Who Do You Think You Are Live 2015

Just wanted to post a quick update from Birmingham, where the 2015 Who Do You Think You Are Live show is being held. It has been a great first two days, with the Findmypast stand very busy. In fact the first day was so busy, a few of us didn’t even get a chance to take a break during the whole day.


It is great to see so many people turning out and with such enthusiasm despite everyone having brick walls to break down. We, and I mean the family history community, may not be able to solve all the puzzles that are coming our way, but we’re certainly having fun trying. It’s really the first time I’ve had a chance to demonstrate the power of the tree and hints together, and show how to ignore search and let the tree do the searching for you.

I’ve had the chance to present my Introduction to the Findmypast Family Tree a couple of times so far, and looking forward to the final presentation tomorrow. I’m afraid it’s not ground breaking genealogy comedy like that provided by Tony Robinson, but it will give you a very good insight into the Family Tree tool we now have available on Findmypast. And I’ve got to introduce the new release of Hints which includes Census records from all over the UK, Ireland and America.

Today I managed to escape the stand for a couple of walkabouts, taking the opportunity to explore some of the other amazing products and services that are on offer to the family historian, and I will blog about some of these in the future.

But for now, with one more long day to go, I need a little rest.

I haven’t forgotten about the questions that came up from the webinar (which I will link to as soon as it is publicly available), and I will start to blog them next week, along with a few repeated requests from visitors to the stand, such as how to export your GEDCOM from other websites, how to upload media to the tree and what is the security on the tree.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, Phil


Thank you to all attendees at WDYTYA 2014

Two weeks ago I presented my first ever talk, and the following day I repeated it. It possibly wasn’t the most exciting, stimulating talk at Who Do You Think You Are Live at Olympia 2014, nor did I recall some fantastic or amazing journey through my family history. But I would sincerely like to thank all the congregation of the “Parish Church of St Findus-in-the-Past” who attended my whistle stop tour of the new findmypast family tree. I had 45 minutes, and 81 slides to cover, so it was quick!

st findus in the past

My aim was to provide an overview of the new tree, with plenty of screenshots, to show the growth of the new tree, and demonstrate how far the feature set has been extended over the last 6 months, and what will soon be released to the findmypast UK user base.

I literally started at the beginning with an explanation of creating a tree, the tree settings available now in terms of privacy and control, and the plans for the future. We then covered adding a person, extending the detail, adding relations, attaching media, selecting profiles, lists, etc.

At the end, I briefly showed the Ming Dynasty Tree one of my colleagues who originates from China has started, to demonstrate how we handle Chinese characters and other character sets. This will be evolving further.

But amazing, even though I prepared my presentation only a few days beforehand, since we are rolling out improvements so fast, it was already out of date in a couple of places!


I also had to throw in a few quick mentions for the findmypast iPhone App called Capture which will soon be released that offers users some nice features such as quick photo, audio and note upload to a person profile, direct to your trees online. It should also be available on Android too! As I told my attentive congregation, this would surely be a great tool to have at a wedding or family gathering. Or even a funeral. At my own grandmother’s funeral a couple of years ago, I would have loved to have collected an audio comment from her friends and family (including her 96 year old elder brother) about their favourite memory of my gran.

In the end, despite my incredible nerves before both presentations, I thoroughly enjoyed doing them, and very relieved to see that they seem to have gone down so well. Apparently, the findmypast team were quite busy after both with questions along the lines of “when can I start using the new tree?”. Very soon I am told.

In addition to the two presentations, I was quite busy Thursday and Friday, helping out as always on the Genes Reunited stand. Well to be honest, the only rest I got was when I did my presentations, though I’m not complaining. I love helping people track down the missing records, lost relatives or just solving the issues they’re having with the site.

genes reunited


I thoroughly enjoyed chatting to one South African born, British based gentleman who used to frequent my great-grand uncles hotel near Durban as mentioned in a previous blog post: http://www.genesreunited.co.uk/blog/phil-moir/archive/2011/7/30/henry-turnbulls-voyage-to-south-africa-in-1904. We were going to chat more, but I’ve lost you email. Please do get in touch with me via this blog.

And I can’t not mention the wonderful company I enjoyed at the findmypast dinner on Thursday night along with many members of the Society of Genealogists, including the members of the Hampshire Genealogy Society. It was a real pleasure sitting with you all, and of course, for letting me have the spare chocolate pudding!


Who Do You Think You Are Live 2014, Olympia, London

For those attending the Who Do You Think You Are Live show at Olympia this week, I will be presenting at the findmypast stand, one session on Thursday at 1:15pm and on Friday at 4:15pm, talks on “How to get the most out of the new findmypast family tree”. I look forward to having the chance to show off the new tree, respond to any questions and hear any suggestions. I will be present on the Genes Reunited stand for the rest of both those days, so if you miss the opportunity to catch my presentation, but still want to chat, then feel free to track me down there.

who do you think you are 2014