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Louis Kessler's Behold Blog » Blog Entry           prev Prev   Next next

What I Do - Fri, 9 Jul 2010

Thomas MacEntee at GeneaBloggers maintains a list of Genealogy Blogs, currently with over 1,100 blogs in it including my Behold blog. He proposed a meme. Until today, I hadn’t ever heard of the word “meme” and I still don’t really know what it is.

None-the-less, Thomas suggested that we genealogy bloggers share some information with the community about what we use in terms of technology to run our genealogy businesses or pursue our family history as a hobby. He provides a list of categories to follow.

So this one will be a little different. Because it will tell you what a genealogy software programmer uses. Here we go:

* Hardware: HP m9402f Desktop, AMD Phenom 9650 Quad-Core Processor 2.30 GHz, 7.00 GB RAM, 640 GB Hard Drive, NVidia GeForce 6150 SE Graphics card, Two LG L1970HR 19 inch monitors, Windows Vista 64-bit Home Premium with Service Pack 2.

* External storage: 2 HP Personal Media Drives, 250 GB and 750 GB

* Online storage: Don’t use it. After major changes, I copy my critical files that I don’t want to lose to a Pen Drive and leave them in a safe place far from my house.

* Backup: I use Beyond Compare 3 to copy my files to my External Storage. I do so about every month or so. I copy the directory with all my Behold work to another directory before I make a change that I may want to back out of.

* Firewall: Hardware firewall with router. Software firewall built into Windows Vista.

* Virus protection: Used to use AVG free for many years. Switched to Microsoft Security Essentials when it came out last fall. Love it. Don’t even know its there.

* Spyware: Microsoft Security Essentials.

* File cleaner: Don’t use one.

* Printer: HP OfficeJet Pro 8500.

* Phone: Land line. Cellphone begrudgingly. I find phone calls to be an interruption. Email is much nicer. You answer when convenient.

* Mobile media: Don’t use any.

* Music player: No.

* Car audio: I just listen to the latest songs on FM radio.

* eBook Reader: No. I still prefer to print out e-books and read them as paper copy.

* Browser: Internet Explorer 8 and I love it. I use Firefox only for xhtml pages, but I’m waiting for IE9 to come out which will read xhtml and then I won’t need Firefox anymore.

* Blog: Wordpress with my own custom modifications. I use bbPress for the forum and have integrated it into Wordpress.

* RSS: Internet Explorer 8. I love that the RSS feeds are integrated into IE on the favorites tab. I have about 100 feeds I keep up with and spend almost an hour a day doing so. IE does this very well and efficiently for me.

* FTP: I used to use WS_FTP. Now I use Beyond Compare 3. I compare my website on my computer with the site online and it will FTP all the changed files in one step.

* Text editor: An older version of UltraEdit. The new version has got too bloaty.

* Graphics: Years ago I used Paint Shop Pro. I got Photoshop Elements after that and hated it. Now I use Windows Live Photo Gallery. I sometimes simply use Paint.

* Screen capture: Used to use SnagIt. But with Vista, I found that the free Windows Snipping Tool does almost everything I need (except printing).

* Social media: That’s my wife and daughters’ domain. They keep me up to date since I’m too busy. But you can find me on StackOverflow where programmers get together to ask and answer programming questions.

* Social bookmarking: I don’t do it. From time to time, I’ll mention interesting sites in this blog.

* Social profile: lkessler at StackOverflow.

* URL shortener: Don’t use one.

* Office suite: Microsoft Office 2010

* E-mail: Windows Mail

* Calendar: No.

* Accounting: Used to use Quicken but quit it quite a while ago when I realized the amount of time I spent recording my expenses was 100 times as much as the amount I time I got info out of Quicken. Besides, my family and I spend everything we make, so once you know that, what else is there to know?

* PDF generator: Don’t use one.

* Genealogy database: Started with Reunion for Windows. Continued using it when it was bought by Sierra and changed its name to Generations. I was a beta tester for an extensive update of Generations. But when Sierra sold it to Ancestry, it was dropped. It no longer is compatible with Vista, and I haven’t updated my genealogy database in about 10 years. I’m awaiting my finishing Behold version 2.0 and then that will become my genealogy software.

* Genealogy tools: Behold. I use it whenever I have to look up my family information, or want to send out a family tree (just their relations) to a relative.

* Other tech stuff: Have used digital cameras for 10 years - a must for genealogists. Use it not only for pics, but as a “copier” in archives, or a “voice recorder” for interviews. Currently use a Canon SD600 which I carry in my pocket wherever I go. But I want to get a new camera with built-in GPS so the exact location (latitude and longtitude) can be written into the picture data when its taken. I’ll probably get one before the next trip I take somewhere.

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