Family History Software vs. Family Tree Software
I have talked much about the difference between family history software and family tree software. One major difference is that the family history programs are built to allow for more story telling and documentation whereas family tree makers consist mainly of charts and data points such as names and dates. Digital family history tools let you organize and preserve many media forms such as video, audio, photos, as well as text. Take for example, the following journal type entries (in italics). Can you imagine how photographs and videos could be intertwined to paint a multimedia family story?
I am so grateful that my husband has a job in a tough economy. A year ago we had to move to a new state to begin a new job.
You can imagine a family photo of them next to a moving truck, or a short video clip of some highlight of the road trip. Family history software can make this easy to assemble.
We had a home that we tried to sell. We were underwater on the mortgage and would either lose money on the sale or have to do a short sale. I began to look at the possibility of renting out our home. We had two choices. The first was to hire a property management company to find a suitable renter or to manage our own property. We decided to try this on our own. The main reason being that we were not going to be able to recoup any additional money in rent to cover the cost of what we owed on the mortgage.
We had other homes in the neighborhood and they were renting for two hundred dollars less than our house payment. So it was not a logical choice for us to pay someone to manage our property when we were putting up additional money toward the mortgage payment. This would not be a profitable decision but one that we hoped to be able to keep our home if we decided to return to live. We listed our home in the local Craigslist for our area or local news channel web site as it is called in our area.
Would it be neat as an artifact in family history software to see a screen image of the actual ad used by the family?
This did not cost us in advertising and I would be able to screen the people who wanted to look at our home. This process took us two months. I had four families come and look at the home. Two of the four took applications which I copied from the internet. I took a security deposit from the family that signed a lease agreement of 12 months. The next step began a legal agreement for them to sign that protected our our property as well as them should damage or fire occur. I had to change our insurance policy to a dwelling fire to cover the property while we were away. At the same time we found a home to rent for the 12 month duration.
Of course, this would be the natural time to display the family out in front of their new home. Some family history software programs can allow for connecting photos with gps coordinates. Think about the children in this family being able, years later as adults themselves with children, to plug in the coordinates into something like google maps to see the very home and neighborhood where they spent those years as a family? Or better yet, plugging the coordinated into a Garmen-like device and be able to actually drive there?
We copied this agreement and had our renters sign the same one. During the 12 months that we managed our home we had several small items that we had to take care of. The heating element in the stove burnt out. The kitchen vertical blinds needed a few replaced. The sprinklers needed adjusting and the shower handle broke in the master bathroom. Because we were in another state we had to figure out how we would be able to fix the problems. We had family nearby that we had pick up the needed items and install or replace for us. We paid them for the time it took. During the summer months we used vacation time to visit as well as fix the sprinklers. We were very fortunate to have been able to find a great family who was careful in the use of our home. They reported problems to us and we were able to fix them quickly.
A powerful family history slideshow or movie could have the person talk in recorded audio about their feelings regarding this family who rented from the person, as it clearly was an important and likely emotional issue.
The tenants paid their rent on time each month. They also cleaned the carpeting upon vacating as we had listed in our agreement. Happily a new job came along and we were able to return to our home after 13 months away. It was easy to fix cosmetic issues and we had a great experience in our first attempt of renting out our home.
A robust family history software package would include perspectives from the children as to their feelings and experience during such a trying time.
Here is the second journal style entry:
I am not very inclined to want to exercise. I suppose it seems boring to me or I have not had the results I have wanted. So when I discovered an exercise program for the Nintendo Wii I decided to try it out. I didn’t want to pay out the $50 price tag and so I looked in my local paper for deals and was able to pick up a used copy that was gathering dust in somebody’s closet. $15 was a much better price for a game that I wanted to try out. I am determined to give it a try for the next 30 days. I am in my mid thirties and would love to slim down. It will be great if I can see some results from this exercise game. In the past I have gone to my local track and walked a few days a week with my son in the stroller. Usually after the first 10 minutes my child would be complaining and It would be tough to work out why trying to keep my child happy too. This time around it is wintertime and I have limited access to transportation and so the walking routine is a bit difficult to do. I am looking forward to exercising in the comfort of my own home and I won’t have a bored child to keep entertained while I do it.
A lot of photos could be used here, showing the family or children out in snowy weather or of them playing together on the entertainment system.
I have also tried to exercise with a treadmill. This has not worked so well for me. I have lots of little children and they always want to try it too and I worry that one of their little hands could get hurt or that they would try it out when I am not there. It was also tough to stay motivated looking at a blank wall or trying to hear the tv over a very loud motor. In the last home I lived in it was difficult to store or move the treadmill around in between using it. I have found that for me I enjoy walking outdoors much better. I enjoy a simple way to exercise and the treadmill just didn’t cut it for me.
My children are now a bit older and so I won’t have the same difficulties I have had in the past. Being able to have the freedom from strollers and children this time around will be refreshing and new for me as I begin an exercise program. I am looking forward to a more healthful energetic me.
Imagine what this might mean for grandchildren and their children to be able to read and see such accounts from their mother or grandmother who lived during the time of such things as the Wii and how she protected and cared for her children. What will family history software and family tree software be like then?