CTRL key and with another tap the “+” or “-“ (plus or minus sign) key.
SHORT CUT KEYS
You can save your self a lot of time and frustration by learning various short cut key strokes. Many of you know you can select, right click, copy and paste. You can do the same with key board short cuts - - such as CTRL-A (select all), CNTRL-C (copy), CNTRL V (paste). Get to know the basic short cut keys – and save yourself time and frustration.
Most of us use email these days to exchange genealogical information – and that’s wonderful. BUT realize – you may not always have that email. If its an employment email – once you change jobs you will probably never be able to regain access – and in the flurry of employment change – maybe not have the time to download what you want to keep. You have to assume you will eventually lose your email – and you really should come up with some solution to extract copies of important items. Again a pdf utility comes in very handy – couple with archiving to a flash drive or other external device.
BACKUP-BUCKUP-BAKCUP!!!! (AND THEN TEST)
Nothing as sickening as losing 20 years worth of research!