Archive for ‘cloud’

April 7, 2016

Rootsweb Is Back Up … — #Genealogy

by C. Michael Eliasz-Solomon

 Rootsweb Stanczyk attended Ceil Jensen’s PARI webinar yesterday. Ceil graciously mentioned my Rootsweb page on Dziennik Polski (Detroit), a Polish historical newspaper.

I was excited for the shout-out and since I had not been on Rootsweb since it came back up, I decided a visit was in order.

Much to my horror the pages were recovered to 2013. Any work since was lost. I was able to quickly restore the current pages from my local files on my laptop. I uploaded the changed files and everything was fine. 

But I now wondered how much on Rootsweb private/user pages were not completely restored to their latest version?

Please check your pages on Rootsweb in case you may need to recover your work/research!

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March 8, 2016

RootsWeb Still Dead … But Signs Of Life ? #Genealogy #Cloud

by C. Michael Eliasz-Solomon

Rootsweb Returns March 15th, 2016RoostWeb estimates it will return March 15th. That is good news.

However, it being down hurt my blog website because I had links to my genealogy research that I had in RootsWeb and much of that research is over a decade ago. Now I had backups of  almost everything. That is my blog for today.

 

First off, it points out how important it is to have backups of your research. I had used RootsWeb as my cloud backup for SO LONG. So long that I had forgotten what I had up there and where it was sourced from. As it turned out, I was missing one spreadsheet. It was important in the sense that it was good data and I had even built my blog using the data from that spreadsheet as a menu item. So my recommendation here is that you have backups of everything and that you know where each copy is.

This may seem trivial, but let me point out that at this juncture, many genealogists use their CD ROM/DVD, their USB (aka thumb) drive, and even the cloud (iCloud, Dropbox, Box, EverNote, oneDrive and GoogleDrive) to backup their data from their hard drive. But what happens when your hardware is obsolete? Remember floppy drives??? Most of us are old enough to remember those removable media (in various sizes). They are gone now. What happens to your backup? It is not backed up if you cannot ACCESS the data.

So it is also true for the Cloud. This jester has a trademarked magazine, “Cloud Is Falling™“, that I started when I realized that we do not own the cloud, we only access it (perhaps for free or for a fee). So what happens if the Cloud Goes Down or a portion of the cloud no longer exists (the cloud company goes bankrupt or changes terms such that you can no longer access it)? You cannot access your research data. It is the same as hardware obsolescence. Perhaps you have heard of “Murphy’s Law” (i.e. anything that can go wrong, will go wrong) and the corollary extension: (at the worst possible time). @AmyJohnsonCrow (twitter) was using the RootsWeb outage to illustrate the need to have backup plans (as well as backed up data). 2016 had illustrated that a few times. We need only recall Ancestry.com eliminating FTM family tree software at the end of 2015. Fortunately, MacKiev has taken over developing and publishing FTM and now (as of March 4th) we have FTM and soon(??) RootsMagic that will have the TreeSynch capabilities to synch with Ancestry.com via their newly published API.

Ok, RootsWeb was out and still is down, so I rebuilt much of my Reference Data from the Menus of my blog to use another portion of the cloud instead of RootsWeb. This will give me redundancy by having the same data on two distinct clouds. I now have all my data on the hard drive now too! How did I do that while RootsWeb was still down?

That is an interesting tale. I used The Internet Archive and in particular, I used their WayBack Machine to access my RootsWeb page. Fortunately, they had made a snapshot of that page whose data I was missing and I was able to cut & paste the data back to my hard drive in a new spreadsheet! Pretty nifty huh? I hope you will enjoy my new spreadsheet which I have enhanced and even improved (i.e. corrected data). The new page: 1811_BiechowChurchRecord_births.htm  can be reached from the Menu of my blog’s home page.

September 10, 2015

Apple Bloggist — Apple Event 9-September-2015

by C. Michael Eliasz-Solomon

Yesterday you may have noticed a fair amount of Internet bandwidth and TV airtime devoted to Apple’s event. I want to do this economy a good deed. Apple did well.

How does that help? Well Apple is part of the DOW and NASDAQ and as such it affects the US Market. I know their stock (AAPL) went down yesterday about 2.12% after/during their event. I also know that todays market started down. So how did Apple and this jester help the economy? Apple announced new products. But this jester is going to tell you why what Apple announced was good.

Apple started with 15 minutes on Apple Watch. That was mostly ho-hum. But it is integral in long term. Wearables will be a more important segment of Apple’s future profits. This because we will shift our focus (in the world economies that are older) to health. Apple’s watch is only the entrée into this future product segment. Let me connect and emphasize a few other Powerpoints that you have missed. At the event Apple talked about pregnant women using their watch to collect fetal data that they could then share with the doctor. They also had a vendor (3D4Medical) during their iPad Pro presentation (which was nearly 40 minutes in length). It was a part of Apple Pencil announcement. A lot of people … ok most people laughed at this Steve-Jobsian-anachronism. Jobs hated the idea of a stylus. But mark this jester’s words that the wearables, the iPad Pro and the Apple Pencil along with apps (like 3D4Medicine) are pushing Apple products into the corporate world (a new market segment for Apple). Just take a moment and realize that Microsoft was a vendor at Apple’s event, earlier in the week we heard about Apple/Cisco and last year Apple/IBM. So we can foresee that Health is a new vertical for Apple in the business world. The Apple Pencil is important in this new segment when combined with apps and a nice tablet (such as iPad Pro).

The Apple Pencil was a part of the 40 minutes of iPad Pro. Why is this more than another Apple Newton (PDA)? The Apple Pencil is important because of the accuracy  —  down to a pixel. At the time of the announcement they had not spoken of the 3D Touch (formerly known as Force Touch) which was a part of the iPhone presentation [yet to come]. Many app types will benefit not just Health apps. CAD, design, graphics will all be MUCH better on iPad and to a lesser extent the iPhone. It will also become staple of e-signatures. This jester (and I assume others) have hated e-signatures based upon on finger-touch because the accuracy was horrid and that added worry to using e-signatures. I now think e-signatures will finally become REAL. Annotations will become a bigger part of Apple’s eco-system. I think it will put pressure (pun intended) on other offerings (MS, Sanyo). So I think Apple Pencil will stick  …  assuming the price comes down from $99.

Apple TV finally got an update. It received 30-31 minutes of love at the Apple Event. Ok, we got a new remote,, Siri-Search, an SDK, plus the other iOS features (multitasking, split-screen, picture-in-a-picture) in another OS, tvOS. So now developers must know: MacOS, iOS, watchOS, and tvOS. What we did not get was 4K support. Apple TV is still 1080p (HD). Why? The hardware in Apple TV (for which we get to pay a much higher price than Roku or Chromecast) includes 2GB RAM, HDMI 1.4, 802.11ac WiFi with MIMO, 10/100Base-T Ethernet, Bluetooth 4.0 wireless, USB-C (only for service & support), A8 chip. That  HDMI 1.4  can support 4K, so why is Apple TV not supporting 4K? There is no local storage so apps have to store data in iCloud. Apps are also limited to 200MB in size. clearly storage on Apple TV is limited — hence why the USB-C is not the “hosted type” that you find on laptops whereby you can transfer a lot of storage. I assume it for  Flash-RAM/PRAM updates, but will Apple send me aUSB-C flash-drive or will I have to bring the Apple TV into the Apple Store to get these updates? So Apple TV is a bit of a miss while providing an evolutionary link to something more special.

iPhone 6s / 6s plus was the big announcement that most people were at the Apple Event to see. They devoted nearly 40 minutes to the iPhone. This jester thinks the new iPhone will be a winner. A9 chip that will be 70% (or more when an app is GPU dependent) faster. There is also 3D Touch, Touch Id(2x faster),  12 MP camera / 5MP front facing camera, auto-focus and zoom? appear to be better or at least faster,  4K Video, True Tone, Display 3x brighter,  Live Photo, LTE and WiFi (upto 2x faster) and you can now purchase or  make install payments on your new iPhone (2 year contract). Oh, iCloud is now half the cost for the same amount of storage. I think I want it all.

Timeline

You can pre-order starting Saturday (9/12). iOS9 will be released Wednesday(9/16), your new iPhone 6s/6s-plus arrives Friday (9/25) .  Apple TV will be available late October (I hate these vague dates). iPad Pro will be available in November. [update]  OS XEl Capitan“, which is version 10.11 will be available, September 30.  [update]. So that is the event timeline.

Ok, since everyone is panning or bored with Apple and its offerings, I expect I will be alone when I walk into my local Apple store to purchase my new gear. Good, because this stuff will give me and my coCEO wife, Teréza an edge in many ways over our competition.

 

Stanczyk 8[mouse-in-wingdings-font]

P.S. A Bloggist is a blogger, apologist.

November 25, 2014

Ancestry App version 6.2 is Released — #Genealogy #Technology

by C. Michael Eliasz-Solomon

Stanczyk noted a new release of the Ancestry.com’s app.

Ancestry App version 6.2

In time for thanksgiving, Ancestry, released version 6.2. It looks like they added two features:

  1. Quickly add photos / documents from iCloud and/or Dropbox.
  2. Discover historical events that shaped your ancestor’s lives.

I get the first feature. It leaves me feeling, “meh”. It adds something for some people that have their photos in the cloud (despite all of the security concerns). For me this is a not-going-to-be-used, app “bloat-ware” feature added by some mobile programmer trying to shore up his/her resume.

The second feature is apparently Ancestry trying too add a widget to your daily notifications. I really see that feature  as less than “meh”. It is almost a negative feature in my eyes.

As far as I am concerned this version of the app, you can pass on. Nothing here. Don’t waste your bandwidth, unless you actually use iCloud or Dropbox to store your genealogy images / documents.

I like to keep my images on the phone, in case you cannot reach the Internet in some building (say a courthouse) where the Internet is blocked by wiring or other building materials. No Internet,  will not deter me, I just have my photos organized for quick location on my phone. If its up on a cloud and you have no access to the Internet for some reason  (or your cloud has crashed) then you cannot access the document when you need it and are out mobile doing some genealogy research in some remote location you cannot return again for a long time. But maybe you store pics of your ancestors (and not critical documents in the cloud) and you use that to add a pic to your tree one time. That might be ok, for people with large trees with 10,000+ people whose pics you do not want to clutter your phone with. So I am just “meh” about this upgrade.

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