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Louis Kessler’s Behold Blog » Archive for 2007

Blog Building - Sun, 30 Dec 2007

I was having so much fun taking Wordpress and customizing it to match my new website, that my wife had to get up and convince me to come to bed at 3 a.m. last night. Wordpress is really well designed. You can customize just about everything, and I love the way its implemented. There is a great tutorial on How ...

The Joys(?) of Open Source Software - Thu, 27 Dec 2007

I thought it would be good to install the same packages on my own computer that I'll have on my new website. That way, I could experiment and set up the site the way I wanted without doing it live. So off I went, merrily downloading the scripting language PHP, the database MySQL, the database manager ...

CSS is so Frustrating - Sat, 22 Dec 2007

Writing webpages in HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) was simple. You learned a few tags and use a simple text-based HTML editor to create it. But then, along came the "experts" who said you have to split off the content from the styling. The content goes into the HTML file and the styling goes into the CSS ...

It’s a Big Adventure… - Tue, 18 Dec 2007

One thing leads to another, and it now seems I've almost got everything properly planned, and I just have to do it! This really is the best time to update my site and set everything up better, before I get to Beta. The move to the new webhost is required, and I'll have to test that everything works the ...

Google Groups for the Behold Forum??? - Thu, 13 Dec 2007

Google Groups might be a viable alternative to using a Forum software on my site for Behold Genealogy user discussions. There are several good reasons I see: Gives you all the features of Google Groups. If you already use Google Groups for other newsgroups, it makes it very convenient for you. Allows ...

Coming Soon: A New Home for Behold - Sun, 9 Dec 2007

I may be a good programmer and good at designing standard user interfaces. But I'm definitely NOT a designer of nice looking websites. Many people have commented, not so positively, on my selection of colors and style for both my personal site at www.lkessler.com and my Behold pages. Through a close ...

Family Research Web Page Generated by Behold - Mon, 3 Dec 2007

It took about 20 hours of my time to go through 6 years of my correspondence with my 6 discovered relatives on my Focsaner side from Romania, and custom build a GEDCOM file using Behold as my guiding tool. This was a great dry run of what entering data in Behold will be like, except that I couldn't enter the ...

Getting Ready to Display Photos - Mon, 26 Nov 2007

My organization of my Romanian family is going to take about a week to complete. I plan to put the resulting Behold-produced page on my website so that my cousins and our researcher in Romania can all have access to the most up-to-date info at all times. Then, as new information comes in, I'll add it to the ...

Two Problems in Two Days - Wed, 21 Nov 2007

So first I was told that Behold was not detecting the new version when you "Check Online for New Version". What had happened was I went from version 0.98.9d to 0.98.9.5. I changed from the letter suffix to the point number for Vista compatibility. Version 0.98.9d detects the new version okay, but ...

Version 0.98.9.5 alpha - Mon, 19 Nov 2007

At last, this version is released! There are a few new things, a number of improvements, and many bug fixes including a few important bugs squashed related to problems customizing tags. Visually, the most significant difference is the elimination of the log file with that data being added into the File ...

My Family Tree on this USB - Thu, 15 Nov 2007

I had a customized 2 GB USB pen made for me. It arrived today, complete with the "image" I developed to put on it. Since Behold will very soon become a portable app, this is a cute way of promoting that ability, and I've now added that pic to Behold's home page beside the Portable Application item. My ...

A Fun Little Test - Wed, 14 Nov 2007

I tried my GEDCOM fragment on several programs. This is what happened: Legacy 6.0: First warned there's no HEAD section. Then that there's no TRLR. Then asked if it should try to load anyway. After it tried, nothing was loaded. RootsMagic 3.2.4 trial version: No warning and it only loaded 1 person. ...

Reading Partial or Incomplete Files - Mon, 12 Nov 2007

Sometimes I'm amazed how one thing can lead to something unexpected. All I wanted to do was allow Behold to attempt to process "illegal" GEDCOM files. I wanted it to process a GEDCOM if there wasn't a header, had missing sources, or maybe was corrupted in some places. So I went to the extreme and took a ...

Two Types of Problems - Sun, 11 Nov 2007

The last thing to do before I issue the next release is to eliminate the log file and move the messages that were reported in the log file into the File Information section of the Everything Report. In doing so, I am revisiting all the error and warning messages that Behold produced. I'm rewriting them and ...

Displaying Photos in the Everything Report - Tue, 6 Nov 2007

As I use Behold to build my HTML webpage for my family research, I realize I will have to include thumbnails of photos. Up until today, I hadn't thought of a good way to do that. GEDCOM files can specify IMG tags, which give the location of an image on the local computer. But TRichview, which I'm using as the ...

The Data Entry Chore - Sat, 3 Nov 2007

Do you like entering all your data into your Genealogy Program? Do you find it easy, or is it a chore? I believe it should be so easy a task that you are encouraged to do it every time you get new info. Don't wait. Get it in now! Unfortunately, I also believe the forms-based data entry that comes with all ...

What Every Genealogist Looks Forward To - Tue, 30 Oct 2007

Exciting times for any genealogist are defined as what I'm about to be going through very soon. On one of the 9 ancestral lines I've descended from, this one tracing back to Romania, I soon may be working with a researcher in Romania to "get the goods" for me. Early indications look like there may be a lot of ...

Retooled and Ready To Go - Wed, 24 Oct 2007

Last night I went through my two big binders of Behold ToDo stuff. I moved everything that could wait until after Version 2 editing, to the second binder. Then I went through Behold's Future Plans page did the same, moving those tasks to a post Version 2 area. What this means is a new schedule and new goal. ...

A More Direct Path! - Tue, 23 Oct 2007

The Getting Real book really got me thinking. For their online applications, their first goal is to get their core functionality working and make it available ASAP. Other features and enhancements can be added later. With Behold, I managed to get the alpha up and available over two years ago. I've been ...

Keeping It Simple - Sun, 21 Oct 2007

One of the difficult parts about programming is to figure out how to add features but still keep the program simple and intuitive. Every feature added, by definition, makes a program more complex. In the extreme, you get what's called "feature bloat". Even if you only have simple features but, say, 100 of them, ...

Blog Titles, Cool Software - Mon, 15 Oct 2007

For years I've only put the date as the title of each of my blog entries. A bit boring, wouldn't you say? The date doesn't do much to help figure out what the post is about. So from now on I've decided to put something to better identify each Blog post. Here's a site I never saw before. Put up by Intel, it's ...

Saturday, October 13, 2007 - Sat, 13 Oct 2007

Dick Eastman yesterday wrote an interesting article titled "PAF on a stick". You have to be a Plus subscriber to see the whole article, but basically Dick was talking about using a Jump/USB/Pen drive (it has many names) to carry, not only your genealogy data, but also your genealogy program around with you. ...

Sunday, October 7, 2007 - Sun, 7 Oct 2007

I surprised myself. After a few more fixes in attempting to merge the display algorithms, I realized that my Friday arguments weren't beneficial enough to go through that right now. So I left the input improvements and backed out of my data structure changes. Now back towards getting done what's needed to get ...

Friday, October 5, 2007 - Fri, 5 Oct 2007

The retooling the two parts of Behold was tricky, but its going well. Moving the CONC tag to the input stage led to a few other simplifications. My large test file of 33,000 people that I use for timings takes about 35 seconds. This improvement actually cut a half a second off that. But changing the ...

Tuesday, October 2, 2007 - Tue, 2 Oct 2007

Time for a bit of an interlude. There are a few things I found that don't work exactly right. Any hidden items need the sources they contain to be hidden as well. Hidden items must be numbered differently. References to notes are not being displayed. Concatenated lines used for titles of sources and citations ...

Friday, September 28, 2007 - Fri, 28 Sep 2007

Sam saw my post from yesterday. He asked: "Why are the reports separate?" He suggested that instead of using the Log File, I display the warning messages in the Everything Report with the related data. For printing, Behold can have a toolbar item to toggle them on and off. He said this would eliminate the need ...

Thursday, September 27, 2007 - Thu, 27 Sep 2007

Next on my To Do list was to redo the error messages. The idea was that I was going to list each message every time it happened along with the GEDCOM line it happened at. But what I have already done was nicely organize the messages so that (in most cases) each message is listed only once along with a list of ...

Tuesday, September 25, 2007 - Tue, 25 Sep 2007

Finally! There are now bookmarks for the spouse and the family information. The bookmarks now internally use the GEDCOM ID number rather than the Behold generated number. The hyperlinks and Forward/Backward functions seem to work as they should. The forward/backward locations will deactivate if they cease to ...

Sunday, September 23, 2007 - Sun, 23 Sep 2007

Fixing the bookmarks was slightly more complicated than I expected. I had been using the generated ID, eg. FAM-43 as the bookmark. But I saw that was wrong, since those IDs are specific to the run, and reorganizing may lose them or they might point to incorrect places. So I changed this to use the ID from ...

Monday, September 10, 2007 - Mon, 10 Sep 2007

There are "bookmarks" in Behold at every horizontal line, corresponding to every pair of people. I set it up that way when ID numbers had more relevance several versions ago. But now if you click on a hyperlink to someone, you will go to the first person of the pair, and not necessarily to the person you ...

Thursday, September 6, 2007 - Thu, 6 Sep 2007

I'm back from the wedding in Vancouver. A wedding is like a vacation for a genealogist. Time to catch up on family happenings in a joyous and friendly atmosphere. On my computer, there's only 250 e-mails to respond to and a week's worth of RSS feeds to read. I've also got 2.5 GB of trip pictures and videos ...

Tuesday, August 28, 2007 - Tue, 28 Aug 2007

I apologise. Last night when I used my e-mailing program to send out the Behold News, the program timed out twice. Each time I had to restart it and I had never done that before. It was supposed to start up where it left off, but I found that 82 people ended up getting two of my mailings. That wasn't intended ...

Monday, August 27, 2007 - Version 0.98.9d alpha - Mon, 27 Aug 2007

Finally, got through the merge from and merge into functions of the new Report options page. Following that, I hurried through the rest of the Tutorial in the help file. It may not be perfect right now, but it will get polished over time. So what was going to be just adding the last set of features before ...

Wednesday, August 22, 2007 - Wed, 22 Aug 2007

One of my programming dreams from long ago has finally come true. When I was a kid, I was really interested in Astronomy. During High School when I experimented with programming, one of the things I wanted to do was enter all the star locations, distances, and brightnesses into a data file and program the view ...

Sunday, August 19, 2007 - Sun, 19 Aug 2007

Setting up the Options page was easy. But setting it up to make it obvious, user friendly, and easy to use was another matter. I really didn't want to get into adding options until after Version 1.0 was released, but the separation of GEDCOM tags from "other stuff" is necessary right now. I spent the last ...

Sunday, August 12, 2007 - Sun, 12 Aug 2007

Now I'm finally getting around to shape Behold into its initial form! After slimming down the numbering, I've gone after the Tags page. I had all these extra codes (a slash or @ sign) to indicate the type of Tag. After several comments that this is confusing, I've now reworked the display of tags so that ...

Tuesday, August 7, 2007 - Tue, 7 Aug 2007

Removing all that stuff from the Numbering Page only took a day. Following that, I added a one-button click to toggle between displaying just your selected tags, and displaying all the tags from the GEDCOM file. Normally, you'll want to only display what you consider to be the relevant data. But this toggling ...

Sunday, August 5, 2007 - Sun, 5 Aug 2007

While Jennifer Jackson was reviewing Behold, she posed a question to me about my Surname Organize function. The female surnames were melded into the male surnames if the female did not have a father listed. That comment prompted me to look in more detail at what Surname Organize was doing. The original idea ...

Wednesday, August 1, 2007 - Wed, 1 Aug 2007

Solution found! The files Tamura and I were using were indeed different. Thank you to all the people who did the test and e-mailed the results to me. You helped us figure out what it was.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007 - Tue, 31 Jul 2007

A very strange bug in Behold was found by Tamura. The problem is I have not been able to reproduce it on 5 different machines. We even both ran it in Microsoft Virtual PC with the same Window XP footprint, but still get different results. If any of you with Behold are reading this, I'd appreciate your help. ...

Thursday, July 26, 2007 - Thu, 26 Jul 2007

While producing the screen shots for the new Help file, I noticed that the forward/back history lists were not displaying correctly. The fix was not as easy as I expected and requires a bit of data structure change. I've been working on this for the last week (excluding Harry Potter reading time) and I'm ...

Sunday, July 22, 2007 - Sun, 22 Jul 2007

We picked up our two copies of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows about 45 hours ago, at 3 minutes after midnight. My younger daughter finished reading it last night at 11:15 p.m. I just finished it about an hour ago. It's a terrific series. J.K. Rowling deserves the highest honours and all the fortune that ...

Friday, July 20, 2007 - Fri, 20 Jul 2007

Here's a way I used Behold today: At the Jewish Resources page of the LDS site, they've added the Knowles Collection with info on thousands of people from the British Isles. They provide that data as a download, either for PAF or as a GEDCOM. I loaded the GEDCOM into Behold. There are 10,831 people. Behold ...

Wednesday, July 18, 2007 - Wed, 18 Jul 2007

Jennifer Jackson, who writes the Jacksbox4you Genealogy Blog, just posted a very nice review of Behold. In fact this is Behold's very first independent review. Up to now, I haven't been actively pursuing publicity for Behold. I have just quietly been working on it, trying to get it past alpha into beta. I've ...

Monday, July 9, 2007 - Mon, 9 Jul 2007

I've been finding a lot of bothersome bugs over the last few months in Behold. The most annoying thing about many of them is that I was sure the code was at one time working. But somehow the bug would be introduced at a new version - and that had a lot to do, I guess, with the major changes to the data ...

Tuesday, July 3, 2007 - Tue, 3 Jul 2007

The only thing holding off this release of Behold is finishing the conversion of the Tutorial in the Help file. I got bogged down a bit, as I tried to update it as I went along. Then I realized that some of it isn't really a "tutorial" to direct you step by step but is more of a hybrid-help thing. I sat around ...

Wednesday, June 20, 2007 - Wed, 20 Jun 2007

I was merrily working away on converting the Help file to CHM format, and since I have to redo all the graphics, I thought I might as well update the Tutorial. While doing that, I pondered a few visual features of the Everything Report that have been bothering me. I don't know why I set the default to be to ...

Monday, June 18, 2007 - Mon, 18 Jun 2007

I've reached my limit. Now I understand why there are so few Certified for Windows Vista programs out there. The most important thing needed is to add a resource file to my Behold.exe file called a Manifest file. It is read by Windows Vista to see what level of User Rights the program requires. The specs say ...

Sunday, June 17, 2007 - Sun, 17 Jun 2007

When I tried to hook up the new Help file to Behold, I found that the Help tools in the version of Delphi I have do not work with the CHM help format. I would have to upgrade to the latest version of Delphi, and I am not ready to do that yet. So I needed to look for a workaround. EC Software, who produce Help ...

Thursday, June 14, 2007 - Thu, 14 Jun 2007

I found out one of the reasons why Behold's setup program worked without problems in Windows Vista. The very strange reason is that the name of the setup program is: "behold-setup.exe". The name contains the word "setup" so Vista assumes its a setup program and lets it do its job in the old Windows XP way. ...

Tuesday, June 12, 2007 - Tue, 12 Jun 2007

I'm halfway through converting the Help file to CHM. This should be done by the weekend. I've rewritten a few pages as well. I think I like the new look of it. I'll be calling it the User Guide, and I'll be putting it up on Behold's website as well. As it turns out, I will have to pay $99 to Verisign simply ...

Saturday, June 9, 2007 - Sat, 9 Jun 2007

Yes, Dr.Explain is a keeper. I purchased it. Over the next few days, I'll use it to restructure the information currently in the Behold Help file and recreate it in Compiled HTML format. Next I signed up with Microsoft to be a Microsoft Partner, so I could apply for the Certified for Windows Vista Logo. I ...

Tuesday, June 5, 2007 - Tue, 5 Jun 2007

The good news is that Behold seems to work fine under Vista. It takes about as long to run, and may actually use about 5% less memory than under XP. It loads Notepad okay (for viewing GEDCOM and log files), and Web Update works perfectly. I still have to try a clean install and see if Operating System calls ...

Monday, June 4, 2007 - Mon, 4 Jun 2007

It took almost all day to get most of everything working on Vista. After the device drivers were installed (I had to do it again in the morning because it stopped when there was one it couldn't install), then it was up to trying things out and seeing what didn't work. It wouldn't install the touchpad ...

Sunday, June 3, 2007 - Sun, 3 Jun 2007

Now on to the Vista upgrade. One first word of advice. Don't start it at 10 p.m. like I did if you want to get to sleep early. My HP Upgrade came with 2 DVDs. One was an HP Upgrade Utility which you're supposed to run first and last, and the other is the Windows Vista disk. The instructions said at the top: ...

Saturday, June 2, 2007 - Version 0.98.9c alpha - Sat, 2 Jun 2007

Instant Organize would take "forever" if you did it on someone with no spouse or children. It was a true infinite loop. This one had to be fixed, so I've put up a new point version. Back to upgrading my wife's laptop from XP to Vista? Do you know what the first step should be? It's to backup all your data. ...

Thursday, May 31, 2007 - Version 0.98.9b alpha - Thu, 31 May 2007

A few important bugs needed to be fixed, and so this second interim version is now available. Next on the agenda will be doing what's necessary to ensure Behold meets Microsoft Vista standards. But before that, I'll be going through the upgrade experience - upgrading my wife's laptop from Windows XP to ...

Sunday, May 27, 2007 - Sun, 27 May 2007

It didn't take that long. About an hour to make the changes. Then two more to run it through a number of GEDCOMs and fix the parts that didn't work for some of them. I discovered an interesting program called Family.Show. It is actually a demo of new technology that Microsoft created for Windows Vista. It ...

Saturday, May 26, 2007 - Sat, 26 May 2007

Took four days off for a brief family get-away. It's been so long, I don't remember the last time I've had four days away from the computer! But back to Behold, and I've still got a few things left to get this point update out. When I added multiple AutoOrg families for a single GEDCOM, I found I had to mark ...

Saturday, May 19, 2007 - Sat, 19 May 2007

Not nice. A few more bugs, including one that ignores the Registration code and prevents it from being copied into the About box if you manually bring up the About box after the program has started. This will have to be fixed right away, so I'll be releasing 0.98.9b in a few days. I'll squeeze a few other ...

Wednesday, May 16, 2007 - Version 0.98.9a alpha - Wed, 16 May 2007

Several major bugs I introduced in 0.98.9 are squashed. When they happened, they added extra lines to the Everything Report. I needed to fix this as soon as possible. Also included is what I hope will be an improvement to the families selected by Auto Organize. Auto Organize generally did quite well. But ...

Tuesday, May 15, 2007 - Tue, 15 May 2007

One of the things I had on my ToDo list before the beta release was to add connecting lines between the people on the Everything Report. I've wanted this since my initial concepts of Behold and I had dotted lines connecting people with their spouses and children on my prototype reports over 10 years ago. But ...

Friday, May 11, 2007 - Fri, 11 May 2007

It took me several tries, but I think I've successfully fixed the Auto Organize function. I've changed its basis from depth of father and mother's ancestral lines, to using the average ancestral generation depth. I now store that value for each individual and it can be displayed if desired. The nicest part ...

Monday, May 7, 2007 - Mon, 7 May 2007

This was a tough bug to track down: Whenever a section was sorted by surname, there was an extra line at the beginning of the section describing the last person of the previous section. It took four days until I resolved this. I had to disassemble a routine I used to re-sort by surname. Somehow, for the ...

Thursday, May 3, 2007 - Thu, 3 May 2007

Over the last 2 weeks, I've had some really good e-mail conversations with several people about Behold. In the process, I saw room for a few important improvements as well as a few bugs that should be fixed right away. So I'm working on those now, and I'll issue an interim release as soon as I'm done. See my ...

Thursday, April 26, 2007 - Thu, 26 Apr 2007

Tagging pictures. I've always planned to eventually get Behold to do that, but couldn't decide on how best to do it. Now I've seen a solution that I'm really impressed with. Facebook is a new social networking site, somewhat like MySpace, but frequented mostly by students. It allows you to identify the people ...

Thursday, April 19, 2007 - Version 0.98.9 alpha - Thu, 19 Apr 2007

That is it at last! The final alpha version. The next version I release, in less than 90 days from now, will hopefully be the first beta version. Until then I'll be working on getting the initial set of features finished off and then during the beta phase I'll turn Behold into a final polished product. This ...

Saturday, April 14, 2007 - Sat, 14 Apr 2007

All my structural changes are now done. Structure-wise, Behold is where I want it to be. The structure should now be able to handle any GEDCOM file thrown at it. Finally, I want to make sure Behold is correctly checking GEDCOM files for errors and properly reporting them in the log file. As soon as that's ...

Wednesday, April 11, 2007 - Wed, 11 Apr 2007

I've been plugging away bit by bit making progress. But I discovered when I was trying to finish off the input error checking, that it would be best to change all my internal links between people to include the forward and reverse descriptive text. I did plan on doing that eventually, but doing so now will save ...

Saturday, March 31, 2007 - Sat, 31 Mar 2007

I discovered a free program for adding annotations to photos. It is called FotoTagger and is at www.fototagger.com. You might want to download it for yourself. This is exactly what I was hoping to be able to include in Behold once I add display of images in the Everything Report, since I hadn't seen anything ...

Thursday, March 29, 2007 - Thu, 29 Mar 2007

For almost a year, I've been annoyed by spam bots pressing the "Send Key" link on Behold's download page, to a non-existant e-mail address. This results in an e-mail bounce and some administrative headaches on my part. The most blatant of these is one I get about twice a day with a return address of ...

Sunday, March 25, 2007 - Sun, 25 Mar 2007

A very interesting article today by Dick Eastman about the future of computerized Genealogy. Specifically, Dick talks about central web-based databases and online collaboration. I'm amazed at the number of online programs that have surfaced in the last few years. My Genealogy Software Links page currently ...

Saturday, March 24, 2007 - Sat, 24 Mar 2007

Excellent! After spending quite a few weeks to set up the data structures to handle recursive GEDCOM links, it only took a couple of hours to get them working. This is a major milestone for me. I first started to work on recursive links almost a year ago. I only thought it would take a week, but it didn't go ...

Monday, March 19, 2007 - Mon, 19 Mar 2007

Behold is a program I need. That's why I'm developing it. Being my own "end user", I notice the little things that would make Behold easier to use, and all the minor bugs that others would consider too small to report. Building Behold, for me, is a lot of fun. This increases the chances that I build a ...

Thursday, March 15, 2007 - Thu, 15 Mar 2007

With these recent improvements, I thought I'd try to see if Behold would now load some of the largest test GEDCOMs I had. These results are for my 3 GHz HP computer with 1 GB of RAM. The first GEDCOM I used to push Behold with is 20 MB in size, has 841,000 lines in it, 33790 people, and Behold's Print ...

Monday, March 12, 2007 - Mon, 12 Mar 2007

I stumbled into my biggest performance improvement yet. The Application.ProcessMessages statement allows the Operating System to handle all outstanding requests from all programs running. I have that statement in critical places throughout Behold to ensure that other applications, and even multiple copies of ...

Tuesday, March 6, 2007 - Tue, 6 Mar 2007

Enroute to recursive links, I found a few more natural improvements to Behold's internals. It's interesting how Behold has progressed. The first 7 years involved developing a working program with an Everything Report the way I thought it would be needed. The next 3 years added all the user interface ...

Tuesday, February 27, 2007 - Tue, 27 Feb 2007

I've finished as much tuning as is required for this version. You won't be able to help but notice the significant performance improvement. Now it's on to finally finish off the complete loading of the data. There are a couple of less used constructs that I still haven't tackled. The first is recursive ...

Saturday, February 24, 2007 - Sat, 24 Feb 2007

Just made a big improvement in Behold's processing speed. After making many other changes, it seemed that genererating the Name index was taking much longer than it should have. So I used my profiler and isolated the line that was taking all the time. It ended up being something I didn't expect: it was in ...

Tuesday, February 20, 2007 - Tue, 20 Feb 2007

A bunch of little things: Work progresses well on Behold. I'm amazed at how many internal changes I've made in the last few months. I use Delphi for my programming of Behold, and Delphi 2007 for Win32 has been announced. I plan to upgrade to it from Delphi 4 after Version 1.0 of Behold is released. To ...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007 - Tue, 13 Feb 2007

Okay. I've done enough data structure restructuring for now. My main goal was to separate citations and I've done that. The rest can improve bit by bit as it needs to. I used to implement citations as a set of linked records that had a lot of repeated information in them. I thought I'd get a performance boost ...

Sunday, February 11, 2007 - Sun, 11 Feb 2007

What is the worst computer program you have ever worked with? I just had my final encounter with what I call the worst. I've struggled with it for several years, and after this last experience, I'll never use it again. The program that wins my smelly sock award is Microsoft FrontPage 2000. This piece of ...

Thursday, February 8, 2007 - Thu, 8 Feb 2007

A quick followup to my last post. To clarify, I decided I need to send my mailings out in multipart rather than HTML. Those of you who view text-only deserve to get a newsletter that looks good too. Just about everyone's e-mail reader should accept multipart because most of the e-mail sent through cyberspace ...

Tuesday, February 6, 2007 - Tue, 6 Feb 2007

I've been thinking of spiffying-up my Behold News mailings that I send out from time to time to Purchasers and Trial Users. Currently, I send out a text e-mail, but I was thinking of sending it out in HTML, so it could look nicer and match the look of my Behold website. Quite a while ago, I had made up a ...

Saturday, February 3, 2007 - Sat, 3 Feb 2007

I've been thinking about the speed of data loading. Reading the GEDCOM should be fast, and as I mentioned in my Jan 30th post, I've done pretty well in comparison to other programs. So I added some interesting statistics about reading time that will show up in the Log file Behold produces. For my very large ...

Thursday, February 1, 2007 - Thu, 1 Feb 2007

I've started working to improve the data structures, and do some optimization as well. Optimization (making a program work faster and use less memory) is actually a specialty of mine. When I started building my Chess Program over 30 years ago, you had to make it work as fast as possible and squeeze as much ...

Tuesday, January 30, 2007 - Tue, 30 Jan 2007

After sending out my e-mail to let people know about the new version, I received two interesting e-mails back about the same thing from two different people. What they both had to say really surprised me. Both have very large GEDCOMs, upwards of 100,000 names. Behold still does not have an easy time with ...

Sunday, January 28, 2007 - Version 0.98.8 alpha - Sun, 28 Jan 2007

That last bug was bad enough that I decided to put out a version with what's done so far. It's a pretty good set of changes and is worthy of at least an alpha release. I was hoping this would have been the last alpha version, but I've still got enough work that will require one more alpha release before the ...

Wednesday, January 24, 2007 - Wed, 24 Jan 2007

A horribly horrible bug! While working on the relationship links, I tried printing a selection so I could look at it ... and I couldn't. Behold was no longer printing or previewing a selection. In fact the last full release, 0.98.7, had this bug as well. It seems that I introduced this bug when I upgraded to ...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007 - Tue, 23 Jan 2007

I made a few false starts as I tried to do a bit more restructuring. I generally attempt to make changes at a micro level, so that Behold continues to work. A couple of times this week though, I had to "remove the engine" in order to try to make a few of the more dramatic changes. But I've done so much ...

Monday, January 15, 2007 - Mon, 15 Jan 2007

Work is progressing well on the internal restructuring, and I'm about halfway through. So far, I've done the GEDCOM input part and cut the time that takes in half. I've also almost eliminated the Preprocessing step. My goal is to make a clear distinction between the code and data structures needed for input and ...

Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - Wed, 10 Jan 2007

I bought the December 2006 issue of Family Tree Magazine because it had a very interesting article by Rick Crume listing 23 common dilemnas people have with genealogy software and his solutions for them. He mentions 10 different programs, but highlights three: Family Tree Maker, Personal Ancestral File, and ...

Sunday, January 7, 2007 - Sun, 7 Jan 2007

Okay. I think I've finished the Tags stuff. It was more work than I wanted to do at this time, so I'm about 2 weeks behind on this version now, but at least that's done with. Next is the part I've been really looking forward to. Over the last year and a half, I worked to implement referencing. I had to come ...

Saturday, January 6, 2007 - Sat, 6 Jan 2007

Still not quite finished on the merging of Tags. I have completed the dialog and the merging "Tags into" procedure. Next I'll just have to copy that procedure over and do almost the same thing for the merging "Tags from" procedure. Doing anything a second time is almost trivial compared to the work involved in ...

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