Thursday, June 20, 2013

Re-examining My Heritage Family Tree Builder Record Matches

On May 22nd I wrote about the new MyHeritage features, one being Record Matches.  The program used the information in your family tree and searches their various collections of documents to find potential matches.  In my case there were matches in 10 different collections: Find a Grave, Social Security Death Index, Newspaper Archives, WikiTree, 1880, 1900 and 1930 Census, Texas Births 1926-1995, and California Deaths 1940-97.

Today I examined the matches more closely and made a few  observations.  The matches are rated by degree of confidence from 5 star on down.  There is a filter that you can set depending on the degree of confidence you want.  I had set mine to 4 stars or higher.In both the Find a Grave (56) and SS Death Index (50) the matches were all 5 star and in looking them over fairly closely, I considered all of them as valid matches with the people in my tree.  Ironically, in the Newspaper Archives (108) all of the 108 matches were for two people, both of whom lived in small towns and were, obviously, very active in the local community.  The matches were about equally divided between 5 and 4 star and all appeared to be valid.   Unfortunately, they were very distant relatives so the information wasn't of much help to me.  I did note that when I set the filter at the lowest level, 1 star, there were 5092 matches in 67 collections--so they have many more collections than just the 10 that appeared when I set the filter at 4 star and above.

Filter Options

I estimate that almost all of the over 400 record matches in the 10 collections were valid--probably because I had the filter set so high; but still an amazing accomplishment when you really think of it!

I changed the filter to 3 star and above and took another look at the Newspaper Archive.  The articles increased from 108 to 991.  Ironically, as I scanned through I noticed a lot more people were included and suddenly I noticed an article about my uncle, however when I began reading it, the article was a write up about the 1st baseball game I pitched for the University of Colorado, when I was a sophomore.  I had never seen the article before and particularly enjoy it, as it pointed out I pitched 6 1/3 innings of scoreless relief against the University of Missouri.  Unfortunately, when I took over we were behind 3-0 and ended up loosing 3-2.  This find was a pleasant surprise, even if it wasn't a correct match!

The program is very similar to most searches that do matching, they provide side-by-side windows with your tree person's data and their search's matching data.  Any data that is new to that in your tree is highlighted in green as either "New" or "Improved".  You then can click on the arrow between the boxes beside the highlighted data and have it added to your data.   Obviously, if you don't want the data added you simply move on to the examine the next match.  

In moving from collection to collection, you go to the top of the page and click on "Record Matches by Collection" and then click on any of the collections you want to work on next.  

I continue to be very impressed with the new features they have incorporated into MyHeritage Family Tree Builder.  You might want to check it out.

Note:  I have no affiliation with MyHeritage and receive no compensation from them.  The opinions are totally mine.